Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor's Degree

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Updated January 19, 2024

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Prepare for careers in criminal justice with an online bachelor's degree. This guide profiles top criminal justice programs and common careers in this field.
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Distance learning can be an excellent option for people pursuing criminal justice careers. Online bachelor's programs in the field prepare learners for jobs in law enforcement and the criminal justice system.

2022 data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reveals median salaries for popular careers in criminal justice:

Median Salaries For Popular Careers in Criminal Justice

Source: BLS

In addition to preparing graduates for the careers above, criminal justice degrees can also make a solid educational foundation for aspiring lawyers, forensics technicians, and postsecondary instructors.

This degree guide explores common courses, career paths, and typical study costs for online bachelor's degrees in criminal justice. It also includes a ranked list of the top online criminal justice bachelor's programs.

AccreditedSchoolsOnline.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Featured Online Criminal Justice Programs

Find a program that meets your affordability, flexibility, and education needs through an accredited, online school.

Top Criminal Justice Programs

#1 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Saint Leo University

  • Saint Leo, FL
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Saint Leo University supports flexible educational opportunities for students near and far. Undergraduate students can choose from in-person and remote degree programs. Learners can choose from one of 46 bachelor's degree programs and opt for remote study across 22 programs.

To earn a bachelor's of criminal justice degree, whether in-person or online, students join a supportive learning community, working alongside peers, faculty, and staff. Criminal justice students complete relevant coursework to gain the skills and knowledge necessary to begin a career in public safety. 

Learners can also customize their studies, choose electives, and declare degree concentrations and minors. While enrolled, learners can connect with institutional resources, such as career services and academic advising, to receive further guidance.

The college connects students with scholarships, fellowships, and other funding opportunities to help offset educational expenses.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$23,100
Out-of-state
$23,100
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$7,296
Out-of-state
$7,296
Retention Rate
69%
Acceptance Rate
72%
Students Enrolled
10,912
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
72% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#2 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

CUNY John Jay College of Criminal Justice

  • New York, NY
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Students seeking a flexible bachelor's degree program should consider CUNY John Jay College of Criminal Justice. Located in New York, New York, the public institution features in-person and virtual programs, enabling remote students to benefit from top-ranked classes, world-class faculty, and a supportive learning community. 

Students pursuing a criminal justice bachelor of science will participate in classes, lectures, and experiential learning opportunities to prepare them for a career in criminal justice. Along with studying institutional theory and practice, degree-seekers can also modify their classes, choose electives, and declare minors to personalize their eduction. Students can access institutional resources, such as career services and academic advising, throughout the course of their studies.

Applicants may be eligible for funding, such as scholarships, fellowships, and federal financial aid, to defray the costs of education. The institution reports that 85% of all degree seekers receive some form of financial aid.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$6,930
Out-of-state
$14,880
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$11,090
Out-of-state
$20,520
Retention Rate
80%
Acceptance Rate
41%
Students Enrolled
15,880
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
35% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#3 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Tiffin University

  • Tiffin, OH
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Degree-seekers who prefer flexible educational options should consider one of the 55 bachelor’s degrees from Tiffin University. Of its 55 bachelor's degree programs, 18 are offered online. Undergraduate students benefit from skilled faculty, rigorous coursework, and a supportive learning environment.

Through lectures, coursework, and other learning opportunities, criminal justice students can gain the skills and knowledge necessary to pursue a career in criminal justice. While earning a bachelor of criminal justice, degree-seekers can modify their classes, choose electives, and declare minors and degree concentrations. The college connects students with numerous resources, such as academic advising and career services, throughout the duration of their degree programs.

Applicants may be eligible for funding, such as scholarships, fellowships, and federal financial aid, to defray the costs of education.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$25,710
Out-of-state
$25,710
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$12,600
Out-of-state
$12,600
Retention Rate
65%
Acceptance Rate
69%
Students Enrolled
2,926
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
51% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#4 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

University of New Haven

  • West Haven, CT
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Students seeking a flexible education can explore the University of New Haven's in-person and online degree offerings. The West Haven-based college supports both learning platforms, and students benefit from a supportive learning community, top-ranked faculty, and motivated peers.

Enrollees seeking a bachelor of science in criminal justice take foundational and advanced classes, learning the ins and outs of the field. Degree-seekers can modify their classes and choose degree concentrations, such as correctional rehabilitation, crime analysis, and police science. While enrolled, participants benefit from career and academic counselors, receiving personal and academic guidance throughout their studies.

Prospective students can meet with the financial aid office to determine their eligibility for scholarships and other financial aid awards. The institution reports that 99% of all degree-seekers receive some form of financial aid.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$39,000
Out-of-state
$39,000
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$16,920
Out-of-state
$16,920
Retention Rate
77%
Acceptance Rate
83%
Students Enrolled
6,793
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
28% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes New England Commission on Higher Education

#5 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Eastern Kentucky University

  • Richmond, KY
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Eastern Kentucky University provides premier degree programs suitable for undergraduate students. The public college offers 89 bachelor's degree programs, 17 of which are fully remote. One of these remote programs is the online bachelor’s degree in police studies. 

Criminal justice students benefit from foundational and advanced coursework, as well as lectures covering conflict resolution and critical thinking skills. Students can also work with an academic advisor to customize their degrees by choosing a minor degree and elective classes. While enrolled, participants benefit from career and academic counselors, receiving personal and academic guidance throughout their studies.

Students can explore their eligibility for scholarships, fellowships, and federal financial aid in consultation with the financial aid office. The average financial aid package earned by students amounts to $8,121.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$9,266
Out-of-state
$19,338
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$9,900
Out-of-state
$13,950
Retention Rate
75%
Acceptance Rate
94%
Students Enrolled
14,980
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
44% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#6 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Lake Superior State University

  • Sault Ste Marie, MI
  • 4 years
  • Campus

Undergraduate students seeking competitive study should consider one of Lake Superior State University's 51 bachelor's programs. Students considering a career in law enforcement or a related career should consider a bachelor of science in criminal justice.

While enrolled, students complete foundational and advanced coursework, gaining skills and knowledge relevant to professional communication, personal responsibility, and evidence analysis. Students have the option to modify their classes, choose electives, and customize their studies. Enrollees can also access career services, academic advising, and other resources throughout their program duration.

Students can meet with the financial aid office to determine their eligibility for scholarships, fellowships, and other financial aid awards. Of all enrollees, 96% receive financial aid awards.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$12,000
Out-of-state
$12,000
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
Not provided
Out-of-state
Not provided
Retention Rate
71%
Acceptance Rate
57%
Students Enrolled
1,984
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
17% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#7 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Utica College

  • Utica, NY
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Students seeking a flexible bachelor's degree can learn at their own pace at Utica College. The Utica-based school supports hybrid learning opportunities with in-person and online programs. Students gain access to a supportive learning community regardless of their location.

Criminal justice students near and far benefit from a supportive learning community through the online bachelor of science (BS) in criminal justice program. Degree-seekers benefit from a robust education, completing coursework that familiarizes them with criminal justice. These classes equip students with the knowledge and skills needed to advance in their future careers.

In consultation with an academic advisor, students can modify their coursework, choose electives, and pursue degree concentrations and minors to suit their career goals. While enrolled, learners can connect with institutional resources, such as career services and academic advising, to receive further guidance.

The college connects students with a variety of funding opportunities to defray educational costs.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$21,560
Out-of-state
$21,560
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$21,480
Out-of-state
$21,480
Retention Rate
71%
Acceptance Rate
87%
Students Enrolled
4,947
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
61% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#8 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Madonna University

  • Livonia, MI
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Students seeking flexible study should consider Madonna University. Undergraduate students can choose from in-person and remote degree programs. At present, the college provides 84 bachelor's degree programs, with 12 programs supporting remote study.

To earn a career in criminal justice, students can earn their bachelor of science in criminal justice degree. Students connect with a supportive learning community, whether in person or online. Degree-seekers benefit from a robust education, completing coursework that familiarizes them with their field of interest. Learners also have the option to pursue a minor or associate's degree in criminal justice.

Students can declare minors, degree concentrations, and further customize their studies in consultation with an academic advisor. Students can also access institutional resources, such as career services and academic advising, throughout their studies.

Students can meet with the financial aid office to determine their eligibility for scholarships and other educational funding. The institution boasts that 97% of all enrollees receive some form of financial aid.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$23,100
Out-of-state
$23,100
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$15,930
Out-of-state
$15,930
Retention Rate
76%
Acceptance Rate
75%
Students Enrolled
2,992
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
61% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#9 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Keiser University-Ft Lauderdale

  • Fort Lauderdale, FL
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Keiser University-Ft Lauderdale supports flexible educational opportunities for students near and far. Students can pursue remote study or learn from the college's campus in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The college campus and online learning environment enable students to connect with peers, faculty, and staff during their studies.

To earn a bachelor of arts in criminal justice, remote and campus-based students connect with peers, faculty, and staff through a supportive learning environment. Students in the criminal justice program complete industry-relevant coursework and attend lectures, gaining the skills and knowledge needed to succeed. Learners complete foundational and advanced coursework with the option to pursue internships and other experiential learning opportunities.

Students can also declare minors and degree concentrations to personalize their learning experience. While enrolled, learners can connect with institutional resources, such as career services and academic advising, to receive further guidance.

To help offset the cost of tuition, students can meet with a financial aid counselor to explore funding opportunities. 

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$19,808
Out-of-state
$19,808
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$27,162
Out-of-state
$27,162
Retention Rate
75%
Acceptance Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
19,567
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
47% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#10 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Anna Maria College

  • Paxton, MA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Anna Maria College supports flexible educational opportunities for undergraduate students. Located in Paxton, Massachusetts, the private institution offers competitive, flexible programs that can be completed in person or online. Students connect with supportive faculty, colleagues, and other staff through in-person and online learning environments.

Students seeking to earn a bachelor of science in criminal justice benefit from a supportive learning community. As part of the program curriculum, students complete coursework and attend relevant lectures given by educators in criminal justice and law enforcement. These classes equip students with the knowledge and skills needed to advance in their future careers in the field.

Learners can customize their studies to suit their personal and professional goals. Learners can also benefit by utilizing institutional resources, such as academic advising and career services.

Students can meet with a financial aid counselor to explore funding opportunities. At the college, 100% of all incoming students receive financial aid funding.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$36,190
Out-of-state
$36,190
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$10,530
Out-of-state
$10,530
Retention Rate
65%
Acceptance Rate
74%
Students Enrolled
1,441
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
24% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes New England Commission on Higher Education

#11 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Drexel University

  • Philadelphia, PA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Drexel University provides premier degree programs suitable for undergraduate students. The college supports 101 bachelor's programs, with eight degrees available fully online While enrolled, students connect with premier faculty and benefit from a supportive learning community.

While earning a bachelor of science in criminology and justice studies, students gain skills and knowledge through their coursework to prepare for their future careers. Students can work with their academic advisors to customize their degrees and study trajectory. The college also connects students with numerous resources, such as academic advising and career services, throughout the duration of their degree programs.

Students can explore their eligibility for scholarships, fellowships, and federal financial aid in consultation with the financial aid office. At the college, 100% of all enrollees are awarded financial aid packages.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$52,146
Out-of-state
$52,146
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$35,181
Out-of-state
$35,181
Retention Rate
89%
Acceptance Rate
75%
Students Enrolled
24,205
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
38% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#12 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Sam Houston State University

  • Huntsville, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Students seeking a flexible education can explore Sam Houston State University's in-person and online degree offerings. To date, the college offers 65 in-person bachelor's programs, eight of which are fully remote. Students across modalities connect with peers and faculty through a supportive learning community.

The university offers two types of criminal justice degrees. Students can choose to pursue a bachelor of science (BS) degree or a bachelor of arts (BA) degree. Both degree tracks are available online. Enrollees gain skills and knowledge through lectures, coursework, and other learning opportunities. Degree-seekers can modify their classes, choose electives, and declare minors and degree concentrations. Students also receive guidance throughout their studies through academic advising, career services, and other resources.

Students can meet with the financial aid office to determine their eligibility for scholarships, fellowships, and other financial aid awards. The college boasts an average financial aid award package of $9,014, with 86% of all enrollees receiving some form of aid.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$5,856
Out-of-state
$15,984
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$5,765
Out-of-state
$13,361
Retention Rate
75%
Acceptance Rate
83%
Students Enrolled
21,558
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
53% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#13 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Saint Ambrose University

  • Davenport, IA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Undergraduate students seeking competitive study should consider one of Saint Ambrose University's 95 bachelor's programs. At the university, enrollees gain access to a supportive learning environment and a world-class faculty, whether learning online or in person. 

Students pursuing a bachelor of science in criminal justice complete foundational and advanced coursework while enrolled. The university also offers a criminal justice minor and specialized track for students planning to earn an advanced degree. In addition, students can pursue internships and other experiential learning opportunities. Students can also access institutional resources, such as career services and academic advising, throughout the course of their studies.

Based on their eligibility, students can receive scholarships, fellowships, and other financial aid awards. Of all enrollees, 100% receive financial aid awards.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$31,532
Out-of-state
$31,532
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$17,460
Out-of-state
$17,460
Retention Rate
76%
Acceptance Rate
77%
Students Enrolled
2,968
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
17% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#14 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

University of Central Oklahoma

  • Edmond, OK
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Undergraduate students seeking competitive study should consider one of the University of Central Oklahoma's 108 bachelor's programs. Of these bachelor's degrees, the school offers four online degrees entirely online. 

Students seeking to earn a bachelor of arts in criminal justice gain skills and knowledge through fundamental and advanced coursework to prepare for a career in law enforcement or a related area. Students can work with their academic advisors to customize their degrees and study trajectory. Students also receive guidance throughout their studies through academic advising, career services, and other resources.

Students can meet with the financial aid office to determine their eligibility for scholarships, fellowships, and other financial aid awards. The college reports an average financial aid award package of $7,755.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$6,686
Out-of-state
$17,573
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$7,000
Out-of-state
$17,008
Retention Rate
65%
Acceptance Rate
84%
Students Enrolled
14,821
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
38% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#15 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Lewis University

  • Romeoville, IL
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Students seeking flexible study should consider Lewis University. Undergraduate students can choose from in-person and remote degree programs. To date, the school offers 79 bachelor’s programs, with eight online degree options.

Students benefit from a supportive learning community, whether they choose to learn online or in person. While enrolled in the bachelor of arts in criminal justice degree, students complete general and public safety administration-specific coursework. Students gain skills and knowledge necessary for relevant careers through their engagement with general and advanced classes.

Learners can customize their studies to suit their personal and professional goals. A leader in student success, the college also connects enrollees with career services, academic advising, and other supportive resources.

To manage the costs of education, students can apply for scholarships, fellowships, and other funding opportunities through the financial aid office. Of all enrollees, 100% receive some form of financial aid.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$33,270
Out-of-state
$33,270
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$14,400
Out-of-state
$14,400
Retention Rate
84%
Acceptance Rate
64%
Students Enrolled
6,359
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
43% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#16 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Chaminade University of Honolulu

  • Honolulu, HI
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Chaminade University of Honolulu, a private college in Honolulu, Hawaii, provides flexible study options for undergraduate students near and far. To date, the college offers 26 bachelor's programs, ten of which are fully remote. Enrollees gain access to a supportive learning environment during their studies with a top-notch faculty and motivated peers.

To earn a bachelor of science (BS) in criminology and criminal justice, students complete foundational and advanced coursework, gaining skills and knowledge relevant to law enforcement, public safety, and other related fields. Students can customize their study by declaring a double major, minor, or degree concentration. While enrolled, students can access institutional resources, including career services and academic advising.

The college connects students with numerous funding opportunities, from scholarships to federal financial aid. The institution reports that 99% of all degree-seekers receive some form of financial aid.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$26,020
Out-of-state
$26,020
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$24,000
Out-of-state
$24,000
Retention Rate
86%
Acceptance Rate
95%
Students Enrolled
2,167
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
55% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior Colleges and University Commission

#17 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Washburn University

  • Topeka, KS
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Undergraduate students can benefit from a flexible, thorough education at Washburn University. A leader in hybrid education, the public college supports both in-person and online learning. To date, the public college supports 61 bachelor's programs, nine of which are online.

Students seeking to earn a bachelor's in criminal justice (BCJ)  join a supportive learning community, connecting with peers, faculty, and staff in person and online. After enrolling, students complete coursework as part of the program curriculum. Participants take foundational classes, as well as advanced coursework, with the option to modify their schedule.

Students can also choose electives, degree concentrations, and degree minors to personalize their learning experience. Throughout their studies, students can access institutional resources, such as career services and academic advising.

To defray the costs of education, students can apply for scholarships, fellowships, and other funding opportunities. According to the college, 92% of all enrollees receive financial aid, with the average student awarded $5,912 in aid.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$8,594
Out-of-state
$19,346
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$9,306
Out-of-state
$18,788
Retention Rate
69%
Acceptance Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
6,285
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
38% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#18 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Cedar Crest College

  • Allentown, PA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Cedar Crest College, a private college in Allentown, Pennsylvania, provides flexible study options for undergraduate students near and far. To date, the college offers 52 in-person bachelor's programs, four of which are fully remote. Online and in-person learners connect with peers, faculty, and staff, either through on-campus learning environments or virtual classrooms.

Students pursuing a bachelor's of criminal justice can gain the skills and knowledge necessary for their career field through lectures, coursework, and other learning opportunities. Students can customize their study by declaring a double major, minor, or degree concentration, which includes ethical leadership, juvenile studies, and criminal behavior. Throughout their program, students can also access resources such as career services, academic advising, and library services.

Students are eligible for scholarships, fellowships, and other financial aid awards. Of all enrollees, 100% receive financial aid awards.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$39,774
Out-of-state
$39,774
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$14,287
Out-of-state
$14,287
Retention Rate
75%
Acceptance Rate
61%
Students Enrolled
1,526
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
45% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#19 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Adrian College

  • Adrian, MI
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Adrian College is a private college offering hybrid education in Adrian, Michigan. Students can choose from 77 bachelor's degree programs. Students benefit from a supportive learning community, top-ranked faculty, and motivated peers.

To earn a bachelor of arts in criminal justice degree, students complete foundational and advanced coursework to prepare for a career in criminal justice or an advanced degree. Students can customize their study by declaring a double major, minor, and degree concentration. Throughout their studies, students can access academic advising, career services, and other institutional resources.

The college connects students with numerous funding opportunities, from scholarships to federal financial aid. 

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$36,834
Out-of-state
$36,834
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$18,600
Out-of-state
$18,600
Retention Rate
64%
Acceptance Rate
56%
Students Enrolled
1,828
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
3% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#20 Earning an Online Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree

Ashland University

  • Ashland, OH
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Students interested in a flexible education should consider one of the 78 bachelor’s degrees from Ashland University. To date, the college offers 78 in-person bachelor's programs, five of which are fully remote. Enrollees connect with peers, faculty, and staff, either through campus learning environments or virtual classrooms.

Online students seeking a bachelor of science in criminal justice degree complete foundational and advanced coursework, as well as attend online lectures. Remote degree-seekers can modify their classes, choose electives, and declare minors and degree concentrations. Students benefit from institutional resources throughout their studies, including career services and academic advising.

Students can explore their eligibility for scholarships, fellowships, and federal financial aid in consultation with the financial aid office.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$20,950
Out-of-state
$20,950
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$6,540
Out-of-state
$6,540
Retention Rate
75%
Acceptance Rate
71%
Students Enrolled
5,091
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
51% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

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Accredited Schools Online uses a custom ranking system to evaluate schools on their quality, affordability, and reputation.

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Why Get an Online Degree in Criminal Justice?

According to the BLS, police officers and detectives earned a median annual salary of $69,160 in 2022 — over $22,000 per year higher than the median salary for all occupations. The BLS projects 3% employment growth for careers like police officer and emergency management director from 2022 to 2032, indicating continuing demand for professionals in this field.

Online criminal justice degrees offer flexibility and accessibility to students pursuing criminal justice careers. Asynchronous learning allows degree-seekers to schedule their education around work and family responsibilities. Additionally, online learners can enroll in out-of-state programs without relocating.

How Much Does a Criminal Justice Degree Cost?

Tuition varies by school. Typically, in-state public schools offer the most affordable tuition rates, while out-of-state and private institutions are more expensive. Some online criminal justice degrees offer lower tuition specifically for online learners, which can save enrollees money as they complete their program.

In addition to tuition, online criminal justice degrees may include charges like student fees. Other expenses include textbooks and graduation fees. Learners should also budget for technology, as they must meet their program's requirements for hardware, software, and internet speed.

How Much Do Criminal Justice Majors Make?

Earning potential depends on many factors, including location. For example, police and sheriff's patrol officers earn the highest average wages in states like California, Washington, and New Jersey, according to 2022 BLS data. Hawaii and Alaska also offer high salaries.

However, several of these states have costs of living exceeding the national average, meaning that these higher wages may not have the same purchasing power as lower salaries in less expensive states.

Graduates of criminal justice schools often qualify for more career opportunities. For instance, the FBI requires special agents to hold a bachelor's degree. Some specialized law enforcement agents also need an academic background in criminal justice and other subjects.

AccreditedSchoolsOnline.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Featured Online Criminal Justice Programs

Find a program that meets your affordability, flexibility, and education needs through an accredited, online school.

Courses for an Online Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice

Major-specific coursework in online criminal justice degrees explores criminal justice institutions, why crime happens, and how professionals in this field respond to crime. Students also learn how various agencies make communities safer. Many programs feature concentrations that align with specific careers.

While each school offers its own classes, the five courses below represent possible options for students pursuing affordable online criminal justice degrees. Research each prospective program to learn more about specific classes and specializations.

  • Essentials of Psychology

    This introductory course covers the relationship between biology and psychology, the human nervous system, and development over the lifespan. Students analyze case studies and draw conclusions about psychological motivations.
  • Police Studies

    Students in this class learn about officers' roles in law enforcement. Coursework explores law enforcement theories, procedures, and types of violence. Learners also examine police corruption and its impact on public safety. Assignments may include analyzing communities' law enforcement needs and drafting community policing policies.
  • Legal Research and Writing

    Paralegals, lawyers, and judges need advanced research and writing skills. Students in this course improve their information literacy, use research aides, and write memoranda. Learners complete research projects on criminal justice topics such as parental custody. Prerequisites may include a first-year English or writing course.
  • Law Enforcement Administration

    This class introduces students to the management and organizational structures commonly found in law enforcement agencies. Topics include the procedures, processes, and documentation standards criminal justice professionals must follow. Coursework also covers organizational oversights and controls, chains of command, and defining elements of criminal justice bureaucracy.
  • Theories of Criminology

    Social scientists have developed multiple theories to explain crime and criminal behavior patterns. This survey course examines major historical and contemporary criminology theories. Students learn about biological, social, and psychological causes of criminal behavior and crime prevention models, including deterrence and early intervention.
  • Criminal Justice Capstone

    Criminal justice bachelor's programs may conclude with a capstone experience. Learners design and execute an original research project that integrates their theoretical and practical knowledge of criminal justice concepts. The project prompts students to display advanced skills in academic research, case analysis, critical thinking, collaboration, and professional writing.

Career and Salary Outlook for Criminal Justice

Graduates of criminal justice schools can qualify for a variety of jobs. According to the BLS, several of these careers feature higher-than-average median wages and positive growth projections from 2022 to 2032.

Below, we explore several common career outcomes for professionals with criminal justice degrees. Job duties vary by state and employer. Some jobs require professional experience in addition to a criminal justice degree.

Police and Detectives


2022 Median Salary: $69,160

Police officers and detectives respond to emergencies, patrol, and arrest suspects. Other job duties include completing paperwork and testifying in court. Some entry-level positions require only a high school diploma. However, police and detectives must typically graduate from a police academy. Bachelor's degree-holders may qualify for promotions and additional career opportunities.

Probation Officers and Correctional Treatment Specialists


2022 Median Salary: $59,860

Probation officers and correctional treatment specialists work with recently paroled criminals. They help parolees attain work and access social services, such as psychological and drug treatment. These officers also perform drug tests and update parolees' files. These professionals typically hold a bachelor's degree in a field like criminal justice or psychology.

Forensic Science Technicians


2022 Median Salary: $63,740

Forensic science technicians collect evidence from crime scenes. These professionals may specialize in subfields like sketching or photography. They perform laboratory tests and work alongside other scientists. Officers use these technicians' findings to arrest and prosecute suspects. In addition to criminal justice knowledge, forensic science technicians typically need an academic background in the natural sciences.

Criminal Justice Degrees By State

Alabama Criminal Justice Degrees

Alaska Criminal Justice Degrees

Arizona Criminal Justice Degrees

Arkansas Criminal Justice Degrees

California Criminal Justice Degrees

Colorado Criminal Justice Degrees

Connecticut Criminal Justice Degrees

Delaware Criminal Justice Degrees

Florida Criminal Justice Degrees

Georgia Criminal Justice Degrees

Hawaii Criminal Justice Degrees

Idaho Criminal Justice Degrees

Illinois Criminal Justice Degrees

Indiana Criminal Justice Degrees

Iowa Criminal Justice Degrees

Kansas Criminal Justice Degrees

Kentucky Criminal Justice Degrees

Louisiana Criminal Justice Degrees

Maine Criminal Justice Degrees

Maryland Criminal Justice Degrees

Massachusetts Criminal Justice Degrees

Michigan Criminal Justice Degrees

Minnesota Criminal Justice Degrees

Mississippi Criminal Justice Degrees

Missouri Criminal Justice Degrees

Montana Criminal Justice Degrees

Nebraska Criminal Justice Degrees

New Hampshire Criminal Justice Degrees

Nevada Criminal Justice Degrees

New Jersey Criminal Justice Degrees

New Mexico Criminal Justice Degrees

New York Criminal Justice Degrees

North Carolina Criminal Justice Degrees

North Dakota Criminal Justice Degrees

Ohio Criminal Justice Degrees

Oklahoma Criminal Justice Degrees

Oregon Criminal Justice Degrees

Pennsylvania Criminal Justice Degrees

Rhode Island Criminal Justice Degrees

South Carolina Criminal Justice Degrees

South Dakota Criminal Justice Degrees

Tennessee Criminal Justice Degrees

Texas Criminal Justice Degrees

Utah Criminal Justice Degrees

Vermont Criminal Justice Degrees

Virginia Criminal Justice Degrees

Washington Criminal Justice Degrees

West Virginia Criminal Justice Degrees

Wisconsin Criminal Justice Degrees

Wyoming Criminal Justice Degrees

Frequently Asked Questions About an Online Criminal Justice Degree

How long does it take to get a criminology degree?

Bachelor's programs in criminology typically require 120 semester credits, which takes four years of full-time study. You can shorten your graduation timeline by overloading your schedule, taking summer classes, or enrolling in an accelerated program. If you have existing college credits, you may be able to transfer them toward your degree and graduate more quickly.

Is an online criminal justice degree worth it?

Whether a degree is worth it depends on your career goals. Employers in law enforcement and the criminal justice system may require even entry-level job candidates to hold degrees, meaning pursuing a degree in this field is required for the roles you apply to.

Multiple criminal justice jobs offer higher-than-average wages, so the degree can offer a positive return on investment. Online degrees can offer cost-saving opportunities by helping learners avoid relocation, commuting, and parking costs. These reduced expenses can further increase your program's return on investment.

Is criminology a stable job?

The BLS projects police officers, corrections counselors, private investigators, and other common careers in criminal justice will experience average or faster-than-average growth from 2022 to 2032. These positive projections may indicate career stability in the coming years.

What are the benefits of having a bachelor's degree in criminal justice?

A criminal justice bachelor's degree can help qualify graduates for a diverse set of careers. Bachelor's degrees in criminal justice can also serve as an educational foundation for advanced study. Upon graduating, you can proceed into master's programs in criminal justice, criminal investigation, criminology, sociology, and other related academic paths.

What is another name for a criminal justice degree?

The term "criminal justice" typically carries a specific meaning in academic contexts, referring to the study of institutions, procedures, and systems used in law enforcement, criminal courts, and corrections. Fields related to criminal justice include criminology, forensic science, public safety, and law.

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