Criminal Justice is a vast field, and students that opt for criminal justice degrees have plenty of options to choose from when it comes to career choices. They can join various law enforcement agencies as field agents, data analysts, probation officers, etc. This is a multi-disciplinary field, and students have the option to pick a specialization that interests them. As part of the curriculum, students also get to study concepts like methods of research, data analytics, social, political, and legal systems, depending on the field they go for.

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Criminal Justice Degree – What Is It?

The criminal justice system is about identifying, arresting, and determining a person’s guilt or innocence. Students get to study behavioral patterns and the ability of a society to combat crimes. It is a social science discipline, and it not only focuses on the arrests and conviction of criminals but also on their treatment.

Students who opt for criminal justice degrees have the following options to choose from:

  • Associate’s Degree (Criminal Justice)
  • Bachelor’s Degree (Criminal Justice)
  • Master’s Degree (Criminal Justice)

Criminal Justice Degrees – Salary Prospects

Criminal Justice offers multiple career options to students. Almost all of them serve the same purpose – equipping students with information and tools to uphold the law and protect the community’s citizens. The following are some of the career options available to students. The data has been obtained from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.


Lawyers have one of the most challenging jobs in the world. They provide legal advice and fight cases for companies, individuals as well as government agencies in courtrooms.

Annual Median Salary, 2019$122,960
Job Outlook, 2019-20294%
Annual Mean Salary, 2019$145,300
State with the Highest Employment Level, 2019Virginia-14,180
State with the Highest Salary, 2019New York-$122,000


Detectives and Criminal Investigators

Detectives and Criminal Investigators have to solve crime cases and protect the lives and properties of the citizens of their respective jurisdictions. They put their lives on the line regularly for others

Annual Median Salary, 2019$83,170
Job Outlook, 2019-20291%
Annual Mean Salary, 2019$86,030
State with the Highest Employment Level, 2019Texas-79,490
State with the Highest Salary, 2019Alaska-$113,420


Social Workers

Social Workers help people deal with daily life problems. These professionals also help people with financial and drug related issues, among other things. The following data is for the category mentioned on the US Bureau of Labor Statistics’ website as “Social Workers, All Other.”

Annual Median Salary, 2019$61,230
Job Outlook, 2019-20295%
Annual Mean Salary, 2019$61,750
State with the Highest Employment Level, 2019California-12,210
State with the Highest Salary, 2019Hawaii-$81,520


How to Select a Criminal Justice Degree Program?

There are certain things students will have to consider before enrolling in a criminal justice degree. Some of those are:

  • Check the school’s accreditation status.
  • Check the specializations being offered.
  • Check the school’s location.
  • Check if the school is offering online classes.
  • Check the course structure.
  • Check the faculty.
  • Check the cost and the time needed to complete the program.

Criminal Justice Degree Requirements

The requirements for a criminal justice degree will vary from university to university. You will most probably have to meet specific pre-requisite requirements set by the school. Please make sure you conduct thorough research about the requirements set by the university you want to enroll in.