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Advance Your Career With an Online Master of Arts in Criminal Justice Degree

Advance your career and make a positive impact in your community, all while continuing to work full-time. The online Master of Arts in Criminal Justice at USI is designed specifically for working professionals like you and offers both standard and accelerated tracks to help you reach your goals on the schedule that works best for you.

What is criminal justice? It is the system we rely on to keep our communities safe. Above all, it’s about helping the people who need it most. The knowledge you gain will empower you to better support vulnerable populations.

Our classes advance your analytical abilities, improve your leadership skills and teach you innovative new methods to protect others. Through engaging and interactive online classes, you’ll learn about the many different facets of criminal justice, including ethical decision-making, criminal law and procedure, correctional treatment and police culture.

Each seven-week course is taught by full-time faculty with PhDs. Their diverse research interests include drug courts, veterans treatment courts, policing and policing strategies, mental health and substance abuse, and corrections and correctional treatment.

All our master’s in criminal justice online courses are certified by Quality Matters, a nationally recognized organization focused on improvement in online education.

Tuition & Fees    Get Started!

What Can You Do With a Master of Arts in Criminal Justice?

Our online master’s in criminal justice degree opens a world of possible careers.

You will learn from faculty who have professional and research experience and can help you advance in your career, obtain managerial positions, pursue a PhD program, move on to employment in federal agencies and more. Our USI faculty will prepare you for the wide variety of jobs available.

Once you complete our online Master of Arts in Criminal Justice, you’ll discover new opportunities to careers such as: 

"I have always wanted to continue my education and the MACJ program has allowed me to accomplish this goal. The online program is structured in a way that I feel connected with my classmates and professors while still allowing me to continue to work full time."

- Emily Earhart, USI 2017 Graduate - Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice
Records Specialist for Evansville Police Department

Required Courses | 18 Credit Hours

  • CRIM 601 - Criminal Justice Policy and Practice
  • CRIM 602 - Criminal Justice Administration
  • CRIM 603 - Research Methods
  • CRIM 604 - Quantitative Methods
  • CRIM 605 - Criminological Theory
  • CRIM 675 - Synthesis

Electives | 18 Credit Hours

  • CRIM 611 - Ethics in Criminal Justice
  • CRIM 612 - Law and Procedure
  • CRIM 620 - Seminar in Corrections*
  • CRIM 630 - Seminar in Policing*
  • CRIM 640 - Special Topics in Criminal Justice*
  • CRIM 650 - Seminar in Criminal Courts*
  • CRIM 691 - Thesis 1
  • CRIM 692 - Thesis 2
  • CRIM 689 - Internship**

*Repeatable with different topic, no limit. **Maximum of 6 Credit Hours total.

To see an expansive list of course descriptions, please click below.

MACJ Course Descriptions

Admission to the program will require a minimum undergraduate grade point average of 2.5 from an accredited college or university. Continuing students must maintain an overall GPA of 3.0 or higher to complete the MACJ.

  1. Submit an online application and $40 application fee.
  2. Submit official transcripts to Graduate Studies.
  3. International applicants may be required to submit additional information.

Courses in the Master of Arts in Criminal Justice are taught by tenured and tenure-track faculty employed full-time by the University of Southern Indiana. All faculty have PhDs and a variety of research and teaching experience. Please visit our faculty websites to learn more about us. 

Criminal Justice Faculty

All MACJ courses are offered online using the Blackboard course management system and are seven (7) weeks in duration. Courses are designed using the Quality Matters Rubric Standards based on best practices and research for course design.

  • Students will build skills relevant for leadership in their field and the community including critical thinking, ethical decision-making, and effective communication.
  • Students will describe the theoretical foundations of criminology and criminal justice institutions and be able to apply these theories to inform criminal justice policy.
  • Students will demonstrate the ability to utilize social scientific research methods and statistics in order to study crime, criminal justice institutions, and criminal justice policy.
  • Students will articulate the historical, legal, and practical nature of criminal justice policy and how policy is related to the functioning of criminal justice institutions.

Receive Credit for Work and Previous Experience

With the Master of Arts in Criminal Justice, you have the opportunity to receive up to 9 credits for prior learning! If you have been in the work force and have gained relevant experience, you can apply that knowledge towards receiving credits in the MACJ program. This can allow you to graduate earlier and pay less for your degree! See the links below for more information.

Download the MACJ PLA Policy

USI's Portfolio Review - Graduate Page

Students who wish to receive credit for prior learning should submit a portfolio of experience to the MACJ program director. The portfolio should be received after they are accepted to the program but prior to the completion of 6 credits. The six-credit deadline refers to those graduate classes taken after acceptance to the program. The portfolio will be evaluated by a committee of faculty of the program. Portfolios are reviewed on a rolling basis. The decision of the committee or their designee is binding and there is no appeal.

The total number of combined transfer credits and PLA credits may not exceed 12.

Students who have completed graduate work at accredited universities will be able to transfer in up to 12 credits toward the MACJ, based on their grades and the similarity of their previous work to that at USI. These determinations will be made by the program director and the members of the MACJ evaluations committee based on best practices in the field.

The total number of combined transfer credits and PLA credits may not exceed 12.

Adapt Your Degree to Your Schedule

Enroll in our master’s in criminal justice online classes on a schedule that is tailored to you. With six start dates each year, you can even select which season works best for your goals.

When you choose our standard track and take one course at a time, you’ll complete your criminal justice master’s program online in about two years.

If you select our accelerated track, you can take two classes at a time and finish your degree in one year!

Course Start Application Deadline Registration Deadline
03/13/23 03/06/23 03/10/23
05/08/23 05/01/23 05/05/23
06/26/23 06/19/23 06/23/23
08/21/23 08/14/23 08/18/23

Get Started Today: 100% Online Master's in Criminal Justice

Take the next step toward earning your Master of Arts in Criminal Justice online at the University of Southern Indiana. Start your application or request more information today.

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