Justice Studies

The Department of Justice Studies offers undergraduate degrees in Criminal Justice and Criminal Justice with Specialization in Juvenile Justice.  The criminal justice program is designed to produce proficient graduates who can excel in various aspects of the field in leadership, service, research and innovation.

Our curriculum provides a comprehensive perspective on the justice system examining topics such as sentencing, ethics, homeland security, etc. Criminal justice majors will have the benefit of an informed and caring faculty to challenge them in their preparation to meet the demands of today’s workplace and the nation’s most rigorous graduate programs.

Bachelor of Science Criminal Justice

The criminal justice program is designed to produce proficient graduates who can excel in various aspects of the field in leadership, service, research and innovation. Criminal justice majors will have the benefit of an informed and caring faculty to challenge them in their preparation to meet the demands of today’s workplace and the nation’s most rigorous graduate programs.

Master of Science in Juvenile Justice

The Master of Science degree program in Juvenile Justice offers a curriculum that enables students to critically evaluate and confront the humanistic, technical, and scientific aspects of criminal justice as applicable to juvenile crime and delinquency. This program is web-based.

The primary objectives of the Master of Science degree in Juvenile Justice are to:

  • Enhance students’ knowledge, skills, and resourcefulness related to detained and institutionalized juveniles in the juvenile justice system;
  • Increase students’ knowledge of theoretical explanations and the etiologies of delinquency and juvenile crime;
  • Assure that students engage in the humanistic, technical, and scientific aspects of delinquency and juvenile crime;
  • Increase students’ knowledge concerning effective methods to intervene and prevent delinquency;
  • Increase students’ skills in how to conduct research and evaluate programs related to delinquency; and
    Expand students’ knowledge of programs and policies related to delinquency.
  • Since there are no comparable degree programs in the nation, graduates will have a unique opportunity to acquire specialized skills and competencies that should positively impact the lives of troubled youth across the state of Texas.

The MSJJ Program requires the completion of 36 semester credit hours. Two options are available for students: thesis and non-thesis. Students opting for the thesis curriculum must successfully complete 30 hours of course work in addition to 6 hours of thesis. The non-thesis option requires the successful completion of 36 hours of course work and passing a comprehensive examination. This program is web-based. Students may take six credit hours during eight week sessions, 8A and 8B for the fall and spring semesters. During the summer five week sessions a student may take six credit hours for summer I and for summer Il towards completing the degree in one year.

Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Juvenile Justice

The goal of the Ph.D. program is to provide doctoral training in juvenile justice research. General objectives include the development of new knowledge, juvenile delinquency prevention, improvement in the juvenile justice system, and dissemination of knowledge gained. The specific intent of the program is to produce scholars with three characteristics: First, graduates will have superior empirical skills. Second, they will be specialists in the subject matter of the juvenile justice discipline. Third, they will be generalists in the subject matter of criminal justice. The program produces scholars to teach in criminal justice and criminology departments in colleges and universities and researchers to work in federal, state, and large local agencies.

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