Pursuing Your Master's Degree in Criminal Justice
Interest in criminal justice is growing and it's easy to see why: the media's reach is pushing more information about crime and the legal system into our lives than ever before. The New York Times ran a report in June of 2011 about a young woman who chose to go to law school after closely following a murder trial, and she's likely not alone. Though a law degree is one way to work toward a degree in the criminal justice system, there are other options. If you're considering a more hands-on career, it might be wise to consider earning a master's degree in criminal justice.
What's in Store: Criminal Justice Master's Degree Courses and More
As a student in a criminal justice program, you'll be exposed to a range of courses covering the ins and outs of the legal system, crime and law. Courses might also cover statistics, victimology, criminal law, research methods and more. Other specializations - including forensic science, criminology, cyber-crime and behavior analysis, and forensic psychology - are often offered with an advanced criminal justice degree. Criminal justice and MBA programs are offered in a wide range of settings from traditional on-campus programs to accelerated programs for professionals as well as flexible online programs allowing students to learn at their own pace. Online programs are often preferred by students managing both college and a career, as these tend to offer accommodating courses and schedules.
What's Next: Criminal Justice Job Outlook
If you're already working in a criminal justice-related career, an advanced degree might be a way to advance into a management or leadership position. Other career options for people with a master's degree in criminal justice are varied, and after graduation you'll likely be prepared for work as a probation officer, correctional treatment specialist, investigator or detective, crime analyst or even an instruction of criminal justice. Pairing this kind of training with a business or management background can even further enhance your career prospects and open doors to careers in emergency management, crime scene management, police administration and more. According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean annual income for professionals in careers related to the legal system was $96,940 according to data from May 2010.
Additional Information for Individuals Looking to Enroll in Master Schools for Criminal Justice