Criminal Justice Degrees Guide

How Can I Get My Master’s Degree in Criminal Justice?

How Can I Get My Master’s Degree in Criminal Justice?

Today’s universities have not only made it more convenient for future criminal justice professionals to earn undergraduate degrees online, but they have also made a way for students to earn graduate degrees in criminal justice online. These online master’s degree programs in criminal justice are rigorous, offering students in-depth studies in law enforcement, criminology, the legal system, corrections and juvenile justice. Students are encouraged to specialize in a specific area of criminal justice, such as national security or forensics, in which they will take extra core courses. Online master’s programs are research-intensive, and students should be prepared for challenging assignments and to competently explain what they have learned using professional writing skills.

To earn your master’s degree in criminal justice online, you must first find an accredited program that best suits your needs and interests. For instance, the University of Cincinnati offers its criminal justice master’s program as either a two-year, part-time program or a one-year accelerated program, depending on how much time you can realistically devote to your studies. Then you must apply and be accepted into a program. To be accepted into most online graduate programs, you must be able to demonstrate your potential to succeed. This often entails maintaining a high GPA during your undergraduate education and presenting letters of recommendation from your undergraduate professors. Having work experience in a criminal justice field is also beneficial.

If you’ve never taken online classes before, it may take some getting used to at first. Instead of listening to a lecture in a traditional classroom alongside your fellow classmates, you enter a username and password to access your lectures online, where you can print them or watch them in video format. In fact, most of what you will need is online—from the syllabus to assignments to remote library services. While some online professors will ask that you purchase physical textbooks or CD-ROMs, others will use online textbooks and resources only. You communicate with your professors and classmates using e-mail, live chat or discussion boards. Online master’s programs in criminal justice are known for having small class sizes, which allows professors to give students more individualized attention.

Master’s-level courses are well-suited for an online format because traditionally, only a small portion of graduate work is done in the classroom. Whether you earn your master’s on-campus or online, you will do the lion’s share of work at home. Getting your master’s degree online simply eliminates the commute, while still providing you with a quality, graduate-level education.

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