FAQs of the University of Cincinnati Master of Science in Criminal Justice program

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The Master of Science in Criminal Justice degree from the University of Cincinnati can help working professionals and full-time students alike advance their careers. U.S. News has consistently recognized the program as one of the top-ranked online criminal justice programs in the country. UC’s MSCJ program is taught by a faculty of influential thought leaders and supported by prestigious accreditation. Whether completed on-campus or online, the MSCJ degree unleashes education to work with your plan for success in criminal justice.

Want to learn more? Here are some frequently asked questions about the Master of Science in Criminal Justice program at UC:

How long has the MSCJ program been around?
The online program has been in existence for 15 years and has graduated more than 2,000 students. The MSCJ program is supported by the University of Cincinnati’s rich academic legacy, which spans back to 1819 and has attracted prestigious awards and recognition.

How does the online program differ from the on-campus program?
The content of the online and the on-campus programs are the same. The only difference is in terms of flexibility. No site visits are required for the online program and students have access to their courses 24 hours a day so that they can complete their coursework as it fits their schedules. Many of the students in the online program are working professionals enrolled in the program to advance in their careers. The diplomas for both programs are exactly the same, and online students can attend the graduation ceremony on campus if they wish.

How long does the online master’s program take to complete?
The online program requires 33 semester hours of coursework. The degree can be completed in one year of full-time study, two years of part-time study, or more or less depending on the student. Generally, coursework takes 12-15 hours per week for part-time students and 24-30 hours per week for full-time students.

What makes UC’s MSCJ program the right choice for me?
UC  has consistently been recognized as one of the top-ranked criminal justice in the country by U.S. News & World Report. The program is taught by notable faculty who are established thought leaders in the field of criminal justice.. The GRE is not required to enroll in the MSCJ program for qualified applicants, and the online program, backed by a tradition of 15 years of industry-leading distance learning, can be completed in as little as one year. Standards for excellence in education in the MSCJ program are also upheld by UC’s impressive accreditation.

What is UC’s accreditation?
The University of Cincinnati is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, a Commission of the North Central Association of Schools and Colleges. This is an accreditation awarded to the nation’s largest and most prestigious public and private colleges, and all public, state-funded universities in the U.S. are regionally accredited. Some online degree programs have only partial accreditation or are unable to meet the requirements for accreditation, and as such this certification, as well as the program’s top rankings, make MSCJ a trustworthy, high-quality partner for furthering your education and career.

What types of courses are offered through the MSCJ program?
UC professors teach a diverse array of classes that cover every aspect of the criminal justice industry, including criminology, corrections, law enforcement, social control and juvenile justice, as well as classes on theory, policy, professional writing and research methods. The core curriculum is designed to give students a dynamic, thorough and interdisciplinary perspective on criminal justice that will help them attain leadership positions in the field.

Does UC offer concentrations for specialized study in the MSCJ program?
Yes. UC offers three optional concentrations as part of the Master of Science in Criminal Justice program

  • Analysis of Criminal Behavior
  • Law Enforcement & Crime Prevention
  • Corrections & Offender Rehabilitation.

The Analysis of Criminal Behavior concentration focuses on the types of criminal offenders and the methods of criminal offending, and is designed for students who want to deepen their understanding of the psychology and bio-social factors behind criminal behavior. This concentration can help students go on to work for government, private and not-for-profit organizations that focus their activities on specific types of crime, though this concentration is valuable preparation for a wide range of jobs in criminal justice.

The Law Enforcement & Crime Prevention concentration is designed to give students a stronger knowledge of the fundamentals and intricacies of law enforcement and crime prevention. It is ideal for students wishing to begin or advance their careers in law enforcement agencies as well as public service organizations that operate crime management programs.

The Corrections & Offender Rehabilitation concentration suits students who are looking to build a career in corrections and make a positive change in the lives of convicted individuals. Courses focus on rehabilitating criminal offenders and build on theoretical and philosophical frameworks. Courses in this concentration also explore working with special populations such as youths, substance abusers and the mentally ill.

How can the UC MSCJ program boost my salary potential?
Employers tend to look favorably at job applicants who have the knowledge and expertise that come from completing a master’s degree, and this degree can be instrumental in  securing executive and managerial positions in criminal justice. These positions usually come with a significant pay increase. For example, PayScale data shows that the median annual salary for a police officer is $49,476, while the median salary for a police chief is $71,897 with the opportunity to surpass $100,000.

Who are the faculty members for the UC MSCJ program?
The faculty of the Master of Science in Criminal Justice program at UC is made up of esteemed scholars, researchers, authors and professionals in the field of criminal justice. The program emphasizes the value of research, as evidenced by the faculty’s consistent achievement in securing prestigious grants.

What research is the faculty of the MSCJ program involved in?
MSCJ faculty members are constantly delving into criminal justice issues they are passionate about, participating in high-level conferences and publishing their findings in prestigious publications. For example, Edward Latessa, director and professor of the School of Criminal Justice at UC, was named as one of the most innovative people in criminal justice by a national survey conducted by the Center for Court Innovation in partnership with the Bureau of Justice Assistance and the U.S. Department of Justice. Joshua Cochran, assistant professor, was recently awarded the American Society of Criminology’s Division on Corrections and Sentencing Dissertation Award and has published his research findings in outlets including Slate, the Civic Research Institute and ACJS Today.

What do I do if I am interested in enrolling in the MSCJ program at UC?
To begin your journey toward completing your MSCJ degree and advancing your career, contact a UC enrollment advisor at 800-645-5078 or click Apply Now today.