The undergraduate degree programs in Criminology and Criminal Justice (CCJ) combine foundational knowledge of criminal justice with a critical understanding of its institutions, processes and operations.CCJ students learn how social forces influence lawmaking, approaches to criminal justice, perceptions and experiences of justice; and how, in turn, criminal justice trends influence society. In accordance with our commitment to promote a more just society, CCJ students develop a firm understanding of the cultural, political, economic and moral complexities surrounding the creation and enforcement of law, and are prepared to become practitioners, advocates and defenders of social justice. CCJ students accomplish this through critical examinations of how power and privilege shape the social realities of criminal justice globally, nationally and locally and by utilizing the latest in legal and social science research to develop critical understandings of how these realities impact diverse groups of people. In addition, CCJ students investigate how social and cultural identities are related to differential experiences of criminalization, victimization, offending, and justice work.  

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We use the latest theories, research and investigative traditions in our interdisciplinary field to explore contemporary real world issues and their impacts on policy, public opinion and criminal justice work. Through direct contact with leading scholars and respected practitioners of justice, CCJ students obtain career and academic mentoring that facilitate connections between their classroom learning and real world experience. Both in and out of the classroom we place a high priority on collaborative and experiential learning so that students can practice the skills needed to succeed within a justice related setting. CCJ students apply their writing, intercultural, research and analytic skills to demonstrate specialized knowledge about a subject area most related to their future aspirations. 
Criminology and Criminal Justice graduates use their knowledge of criminology and justice to pursue meaningful and rewarding careers with integrity. Our graduates are critically informed citizens, who value diversity and social justice, and use this knowledge to advance the cause of justice.  
Criminology and Criminal Justice Undergraduates will be able to: 
  • Identify the key stages of criminal justice processes and at each stage locate the core institutions involved and the key roles performed by those who inhabit them
  • Summarize and differentiate the major theories about crime, criminalization and victimization and then apply theories to critically analyze contemporary injustices 
  • Describe the differences between popular perceptions of criminal justice institutions and the lived realities of victims, criminals and justice workers
  • Recognize how social forces affect the perception and pursuit of justice in the U.S. and around the world
  • Critically assess how power and privilege impact law making and law enforcement
  • Use criminal justice theories, methods or investigative techniques to assess patterns of crime, criminalization and victimization and to establish justification for a course of action
  • Through written or oral communication describe differential impacts on diverse members of society and provide sustained, focused justifications for the value of diversity for a more just society
  • Apply collaborative skills, ethical reasoning, analytic skills and knowledge about crime and justice to address an injustice, advance causes of justice.
  • Pursue advanced professional training and/or a meaningful justice-related career