Jun 21, 2024  
2023-2024 Academic Catalog 
    
2023-2024 Academic Catalog

Criminal Justice and Criminology M.S.

Location(s): Statesboro, Armstrong-Savannah


The M.S. in Criminal Justice & Criminology offers two tracks–Traditional and Executive. The Traditional Track offers three areas of emphasis in a variety of delivery modes. Students in the seated delivery method may take seated, hybrid, or online courses. The online delivery method allows students to complete the degree requirements utilizing a fully online delivery method. Students will opt into one of three emphases. Both the Cybercrime and Criminal Justice emphases (in the Traditional Track) are available in seated modes on the Armstrong and Statesboro campuses as well as the online and hybrid modes of delivery.  The Criminology emphasis (in the Traditional Track) is available on the Statesboro campus in the seated delivery mode as well as online and hybrid delivery modes. Executive track students will engage with hybrid courses on the Armstrong campus.

Degree Requirements: 30-36 Credit Hours


Admission Requirements

Regular Admission

Admission to this program is competitive. At a minimum, for regular admission the applicant must have:

  1. A Bachelor’s degree from an appropriately accredited, four-year institution in criminal justice/criminology or related field (that adequately prepares students for success in this field. This application requirement will be waived for applicants who successfully complete the Post-Baccalaureate Cyber Certificate.)
  2. A 3.00 cumulative grade point average or higher on completed requirements for a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution. (This application requirement will be waived for applicants who successfully complete the Post-Baccalaureate Cyber Certificate.)
  3. Letter of Application detailing: a) academic background and/or professional credentials, b) relevant research and work experience, c) career goals and reasons for enrollment in this program.
  4. Two letters of recommendation addressing the applicant’s: 1) academic work; 2) professional experience, if any; 3) ability to handle master’s level curriculum, and 4) how the applicant can be expected to contribute to the program. (This application requirement will be waived for applicants who successfully complete the Post-Baccalaureate Cyber Certificate.)

Additional Admission Requirements - Executive Track

  1. A letter of recommendation from their current criminal justice employer/supervisor (in liu of two letters of recommendation). 
  2. Be a current POST-certified law enforcement officer in the state of Georgia.

Provisional Admission

Applicants who meet two out of the three requirements outlined for GPA and GRE scores may be granted provisional admission by the graduate faculty committee based on careful review of additional materials submitted.

Reclassification

A student may be reclassified with regular admission providing that they have completed three program or related courses (9 hours), approved by their advisor, with a grade of no less than B. Additional courses may be required to be completed prior to a student’s reclassification that do not contribute to these nine hours (such as taking an undergraduate statistics course to prepare for graduate statistics). No more than nine hours may be earned under the provisional admission classification. After nine hours, the student must either be reclassified as a regular admission student or be removed from the program.

Prerequisites for Admission

While an undergraduate degree in criminal justice is not a prerequisite to admission, newly admitted students must be deemed adequately prepared for graduate study in this essentially multidisciplinary area. Students who lack the necessary background may be required to complete additional undergraduate coursework. For example, students who have not successfully completed an undergraduate statistics course may be required to do so prior to enrollment in graduate statistical analysis or research methods courses.

Standards of Progression and Graduation

  1. Graduate students must maintain a 3.0 overall grade point average in all graduate courses. A student will be placed on academic probation if they earn one (1) C or below. If a student earns two (2) C’s or below, the student will be dismissed from the program.
  2. Each student must file a program of study and an application for graduation with Graduate Studies. Fifty percent of the program of study must be completed at the 6000-8000 levels.
  3. If any change in the approved program of study is required, an amended program of study, signed by the student and advisor, must be submitted to Graduate Studies.
  4. Satisfactory completion of a written comprehensive assessment one semester prior to graduation for the coursework option students is required. Students choosing the thesis option must receive a satisfactory score on a formal thesis defense. Students completing practicum must receive a passing grade on the paper required for completion of the course. Students on the executive track will complete a policy paper.
  5. Students are encouraged to apply for graduation two semesters before the anticipated date of graduation. Note: A copy of the official program of study must accompany the candidate’s application.
  6. All degree requirements must be completed within seven years.

Program of Study


The M.S. in Criminal Justice & Criminology degree program is structured both for students seeking careers or professional advancement in the criminal justice field and for students who ultimately wish to pursue an advanced degree in criminal justice/criminology.

Traditional Track: 36 Credit Hours


Traditional Track for students seeking careers or professional advancement in the criminal justice field and for students who ultimately wish to pursue an advanced degree in criminal justice/criminology.

Advanced Work: 12 Credit Hours


In conjunction with advisor and program coordinator, select one area of emphasis (9 credit hours) and one free elective (3 credit hours). 

Electives: 3 Credit Hours

  • Select 3 credit hours of courses at the 5000G level or above.

Capstone Options: 6 Credit Hours


Students select from three capstone options to complete their final 6 hours of the program:

Thesis Option:

  1. Recommended for students who seek to do research for public and non-profit agencies or who seek further educational opportunities, such as a Ph.D. Students must pass the thesis defense.

Practicum:

  1. Recommended for students who seek employment in the justice system or adjacent systems’ agencies. Students will complete an internship, approved by their advisor and the program coordinator, completing all tasks associated with the internship option. Students will complete a comprehensive paper as part of this course, and must earn a passing score on this paper.

Focused Course Work:

  1. Recommended for students who seek additional substantive information relative to their career track. Specific courses must be approved by their advisor and the program director. Students selecting this option must earn a passing grade on a comprehensive exam.

Total Credit Hours: 36


*The M.S. Student Handbook describes additional relevant information for the degree requirements.

Executive Track: 30 Credit Hours


Executive Track for current POST-certified criminal justice professionals

Advanced Work: 12 Credit Hours


In conjunction with advisor and program coordinator, select one area of emphasis (9 credit hours) and one free elective (3 credit hours). 

Electives: 3 Credit Hours

Select 3 credit hours of courses at the 5000G level or above.

Total Credit Hours: 30


Other Program Requirements

Students on the Executive Track must complete a policy paper as a capstone of their degree.

The M.S. Student Handbook describes additional relevant information for the degree requirements.

Advisement

Graduate students are advised by their program. Graduate students should reach out to their graduate program director for information regarding the structures in place to facilitate advisement. For more information visit Graduate Academic Advisement .

Graduate students can also contact the Jack N. Averitt College of Graduate Studies for more information about their program director.
Phone: 912-478-COGS (2647)
Email: gradschool@georgiasouthern.edu