What you'll learn as a criminal justice major at UW-Platteville
Earning a criminal justice degree from the UW-Platteville Department of Criminal Justice and Social Sciences provides an understanding of the criminal justice system and society in which it functions. Prepare for a career in this challenging and rewarding field by selecting courses in policing, corrections, criminological theory, law, forensic investigation, private security, and more. Remember that because the criminal justice program’s foundation in the liberal arts, many of the skills you learn through the program can transfer to any career field.
UW-Platteville offers both a Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice. Both of these programs can be completed online and on campus. You can choose an emphasis in Corrections or Law Enforcement. The university also offers online Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in Criminal Justice Management, Criminal Justice Theory, and Victim Offender Services with the option to choose a minor in Criminal Justice.
We also offer a minor in criminal justice. This minor requires the completion of 12 credits of required foundational courses and 12 credits of in-depth topic-specific elective courses in criminal justice or forensic investigation.
With a bachelor’s in criminal justice, whether you’re seeking to enter the criminal justice field or advance in your current law enforcement or security career, you’ll become an invaluable member of your community in law enforcement, the court system, and the correctional system. An undergraduate education in criminal justice also provides for the needs of students who plan to enter law school or who wish to pursue graduate studies in criminal justice, criminology, or related fields.
You’ll develop career-ready skills through the university’s nationally recognized internship program as you work in local, state, or national agencies and departments while earning credit. Our active student organizations and clubs give you ample opportunities to make friends and build your resume. For students in the on-campus program, you can also apply classroom principles in simulated crime scenes at UW-Platteville’s Forensic Investigation Crime Scene House.
Criminal justice graduate programs at UW-Platteville allow you to continue honing your knowledge and skills with a master’s degree in criminal justice, and with our Accelerated Bachelor’s to Master’s Pathway, you can apply credits from your UW-Platteville undergraduate degree toward your graduate degree. Choose a more flexible option that allows you to work while completing your master’s degree. Most students with part-time status complete their master's degree in two years.
Online Programs Offer Flexible Options
UW-Platteville offers nationally recognized, 100% online bachelor’s and master’s degree in criminal justice programs. Our online bachelor’s in criminal justice degree program continues to be recognized for excellence by U.S. News & World Report. Through the online Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice, you’ll build knowledge from courses such as Criminal Law, Foundations of Policing, and Criminology as you earn your degree at your pace.
Discover by Doing
Criminal justice at UW-Platteville is focused on experiential learning that connects your education to your future career.
About The Criminal Justice Major
The major in criminal justice provides opportunities to study a wide array of topics and allows you the flexibility to choose specialized courses in areas related to your own professional goals and academic interests. The first 60 credits are composed primarily of general education courses to develop a broad educational background, along with the first three core criminal justice courses. After completion of 60 credits, in-depth knowledge can be obtained by careful selection of courses in policing, corrections, criminological theory, law, forensic investigation, alcohol and other drug abuse counseling, and private security. You may select an optional emphasis for your degree in either Law Enforcement or Corrections. These emphases direct students' elective credits to topic-specific courses for in-depth specialization.
As a criminal justice major, you are encouraged to consider completing minors in related areas such as psychology, sociology, political science, safety, accounting, chemistry, biology, business, ethnic studies, or computer science. Students who are majoring in other fields can minor in criminal justice or forensic investigation.
Careers in Criminal Justice
As a criminal justice major, you have a wide range of career paths to choose from, with jobs such as:
- Police officer
- Private investigator
- Crime scene investigator
- Correctional officer
- Probation officer
- Parole officer
- Youth correctional counselor
- Reentry counselor
NETWORKING OPPORTUNITIES LEAD TO CAREERS
At the annual Criminal Justice Career Day, you can network with nearly 100 tri-state agencies, plus gain practical skills in our well-established internship program, which offers exciting opportunities at a number of agencies.
Law Enforcement Academy Transfer Credit
UW-Platteville’s Criminal Justice program awards 15 credit hours of lower-level transfer credits towards a bachelor’s degree to students who have successfully completed a law enforcement academy in the state of Wisconsin. Please note that the academy must be approved by the Wisconsin Department of Justice’s Training and Standards Bureau.
Criminal Justice Association
This organization provides a medium for interaction among the people in the field of criminal justice and a unified voice for students of criminal justice in all matters of professional and academic concerns.
UNIQUE FACILITIES FOR HANDS-ON LEARNING
The Forensic Investigation Crime Scene House and Forensic Investigation Research Facility—one of only a handful of its kind in the country—allow for hands-on experience in evidence collection, entry procedures, search methods, clandestine gravesite excavation, and more aspects of forensic investigation.