MCJ Criminal Justice

The Master of Criminal Justice prepares students for administrative positions in police, corrections, juvenile, and judicial systems. Program objectives are based upon the assumption that criminal justice decision-making and policymaking in society require broad academic experience, innovative thinking, understanding of the theoretical foundations of the field, knowledge of appropriate research methods, and principles of administration. The major focus is to demonstrate that criminal justice in the United States and the problems associated with crime and delinquency must be viewed within the context of the larger society rather than as an isolated system. The program includes analysis of the major elements within criminal justice as related elements in a system in which decisions regarding crime and justice in one sphere may have consequences in other spheres.

Graduates are expected to be:

  1. conversant with the theoretical and legal principles implicit in criminal justice administration;
  2. knowledgeable about essential research contributions in the field;
  3. capable of research analysis appropriate to the field; and
  4. competent to assume administrative responsibilities involving decision-making in one of the areas of criminal justice administration.

Common Courses (18 Credits)

Courses that are common to all emphases may be applied to all. At least 36 hours are required for the degree.

Core Requirements
CRIJ 5300Linear Regression 13
CRIJ 5301Advanced Criminology3
CRIJ 5303Race and Ethnicity3
CRIJ 5308Victimology3
CRIJ 5315Graduate Proseminar3
CRIJ 5322Advanced Criminal Justice Ethics3
Additional Requirements18
Total Semester Credit Hours36
1

 These courses assume upper-level, undergraduate competency in applied statistics, criminology, research methods, and ethics.  Lack of competency in any of these areas may require completing undergraduate coursework to satisfy competency.


Without Thesis

The professional track is for students attending online and students seeking to enhance their professional standing as criminal justice practitioners. This track does not prepare students for college teaching or doctoral work.

Emphasis Requirements
CRIJ 5307Homeland Security3
CRIJ 5321Leadership and Supervision3
CRIJ 5304Advanced Methods in Criminal Justice3
or CRIJ 5306 Criminal Justice Program Evaluation
Choose Three of the following9
Advanced Methods in Criminal Justice 2
Criminal Justice Program Evaluation
Terrorism
Logistic Regression
Special Topics in Criminal Justice
Forensic Anthropology
Religious Terrorism
Conflict Studies
Terrorism Studies
Sociology of Religion
Psychology of Religion
Religious Terrorism
Sociology of Religion
Theoretical Sociology
CRIJ 5090Criminal Justice Comprehensive Examination (Statistics)0
CRIJ 5090Criminal Justice Comprehensive Examination (Theory and Methods)0
CRIJ 5090Criminal Justice Comprehensive Examination (Ethics)0
Total Semester Credit Hours18
2

Either CRIJ 5304 or CRIJ 5306 may be used here if not used to meet emphasis requirements.

With Thesis

The thesis track is for students seeking to pursue an academic career in teaching, research, and doctoral-level studies.  Students attending online may not select this track.

Emphasis Requirements
CRIJ 5321Leadership and Supervision3
CRIJ 5304Advanced Methods in Criminal Justice3
Choose two of the following:6
Criminal Justice Program Evaluation
Homeland Security
Terrorism
Logistic Regression
Special Topics in Criminal Justice
Forensic Anthropology
Homeland Security
Religious Terrorism
Conflict Studies
Terrorism Studies
Sociology of Religion
Psychology of Religion
Religious Terrorism
Sociology of Religion
Theoretical Sociology
Thesis
CRIJ 5198Criminal Justice Thesis (Semester 1)3
CRIJ 5198Criminal Justice Thesis (Semester 2)3
Total Semester Credit Hours18
3

 CRIJ 5311 assumes upper-level, undergraduate competency in applied statistics, criminology, research methods, multivariate analysis, and ethics.  Lack of competency in any of these areas may require completing undergraduate coursework to satisfy competency.

Homeland Security Emphasis

Emphasis Requirements
CRIJ 5304Advanced Methods in Criminal Justice3
or CRIJ 5306 Criminal Justice Program Evaluation
HLS 5307Homeland Security3
HLS 5309Terrorism3
HLS 5320Religious Terrorism3
HLS 5321Leadership and Supervision3
HLS 5370Foundations of Information Security3
CRIJ 5090Criminal Justice Comprehensive Examination0
Total Semester Credit Hours18

Course Information and Schedule 

The Course Information page includes a complete list of courses and course descriptions. 

See the courses offered this semester using the Online Course Schedule.

Program Entry Requirements

Students will be admitted into the MCJ by faculty once the application criteria are met. 

University admission to graduate studies does not guarantee admittance to the Master of Science in Criminal Justice program. To be admitted into the MCJ program, you must have:

  1. A bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice or a closely related field;
  2. A 3.0 GPA on the last 60 upper-division undergraduate credit-hours*; and
  3. A 500-word essay which states why you want to pursue a MCJ at A&M-Central Texas.

*Applicants with a GPA less than 3.0 and applicants who earned their B.A. more than five years ago must submit a GRE score.

Program-Level Student Learning Outcomes 

  1. Identify current theories and research relating to criminal justice in order to implement appropriate responses to crime.

  2. Apply research methods to test theory and apply in addressing public safety concerns.

  3. Manage the specialized resources (physical and personnel) available to criminal justice agencies.

  4. Discuss the key concepts and evaluate the application of foundational ethical systems to criminal justice practice.

HandBook

Click here to go to the handbook for the Masters in Criminal Justice