2023 Best Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice Programs

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Deciding which college to attend can be a daunting task. For many, it will be the most important decision that they make in their lives. To make an informed decision, you have to consider a lot of variables, such as cost of attendance, financial aid, student/teacher ratio, academics, student life, and more. These factors will either positively or negatively impact the quality of education that you receive.

Do you want to acquire a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, but don’t know what institution you should attend? Well, if you are as ambitious as I was in my late teens, then you want to attend a top school, instead of an average or mediocre one. Fortunately, we have already done the legwork for you. To help you find the right school for your interests and goals, we’ve compiled a list of 2022’s best bachelor’s in criminal justice programs.

What institution did we forget? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below.

  1. CUNY John Jay College of Criminal Justice, New York, NY

Part of the legendary City University of New York system (CUNY), the John Jay College of Criminal Justice is a liberal arts school, but it specializes in forensic and criminal justice education. Over 15,000 learners attend. Learners get a broad, multi-disciplinary, and multi-dimensional comprehension of criminal justice. They will be taught how to apply an analytical, ethical, critical, qualitative, and quantitative approach to crime control. Classes consist of:

  • Race, Gender, Ethnicity, Crime, and Justice
  • Understanding Criminal Behavior
  • Crime Prevention and Control
  • Criminal Responsibility
  1. Marist College, Poughkeepsie, NY

At Marist, learners can earn a dual degree in criminal justice and psychology. Classes not only cover the triggers of crime, but they examine the many responses society has toward crime control. At Marist, learners will be expected to finish an internship along with the classwork, which covers:

  • Policing in America
  • Corrections and Penology
  • Criminal Courts
  • Juvenile Justice and Delinquency
  1. George Washington University, Washington, DC

George Washington University (GWU) is a research institution structured into over a dozen colleges and schools; it has nearly 100 academic programs of study. It is highly respected for its programs in government, journalism, and international affairs. GWU has a BA in criminal justice through the Department of Sociology where learners take several classes on sociology and the sociological aspects of criminal justice. At GWU, learners take unusual criminal justice classes such as:

  • The Sociological Imagination
  • Economics of Crime
  • S. Constitutional History
  • Transnational Crime
  1. Northeastern University, Boston, MA

Northeastern has a BS in criminal justice degree that readies learners for either a professional or a research-driven career in criminal justice. Learners are taught how to predict and explain crime patterns while also developing community advancement strategies.  The criminology degree program is also considered one of the most outstanding in the country. Through Northeastern’s diverse range of electives, learners can take classes such as:

  • The Death Penalty
  • Human Trafficking
  • Corruption, Integrity, and Accountability
  • Crimes against Humanity
  1. Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

Michigan State University is known for its academic programs in many areas; its most popular academic degrees consist of criminology, psychology, and education programs. MSU is home to over 50,000 learners. At MSU, learners can receive a bachelor’s in criminal justice degree that centers on the importance of security and civil liberty. Learners take classes on subjects such as policing to juvenile justice, private security, and methods of criminal justice research.

  1. Liberty University, Lynchburg, VA

Liberty University is the nation’s largest evangelical school with over 110,000 learners, most of whom study online. Graduates from Liberty’s BS in criminal justice degree program have gone on to become criminologists, fraud investigators, police officers, and crime scene investigators. Liberty ensures its learners have many chances in the workforce by delivering a broad-based education in criminal justice. Learners can even concentrate in these areas:

  • Homeland Security
  • Juvenile Justice
  • Public Administration
  • Strategic Intelligence Studies
  1. West Chester University of Pennsylvania, West Chester, PA

West Chester University is part of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education; more than 16,000 learners attend WCUPA. Today, WCUPA has dozens of bachelor’s and master’s degrees in various professional and academic subjects. West Chester learners get a hypothetical and real-life learning experience while obtaining a BS in criminal justice degree. Classes can be customized to meet the learner’s objectives; learners are expected to finish an exhaustive practicum. Classes consist of:

  • Concepts of Crime and Delinquency
  • Corrections
  • Policing in America
  • Criminal Procedure

The institution is counted among the best in its region; it is touted as the best college for veterans and one of the most reasonably priced colleges in the nation.

  1. Park University, Parkville, MO

Park University has 40 other campuses across the country, 33 of which are situated on military installations, in addition to offering many online courses. Park is a private school with 16,500 learners. It has nearly 54 degrees and 27 certificates. Park University has a BS in criminal justice degree that offers learners an in-depth comprehension of the US criminal justice system. In this degree program, learners will investigate society and crime via hypothetical, logical, and real-life applications. Along with its regional academic rating, Park University is known for its dedicated service to learner vets. Learners may further concentrate their study of on criminal justice by selecting one of the three paths:

  • Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement
  • Criminal Justice and Corrections
  • Criminal Justice and Security
  1. Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, TX

Sam Houston State University (SHSU) is a member of the Texas State University System and has over 20,000 learners in attendance. SHSU is most known for its criminal justice programs, and the College of Criminal Justice is rated in the top five nationally.  SHSU has a BS in criminal justice and victim studies degree that is peerless. learners investigate sociological aspects of crime and gain real-life experience via an internship; some classes are also available online. Sam Houston’s coursework covers:

  • Cyber Crime
  • Global Terrorism
  • White-Collar Crime
  • Victimology
  1. Rutgers University, Newark, NJ

Rutgers is a public school with several campuses situated across New Jersey. It is a vast, sprawling research institution with more than 70,000 undergraduate and graduate learners. Rutgers is a senior member of the Big Ten Academic Alliance and the Universities Research Association. Rutgers’ BS in criminal justice degree is multidisciplinary. Learners will take classes in variety of subjects, each of which offers an unusual lens to increase the learner’s comprehension of crime and criminal justice. Rutgers also has an accelerated BS/MA degree program in criminal justice for people who want to pursue an advanced degree. Core classes consist of:

  • Criminology
  • Police and Society
  • Corrections
  • Criminal Justice: Ethical and Logical Foundations
  1. St. Edward’s University, Austin, TX

St. Edward’s University is a Roman Catholic religious institution that offers a liberal arts education to its 5,000 learners. St. Edward’s has more than 60 areas of academic study. Its BA in criminal justice degree readies learners for successful careers at the local, state, and federal level of justice and law enforcement. At St. Edward’s, learners are taught to identify patterns of criminal behavior, and they get full knowledge of the law, judicial philosophy, and the US constitution. Classes consist of unusual electives such as:

  • American Court System
  • Death Investigations
  • Mock Trial

For the last five years, St. Edward’s has been among the top producer of US Fulbright learners, and in the last decade, St. Edward’s learners have won an impressive 27 Fulbright scholarships. The institution is nationally rated by Forbes.

  1. Boston University, Boston, MA

Boston University (BU) is a sizeable privately run institution with over 30,000 enrolled learners. BU is associated with the United Methodist Church. Boston University’s BS in criminal justice degree combines concepts of social science with applications in corrections, social policy, and policing. Learners are expected to concentrate on law, policing, adjudication, or corrections. Along with its academic reputation and rating, Boston University is known for its pioneering research efforts and its commitment to sustainability.

  1. Indiana University at Bloomington, Bloomington, IN

The Bloomington campus of IU is a research institution and the leading school in the more extensive Indiana University System. Many of IU Bloomington’s programs are well known, among them the business, computer science, and international studies schools. More than 40,000 learners attend IU Bloomington. IU Bloomington’s BA in criminal justice degree is multidisciplinary. The degree program is an unusual blend of the social sciences, legal studies, and the humanities. Learners graduate ready for advanced education in law or a career in law enforcement-related fields. Three concentrations are available:

  • Criminal Justice and the Law
  • Gender, Race, and Crime
  • Criminal Justice and Psychology

Indiana University is deemed a Public Ivy. It has the same academic status as private Ivy Leagues and is rated highly by U.S. News & World ReportForbes.

  1. St. Thomas University at Miami, Miami Gardens, FL

St. Thomas University is a private, religious institution structured into six schools and colleges. Over 5,000 learners attend STU and are enrolled in the institution’s 60 academic programs. St. Thomas has a BA in criminal justice degree that readies its learners to work with prestigious agencies such as the FBI, DEA, and US Department of Justice. At STU, learners get crucial leadership skills while examining the concepts of policing and corrections. Possible classes consist of:

  • Criminology
  • Law Enforcement Systems
  • Victimology
  • Terrorism and Law Enforcement Procedures

St. Thomas has many projects and programs on campus that develop leadership skills in its learners. Among these programs is the well-known religious Education Continuum Program, which offers scholarship opportunities, dual enrollments for selected majors, and connections to local and national organizations.

  1. St. Mary’s University, San Antonio, TX

St. Mary’s University is a religious and Marianist school that offers a liberal arts education to its 4,000 undergraduate and graduate learners. While tackling a BA in criminal justice degree at St. Mary’s University, learners will take classes on everything from the international justice system to criminal justice administration. They will also hone their critical thinking, problem-solving, and communication skills. St. Mary’s alumni have found careers as:

  • Police and Corrections Officers
  • Forensic Science Technicians
  • Loss Prevention Specialists
  • Criminal Profilers

Though focused on delivering a liberal arts education, St. Mary’s stresses the importance of research, especially in the STEM fields. Learners are urged to engage in research efforts, even at an undergraduate level. And conference travel funds and summer degree program support are available.

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