Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration

Nadia L. - Class of 2020

Investigate a Rewarding Career in the Justice System

Are you passionate about advocating for justice at the local, state, and federal levels? With the Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration, you can make a difference and be prepared for a variety of career options.

National University’s Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration program is designed to meet the educational and professional needs of individuals interested in law enforcement who are interested in professional development or career advancement. The program also prepares individuals for other employment opportunities like teaching, training assignments, private security employment, research, or employment as consultants within the field.

Our program is diverse, with topics of study including forensic science, research methods, juvenile justice, corrections, and more. The program concludes with a senior project supervised by full-time, associate, and select core adjunct faculty.

Request Information

4-Week Courses

Balance work, life, and school with available four-week courses.

Year-round Enrollment

Our admissions team reviews applications year-round.

180K Alumni Worldwide

Become a part of NU’s global alumni community.

$30 Million in Scholarships

Explore National University’s scholarship opportunities.
Eligibility requirements apply.

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 concerning victims and offenders.
  • Examine the importance of ethics when applied to all three branches of the criminal justice system.

Why NU’s Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration Program?

  • Public Safety Promise: Public safety professionals can receive a 25% tuition discount.
  • Help the Public: A criminal justice degree sets you on a path toward a career that helps individuals and the community you serve.
  • Faculty Support: Program faculty are readily available for support. During their senior year, students complete projects with hands-on supervision from full-time, associate, and select core adjunct faculty with real-world experience.
  • Online or On-site: Complete your program with online or on-site class formats and achieve a balance between your education and personal life.
  • Relevancy: The Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice program examines the issues facing public safety today to prepare you for tomorrow.

Request Information

Earning a criminal justice degree from National University ensures you’ll gain a thorough understanding of the cross-section between laws, processes, and the systems that make justice a reality. Your comprehensive understanding of the system will make you knowledgeable and helps increase marketability in your field as you assist individuals and the community you serve.

Plus, your degree allows you to broaden your career pursuits: you can go to law school, graduate school, or be part of the administration of justice. With a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, you can choose from a variety of careers.

  • Police and Sheriffs Patrol Officers – The national median salary is $65,533. Jobs can be found at colleges and universities, K-12 schools, hospitals, and the local, state, and federal government.
  • Detectives and Criminal Investigators – The national median salary is $86,944 and the number of jobs is expected to grow by 14.4 percent between 2022 and 2031.
  • First-Line Supervisors of Police and Detectives – The national median salary is $92,976, and jobs can be found with local, state, and federal law enforcement and correctional facilities, and correctional facilities.
  • Public Safety Telecommunicators – Jobs for public safety and police dispatchers, and 911 or emergency dispatchers can be found at local and state governmental agencies, ambulance services, colleges and universities, and hospitals.
  • Security Services and Correctional Services – Work as part of security details in a wide variety of settings including national, state, local, and military security agencies, corporate security, loss prevention, finance, fraud, private security, emergency management, and other public safety interests.
  • Law Enforcement (operators/first-line supervisors, analysts [fraud, interdiction], administrators) – A variety of careers in the field exist with local, state, and federal agencies such as FBI, DEA, Customs and Border Protection, Fish and Wildlife, US Military, Secret Service, ATF, and US Marshals.

National University is proud to offer online classes. In our ever-changing world, it can be difficult to keep up with every priority. We believe that education should be as manageable as possible, which is why we offer online, four-week courses. With NU’s four-week format, you’ll be able to complete your classes one at a time and earn your degree faster.

Earning an online criminal justice degree at NU means you have the support you need to complete your degree. You’ll engage with classmates, access support services, and receive valuable insight and feedback from faculty.

If you are looking to advance your career while you continue your educational journey, National University’s transition programs can do just that. Criminal justice students can use their time spent on earning their bachelor’s degree to make progress in the MSCJA, MFS, or MPA programs.

How It Works:

  • Student must be enrolled in the Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice program and have a cumulative GPA of 3.0
  • Student must be within completing their last six (6) courses
  • Eligible students can enroll in two (2) courses in MSCJA, MFS, or MPA programs as bachelor’s degree electives

Transition graduate electives are restricted to courses with no prerequisite. All transition coursework must be completed with a grade of “B” or better. Through the transition program, students can reduce their course load to as few as ten classes to earn their degree. 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, or Master of Public Administration Program.

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 of 69 units of the University General Education requirements. In the absence of transfer credit, additional general electives may be necessary to satisfy the 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.

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.

Dennis Reyes., Class of 2021

Dennis Reyes

Class of 2021

“My favorite part of the program was the staff and students. The staff was professional and had previous experience working in some aspect of criminal justice, not just teaching about it. The students were also professional and most had full time jobs. They were in class with the goal of graduating and not just filling a seat.”

Contact Us

Take the first step by starting your application online today.
To speak to an enrollment advisor about this program, please email [email protected].

Request Information

Why Choose National University?

We’re proud to be a veteran-founded, San Diego-based nonprofit. Since 1971, our mission has been to provide accessible, achievable higher education to adult learners. Today, we educate students from across the U.S. and around the globe, with over 180,000 alumni worldwide.

BS in Criminal Justice FAQs

Yes! Earning your degree ensures you get benefits you won’t get without a degree. Though salaries and career opportunities vary, the benefits of working in the field before or after you complete the program are plentiful.

Majoring in criminal justice also allows you to pursue a wide variety of jobs, giving you an advantage in the field. Earning your degree can help you become a police officer, private detective, and other relevant jobs with-in the justice system.

Earning a bachelor’s in criminal justice administration will give you plenty of knowledge to help you prepare for the field. With NU’s available resources and training available to people in criminal justice occupations, you could navigate the criminal justice field without too much difficulty.

According to The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the criminal jus-tice field is expected to see significant growth: a 7% growth is plausible from 2020 to 2030. Additionally, criminal justice employees have a good salary. The median annual wage for police and detectives was $67,290 in May 2020.* The Bureau of Labor Statistics forecasts that more than 53,000 new jobs for police officers and detectives will become available by 2026.

*Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, on the internet, at: (viewed January 24, 2022). Cited projections may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions and do not guarantee actual job growth. Candidates are strongly encouraged to conduct their research.

Yes. Earning a bachelor’s in criminal justice gives you a strong foundation that you can easily build on to earn a Juris Doctor degree. A BS in criminal justice program’s focus on justice and equality can help you make your way toward public service-oriented careers in criminal or immigration law.

That depends on what you would like to achieve in your career. If you are service-oriented, value justice, and want to reduce criminal behavior, then getting a criminal justice degree will be more beneficial for you. Typically, criminology focuses on crime perpetrators and their motivations rather than taking a more direct approach.

Criminal justice requires an understanding of the way the law enforcement system operates and the systems within it. Criminology, on the other hand, is a more abstract field that uses psychological and sociological assessment to gain an understanding of criminals and why they commit crimes.

Program Disclosure

Successful completion and attainment of National University degrees do not lead to automatic or immediate licensure, employment, or certification in any state/country. The University cannot guarantee that any professional organization or business will accept a graduate’s application to sit for any certification, licensure, or related exam for professional certification.

Program availability varies by state. Many disciplines, professions, and jobs require disclosure of an individual’s criminal history, and a variety of states require background checks to apply to, or be eligible for, certain certificates, registrations, and licenses. Existence of a criminal history may also subject an individual to denial of an initial application for a certificate, registration, or license and result in the revocation or suspension of an existing certificate, registration, or license. Requirements can vary by state, occupation, and licensing authority.

NU graduates will be subject to additional requirements in a program, certification/licensure, employment, and state-by-state basis that can include one or more of the following items: internships, practicum experience, additional coursework, exams, tests, drug testing, earning an additional degree, and other training/education requirements.

All prospective students are advised to review employment, certification, and licensure requirements in their state, and to contact the certification/licensing body of the state or country where they intend to obtain certification/licensure to verify that these courses/programs qualify in that state/country, prior to enrolling. Prospective students are also advised to regularly review the state’s/country’s policies and procedures relating to certification/licensure, as those policies are subject to change.

*Positions may require additional experience, training, and other factors beyond successfully completing this degree program. Depending on where you reside, many positions may also require state licensure, and it is the responsibility of the student to ensure that all licensure requirements are met. We encourage you to also review program-specific requirements. Any data provided on this page is for informational purposes only and does not guarantee that completion of any degree program will achieve the underlying occupation or commensurate salary.

Request Information