Are Criminal Justice Degree Programs Available Online?
By first determining what exactly your career goal is, you will easily find a degree program in criminal justice online. In general, the career training for aspiring criminal justice professionals would include taking an associate’s, certificate, bachelor’s, and even master’s degrees.
In a certificate degree program in criminal justice, students will learn about certain fields such as national security management, terrorism management, and crime scene technician. It typically takes only an academic year to complete a certificate program in criminal justice.
By choosing an associate’s degree program, you will be prepared for careers like paralegal, court reporting, private security, corrections, and law enforcement. It would normally take two years to finish an associate’s degree program.
In order to attain further training and more extensive education on any of the courses or programs available at the associate level, you would need to earn a bachelor’s degree. By taking a bachelor’s degree program in a field related to criminal justice, you will also be qualified for jobs as a correctional treatment specialist, a probation officer, or a social worker. The time required to complete this degree program is four years.
Those who are looking to increase your chances at getting higher and more advanced rankings or positions in law enforcement, it is advised that you earn a master’s degree in criminal justice or any other related field. With a master’s degree, you will be qualified to work as a police chief, an FBI agent, or a college instructor. It would normally require two years of study to finish a master’s degree program after finishing a bachelor’s degree program.
In most criminal justice schools, students are typically able to transfer the credits of one degree program to a different and more advanced degree program. If, for instance, you have earned an associate’s degree, you can use it and take the credits for your bachelor’s degree program. This is also applicable for online degree program in criminal justice.
Earnings and Opportunities
The salary of a criminal justice professional basically depends on their educational level and their chosen field of work. The Bureau of Labor Statistics stated that in 2007, the median salary of sheriff patrol officers and police was around $50,000. Meanwhile, detectives, police managers, and first line supervisors receive an average of $70,000. Generally speaking, the BLS is expecting an increase of 11% in employment through 2016. These are great figures considering the fact that there are also a number of careers and jobs waiting for criminal justice majors.