Best Criminal Justice Schools in Mississippi

Updated November 3, 2022

Mississippi criminal justice schools equip students with skills to enter a variety of legal and law enforcement fields. Find the program for you!

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.

Are you ready to discover your college program?

Credit: CRobertson | iStock | Getty Images Plus

Academic Programs and Career Paths for Criminal Justice Students

Mississippi has a crime rate 10 percent above the national average, making careers in criminal justice in-demand in the state. Those interested in attending criminal justice school in Mississippi can transition into industries such as criminal investigation and prosecution, correctional facility, judicial and legal work or even wildlife and natural resources law enforcement. This page offers information about Mississippi's best criminal justice schools, as well as state-specific employment, salary and job growth resources for current or prospective students, and anyone interested in exploring a degree in criminal justice.

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.

Top Online Programs

Explore programs of your interests with the high-quality standards and flexibility you need to take your career to the next level.

Mississippi's Best Criminal Justice Programs

Methodology

To be considered for this ranking, schools were required to meet the following criteria: Accredited at the institutional level Private nonprofit or public school Minimum of 1 bachelor's or master's degree in subject area for 4-year schools Minimum of 1 associate degree or certificate program in subject area for 2-year schools Schools were then scored on factors such as: Cost & Financial Aid Number and variety of program offerings Student-teacher ratios Graduation rates (4-year schools only) Placement and support services offered Academic/Career counseling services Employment services Loan default rates These factors were assembled for each school and rated using a peer-based-value (PBV) calculation. PBV compares the cost of a program to the cost of other programs with the same (or similar) qualitative score and cost. PBV denotes the overall value or "bang for your buck" of a college or degree program.

With a variety of program options, specializations and criminal justice schools spread across Mississippi, the search for the perfect school can be difficult. The list below provides an analysis of which schools offer the best overall value for criminal justice students. Each criminal justice school is scored and ranked by features like tuition cost, acceptance rates and financial aid availability. These variables can help college-bound students efficiently assess Mississippi's best criminal justice programs.

#1 Best Criminal Justice Schools in Mississippi

Mississippi Valley State University

  • Itta Bena, MS
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Students seeking a flexible bachelor's degree should consider Mississippi Valley State University. The Itta Bena-based college supports both in-person and remote bachelor's programs. Students across modalities connect with peers and faculty through a supportive learning community.

Enrollees pursing a bachelor of science in criminal justice gain skills and knowledge through lectures, coursework, and other learning opportunities. Depending on their career goals, students can declare a double major, minor, or degree concentration. Enrollees can access institutional resources including career services and academic advising.

Applicants may be eligible for funding, such as scholarships, fellowships, and federal financial aid, to defray the costs of education. The college boasts an average financial aid award package of $8,690, with 98% of all enrollees receiving some form of aid.

Average Tuition
In-state
$6,726
Out-of-state
$6,726
Retention Rate
61%
Admission Rate
65%
Students Enrolled
2,147
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
50% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#2 Best Criminal Justice Schools in Mississippi

University of Southern Mississippi

  • Hattiesburg, MS
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

University of Southern Mississippi supports a variety of undergraduate-level degrees. Learners can pursue remote study or learn from the college's campus in Hattiesburg. Students pursuing the bachelor's in criminal justice connect with supportive faculty, colleagues, and other staff through in-person and online learning environments.

Degree-seekers complete general and advanced coursework as part of the program curriculum. Enrollees can also pursue experiential learning opportunities, such as internships and research projects.

Students can modify their coursework, choose electives, and declare minors and degree concentrations. Throughout their studies, learners can work with career services and academic advising to receive further guidance.

Degree candidates can meet with a financial aid counselor to explore funding options. The institution reports that 93% of all enrollees receive some form of financial aid.

Average Tuition
In-state
$8,786
Out-of-state
$10,786
Retention Rate
68%
Admission Rate
97%
Students Enrolled
14,133
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
70% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#3 Best Criminal Justice Schools in Mississippi

University of Mississippi

  • University, MS
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Students seeking a flexible bachelor's degree can learn at their own pace at University of Mississippi. Undergraduate students can choose from in-person and remote degrees. To date, the school offers 78 bachelor’s programs, with three online degree options.

Enrollees pursuing a bachelor of science in criminal justice can connect with a supportive learning community, whether in person or online. Degree candidates complete general and major-specific coursework. Participants take foundational and advanced classes, with the option to modify their schedule and choose electives.

In consultation with an academic advisor, students can pursue degree concentrations and minors. Learners further benefit from access to institutional resources, such as academic advising and career services.

Students can meet with the financial aid office to determine their eligibility for scholarships and other educational funding. At the college, 86% of all incoming students receive financial aid.

Average Tuition
In-state
$8,718
Out-of-state
$24,990
Retention Rate
87%
Admission Rate
88%
Students Enrolled
21,617
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
38% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#4 Best Criminal Justice Schools in Mississippi

Jackson State University

  • Jackson, MS
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Students seeking a flexible bachelor's degree can learn at their own pace at Jackson State University. Learners can choose from a variety of degrees, either in person or online. Students pursuing a bachelor of science in criminal justice connect with supportive faculty, colleagues, and other staff through in-person and online learning environments.

The college provides students with a competitive education through intensive study. Learners can also pursue internships, research projects, and experiential learning opportunities to supplement their education.

Degree-seekers can modify their coursework, choose electives, and declare minors and degree concentrations. Students can receive guidance through career services, academic advising, and other institutional resources.

When preparing for degree costs, applicants can meet with the financial aid office to explore funding opportunities. The institution boasts that 98% of all enrollees receive some form of financial aid.

Average Tuition
In-state
$8,270
Out-of-state
$8,270
Retention Rate
77%
Admission Rate
68%
Students Enrolled
7,020
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
61% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#5 Best Criminal Justice Schools in Mississippi

Delta State University

  • Cleveland, MS
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Undergraduate students can benefit from a flexible, thorough education at Delta State University. Learners can choose from on-campus and online programs. Students pursuing a bachelor of science in social justice and criminology can connect with peers, faculty, and staff during their program.

Degree-seekers connect with a supportive learning community, whether in person or online. Criminal justice students follow a rigorous program curriculum. These classes equip students with the knowledge and skills needed to advance in their future career.

In consultation with an academic advisor, enrollees can modify their coursework, choose electives, and pursue degree concentrations and minors. A leader in student success, the college connects enrollees with career services, academic advising, and other supportive resources.

Learners can meet with a financial aid counselor to determine their eligibility for scholarships, fellowships, and federal financial aid. The institution boasts that 94% of all enrollees receive some form of financial aid.

Average Tuition
In-state
$7,501
Out-of-state
$7,501
Retention Rate
67%
Admission Rate
94%
Students Enrolled
3,751
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
49% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

A degree in criminal justice may lead to many different careers. Take a look at some of the most common occupations for criminal justice school grads in Mississippi below. Before choosing a specialization within criminal justice, college-bound students can get a feel for what each profession looks like in the state of Mississippi, including average salaries and the level of education required for each profession.

Police, Sheriff & Highway Patrol Officers

  • Total Employed in Mississippi7,320
  • Median Salary in Mississippi$33,430
  • Degree Level Required in MississippiAcademy Program

Correctional Officer

  • Total Employed in Mississippi7,090
  • Median Salary in Mississippi$24,630
  • Degree Level Required in MississippiVaries; up to Bachelor's

Compliance Officer

  • Total Employed in Mississippi1,960
  • Median Salary in Mississippi$47,040
  • Degree Level Required in MississippiBachelor's

Court, Municipal and License Clerks

  • Total Employed in Mississippi1,540
  • Median Salary in Mississippi$28,200
  • Degree Level Required in MississippiVaries; up to Bachelor's

Paralegal and Legal Assistant

Detectives and Criminal Investiagors

  • Total Employed in Mississippi910
  • Median Salary in Mississippi$45,660
  • Degree Level Required in MississippiVaries; up to Associate

Probation Officer

  • Total Employed in Mississippi260
  • Median Salary in Mississippi$28,940
  • Degree Level Required in MississippiBachelor's

Projected Job Growth and Annual Salaries in Mississippi

When choosing a criminal justice school in Mississippi it may also be important to consider the legal and protective service career options available in the state. With crime rates 10 percent higher than the national average, many criminal justice oriented fields show higher than average job growth projections. Compare Mississippi's numbers on the graphs below and learn about which degree each specialized position within criminal justice requires, from Doctorate to Associate.

Salary

JobNationalMississippi
Criminal Justice Professor63,23064,460
Probation Officer31,64054,080
Bailiff30,65044,900
Court Reporter32,27054,720
Rehabilitation Counselor32,22037,330
Forensic Science Technician51,42060,090
Administrative Law Judge79,28089,970
Gaming Investigators32,04034,790

Job Growth

JobNationalMississippi
Transportation Security-0.090.095
Administrative Law Judge-0.0330.018
Compliance Officer0.0330.055
Correctional Officer0.0370.144
Detectives, Criminal Investigator-0.0120.045
Bailiff0.0470.071
Paralegal, Legal Assistant0.0760.097
Court Reporter0.0150.044

Source: Projections Central, 2015

Highest Employment Areas for Criminal Justice in Mississippi

Before enrolling in criminal justice school, students may want to have a better understanding of the most employable areas in the state. Michigan has many large-population cities with criminal justice career opportunities, examples mapped below. Details on common industry careers and the largest employment areas in the state of Michigan are included-scroll over the map to learn about each region.

  • Protective Services Potential Employers Lauderdale County Courthouse; Tallahatchie County Correctional Facility; Oxford Police Department; Mississippi Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks; Mississippi State University; Jackson Police Department; Mississippi Department of Transportation Office of Law Enforcement; private detective firms; Mississippi Gaming Commission; Jackson-Medgar Wiley Evers International Airport Total Number of Employees in Mississippi: 33,570
  • Legal Occupations Potential Employers Private Practice Law Firms; Adams County Courthouse; Holmes County Circuit Court; Office of Disability Adjudication and Review; Mississippi Mediation and Arbitration; Mississippi Court of Appeals; Desoto County Courthouse; Jones Circuit Courthouse; Mississippi Attorney General's Office; Mississippi Secretary of State Total Number of Employees in Mississippi: 5,510

Largest areas of employment in descending order

Protective service

  1. Jackson
  2. Gulfport, Biloxi
  3. Northeast Mississippi
  4. Southeast Mississippi
  5. Northwest Mississippi

Legal service

  1. Jackson
  2. Northeast Mississippi
  3. Gulfport, Biloxi
  4. Southeast Mississippi
  5. Northwest Mississippi

Additional Information on Criminal Justice in Mississippi

Business Compliance Resources

  • State of Mississippi Department of Revenue
  • The Department of Revenue provides information on Mississippi's taxes, registering businesses, online tax forms and various laws for individuals and businesses working in the state.

    Mississippi Department of Banking and Consumer Finance
  • This department works to ensure fair and ethical banking in Mississippi through regular examinations of businesses handling finances such as pawn brokers and motor vehicle sales companies.

    Mississippi Secretary of State
  • The Secretary of State is in charge of business regulation and enforcement as well as business services. This website provides information on forming a business in Mississippi, from registering the business to the state rules for businesses and employers.

    Mississippi District Office for U.S. Small Business Administration
  • This organization helps small businesses succeed by providing loans, counseling and training sessions and resources for legal and regulatory compliance for business owners.

Correctional Resources

  • Justice Strategies Mississippi
  • A research organization that analyzes and advocates for humane, effective approaches to criminal justice, with a special focus on mass incarceration and immigration systems issues. This is the Mississippi chapter of the national non-profit.

    Mississippi Department of Corrections
  • The MDoC provides information on correctional institutions in Mississippi, covering topics such as inmate statistics, administration and finance, laws and regulations and professional development. Employment requirements can also be found here.

    Mississippi Juvenile Justice Services
  • This website details information for juvenile legal and regulatory compliance. They release data on juvenile institutions and how volunteers and criminal justice professionals can improve the juvenile justice system in Mississippi.

    United States Probation and Pretrial Services, Southern District of Mississippi
  • This office works closely with the court system to help rehabilitate and reintegrate convicted individuals back into Mississippi communities. Their website provides necessary probation forms, information on programs and services and employment and internship opportunities.

Court & Judicial Resources

  • Employment Opportunities, State of Mississippi Judiciary
  • Jobs available in Mississippi's court system. The website also has information on Mississippi courts themselves.

    Mississippi, The National Center for State Courts
  • A links page to information on Mississippi's court system, including various courts and facilities and a portal to employment opportunities.

    Mississippi, The United States Department of Justice
  • This division of the Department of Justice serves the community by providing data and information on employment standards and guidelines, laws and regulations, services, publications and initiatives.

    State of Mississippi Judiciary
  • This website makes court related information accessible to Mississippi citizens. They update their page with legal information such as forms, legal policies and regulations, briefs, reports and employment opportunities.

    Southern Poverty Law Center, Mississippi
  • Dealing with overall criminal justice reform, civil rights and juvenile justice advocacy, the SPLC is a team of civil rights lawyers and staffers who work to promote equality and justice for all. The group has an office in Mississippi, and history, career information and details on initiatives can be found here.

Legal Resources

  • American Civil Liberties Union of Mississippi
  • The American Civil Liberties Union of Mississippi works with courts and the communities to ensure fairness and equality for civil rights cases. Their website includes information on criminal justice reformation, freedom and equality standards, and other resources to help protect Mississippians.

    The Innocence Project, University of Mississippi School of Law
  • The Innocence Project represents clients who claim to have been wrongly convicted in the Mississippi legal system. This website provides information on their processes, assistance and multiple cases of wrongful conviction.

    Mississippi, American Bar Association
  • The Mississippi branch of this association supports lawyers by detailing their initiatives, regulations, and free legal assistance programs in Mississippi.

    Mississippi Association for Justice
  • This organization comprised of attorneys works with civil justice cases to ensure justice and accountability. Individuals can access information on attorney legal practices, informative conferences and events and legal publications and databases.

Law Enforcement Resources

  • Mississippi Association of Chiefs of Police
  • This coalition of police chiefs has resources on trainings, conferences, testing, current legal issues, and links to helpful resources including standards and policy manuals, professional associations and certification programs.

    Mississippi Department of Public Safety
  • A website that is the hub for the various divisions of Mississippi law enforcement and criminal investigation. There are links to information on motor vehicle safety, firearm data and permits, and other divisions that handle cases of public safety.

    Mississippi Professional Investigators Association
  • This association is a membership organization for private investigators in Mississippi where they can discuss and network with other professionals and find information on investigative work such as infidelity, fraud, missing persons and background investigations.

    Mississippi Law Enforcement Officers' Association
  • This membership organization trains and educates Mississippi law enforcement officers and agencies in order to build officer professionalism and proficiency. This website provides information on training, memberships, events and supported legislation.

    Mississippi Sheriffs' Association
  • The Mississippi Sheriffs' Association provides law enforcement training to help with communication management, law compliance and other professional development opportunities.

Wildlife & Environmental Resources

Popular Resources

Whether you’re looking to earn your online degree or you’re a parent looking for answers, you can find all of your questions covered here. Explore these resources to help you make informed decisions and prepare for whatever is thrown your way.

See All Posts

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.

Shape your future with an online degree

Connect with a community of peers, and find a program that will allow you to continue your education in a fast and flexible way.