Take a step ahead to get that next promotion or land that leadership position. Earn a graduate degree in Criminal Justice from Columbia College. Thank you for your interest in the M. A. in Criminal Justice online degree program at Columbia College. Earning your degree online gives you the flexibility to work full time and fulfill your other obligations because you can do your class work when it is convenient for you.


You’ve already done the hard work. You’ve established a strong foundation from which to launch your leadership career. Earning an advanced degree in criminal justice demonstrates your commitment to public service and provides you with specific expertise in leadership that can elevate you to a higher position and higher salary. A graduate degree can better qualify and prepare you for leadership and command positions. The professionals that have earned this degree will have higher earning potential and greater opportunity both within the law enforcement field as well as complementary fields like media relations, forensics, and higher education. The Master’s Degree in Criminal Justice is earned completely online. Each class is eight weeks long, and the average student finishes their degree in 20 months.


The Master of Arts degree in Criminal Justice is earned completely online. An online cohort begins every two months. The benefit of a cohort is that you proceed through the program with the same set of students, building relationships and professional bonds with your classmates. A minimum of thirty semester hours of graduate work, including a six-hour capstone project, is required to earn your Master of Criminal Justice Degree. Graduate work completed at accredited institutions may be eligible for transfer credit, pending evaluation. Each class lasts eight weeks and they are completed sequentially with your cohort.

Career Opportunities

Strategic positions are available for those who have both the experience and education to step into a leadership role. Graduates with a Master of Arts degree in Criminal Justice degree build on the solid foundation that they’ve already established to advance career opportunities in leadership, education, and advisory positions. Our students typically bring strong ethical and moral values to the table – by completing the graduate program, these values are reinforced with scholarly endeavor. Many of our students already have established careers in criminal justice. By earning an advanced degree, individuals build on this to expand opportunities in leadership positions including:

  • Police Chief or Police Commissioner
  • Warden of Corrections Facilities
  • Director of Statewide Criminal Justice Agencies
  • Federal Law Enforcement Officer
  • Criminal Profiler
  • Criminologist
  • Attorney General Investigator
  • Consultant and Legislative Liaison for Policy Decisions
  • Forensic Examiner
  • Professor


  • Law Enforcement
  • Courts/Judiciary
  • Corrections
  • Forensic Science
  • Private Security
Program taught in:
  • English

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