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Rising concern over homeland security and increasing emphasis on education in law enforcement agencies have led to a greater demand for qualified criminal justice administrators and instructors nationwide. If you already have a bachelor's degree from a regionally or nationally accredited college and want to further your career by earning an advanced criminal justice degree, Kaplan University's Master of Science in Criminal Justice program offers a convenient, flexible opportunity to help achieve your goal.
Our Master of Science in Criminal Justice program is designed to provide you with the credentials required for advancement in a rapidly changing career field. Through our convenient courses, you can interact with industry professionals who are dedicated to helping you:
Access gainful employment information, including program length, tuition costs, financing options, and success rates.
In addition to developing a broad foundation in criminal justice, this master's degree program is designed to enhance your knowledge in the concentration that best fits your career and educational goals.
Kaplan University offers multiple start dates, giving you greater flexibility with your education, life, and work schedules.
Online Start Date
Nov 23, 2016
This course consists of an in-depth analysis
of various explanations of criminal behavior. Readings include
the original works of prominent authors from a broad range of
disciplines related to crime, social deviance, and causation.
Ethical and legal foundations in defining social deviance and
crime are also considered. Specific focus is placed on
applications of theory that address causes and correlations of
criminal behavior in a variety of cultures throughout the world.
This course is well suited for criminal justice practitioners, as
students apply criminological theory to contemporary
Total Program Credits: 55
This course presents an in-depth analysis of
the various dynamics facing criminal justice organizations in the
context of professional practice, including, but not limited to,
the theoretical concepts underlying organizational behavior,
management and leadership of human resources, and design and
structural processes. The scope includes fiscal accountability;
personnel deployment; implementation of change; motivation and
retention of personnel; the hiring, assignment, and promotion of
personnel; organizational communication; professional
development; and fundamental legal issues as they pertain to
This course will address critical issues
affecting the major tenets of the criminal justice profession,
including, but not limited to, homeland security, training and
education, ethics and morality in professional practice, and
community-based law enforcement and corrections programs. Other
current trends and any other critical issue facing the fields of
policing, private security, and corrections are addressed as
In the first of two courses in applied research in criminal justice, students will be introduced to applied research within the profession, which encourages adoption of the role of a reflective practitioner who seeks to simultaneously understand and change the professional setting. Students will examine the history of applied research and the intersection of applied research and traditional academic research. This study allows participants to develop an understanding of the process and how they can impact their own professional setting.
and appropriate communication is essential for success in the academic and professional
worlds. Academic and Professional Communications in Public Safety is designed
to prepare students for the rhetorical challenges found in their coursework,
professional career, and the final capstone/research paper. Students will learn
to clearly communicate complex and sophisticated materials to a wide
variety of expert and nonexpert audiences using both written and oral
techniques. This course will introduce students to the basic elements of academic and professional writing at the holistic
and paragraph levels. Students will learn about audience and purpose as well as
the graduate research, writing, and formatting process. These skills are coupled with an additional focus on
the context, delivery, and medium through which students will communicate.
Emphasis is also placed on accurately citing and quoting primary materials,
organizational strategies, and grammar, editing, and usage skills.
As a final step in the Master of Criminal Justice, students who have chosen the comprehensive examination track take the examination. The comprehensive examination incorporates the program outcomes of the master’s degree. The exam is designed to assess a student's overall learning and mastery of the coursework in the program. Successful completion of the exam provides a measurement and acknowledgement of the effective learning experience of the student.
Successful completion of all comprehensive
exam-track core curriculum courses
Total Program Credits: 55
This course provides a critical analysis of
contemporary issues facing the U.S. correctional system. Students
address issues such as the philosophies and theories that guide
practice, community-based policies and practices, prison reform,
special populations, recidivism, and legal mandates affecting the
administration and operations of correctional
Total Program Credits: 55
Concentration courses are completed within the open electives requirement of the degree plan.
The course addresses a variety of correctional
issues from an international perspective, including, but not
limited to, a comparative analysis of the philosophies and
theories guiding practice, supervision, and treatment of prison
populations with an emphasis on human rights, post-confinement
intervention strategies, and legal standards governing
This course is designed to explore the social
context of delinquency, law, the history of the juvenile court,
policing in juvenile justice, and court and corrections
interventions with regard to children who have been victimized or
are criminal. The course integrates scholarship and case law to
investigate the many layers of the juvenile justice system,
including how the juvenile court works and why it works the way
it does. Upon completion, students will have much more than a
cursory understanding of the juvenile justice
This course is designed to identify
community-based corrections programs and to explore the issues
relevant to the field of community-based corrections. The
materials presented will draw upon scholarly and practical
research to identify the programs commonly used, what "works,"
policy issues, services provided, costs, and who receives
probation and parole. Boot camps, electronic monitoring, house
arrest, day treatment, fines, community service, drug courts, and
other alternatives will be discussed. Students will have the
opportunity to debate and better understand the many challenges
facing probation, parole, and community-based
This course covers comparative foreign
criminal justice systems, including the investigation and
prosecution of international terrorists, the International
Criminal Court, U.S. criminal cases affecting international
relations, mutual assistance treaties, and issues concerning the
formation of criminal justice systems in developing democracies.
This course is especially beneficial for understanding global
legal issues facing the criminal justice
Global Issues in Criminal Justice Concentration
Total Program Credits: 55
This course focuses on the historical
development and current status of various forms of transnational
crime from the perspective of the international criminal justice
community. Particular emphasis is given to issues of organized
crime, narcotics trafficking, money laundering, human
trafficking, and the current strategies for the containment of
This course is designed to provide students
with a critical analysis and understanding of issues related to
terrorism. This includes historical analyses of the causes and
effects of social, political, economic, and religious conflict as
they pertain to terrorist groups from source countries;
protective intelligence gathering and associated legal issues;
threat assessment; emergency first-responder plans and policies;
counterterrorism tactics and strategies; cyberterrorism and the
role of technology; and concerns for the
This course addresses complex issues related
to substantive criminal law, focusing on the sources of modern
criminal law, the purposes and types of laws, the interpretation
of criminal laws, the categories of crime and penalties, the
similar characteristics of criminal violations, the elements of
complex crimes, and the types of criminal defenses. This course
is best suited for those students working in the area of law
Total Program Credits: 55
This course involves the study of the Federal
Rules of Evidence and similar state rules, as well as the
requirements of the U.S. Constitution concerning the admission
into evidence of testimonial and physical evidence at trial.
Students examine such topics as the foundational requirements for
the admission of real and demonstrative exhibits, the
authentication of writings and business records, witness
credibility, hearsay, privileges, expert testimony, victims'
rights, and chain of custody. This course is particularly well
suited for those criminal justice professionals whose jobs
require them to testify in court on a regular
This course involves the study of legislation
and case law that affect the daily practice of criminal justice
professionals in the context of investigative techniques and the
prosecution of cases. Students examine such areas as white-collar
crime; the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO)
Act; money laundering; health care fraud; wire, mail, and bank
fraud; identity and access device fraud; securities fraud;
insurance fraud; corporate criminal liability; tax enforcement;
and public corruption. In addition, the USA PATRIOT Act, Title
III wiretaps, and grand jury procedures are also
This course involves the study of specialized
topics in substantive and procedural criminal law with a special
emphasis on employment law, and how these legal issues impact
ethics and leadership in criminal justice organizations. This
course is well suited for command-level personnel in response to
a variety of potential agency and personal liability
Leadership and Executive Management Concentration
Total Program Credits: 55
course is designed to familiarize students with public program budgeting
and finance concepts from program
conception to programevaluation. Special emphasis is given to methods
of financing public programs and the
preparation and management of budgets for the programs. This course is intended
to provide students with an opportunity to learn and practice the technical
aspects of program budgeting and
finance in the public safety arena.
Discrimination in the workplace, prejudicial
treatment of individuals by public officials, official
misconduct, and a lack of individual and collective professional
practice are all enduring issues that must be addressed by our
criminal justice system. Accordingly, this course is designed to
address these and other related issues at length, as well as
offer strategies for improved individual and professional
Students experience the art and science of
applied research while they develop the tools of reflective
inquiry and collaborative practice. Students will engage in
analysis of current issues and challenges to explore and practice
applied research methods as a logical extension of professional
practice. Integral to this process is the examination of both
informal and systematic ways to ask and answer questions.
Students will conduct their own applied research
This course will provide students with the
fundamental knowledge necessary to competently address various
critical issues concerning security including, but not limited
to: physical security concerns, threat assessment, privatization
trends, relationships with the law enforcement community, crisis
planning, and the impact of the Department of Homeland Security
on security thinking and delivery.
Total Program Credits: 55
Independent Study credits vary from 1-5.
This course examines the field of forensic
psychology and provides students with knowledge of how psychology
can assist the field of law and criminal justice. Students are
encouraged to examine the legal system through the use of
psychological concepts and methods and apply them to practical
situations. Topics will include an overview of the intersection
of law and psychology, forensic clinical assessment, competency
and criminal responsibility issues, jury selection, correctional
psychology, and diagnosis as well as a comprehensive review of
the ethics code. An emphasis will be on utilizing case law and
research as well as psychological testing to accurately and
ethically report findings.
This course is designed to engage students in developing a position of relevance to their professional field of study and the criminal justice graduate curriculum. Students decide on a suitable topic under the direction and supervision of a designated faculty member. No more than 10 quarter credit hours of independent study may apply toward the degree.
Permission from the Dean
The 25% tuition reduction applies only to international students living outside of the United States. This discount does not apply to military students. Please check with your advisor to see if you are eligible.
Cost Per Credit
Number of Credits / Terms
Online & Learning Center
Some programs have additional associated fees that are not included in the price of tuition. Click here or check with an Admissions Advisor for more information.
Maine residents interested in enrolling in an online program: click here for tuition and fee information.
Learn More about Kaplan University Tuition and Fees
Kaplan University Learning Center students will only complete a portion of their program on site. You will need to complete at least 50% of the program requirements online, or through transfer credit awarded via prior learning assessment. If you have any questions about these requirements, please speak with an Admissions Advisor. Not all programs are available for enrollment at the Kaplan University Learning Center.
Learn more about grants and Kaplan University Scholarships that may help reduce the cost of your education.
Kaplan University tuition reductions (including military servicemember, spouse, and veterans tuition rates; scholarships; grants; vouchers; and alumni and alliance reductions) cannot be combined.
Kaplan University has significantly reduced many of our tuition rates and fees for servicemembers, their spouses, and veterans. Click here for more information.
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