Online Doctoral Degrees in Criminal Justice

On online doctoral degree in criminal justice may prepare students for leadership roles in law enforcement settings. In this three to five year program, students may conduct extensive research to generate innovative criminology theory, providing new insight on crime and public policy. Program coursework may include dissertation courses alongside major-specific criminal justice classes including law and legal foundations, sociological theories of crime, and criminal justice policy.

Upon completion of the program, students may seek entry to senior-level employment in their chosen field. Doctoral-level graduates may gain employment in corporate security, post-secondary education, government agencies, universities, and law enforcement agencies.

Program Overview

  • Prerequisite: Bachelor’s Degree at minimum
  • Program Length: Three to five years to complete
  • Post-Grad Options: Employment
  • Projected Employment Growth: 21% (2010-2020)*

Program Coursework

The curriculum for doctoral programs may include comprehensive dissertation courses alongside core classes. These classes may emphasize criminal justice theory, research, and legal policy. Core online criminal justice coursework may include the following:

  • Contemporary Public Safety Leadership
  • Management and Leadership Theory
  • Correlates of Crime
  • Criminal Justice Policy Analysis
  • Law and Legal Foundations
  • Psychological and Biological Theories of Criminal Behavior
  • Sociological Theories of Crime

Career Options

Doctoral-level graduates may gain employment in law enforcement organizations, corporate security, corrections, federal government agencies, and academia. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, private detective and investigation employment is projected to increase by 21% from 2010-2020.*

Possible careers include:

  • University Professor
  • Criminologist
  • Intelligence Specialist
  • Private Detective
  • Prison Warden

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

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