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Master's in Criminal Justice

Give back to your community when you earn your Master of Science in Criminal Justice degree from the Golden State College. This master’s program is designed to prepare you to go into the field of criminal justice, either the academic field or a more pragmatic oriented field such as law enforcement or corrections. This master’s in criminal justice develops your skills in victimology, forensics, and cybercrime. Pursuing criminal justice will allow you to analyze how the functions of police, prosecutors, courts, and corrections are interrelated and decide if a career in criminal justice is right for you.


The criminal justice master’s degree prepares you for a professional career in the field of criminal justice. The rapid advance of technology and the specter of terrorism have created an expanding need for professionals with advanced skills to grapple with the criminal justice issues of the 21st century. This criminal justice program develops your knowledge and skills in the areas of criminal law, criminal justice, forensics and crime scene investigations, cybercrime and technology, management, constitutional processes, ethics, victimology, comparisons of criminal justice systems, and other current and related topics. Upon completion of your master’s degree in criminal justice, you will be able to:


Analyze the major systems of criminal justice and how the functions of police, prosecution, courts, and corrections are interrelated

Evaluate the issues and management of personnel administration in criminal justice

Analyze the judicial processes of the U.S. Constitution

Explain ethical issues within the criminal justice system

Evaluate research regarding criminal justice and public policy and its effect on society, victims, and rehabilitation

Apply forensic methods and crime scene investigation to real-world situations

Assess research and methods used to investigate a key empirical or theoretical issue relating to criminal justice


Program Requirements

Total number of credits: 39 credits

Core Course Requirements: 30 credits

Specialization Requirement: 9 credits

To be awarded the Master of Science in Criminal Justice degree, all students must complete 39 credits with a 3.00 minimum grade point average.

Students who have earned an undergraduate degree in criminal justice or have successfully completed undergraduate coursework in criminal justice, criminal law and constitutional law with a grade of “C” or higher will be exempt from the requirement to take CRJ 501 Criminal Justice, Criminal Law & the Constitution.

Students who waive CRJ 501 are required to take 36 total program credits in order to meet graduation requirements.


Serve the greater good – earn your master’s in criminal justice from the Golden State College. Your courses cover advanced topics in law, ethics, forensics, and corrections. You will also add a specialization to your master’s program to provide further focus to your studies.


Major Course Requirements (30 credits, all courses are 3 credits.)


Criminal Justice

CRJ 501 Criminal Justice, Criminal Law & the Constitution

CRJ 510 Criminal Justice Policy & Theory

CRJ 512 Criminological Theory

CRJ 514 Constitutional & Judicial Processes

CRJ 520 Research Methods in Criminal Justice

CRJ 522 Psychological Factors in Criminal Justice

CRJ 524 Ethics in Criminal Justice

CRJ 613 Comparative Criminal Justice Systems

CRJ 615 Victimology

CRJ 697 Capstone: Evaluation & Program Analysis in Criminal Justice

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