Online Associate Degrees in Criminal Justice

An online associate degree in criminal justice may provide individuals with the skills needed to uphold laws and maintain a sense of safety to the public. In this two-year program, students may learn how to enforce laws, conduct traffic stops, and perform investigative duties. Program coursework may include some general education requirements and major-specific courses such as criminology, juvenile justice, and criminal justice communication.

Graduates of the program may either seek entry-level employment or enroll in a baccalaureate degree program. Associate-level graduates may seek employment in federal security programs, state police departments, probation offices, correction facilities, and investigative bureaus.

Program Overview

  • Prerequisite: High School Diploma or GED
  • Program Length: Two years to complete
  • Post-Grad Options: Entry-Level Employment or Bachelor’s Program
  • Projected Employment Growth: 7% (2010-2020)*

Program Coursework

Curriculum for online associate-level criminal justice degree programs may include select general education courses alongside core criminal justice classes. These online courses may teach students how to conduct basic investigative techniques, conduct effective correctional procedures, and write detailed criminal reports. Core online criminal justice courses may include the following:

  • Introduction to Forensics
  • Criminal Justice Communications
  • Criminal Evidence
  • Juvenile Justice
  • Policing in America
  • Introduction to Terrorism
  • Criminology

Career Options

Associate-level graduates may seek employment in police departments, correction facilities, government programs, private security firms, and juvenile detention programs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, police and detective employment is projected to increase by 7% from 2010-2020.*

Possible careers include:

  • Police Officer
  • Detective
  • Probation Officer
  • Deputy Sheriff
  • Corrections Officer

Continuing Education

Upon successful completion of an associate degree program, students may wish to further their education by transferring to a four-year baccalaureate degree program in criminal justice or related field. A bachelor’s degree in criminal justice may provide students with advanced training in security and police administration. Employers may prefer individuals hold an associate degree to qualify for entry-level criminal justice positions.

*U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook

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Argosy University offers doctoral, master's, and bachelor's degree programs to students through its eight colleges:  College of Behavioral Sciences, Graduate School of Business and Management, College of Education,  College of Health Sciences, College of Arts and Sciences, College of Creative Arts and Design, College of Clinical Psychology and Western State College of Law at Argosy University as well as certificate programs in many areas.


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