Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration

Available Online

The Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration degree is designed to meet the educational and professional needs of individuals in law enforcement who are interested in professional development or career advancement. It also prepares individuals for challenging and dynamic careers in the justice system at the local, state, and federal levels. Individuals completing the program are prepared for entry- and advanced-level positions, teaching, or training assignments, private security employment, research, or employment as consultants within the field.

The major consists of upper-division courses that include basic forensic science, research methods, juvenile justice, corrections, criminology, leadership and management, civil and criminal investigations, court systems, criminal law, and a senior project supervised by full-time, associate, and select core adjunct faculty. Additionally, students select elective courses from psychology, sociology, addictive disorders, behavioral science, legal studies, information technology, and human resource management to provide a broader perspective in human behavior.

Transition Programs

There are four transition programs available to students in the Criminal Justice program:

BS in Criminal Justice Administration/Master of Criminal Justice (MCJ) Program

BS in Criminal Justice Administration/Master of Forensic Science (MFS) Program

BS in Criminal Justice Administration/Master of Public Administration (MPA) Program

BS in Criminal Justice Administration/Master of Juvenile Justice (JJS) Program

The CJA BS/MA transition programs allow students who are enrolled in the BS in CJA and have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 and who are within completing their last 6 courses to register for 2 courses in the MSCJA, MFS, or MPA program as electives for the bachelor's degree or one MS Juvenile Justice (JJS) as an elective in the BSCJA program. Transition graduate electives are restricted to those courses that do not require a prerequisite. Students must complete all transition course work with a grade of B or better.

BS in Criminal Justice Administration/Master of Criminal Justice (MCJ) Program

BS in Criminal Justice Administration/Master of Forensic Science (MFS) Program

Students pursuing the BSCJA/MCJ/MFS can choose any two classes which do not require a prerequisite.

BS in Criminal Justice Administration/Master of Public Administration (MPA) Program

Students pursuing the BSCJA/MPA Program can take any two courses, with the exception of PAD 631 and PAD 644.

BS in Criminal Justice Administration/Master of Juvenile Justice (JJS) Program

For the BSCJA/JJS, students can choose one 600-level juvenile justice course, with the exception of JJS 625 or JJS 690 as long as prerequisites have been met.

The number of courses required to earn a MCJ, MFS, or MPA degree for transition program students is reduced from 12 to as few as 10 courses. For JJS students, the JJS required courses can be reduced from 11 to 10.

Graduate-level course work taken as part of the criminal justice administration program cannot be applied to the Master of Criminal Justice Program, Master of Forensic Science Program, Master of Public Administration Program, or the Master of Juvenile Justice Program.

CAEL Portfolio

In partnership with the Council on Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL), National University has developed a portfolio-based system of demonstrating that a student has achieved the course outcomes for University undergraduate courses. Credit may apply towards both the lower division and upper division credit requirements of the University's undergraduate degree programs unless specified otherwise in policy or limited by the state or jurisdiction of a student's residence. In our Portfolio program, students demonstrate that what they already know is equivalent to what they would have learned in an equivalent college course. The program is designed to be as flexible as possible to meet students’ needs. Students may have acquired this knowledge through past employment, independent reading and study, training programs or in-service courses, volunteer service, cultural or artistic pursuits, hobbies and recreational pastimes, community or religious activities, organizational memberships, adult education, non-credit courses, study abroad, military training not evaluated for credit by ACE, or other experiences. A portfolio enables students to identify and articulate this knowledge, and potentially earn credit for it. Students learn the process of identifying areas of course-equivalent learning and portfolio development skills through the PRLX2100X course offered through the Division of Extended Learning. The resulting portfolio is submitted for review by Subject Matter Experts for potential award of credit. For further information regarding the Portfolio program, please contact

Program Learning Outcomes

  • Apply biological, psychological, sociological, and economic explanations for criminal behavior from a variety of disciplines.
  • Identify the causes and patterns of juvenile delinquency.
  • Distinguish the leadership and management styles commonly employed in the Criminal Justice System.
  • Demonstrate the criminal investigation process to include preliminary investigation, evidence collection and preservation, submission, and testimony in a courtroom.
  • Explain the role of criminal sanctions in relationship to victims and offenders.
  • Examine the importance of ethics when applied to all three branches of the criminal justice system.
  • Analyze problems within the Criminal Justice System.


To receive a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration, students must complete at least 180 quarter units as articulated below, 45 of which must be completed in residence at National University, 76.5 of which must be completed at the upper-division level, and a minimum 70.5 units of the University General Education requirements. In the absence of transfer credit, additional general electives may be necessary to satisfy total units for the degree. The following courses are specific degree requirements. Refer to the section on undergraduate admission procedures for specific information regarding application and evaluation. All students receiving an undergraduate degree in Nevada are required by State Law to complete a course in Nevada Constitution.

Preparation for the Major (1 course; 4.5 quarter units)
Requirements for the Major (9 courses; 40.5 quarter units)
Core Requisite(s):
Students who do not complete the Senior Project within the two month period are eligible, at the discretion of the instructor, to receive a grade of “IP” with a maximum of a one-time six month extension. Students who do not complete the project at the end of the extension period will need to retake CJA 470. No grade of “I” (Incomplete) can be given for this course.
Upper-Division Electives (7 courses; 31.5 quarter units)
Students must complete a minimum of 7 courses (31.5 quarter units) of electives from the list below.