Criminal justice professionals work in a wide variety of capacities throughout the criminal justice system. Whether their area of expertise is in corrections, law enforcement, clerical duties or any other aspect of the profession, a key to advancement is often the attainment of an advanced degree. A Master of Criminal Justice degree increases the knowledge of the student, as well as their potential for advancement in the field. Many criminal justice professionals, however, cannot afford to take time away from the profession to earn a degree or relocate for the specific program of interest. Thankfully many high quality universities have begun to offer graduate criminal justice programs online for the convenience of working professionals. This is a list of the top ten best online criminal justice degree programs available from regionally accredited institutions.
#1. Boston University: Master of Criminal Justice
Executive Summary: Boston University is one of the most prominent private institutions of higher education in the nation. Boston University has been committed since its inception to developing an academically rigorous, practical culture.
Tuition: BU Master of Criminal Justice program tuition is $30,400.00 for the entire program.
Unique Features: Boston University is ranked #51 in the nation by U.S. News and World Report and its online programs are ranked #12 in the Faculty Credentials and Training category of U.S. News and World Report’s online education honor roll.
#2. Northeastern University: Master of Science in Criminal Justice Leadership
Executive Summary: Northeastern University is the largest and one of the most respected research universities in Massachusetts. Northeastern emphasizes academically rigorous education methods coupled with a pragmatic emphasis ensuring that students graduate with an understanding of how best to apply their education to real world situations.
Tuition: Tuition for the MS Criminal Justice Leadership program at Northeastern is $545.00 per credit.
Unique Features: Northeastern University is ranked #56 among top national universities by U.S. News and World Report, ranked #7 among up and coming schools and boasts a #12 ranked criminology program.
#3. Michigan State University: Master of Science in Criminal Justice
Executive Summary: Michigan State University boasts the oldest Masters in Criminal Justice program in the nation and was also one of the first Universities to offer the program online making this school a veteran of online criminal justice education.
Tuition: Resident and nonresident tuition for the online MS Criminal Justice program is the same at $638.00 per credit.
Unique Features: Michigan State University ranks #71 among top national universities by U.S. News and World Report and the criminology program ranking is tied for 7th in the country with FSU.
#4. Florida State University:
Executive Summary: Florida State University is a large and respected public university. The criminal justice program at FSU is widely regarded as one of the absolute best in the country. Out of state students find FSU’s distance education program particularly affordable because the university has recently reduced its rates for out of state students in the online program to the same as those for in state students.
Tuition: Tuition for both resident and nonresident students in the online graduate criminal justice program pay the resident tuition rate of $513.34 per credit
Unique Features: Florida State University boasts many high rankings by U.S. News and World Report including #97 among national universities, tied for #7 in Criminology and #22 in Student Services and Technology on the online education honor roll.
#5. Arizona State University: Master of Arts in Criminal Justice
Executive Summary: The Criminal Justice program at Arizona State University is devoted to providing working criminal justice professionals with the opportunity to earn an affordable, respected masters in their field without having to take time off or relocate.
Tuition: ASU’s graduate program tuition is $463.00 per credit.
Unique Features: ASU is ranked #139 among national universities, #12 in Criminology, and #4 in the Up and Coming category by U.S. News and World Report as well as being highly ranked across the board for its online programs.
#6. University of Massachusetts: Master of Arts in Criminal Justice
Executive Summary: The University of Massachusetts is one of the most respected public universities in the United States. UMass’ MA in Criminal Justice program offers students the opportunity to earn this affordable degree from a prestigious state university at their own convenience regardless of location.
Tuition: Tuition for the MA Criminal Justice program at UMass is $535.00 per credit.
Unique Features: The online programs at the University of Massachusetts have been recognized by the Sloan Consortium for excellence in online teaching. UMass was also ranked by The Times of London as one of the top 20 universities worldwide. UMass is ranked #97 among national universities by U.S. News and World Report.
#7. Loyola University-New Orleans: Master of Science in Criminal Justice Administration
Executive Summary: Loyola University-New Orleans is a Roman Catholic university of the Jesuit tradition with an academic history over 100 years old. The criminal justice program here aims to train leaders in the field with an emphasis on administration.
Tuition: Tuition for the MS in Criminal Justice program at LU-NO is $744.00 per credit.
Unique Features: LU-NO is ranked #9 among universities in the southern region by U.S. News and World Report and has a good reputation for online education across its diverse online offerings.
#8. California State University San Bernardino: Master of Arts in Criminal Justice
Executive Summary: This program is designed for criminal justice professionals seeking to take their education, and career to the next level; it is designed to cater to the needs of busy working professionals that do not desire to take time off or relocate to earn the degree.
Tuition: Full time resident tuition is $2,611.00 per term. Non residents pay an additional $248.00 per unit fee.
Unique Features: U.S. News and World Report ranks San Bernardino #54 out of the approximately 134 ranked universities in the western region.
#9. University of Louisiana at Monroe: Master of Arts in Criminal Justice
Executive Summary: The criminal justice program at ULM can be completed either wholly online, wholly in the classroom or in a custom hybrid method designed to meet the students specific needs.
Tuition: Full time tuition for residents is $3,478 per year, full time tuition for non residents is $11,424.00 per year. Part time tuition for both in and out of state students is $197.00 per credit.
Unique Features: ULM is ranked in tier 1 of the best regional universities in the country by U.S. News and World Report.
#10. Florida International University: Master of Science in Criminal Justice
Executive Summary: FIU was founded in 1969 with the mission of providing an affordable education to low income students in south Florida and has been succeeding in this mission ever since.
Tuition: Full time graduate tuition at FIU is $9920.00 for Florida residents, $22,020 for non-residents. FIU charges a $299.00 per course distance learning fee.
Unique Features: FIU has designed its criminal justice program to meet the needs of working professionals seeking to advance their careers in the field. Located in Miami Florida, FIU’s criminal justice program has the benefit of being able to attract experienced from the Miami area that can offer students a very real perspective in the practical application of their criminal justice education.