Master of Arts in Criminal Justice

School of Public Affairs

The program reflects the numerous complexities of the discipline. It provides academic leadership for students to work within corrections, institutionalized and non-institutionalized settings, victim services, adult and juvenile services, policing and law enforcement, private security, courts, and other human service organizations serving the clients of these institutions. It also helps develop research abilities for those students who may wish to consider doctoral studies.

Strong ties developed in state, local, and federal law enforcement, corrections, drug treatment, victimization, and crime control policy organizations provide research and learning opportunities for interested students.

The degree may be earned by full-time or part-time study. Most courses will be offered in the evening, although some may be offered during the day or on weekends.

Degree Conferred: M.A.
Program code: MACJ

Program Requirements for Admission

Requirements More Information
GPA A successful undergraduate record with a GPA of 3.0 (either as the cumulative GPA or for the last 60 hours of undergraduate study) is generally required.
Supporting Materials

In exceptional cases, the program may approve admission to students with special backgrounds, abilities, and interests.

Deadline for Application

Semester Deadline
Fall May 31*
Spring November 1

* It is recommended that students seeking funding for the fall semester submit their applications by February 15.

Application Process

Gather supporting materials and begin the standard graduate application.

The Curriculum

  1. The thesis track requires 36 credits. Six (6) of those are related to work on the thesis.
  2. The non-thesis track will require 36 credits plus successful completion of the comprehensive essays, for which a student will register for one credit of CRIMJ 594.
  3. Course credits must be at the 400-level or above with a minimum of 30 credits at the 500-level or above. This means that students may, in consultation with their academic adviser, take 6 credits of course work at the 400-level. These credits must not be for coursework already completed at the undergraduate level.
  4. A minimum grade-point average of 3.0 must be earned and maintained for course work taken as a graduate student.
  5. Students are required to take the following courses:
    • CRIMJ 500 ADVANCED CRIMINOLOGICAL THEORY (3). Prerequisites: admission to program or permission of program
    • CRIMJ 501 QUANTITATIVE METHODS FOR CRIMINAL JUSTICE (3). Prerequisites: to be taken concurrently with CRIMJ 503, permission of program
    • CRIMJ 502 PUBLIC POLICY AND THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM (3). Prerequisites: admission to program or permission of program
    • CRIMJ 503 ADVANCED STATISTICS IN CRIMINAL JUSTICE (3). Prerequisites: to be taken concurrently with CRIMJ 501, permission of program
    • CRIMJ 504 CRIMINAL JUSTICE ORGANIZATION AND MANAGEMENT (3). Prerequisite: permission of program
  6. Students who believe they have completed a course substantially similar to one of the specific course requirements may apply to have their previous work evaluated by the MACJ Program Coordinator for the purposes of exemption to that requirement. If approved, another course will be taken in place of that requirement.
  7. A maximum of 6 credits of completed graduate work may be transferred in from another accredited institution.

Additional Courses

  • CRIMJ 441 (US) JUVENILE LAW AND JUSTICE (3). Prerequisite: CRIMJ 100 or permission of the program
  • CRIMJ 407 VICTIMOLOGY (3)
  • CRIMJ 408 POLICE ADMINISTRATION (3). Prerequisite: CRIMJ 100, CRIMJ 210
  • CRIMJ 410 THE PENNSYLVANIA COURT SYSTEM (3). Prerequisite: CRIMJ 100, CRIMJ 220
  • CRIMJ 415 (PUBPL) DRUG CONTROL POLICY IN COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVE (3). Prerequisite: CRIMJ 100 or PL SC 001 or PL SC 014 or SOC 001
  • CRIMJ 423 SEXUAL AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE (3) Prerequisite: CRIMJ 100
  • CRIMJ 425 ORGANIZED CRIME (3) Prerequisite: CRIMJ 100, or permission of program
  • CRIMJ 426 SPECIAL OFFENDER TYPES (3) CRIMJ 100, or permission of program
  • CRIMJ 430 ALTERNATIVES TO INCARCERATION (3). Prerequisite: CRIMJ 100, CRIMJ 230
  • CRIMJ 431 OFFENDER AND PRISONER TYPES (3) CRIMJ 100, 113, 230 or permission of program
  • CRIMJ 436 (US) WOMEN IN THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM (3)
  • CRIMJ 462 COMPARATIVE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEMS (3)
  • CRIMJ 465 ETHICS IN CRIMINAL JUSTICE (3) CRIMJ 100, or permission of program
  • CRIMJ 494 RESEARCH TOPICS (1-12)
  • CRIMJ 497C COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVES OF HOMICIDE AND OTHER ACTS OF VIOLENCE (3)
  • CRIMJ 563 CONCEPTS AND PRACTICES IN POLICE ADMINISTRATION (3). Prerequisite: permission of program
  • CRIMJ 564 ADMINISTRATIVE AND LEGAL ASPECTS OF CORRECTIONS (3). Prerequisite: permission of program
  • CRIMJ 565 COURTS IN THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM (3). Prerequisite: permission of program
  • CRIMJ 567 JUVENILE JUSTICE: ISSUES AND PRACTICE (3). Prerequisite: permission of program
  • CRIMJ 568 QUALITATIVE METHODS (3). Prerequisite: permission of program
  • CRIMJ 590 CRIMINAL JUSTICE COLLOQUIUM (1-3). Prerequisites: admission to program
  • CRIMJ 594 RESEARCH TOPICS (1-6). Prerequisite: admission to program
  • CRIMJ 595 INTERNSHIP (3 or 6). A student may sign up for a maximum of 280 field hours (3 credits) or for a maximum of 560 hours (6 credit hours). Prerequisites: 6 graduate credits in Criminal Justice or permission of program
  • CRIMJ 596 INDEPENDENT STUDY (3). Prerequisites: CRIMJ 500 or permission of program
  • CRIMJ 600 THESIS PREPARATION (6). Prerequisites: completion of required courses and permission of program

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