Students studying criminal justice learn about the nature and causes of crime as well as crime prevention and the treatment of offenders. Students have the option of selecting from two Bachelor of Science programs:
- Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice
- Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice with Paralegal Studies
Students must meet specific academic criteria including 24 semester hours of required classes and 18 semester hours of Criminal Justice electives. Electives include a wide range of courses, including Investigation & Intelligence, Homeland Security and Homeland Defense.
Students in the Criminal Justice with Paralegal Studies program will gain an understanding of what paralegals can accomplish, as well as the limitations imposed by the unauthorized practice of law statute. Paralegals may not provide legal services directly to public except as permitted by law.
Students interested in the Criminal Justice program might also be interested in the Pre-Law studies that can be incorporated into curriculum.
The following courses are required of every Criminal Justice major:
- CRJ 010 Introduction to Criminal Justice
- CRJ 101 Introduction to Policing
- CRJ 181 Criminal Law
- CRJ 182 Criminal Procedure
- CRJ 250 Criminology
- CRJ 270 Management of Offenders
- CRJ 362 Research Methods in Criminal Justice
- CRJ 380 Senior Seminar
After completing 60 credit hours, students will have the opportunity to participate in field work. Kutztown students have received internships with a wide range of local, state and federal agencies. Law enforcement placements have included the state police, private detectives and sheriff's departments, as well as the Federal Bureau of Investigation and U. S. Marshals. Students interested in pursuing careers in courts have worked with prosecutors, defense attorneys and court administrators. Many students are placed in adult and juvenile probation agencies or in adult prisons and juvenile reformatories. One student was placed in Rwanda with the war crimes court.
Criminal Justice Minor
Kutztown University students can choose to minor in criminal justice. The minor requires students to complete CRJ 010 Introduction to Criminal Justice, as well as five other criminal justice courses. Half of these courses must be at the 200-level or above; and, at least half of the eighteen credits must be taken at Kutztown University.
A minor in this area provides our student with a solid understanding of the origin, aims, operation and impact of the criminal justice system. Students from a variety of majors-for example, psychology, sociology, history, computer science and social work-have selected criminal justice as a minor.
Students must meet a number of standards before they will be accepted as minors: they must complete CRJ 010 Introduction to Criminal Justice with a "C" grade or higher; and, they must complete twenty-four (24) credits at Kutztown University with a minimum 2.50 grade point average.
The minor provides increased opportunities for employment. And, a number of students have minored in criminal justice and then gone on to earn master's degrees in criminal justice.
The field of criminal justice is growing, with careers ranging from policing and private security functions to probation, parole, corrections and work in the courts at the local, state or federal levels of government.
This program is taught by the Department of Criminal Justice.
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Criminal Justice Transfer Admission Requirement
Students transferring from another university or a community college are required to complete any college-level criminal justice course with a grade of C or higher and have a combined grade-point average of 2.5 or higher from all institutions previously attended.