Sociology & Criminal Justice Programs


Mission Statement

The Criminal Justice major provides the opportunity to systematically examine criminal justice systems and the administration of justice, analyzing the causes and patterns of crime and criminal behavior and the ways in which institutional responses address these social problems. The curriculum emphasizes social justice and the promotion of human rights throughout the globe. Criminal Justice courses highlight practical problem-solving using research, theory, and analytic skills relevant to careers in criminal justice, legal studies, community and social service.


Core courses in the Criminal Justice major are designed to expose students to the range and variation of crime and criminal behavior, the criminal justice systems, and the administration of justice that attempt to control and mitigate social problems both domestically and globally with an emphasis on social justice and human rights. Students will review: the major systems of social control, policies, and practice; consider the social and personal consequences of crime and criminal behavior on victims; look at the issues of juvenile justice and corrections, including the history and practice and the range of institutions meant to treat offenders; understand the nature and causes of crime, crime typologies, offenders, and victims; examine criminal law and procedure, understanding how the courts work and how legal decisions are made; examine the history, theory, and practice of police organizations, including internal views that consider police subculture; discuss issues of ethics in law enforcement and criminal justice; explore how individual human differences such as race, class and gender relate to the criminal justice system; consider the implications of systems and policies on social justice and human rights; and be grounded and informed in methods, both quantitative and qualitative, for conducting and analyzing criminal justice research and theory.

Elective courses in the major are designed to provide a detailed focus on some area of criminal justice and consider the broader theoretical issues of crime and other significant social problems. Related requirements are courses found outside of the major in other disciplines that have strong relevance for criminal justice.

Upon completion of this program, majors will have an understanding of the importance of an effective criminal justice system in a just society. Majors, and to a lesser extent minors, will be exposed to the primary components of criminal justice systems, both domestically in the Anglo-American legal tradition, and globally in other major legal traditions, with a focus on justice as a goal.

For the criminal justice course offerings, CJ 1000 provides a comprehensive descriptive overview at the introductory level, 2000- level courses provide an in-depth specialized study of a particular case, area, or social phenomenon and introduce theoretical perspectives, and 3000-level courses apply theory critically in specific cases and consider the consequences of various theories on social policy and strategies for social change.

CJ 1000 is required as a prerequisite for any 2000-level criminal justice course and any 2000-level criminal justice course is a prerequisite for any 3000-level criminal justice course. Any student who has grounds to request a waiver of this requirement may do so by contacting the criminal justice area coordinator for a decision. This request must be made prior to enrolling in the upper level criminal justice course.

Grade Requirements for Criminal Justice Majors

Students who major in Criminal Justice must achieve a grade of C- or above in all core courses in the major.

If a student receives a lower grade than a C-, that student will need to repeat the course.




CJ 1000 Introduction to Criminal Justice Systems and the Administration of Justice


Core Requirements:

CJ 2000 Criminology


CJ 2020 Criminal Law


CJ 2030 Criminal Procedure


CJ 2100 Corrections


CJ 2212 Policing


CJ/SOC 2350 Human Diversity in Criminal Justice


CJ/SOC 2600 Methods in Social Research


CJ 3300 Justice and Human Rights Advocacy


CJ 3900 Capstone Seminar: Criminal Justice


Criminal Justice Electives:

Six credits, one each at the 2000- and 3000- level.


(May also be used to fill a concentration.)




Requirements in Related Areas:

MATH 1150 Statistics I



CJ/SOC 1140 Quantitative Data Analysis for the Social Sciences

Related requirements outside of the Criminal Justice Major


Two related requirements (six credits) outside the major. May also be used to fulfill a concentration.

The six credits must be from two different academic disciplines except for foreign language sequences. Students who, in addition to the Criminal Justice major, are also a major or minor in another discipline are exempt from Criminal Justice Related Requirements.

AC 2010 Identity Theft

BLKS/SOC 2000 Contemporary Black Worlds

BLKS/P&H 2330 African-American History

BLKS/P&H 2450 Introduction to African-American Cultures

BLKS/PRS 2541 Race and Religion in America

BLKS/HW 3050 Race, Class, Gender and Health

BUS 2610 Crisis Management

COM 2010 Public Speaking

COM 2020 Intercultural Communication

COM 2100 Managerial Communication

COM 2112 Conflict Management

COM 2230 Writing for Communication

ED 2455 Programming for Positive Youth Development

FSC 1700 Forensic Photography

FSC 2700 Intro to Forensic Science

IT 2216 Network Security

P&H 2310 American Constitutional Law

PRS 2210 Ethics

PRS 2470 Social and Political Philosophy

PSY 2100 Adolescent Psychology

PSY 2125 Substance Use Counseling

PSY 2200 Behavior Disorders in Children

PSY 2250 Family Life

PSY 2300 Abnormal Psych

PSY 2310 Psychology of Criminal Behavior

PSY 2320 Psychology and the Law

PSY 2330 Drugs and Behavior

PSY 3130 Brain and Behavior

PSY 3200 Stress, Coping and Adaptation

PSY 3210 Stereotypes and Prejudice

PSY 3260 Psychology of Violence and Terror

SOC 2050 Social Problems

SOC 2200 Race and Ethnicity

SOC/SWK 2420 Working with Groups

SOC 2470 Sex, Gender & Sexuality

SOC 2760 Wealth, Poverty, and Social Class

SOC 2490 Grassroots: Organizing, Leadership and Change

SOC 2510 Social Movements

SOC/SWK 3390 Crisis Intervention

SOC/BLKS 3600 Chocolate Cities

SPE 2600 Introduction to Special Education

SWK 2310 Introduction to Social Work

SWK 2410 Working with Individuals

SWK 3000 Advocacy in Social Work Practice: Community Organization, Management and Policy

Any foreign language course

Please note, some of the above courses may have a prerequisite.


Courses may be used to meet elective and related requirements.

Survivor/Witness/Victim Advocacy Concentration

The concentration, by promoting empathy and human rights, helps prepare students for careers in informed advocacy for people who have witnessed or have been victimized by crime. 



Required: 12 credits

CJ/SOC 2350 Human Diversity in Criminal Justice


CJ 3300 Justice and Human Rights Advocacy


SWK 2310 Introduction to Social Work


SOC/SWK 3390 Crisis Intervention


Choose one of the following: 3 credits

CJ/SOC 2160 Urban Life: Culture and change


CJ 2170 Population, Immigration, and Crime


CJ/SOC 2402 Domestic Violence: Family and Intimate Partner Violence


SWK 2410 Working with Individuals


SOC/SWK 2420 Working with Groups and Communities


CJ 3212 Community Policing: Case Studies and Problem Solving


CJ/SOC 3404 Sociology of Violence


CJ/SOC 3640 Deviance and Social Control




Requirements for a Minor in Criminal Justice: 15 credits

Students can earn a minor in Criminal Justice by taking CJ 1000 and four courses in the Criminal Justice curriculum at the 2000-level or above (excluding CJ/SOC 2340), with at least one course at the 3000-level.


Criminal Justice majors are encouraged to do internships in Criminal Justice, CJ 3450, in practitioner settings and are required to take the requisite CJ 3450 SM Criminal Justice Internship Seminar. Students may earn only three credits for each internship/field experience.

Prerequisites for an internship include:

Completion of SOC/CJ 2340 with a grade of C or better;

A 2.75 cumulative academic average;

A 3.0 cumulative academic average in the CJ major;

And, no outstanding “Incomplete” in a previous field placement.