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Criminal Justice

Criminal Justice

Help Protect Others: Pursue a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice

Do you have an inquisitive mind? Do crime investigation shows intrigue you? Are you passionate about social justice? Choosing to major in criminal justice may be perfect for you. 
At South Carolina State University, our Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice degree takes a deep dive into the study of crime, its causes, and how our society reacts to it. Our criminal justice degree will provide you with a deep understanding of three primary components of the criminal justice system: law enforcement, courts, and corrections. 
Through studying criminal justice topics of interest to you — as well as experiential learning opportunities in the community — you’ll be prepared for a career path in law enforcement, investigating, corrections, forensics, crime prevention, customs, government agencies and more.

Criminal justice: Reality vs. TV

We all know popular television shows like “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation” and “Law & Order” glamorize and exaggerate crime investigation for entertainment value. Reality-based shows like “Cops” offer a more realistic view of law enforcement activities and a career in criminal justice, but they focus on just a small portion of what law officers do. 
By selecting a major in criminal justice at South Carolina State, you’ll become an expert in the law, courts, and corrections — preparing to be a real-world hero. 

Method of Instruction

  • Face-to-face

Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice Program Highlights

Our criminal justice degree program prepares you for a career in criminal justice and provides you with a comprehensive understanding through a proven mix of coursework and experiential learning opportunities. While studying criminal justice at SC State, prepare to:

Gain real-world experience in the criminal justice field

In your senior year studying criminal justice, you’ll complete a valuable internship designed to develop your skills and insights in an area focusing on law, criminal justice administration, juvenile justice, crime and delinquency, crime prevention, corrections, law enforcement, security, or other options.

Choose your focus and kickstart your career

Through your major in criminal justice, you can choose classes to focus on an area of criminal justice that interests you — whether it’s law enforcement, forensic science, crisis management, corrections, and more. This will make you more marketable and help you focus your career path.

Join forces to connect and deepen your understanding

You’ll enjoy connecting with other students as you strengthen your understanding of the criminal justice field. Join the Alpha Phi Sigma Criminal Justice Honor Society, the National Association of Blacks in Criminal Justice, or the Criminal Justice Club. Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice majors attend national conferences, participate in competitions, take field trips, participate in public service, and more.

Faculty members who teach major in criminal justice courses
Student-to-faculty ratio, with the majority of classes having less than 20 students
Number of police and sheriff’s patrol officers in the U.S., according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Can You Do With a Criminal Justice Degree?

By choosing to major in criminal justice at South Carolina State, you will position yourself to pursue a career in criminal justice that connects with your interests and passions. Our graduates are well-prepared to earn advanced degrees or otherwise qualify for jobs such as:

  • FBI agent
  • U.S. marshal
  • Crime scene investigator
  • Correctional officer
  • Police officer
  • Victim advocate
  • Detective
  • Lawyer

Criminal justice degree career salary expectations

A career in criminal justice can offer you competitive compensation and job security. 
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the 2021 median salary for police officers and detectives was $66,020. The 2021 median salary for correction and probation officers was $60,250.

What Will You Study as a Criminal Justice Major?

South Carolina State’s criminal justice degree draws on topics from history, political science, communications, psychology, and sociology to supplement your criminal justice coursework. Our bachelor’s degree in criminal justice program features extensive coursework in the criminal justice system, law enforcement, courts, and corrections. Courses include:

  • Cyber Crime
  • Victimology
  • Administration of Law Enforcement
  • Police-Community Relations
  • State and Local Government
  • Terrorism
  • Constitutional Law
  • Abnormal Psychology

Gain additional insights into racial equality and social justice while studying criminal justice

South Carolina State is a leader in promoting education, dialogue, and understanding of racial issues related to criminal justice and law enforcement. To enhance your understanding of seeking a career in criminal justice, we offer courses like African American Experience in Criminal Justice, Ethical Issues in Criminal Justice, and Urban Sociology to confront the racial inequities in the application of criminal justice.