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, with a selected emphasis in either law enforcement or corrections, provides an understanding of the criminal justice system and the 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.

UW-Platteville offers both a Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts and Masters degree in Criminal Justice. With a bachelor’s of 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, courts, corrections, and prosecution and defense. 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 resumé. 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.

In addition to the bachelor’s of criminal justice degree offered on campus, UW-Platteville offers criminal justice degrees online.

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 criminal justice programs. Our online bachelor’s 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.

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About The Criminal Justice Major

The major in criminal justice provides a basic understanding of the criminal justice system and the society in which it functions, emphasizing a wide perspective and allowing students the flexibility to choose specialized courses in areas related to their own professional 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 (AODA) counseling, and private security. Students may select an optional emphasis for their degree in either law enforcement or corrections. These emphases direct students' elective credits to topic-specific courses for in-depth specialization.

Students who major in criminal justice 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.

We also offer a minor in criminal justice. Students who minor in criminal justice will complete 12 credits of required foundational courses and 12 credits of in-depth topic-specific elective courses in criminal justice or forensic investigation. As part of the liberal arts tradition, criminal justice can be studied as an end in itself, as a field of study that is personally enriching regardless of one's career interests.

Careers in Criminal Justice

As a criminal justice major, you have a wide range of career paths to choose from, with jobs such as:

  • Detective
  • Police officer
  • Private investigator
  • Crime scene investigation
  • Correctional officer
  • Probation officer
  • Parole officer
  • Youth correctional 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.