In this ranking, we profile the top 30 accelerated master’s in criminal justice online programs for 2020.

An accelerated masters in criminal justice online program is designed to equip students with advanced skills in criminal justice in less time than a traditional program. While earning an accelerated criminal justice degree online, students partake in rigorous study and fast-paced classes. Accelerated programs generally take one to two years to complete. They are ideal for working students who want to earn a graduate degree in less time than most traditionally structured programs.

30 Accelerated Masters Degree in Criminal Justice Programs Methodology

We looked at 165 colleges and universities listed by the Center for Educational Statistics (NCES) College Navigator that offered an accelerated criminal justice degree online. We narrowed our original pool of schools to find the top 30 by applying the following criteria: accreditation with a reputable governing agency, at least one option for completing an accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degree (completion time of no more than two years), and program or institution rankings with at least one major publication like U.S. News and World Report. We then listed the top 30 accelerated master’s in criminal justice online programs according to raw affordability.

Below are the results of our top 30 accelerated master’s in criminal justice online programs of 2020.

#30 – Boston University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Boston, Massachusetts

Website

Boston University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
16-18 months! Boston University’s accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degree.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $53,572

Boston University’s online accelerated master’s in criminal justice consists of eight courses (32 credits) or four required courses and four electives. Completion time for this program is 16-18 months, making it an accelerated criminal justice degree. Students may elect one of three areas of concentration to focus studies and tailor their degree. These concentrations include crime analysis, cybercrime investigation and cybersecurity, and strategic management. The online required courses that all students take in this program, regardless of concentration area, include applied analytical methods, criminal justice administration and ethics, criminology and crime policy, and research and evaluation methods. In addition to online and accelerated programs, Boston University offers quality education and prestige. In fact, Boston University ranks #40 in best national universities by U.S. News and World Report. Also, the online graduate criminal justice programs rank #4 out of more than 1,200 surveyed programs.

#29 – Fairleigh Dickinson University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Teaneck, New Jersey

Website

Fairleigh Dickinson University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Fast-paced online master’s in criminal justice – Fairleigh Dickinson University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $23,802

Individuals with a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university and 3.0 undergraduate GPA may qualify for admission to the accelerated master’s in criminal justice online program at Fairleigh Dickinson University. This fast-paced 36-credit hour program takes less than 18 months to complete for full-time students and 18-24 months for part-time students. Six courses represent the core curriculum or 18 credits. These courses consist of advanced criminological theory, critical analysis of criminal justice, social science research methods, and U.S. constitution, public policy, and criminal justice. Fairleigh Dickinson ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, the school ranks #56 in best regional universities in the North.

#28 – Norwich University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Northfield, Vermont

Website

Norwich University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Earn your accelerated master’s in criminal justice online in only 15 months.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $19,360

Norwich University’s accelerated criminal justice degree online program, designed for working professionals, prepares students for careers that ensure the safety of the global community. The flexible online platform offers students the ability to complete coursework that accommodates busy schedules. While classes are delivered online, a one-week residency on-campus experience is required. Courses include cyber crime, cyber law, law and the international system, law enforcement administration, and international response to transnational terrorism. The average time to completion of the degree is just 15 months. Norwich ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 66th best regional university in the North.

#27 – Southern New Hampshire University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Manchester, New Hampshire

Website

Southern New Hampshire University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
No GMAT or GRE required. Southern New Hampshire University – online master’s in criminal justice.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $18,810

Southern New Hampshire University’s accelerated master’s in criminal justice online program consists of 36 credits and a completion time of approximately 15 months. By taking two courses per ten-week term, students finish their accelerated degree in a shorter time than most traditional master’s in criminal justice programs. Admission requires no GMAT or GRE scores but does require an accredited bachelor’s degree and official transcripts, as well as a completed application. All courses are delivered online and include courts and the judicial process, criminology and public policy, ethical leadership in criminal justice, and introduction to organizational conflict management. According to U.S. News and World Report, SNHU ranks #92 in best regional universities in the North and #1 in most innovative schools.

#26 – Northcentral University

Online MBA in Criminal Justice

San Diego, California

Website

Northcentral - Accelerated Masters in Criminal Justice Online
Northcentral University – A top school for an online MBA in criminal justice.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $17,917

Northcentral University’s accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degree is uniquely designed as an MBA program with a specialization in criminal justice. The specialized business degree is for individuals seeking management and leadership positions in correctional institutions, court systems, and law enforcement. A total of thirty credits and ten courses are required. Students typically earn their degree in an accelerated timeframe of just 16 months. The short completion time allows students to earn their graduate degree in less time than traditional MBA programs. Northcentral ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, the online MBA programs rank #215-#284 out of more than 1,200 programs surveyed by U.S. News.

#25 – Indiana University of Pennsylvania

Online Masters in Criminology and Criminal Justice

Indiana, Pennsylvania

Website

Indiana University of Pennsylvania - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Ranked and accredited – Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s accelerated master’s in criminal justice online.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $16,650

Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s online accelerated master’s in criminal justice program prepares students for advanced positions in federal, state, and local law enforcement and corrections. Accelerated degree options allow students to earn their degree in a shorter length of time than traditional programs. The early admission program is open to individuals who have earned at least 15 credits in their major and have a 3.25 GPA or higher. Full-time students finish their degree in just 15 months, making the program one of the most accelerated online master’s in criminal justice on our list. U.S. News and World Report ranks Indiana University of Pennsylvania #293-#381 in best national universities. Also, the online graduate criminal justice programs rank #30 out of more than 1,200 U.S. News-surveyed programs.

#24 – Franklin University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Columbus, Ohio

Website

Franklin University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
14-month completion time! Franklin University’s master’s in criminal justice online degree.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $16,080

Franklin University’s accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degree program offers a 14-month completion time and requires no GRE or GMAT for admission. The program consists of 30 semester hours of online courses that cover a wide range of criminal justice and criminology courses. These courses include adult and juvenile systems of justice, effective administration of justice, stats and research methods of criminal justice, and strategic policing and contemporary crime control strategies. Students must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 while enrolled in the master’s program. Franklin University, a private school designed for adult learners, offers accreditation and rankings with major publications like U.S. News and World Report.

#23 – National University

Online Master of Criminal Justice

La Jolla, California

Website

National University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Ranked with U.S. News! National University’s online master’s in criminal justice.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $15,480

National University’s online accelerated master’s in criminal justice takes approximately one year to complete. Classes run four weeks in length and move at a rigorous pace. All courses at National University are taught by experienced practitioners in the field. These classes cover topics like advanced criminological theory, advanced research methods, critical issues in criminal justice, legal issues in criminal justice, and professional ethics in criminal justice. Four elective courses are also required and explore topics like forensic psychology and major case investigation. According to U.S. News and World Report, National University ranks among best regional universities in the West. In addition to school rankings, the online graduate criminal justice programs rank #52 out of more than 1,200 surveyed programs.

#22 – University of Massachusetts

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Lowell, Massachusetts

Website

University of Massachusetts - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
UMASS Lowell offers an accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degree that takes 18 months to complete.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $15,060

University of Massachusetts Lowell offers an accelerated criminal justice degree online program that takes 18 months to complete. The online pathway combined with the wide selection of electives makes the criminal justice program a highly flexible program for those seeking advanced study. Online courses include administration of justice, criminological theory foundations, descriptive and inferential statistics, law and public policy, and managing justice organizations. Admission to the accelerated program does not require GRE scores. However, admission requires an earned bachelor’s from an accredited institution. UMASS Lowell ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, the school ranks #179 in best national universities and the online graduate criminal justice programs rank #5 out of more than 1,200 surveyed programs.

#21 – Mercer University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice and Public Safety Leadership

Macon, Georgia

Website

Mercer University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Only 16 months! Mercer University’s online master’s in criminal justice.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $14,674

Mercer University’s online master’s in criminal justice and public safety leadership is a fully online program designed to equip students for advanced leadership roles. This program is considered accelerated, as courses are offered in eight-week sessions. Also, the fast pacing of the classes allows students to earn their graduate degree in just 16 months. To add to the program’s flexibility, students are admitted five times each year – in August, October, January, March, and May. The master’s program requires a total of 30 credits and includes a variety of course subjects. Topics include leadership and ethics in public safety, multidisciplinary view of theories and models of leadership, and research analysis. Mercer ranks #153 in best national universities, according to the most recent publication of Best Colleges by U.S. News and World Report.

#20 – Hilbert College

Online Masters in Criminal Justice Administration

Hamburg, New York

Website

Hilbert College - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Earn a criminal justice master’s in just 16 months- Hilbert College.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $14,570

Hilbert College’s accelerated criminal justice degree online program equips students for careers in law enforcement, criminal justice, and safety agencies. Courses are delivered entirely online to accommodate busy and working individuals. Students take one course at a time and move through the program with a cohort. This format allows students to develop relationships with colleagues and faculty. Courses change every five weeks, making the program completion time just 16 months. Some of the courses include criminal law and the courts, introduction to graduate statistics, organizational theory and management, and research methods in criminal justice. Hilbert ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report as a top regional college in the North.

#19 – Bethune-Cookman University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice Administration

Daytona Beach, Florida

Website

Bethune-Cookman University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
18 months! Bethune-Cookman University’s master’s in criminal justice online degree.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $14,100

Bethune-Cookman University offers accelerated master’s in criminal justice online programs designed for individuals seeking online options for graduate degrees in criminal justice. The program is offered fully online and requires either a thesis or capstone project. Students finish their degree requirements in just four semesters or 18 calendar months. Courses cover a variety of topics like advanced research methods in criminal justice, criminal justice administration, professional ethical standards, research methods in criminal justice, and theories of justice for criminal justice professionals. Bethune-Cookman, a top-ranked liberal arts institution, ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, U.S. News ranks Bethune #164-#215 in best national liberal arts colleges in the country.

#18 – Colorado Christian University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Lakewood, Colorado

Website

Colorado Christian University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Ranked with U.S. News – Colorado Christian University’s accelerated master’s in criminal justice online.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $13,980

Home to one of the top online accelerated master’s in criminal justice programs on our list, Colorado Christian University’s College of Adult and Graduate Studies offers accreditation, affordability, and accelerated options. Through full-time study, students may earn their master’s in criminal justice in 15 months. Courses run five-weeks in length and a total of 36 total credit hours are required to complete the degree. Transfer students can shave even more time off the accelerated degree by transferring up to six graduate-level credit hours. In addition to accreditation, Colorado Christian ranks #87-#113 by U.S. News and World Report as a top regional university in the West.

#17 – South University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Savannah, Georgia

Website

South University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Takes less than 2 years! South University’s accelerated master’s in criminal justice online.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $13,316

South University’s online master’s in criminal justice program allows students to earn a graduate degree in less than two years. Considered an accelerated program due to the shortened completion time, flexible online courses move at a rigorous pace. Students take classes that cover topics like advanced research methods and analysis, ethics and moral behavior in the criminal justice system, foundations in criminal justice, and organizational leadership. Admission requirements include an earned bachelor’s from an accredited college or university, and minimum undergraduate GPA of 2.7 or competitive GRE or MAT scores. South ranks among top health professions schools, according to U.S. News and World Report.

#16 – ECPI University

Online Masters in Management – Homeland Security

Virginia Beach, Virginia

Website

ECPI University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
An accelerated master’s in criminal justice online program that takes only 16 months! ECPI University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $12,960

While not an accelerated criminal justice degree online program like many of the others on our list, the master’s in management with specialization in homeland security at ECPI University offers acceleration and flexibility. We added ECPI’s online master’s in management due to the emphasis on homeland security management, often a specialization seen in criminal justice programs. This degree is offered entirely online and structured to allow students to earn their master’s degree in just 16 months. Also, program structure is ideal for busy and working students. In addition to offering accelerated degrees online, ECPI offers accreditation and rankings with U.S. News and World Report. In fact, ECPI ranks #96-#122 in best regional universities in the South.

#15 – Arizona State University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Tempe, Arizona

Website

Arizona State University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
ASU’s online master’s in criminal justice has accelerated pathways to completing the degree.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $12,134

Arizona State University’s accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degree program is a professional degree designed to equip criminal justice agency scholars and leaders. Full-time and part-time completion options are available. To take advantage of the accelerated option, students may enroll full-time and earn their degree in just 18 months. Accelerated 7.5-week classes cover topics like applied data analysis in criminal justice, criminal justice planning and program evaluation, and theory and practice in criminal justice. ASU ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 117th best national university. In addition to institution rankings, the online graduate criminal justice programs rank #4 out of more than 1,200 programs, making it a top ranked criminal justice program.

#14 – Faulkner University

Online Master of Justice Administration

Montgomery, Alabama

Website

Faulkner University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Faulkner University’s master’s in criminal justice online program takes 14 months.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,160

Faulkner University’s online master’s in criminal justice degree prepares self-motivated students for careers in criminal justice and career advancement in current fields. Program design includes online courses and accelerated pacing. In fact, the courses run five weeks in length, making it possible for students to earn their degree in 14 months. Ten courses are required for completion of the degree. These courses include administration of justice, criminal justice writing, law and justice, and policing in America. U.S. News and World Report ranks institution according to their performance across indicators of excellence. Faulkner has received top rankings from this publication. In fact, U.S. News ranks Faulkner #96-#122 in best regional universities in the South.

#13 – Lasell College

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Newton, Massachusetts

Website

Lasell College - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
100 percent online – Lasell College’s accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degree.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,960

Recognized as one of the quickest online accelerated master’s in criminal justice degree programs on our list, Lasell College’s criminal justice degree takes only 12 months to earn. In addition to 100 percent online courses, the program offers four concentrations in areas such as emergency and crisis management, homeland security and global justice, self-designed option, and violence prevention and advocacy. Students may tailor their degree to meet career goals by selecting one of the four offered concentrations. In addition to flexibility, Lasell offers reputation. In fact, Lasell ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report as the 116th best regional university in the North.

#12 – Mount Mercy University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Website

Mount Mercy University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
15 months! To earn an accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degree from Mount Mercy University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $9,960

Mount Mercy University’s accelerated master’s in criminal justice online program requires no entrance exams and offers 100% online courses. The Mount Mercy criminal justice program moves at a rigorous pace and allows students to earn their degree in just over one year. Classes run in accelerated five-week and ten-week stretches. To finish the degree in just 15 months, students must enroll full-time. Core courses cover topics like administration of justice, research and statistics for criminal justice, and theory of justice. There is also a non-thesis capstone requirement. Mount Mercy ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 40th best regional university in the Midwest and 37th best value school.

#11 – Trine University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Angola, Indiana

Website

Trine University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Ranked and affordable – Trine University’s online masters’s in criminal justice.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $9,900

The Trine University online master’s in criminal justice program offers online courses for adults with a bachelor’s degree. The program requires a total of 36 credits but moves at a fast pace, allowing students to earn their degree in less time than most traditional programs. Some of the required courses cover topics like applied statistics for criminal justice, criminal justice policy formation and analysis, criminology, research and writing for professional success, and the American system of justice. Not only does Trine offer accelerated options, but also accredited programs and institutional rankings. In fact, Trine ranks #46 in best regional universities in the Midwest and #30 in best value schools.

#10 – McKendree University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Lebanon, Illinois

Website

McKendree University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
18 months of full-time study leads to a master’s in criminal justice online degree at McKendree University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $9,291

McKendree University’s accelerated criminal justice degree online is designed to provide students with research-based curriculum that prepares them for careers in criminal justice. Online classes run eight weeks. The accelerated format allows students to earn their degree in 18 months of full-time study or in two years of part-time study. Courses include advanced studies in criminal justice, criminological theory, ethics and individual rights, research in criminal justice data analysis, and research in criminal justice methods and concepts. McKendree is accredited and ranked with major publications. In fact, McKendree ranks #53 in best regional universities in the Midwest and #40 in best value schools.

#9 – Saint Leo University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Saint Leo, Florida

Website

Saint Leo University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Saint Leo University’s accelerated master’s in criminal justice online program offers high profile internship opportunities.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $8,498

Saint Leo University’s online accelerated master’s in criminal justice program takes less than two years to complete. The accelerated program offers classes in highly specialized criminal justice topics, including criminal advocacy, forensic science, offender treatment, and terrorism in Israel. Through hands-on study and a capstone course, students address common problems and challenges faced in criminal justice careers. In addition to the capstone project, students intern with a variety of federal agencies close to work or home. These internships include placement opportunities with the Drug Enforcement Administration and the U.S. Secret Service. Saint Leo ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 25th best regional university in the South and 5th best value school.

#8 – Lamar University

Online MBA in Criminal Justice Management

Beaumont, Texas

Website

Lamar University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Lamar University – Affordable options for accelerated master’s in criminal justice online programs.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $8,174

One of the most affordable online master’s in criminal justice programs on our list is the online MBA in criminal justice management at Lamar University. Whether you are already established in your criminal justice career or are ready to advance to a leadership level, this program will equip you with new talents and expertise. In as little as 16 months, you may earn your criminal justice degree. The accelerated program offers 100% online classes that run eight weeks. Courses include criminal justice leadership, criminal justice system and policy, special studies applied criminology law, and theoretical foundations of crime control. The AACSB-accredited school also ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, Lamar ranks #293-#381 in best national universities.

#7 – Weber State University

Online Master of Criminal Justice

Ogden, Utah

Website

Weber State University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
12-18 months degree completion time! Weber State University – Accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degree.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $8,118

Weber State University’s accelerated criminal justice degree online requires no GRE or thesis and allows students to finish their degree in 12-18 months. Weber State faculty offer decades of field experience in corrections, forensics, law, and policing. Students learn practical applications and methods used in different areas of criminal justice. All courses are delivered online and cover topics like advanced victimology, contemporary criminal justice, criminal justice statistics, judicial administration, and legal foundations in criminal justice. Weber State ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, the most recent publication of Best Colleges lists Weber State #80 in best regional universities in the West and #40 in top public schools.

#6 – Wichita State University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

Wichita, Kansas

Website

Wichita State University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Only 18 months! Accelerated options for an online master’s in criminal justice at Wichita State University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $6,904

Wichita State University’s accelerated master’s in criminal justice online prepare students for careers in leadership criminal justice roles. The online master’s program is designed to lay the foundation for law school or doctoral studies. Full-time students may earn their degree in as little as 18 months, making it a top accelerated program designed flexibly for working students. Courses cover topics like advanced research methods in criminal justice, contemporary issues in criminal justice, crime causation and criminal justice policy, quantitative methods, and seminar in applied criminal theory. Wichita State ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 293rd to 381st best national university.

#5 – Angelo State University

Online Masters in Criminal Justice

San Angelo, Texas

Website

Angelo State University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
No GRE for admission to the accelerated master’s in criminal justice online program at Angelo State University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $6,696

Angelo State University’s online master’s in criminal justice program can be completed in as little as 18 months. This fully online degree program offers courses that run in eight-week and 16-week increments. Courses cover a variety of topics, including criminal justice theory, critical analysis of justice administration, police in society, research methods and statistics in security studies, and seminar in criminal justice agency ethics. Admission requirements consist of a complete undergraduate academic record. Applicants should have at least a 2.75 undergraduate GPA overall and two letters of recommendation. The GRE is not required for admission. Angelo State ranks highly with U.S. News and World Report. In fact, the school ranks #87-#113 in best regional universities in the West.

#4 – University of Nebraska

Online Masters in Criminology and Criminal Justice

Omaha, Nebraska

Website

University of Nebraska - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Ranked and affordable – University of Nebraska’s online master’s in criminal justice.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $6,592

University of Nebraska’s accelerated criminal justice degree online is a nationally-ranked program that can be completed entirely online or in a combination of online and on-campus courses. Full-time students may earn their master’s in just 18 months. If working at an accelerated pace doesn’t fit your schedule or needs, an alternative flexible format is available for part-time students. Admission to the program is also flexible. Requirements do not call for GRE test scores; however, applicants must hold a 3.0 GPA in the last two years of undergraduate work. In addition to flexible online options, University of Nebraska offers accreditation and rankings with U.S. News and World Report. In fact, University of Nebraska ranks #293-#381 in best national universities.

#3 – Texas A & M University

Online Masters in Applied Criminology

Commerce, Texas

Website

Texas A & M University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Only 12 courses – Texas A&M’s accelerated master’s in criminal justice online program.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $6,424

Texas A&M University offers an accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degree that confers the degree in just 18 months. Offered 100% online with courses that run five weeks in length, the program is flexibly scheduled to fit the needs of working students. Courses cover a number of criminal justice and criminology topics, such as corrections, criminology, issues in criminal law and the courts, and seminar in policing and law enforcement. A total of 12 courses are required for the criminology degree. Texas A&M is a nationally ranked institution. In fact, the school ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 293rd-381st best national university.

#2 – Missouri State University

Online Masters in Criminology and Criminal Justice

Springfield, Missouri

Website

Missouri State University - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
Thesis or non-thesis pathways – Missouri State University’s accelerated master’s in criminal justice online.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $6,038

Missouri State University’s online accelerated master’s in criminal justice program consists of four semesters, including the option of completing courses during the summer. If students elect to take summer classes, the accelerated degree may be earned in 1.5 years. For the online master’s in criminal justice, thesis or non-thesis pathways are offered. In addition to thesis options, online courses add to the program’s flexibility. Online courses cover a wide range of criminology and criminal justice topics. These topics include applied research in criminal justice, crime theory and policy, criminal justice policy, and leadership and management in criminal justice. Missouri State ranks #293-#381 in best national universities.

#1 – University of the Cumberlands

Online Masters in Justice Administration

Williamsburg, Kentucky

Website

University of the Cumberlands - 30 Accelerated Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs
#1 most affordable – University of the Cumberlands – accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degree program.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $5,970

University of the Cumberlands offers the #1 most affordable accelerated master’s in criminal justice online. The program is flexibly designed for working students and offers several specialization options. In the event you want to tailor your criminal justice degree, 10 specializations are available. Specializations include addiction studies, corrections, criminal justice education, homeland security, juvenile justice, law enforcement, and more. A total of 31 credits are required for the completion of the degree. Courses include criminological theories in justice administration, ethical issues in justice administration, and legal issues in justice administration. University of the Cumberlands ranks with U.S. News and World Report as a top national university.

––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Frequently Asked Questions

What jobs can I get with an accelerated masters in criminal justice online degree?

By earning an accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degree, you can open doors to wider employment opportunities in the fields of criminal justice, law enforcement, security, and more. While most police work requires less college and more on-the-job training, some leadership roles call for graduate degrees.

Below are five possible jobs one can acquire with an accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degree.

  • Criminal profiler: Criminal profilers examine evidence to determine the profile of a person who has committed a crime. Assessments are based on behavioral theories and insights into an individual’s personality.
  • Criminologist: Criminologists study crimes and causes while implementing research and statistical evidence. They work closely with law enforcement to make recommendations and implement public policy.
  • Forensic psychologist: The role of the forensic psychologist is to work closely with the legal system to perform assessments and promote mental health treatments of suspected criminals. Often, a forensic psychologist helps determine if an individual is fit to stand trial.
  • Police and detective supervisor: The first-line managers in police departments or agencies evaluate officers and direct schedules. Police supervisors are in charge of teams of police officers during particular or all shifts. They keep morale strong in the office and help provide support and training for new and seasoned officers.
  • Supervisory criminal investigator: These management-level professionals supervise a team of criminal investigators or assist in high-level investigations. The role of a supervisory investigator is to assign cases to detectives and other investigators, while ensuring departmental policies are carried out.

How much money can I make with an accelerated masters in criminal justice online degree?

Since a criminal justice degree is versatile in terms of career choice, earnings potential varies by occupation. We looked at several occupations reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine the average salaries for individuals with a master’s in criminal justice online degree. The findings are listed below.

Private detectives and investigators typically don’t have graduate-level training; however, earning an accelerated master’s in criminal justice online might qualify you for supervisory roles. According to BLS, the median annual wage for private detectives and investigators was $50,090 as of May 2018. The median annual wage varies among industry. In fact, the top three industries reported the following:

Government investigators earned an average median wage of $59,340. Finance and insurance investigators earned $57,220 on average. Armored car services and guards or private security investigators earned an average median wage of $47,270.

Individuals with a master’s in criminal justice online degree working as police officers or detectives earned an average median pay of $63,380. BLS reports detectives and criminal investigators earned an average of $81,920 as of May 2028. Also, BLS reported the top paying industry for police and detectives was the federal government. Federal government detectives and/or supervisors earned an average of $87,130.

What is the job outlook for those with an accelerated online masters degree in criminal justice?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the job outlook for individuals with accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degrees is projected to grow about as fast as all other occupations. In fact, BLS projects a five percent employment growth for police and detectives from 2018 to 2028.

Employment growth is anticipated due to need. Even as crime rates fall within recent years, the demand for public safety continues. As a result, more police officers and police supervisors will be needed to aid in the improvement efforts of public safety.

BLS reports strong competition for police and detective positions. Depending on local and state budgets, hiring will fluctuate. Also, the industry has low turnover rates, which also impacts hiring. Since job openings are limited, individuals with bachelor’s or master’s degrees in a related field will have the best job opportunities. Also, specialized training, such as earning a concentration in a niche area of criminal justice, may set you apart from competition. Specialized training includes areas like forensic science, homeland security, or law enforcement.

Since government spending determines job growth for police and detectives, job opportunities fluctuate from year to year. Also, location impacts hiring, as local budgets increase or decrease annually.

What are the admission requirements for most accelerated masters in criminal justice online programs?

The admission requirements for accelerated maser’s in criminal justice online programs vary. However, the programs on our list do show some similarities. For example, many of the programs listed here require an earned bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university. In some cases, graduate programs, especially accelerated master’s in criminal justice online programs, require an earned bachelor’s in criminal justice or a closely related discipline.

Since many accelerated programs require prerequisite courses be completed before admission, less core courses are required. With less requirements comes less time spent in class. However, some programs do not accept transfer credit, but require an earned bachelor’s degree in criminal justice. The criminal justice undergraduate degree requirement ensures foundational classes have been taken prior to admission to an accelerated master’s in criminal justice online program.

Additional requirements for online master’s in criminal justice programs, specifically accelerated programs, include satisfactory undergraduate performance, GRE or GMAT scores, and letters of recommendation. Not all programs require the GRE or other graduate test scores. However, top-ranked criminal justice programs require these scores and ask for scores not older than five years.

While admission requirements vary by program and institution, it is important to evaluate admission criteria prior to completing the application.

How long are accelerated online masters degree in criminal justice programs?

Accelerated programs are designed to shorten the length of time it takes to earn a graduate degree. The programs on our list offers accelerated options for completing an online master’s in criminal justice. These programs require less than two years to earn the graduate degree. In the event that the program takes two years for completion, transfer credit is accepted, which shortens the length of time. The average completion time for a traditional master’s in criminal justice is two years.

Accelerated master’s in criminal justice online degrees take, on average, 18 months to complete. The shortest programs on our list take 12 months, while the longest programs take just under two years and accept transfer credits. 12-month accelerated master’s in criminal justice online programs generally require summer semesters. By taking classes in the summer, you shorten the length of time required to meet degree stipulations.

Classes in traditional master’s in criminal justice programs run sixteen weeks, while accelerated classes run as short as five weeks in length. Shorter classes do not mean less rigor. In fact, accelerated programs are rigorous and fast-paced. Successful students are detail-oriented, highly organized, and self-motivated. Accelerated programs work well for busy, working students who want to succeed in balancing outside obligations with their education.

BCO Staff
November 2019

Top 30 Most Affordable Master’s in Criminal Justice Online Programs

Top 30 Most Affordable Law Degree Programs Online

This concludes our list of the top 30 accelerated masters in criminal justice online programs of 2020.