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Online Bachelor's Degree Criminal Justice

Criminal Justice
Bachelor of Science
  • 120 credits
  • Transfer up to 90 credits
  • All courses available online
  • Select hybrid courses available
  • $324 per credit (in-state)
  • $499 per credit (out-of-state)
  • $250 per credit (military)
  • Other fees may apply
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Develop critical thinking and effective decision-making skills and gain an in-depth understanding of the criminal justice system in the online bachelor’s degree program in criminal justice at University of Maryland Global Campus. Connect with a diverse network of peers and learn from esteemed faculty members with experience in the industry. With convenient online courses, multiple start dates, and access to lifetime career services, UMGC provides the flexibility and support you need. You can also save time and money with a variety of scholarship opportunities for eligible students and our generous transfer credit policy. Get started today!

Develop Deep Knowledge of Criminal Justice Programs

In this 120-credit criminal justice degree program, you’ll take courses that may help equip you with knowledge in several areas of criminal justice, law enforcement, crime prevention, ethics, social science, and interagency collaboration. The curriculum is designed to help you gain professional skills such as critical and analytical thinking, problem-solving, effective writing, and decision-making. The program concludes with a comprehensive capstone course designed to allow students to apply principles of interagency cooperation, critical thinking, and systems approaches to solve practical problems in the criminal justice system.

Here are a few benefits of this online program: 

  • You’ll benefit from criminal justice-focused coursework and a general education curriculum that can help provide you with well-rounded skills and expertise.
  • Through an accelerated pathway, you may be able to reduce your total coursework for a related master’s degree.
  • Eligible criminal justice majors can join Pi Gamma Mu, which recognizes outstanding scholarship in the social sciences. UMGC’s Maryland Theta chapter was recently added to the society’s Roll of Distinction and was also the winner of the 2020 UMGC Student Organization Awards Best in Show Activities and Events Award.

See Courses & Program Info

View a complete list of program courses, credit opportunities, and more.

Search Course Catalog

These requirements are for students who enroll in the 2023–2024 academic year. For prior year requirements, visit our catalog archive.

Bachelor’s Degree Requirements

In addition to the specific course requirements outlined on each bachelor’s degree webpage, UMGC maintains certain requirements for all bachelor’s degrees.

Develop Vital Skills in Criminal Justice

Criminal justice practitioners need to develop deeper knowledge and career-focused skills to meet the increasing professional demands of the field. While state and local law enforcement agencies do not require a criminal justice degree to be hired, many related technical fields and promotional opportunities require higher education. In addition, some federal law enforcement agencies now require at least a bachelor's degree for new hires.

Our faculty refresh and update the curriculum regularly with a focus on helping students achieve these learning goals: 

Unlock Your Career Potential

This program is designed to help you obtain the skills you need to succeed in local/state law enforcement, federal law enforcement, criminal justice administration, or private safety and security roles. For example, graduates might take on positions such as police officer, criminal investigator, forensic investigator, crime intelligence analyst, case manager, correctional officer, and more. Please note that many law enforcement roles require successful graduation from a police academy. 

Vernon H., Woodbine, MD

Job Postings
More than 60,000 job postings for police and detectives are projected annually from 2022 to 2032.
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics | “Occupational Outlook Handbook” | 2023
Top 5
Best Places to Work
The intelligence community ranked no. 3 in the Best Place to Work in the Federal Government employer rankings in 2022 and has ranked top 5 for 11 consecutive years.
Source: Partnership for Public Service & Boston Consulting Group | “Best Places to Work in the Federal Government Rankings” | 2022
Top 15
Criminal Justice Jobs
Five of the 15 highest-paying criminal justice jobs in the United States require at least a bachelor’s degree, according to an analysis of BLS job titles on LinkedIn.
Source: LinkedIn | “15 Best-Paying Criminal Justice Jobs” | January 24, 2023

Practice Real-World Skills in Your Courses

Throughout the curriculum, your instructors will assign coursework that will help you prioritize real-world skills and hands-on experiences. In past courses, students have been able to complete the following projects:

  • Analyze a fact pattern and discern what facts are relevant to criminal culpability and why. Consider general criminal law concepts and specific statutes in your analysis.
  • Assume the role of a law enforcement administrator and develop an appropriate action plan to address a complex law enforcement problem in a community-based capacity.
  • Based on a description of a serial murder investigation, identify facts and items that are significant to the criminal investigation and explain their importance.

Explore UMGC Insights

Gain insight from our faculty and staff and delve deeper into a range of topics, including criminal justice careers, prior learning, transfer credits, and more. 



Get answers to questions that current and prospective students are asking about program-specific admission, credibility, student organizations, and more.


Contact Us

Our helpful admissions advisors can help you choose an academic program to fit your career goals, estimate your transfer credits, and develop a plan for your education costs that fits your budget. If you’re a current UMGC student, please visit the Help Center.

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