Online Criminal Justice Degrees

AIU’s online criminal justice programs could help you work to develop a solid foundation for seeking jobs in the criminal justice field, whether you’re interested in the enforcement of law, the adjudication of cases, or the punishment of criminal offenders.

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Earning a criminal justice degree online at American InterContinental University could help you prepare to pursue a career path in one of the federal, state, or local agencies that comprise the U.S. criminal justice system. In our online associate or online bachelor’s in criminal justice programs, you’ll have the opportunity to learn about the fundamentals of criminal corrections, crisis management, forensics, the U.S. court system, and more.

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AIU student Anthony Wheatley, on how the “online option” attracted him to AIU. Consider earning your online degree at AIU.


"The online option attracted me to AIU. The online atmosphere was great. AIU provided the tools and all the different resources to help me be successful in my degree."

- Anthony Wheatley
  MBA 2018

BBA 2015

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Ramon Romero, Operations Manager, Novelis; Master of Information Technology, 2012; MBA, 2011; BS in Criminal Justice, 2005
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AIU’s Online Criminal Justice Degree Benefits

Enrolling in one of AIU’s online criminal justice programs comes with a number of benefits:

  • Fully online criminal justice classes offer flexibility and convenience for those with busy schedules, allowing you to read, listen to, or watch customized course content from any web-enabled device.
  • AIU allows you to transfer-in up to 75% of the credits required to complete your degree.1
  • intellipath® allows you to personalize your learning plan and skip what you already know, resulting in a more customized educational experience.
  • Access to our dedicated, 24/7 technical support team.
  • An online library that provides access to articles, books, websites, and additional resources, plus a staff of professional librarians who are here to help you when you need it.
  • AIU’s Law Enforcement Advanced Standing Program (LEASP) may enable qualified students to turn their police academy training into college credits.

Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice Online Program

AIU’s bachelor’s in criminal justice online program can help you prepare to pursue careers within the field of criminal justice. You can choose among specializations in corrections and case management, forensic science, security and crisis management, or law enforcement, or you could opt for the criminal justice general track. Each of these options can provide an opportunity to learn to think critically and apply your knowledge to various issues within the criminal justice sphere.

  • Corrections and Case Management: This specialization focuses on issues related to the interaction with and the rehabilitation of adult and juvenile inmates. Electives include: Prison Law, Offender Rehabilitation, Advanced Topics in Corrections, Case Management & Treatment Planning, and Psychopharmacology for Criminal Justice Professionals.
  • Forensic Science: With an online forensic science degree specialization, you could study criminology online and explore the processes used in investigating and solving crimes. Electives include: Criminalistics I & II, Medicological Death Investigation, Forensic Biology, and Criminal Investigation.
  • Homeland Security and Crisis Management: This specialization provides in-depth coverage of foreign and domestic terrorism threats, as well as crisis/disaster management. Electives include: Foundations of Crisis Management, Terrorism & Homeland Security, Critical Infrastructures, and Communication & Crisis Planning.
  • Law Enforcement: With an online law enforcement degree specialization, you’ll have the opportunity to explore in greater depth the relationship between police and the communities they serve as well as law enforcement ethics and public policy. Electives include: Community-Oriented Policing, Advanced Law Enforcement, Criminalistics, Terrorism & Homeland Security, and Criminal Investigation.
  • General Track: In lieu of choosing a specialization, students pursuing the general criminal justice track can choose any five elective courses.

Associate in Criminal Justice Online Program

Through our program, you can work to develop knowledge, skills, and abilities relevant to obtaining an entry-level position in the criminal justice field. This program covers fundamentals of the U.S. criminal justice system and theories of crime causation, while also exploring juvenile delinquency and the juvenile justice system. Included in the core curriculum is a course on careers in criminal justice, addressing key topics such as reporting procedures and requirements, crime scene management, interviewing/interrogation skills, and job search strategies.

Get Credit for Your Law Enforcement Training

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Through AIU’s Law Enforcement Advanced Standing Program (LEASP), successful completion of a state-approved police academy program or other prior law enforcement training can earn you 36 college credits toward a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice. This could save you up to 20 percent on tuition and allow you to earn your online criminal justice degree faster, by reducing the number of classes you need to take that cover the basics. During the admissions process, applicants can submit unofficial transcripts for a free evaluation by the Prior Learning Assessment Team. Don’t delay—enroll in one of our criminal justice programs today.

Admission Requirements

No SAT or other standardized test scores are required for acceptance to AIU. Applicants to our online criminal justice degree programs must supply proof of high school graduation or completion of an equivalent program by providing official high school transcripts or a high school diploma, or GED transcripts or certificate, as applicable. Homeschooled students are required to submit additional documentation and should reach out to an Admissions Advisor for guidance. Successful completion of 180 credit hours is required to graduate from AIU’s online criminal justice bachelor degree program, while completion of 90 credit hours is necessary to graduate from the online criminal justice associate’s degree program—although applicants with job education, military, or law enforcement experience may be able to receive education credit.1 Please see our admissions FAQ page for answers to a number of popular questions relating to the application process.

Accredited Criminal Justice Degree Online Programs

When considering online colleges for criminal justice degrees, it’s important to choose a school that is accredited, as this can affect both financial aid options and how employers view your degree. American InterContinental University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (hlcommission.org), a regional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. AIU is also approved by the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA) through the Arizona SARA Council. NC-SARA aims to expand distance education opportunities and has established comparable national standards for the interstate offering of postsecondary distance education.

AIU has also received recognition from third-party reviewers. Military Times has ranked AIU among its 2020 Best Colleges list, and U.S. News and World Report has named AIU among its Best Online Bachelor’s Programs lists for the past three years (2017–2019).

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Earn Your Degree Faster Than You May Think

The Law Enforcement Advanced Standing Program (LEASP) gives students who have undergone police academy training the ability to convert that experience into college credit, allowing for accelerated criminal justice degree completion. AIU also awards credit to eligible students for previous work or military experience through our Prior Learning Assessment program1. To qualify, the outcomes of employment experience, non-collegiate/non-school based education, or life experience must be documented and applicable to the student’s chosen program of study, and the outcomes of this experience must be comparable to what would have been gained through college courses. AIU also allows for the transfer of up to 75 percent of the credits required to complete a bachelor’s or associate degree1. Taking advantage of these various options can help you earn your criminal justice degree faster than you might have thought possible.

Ways to Save

The same programs that allow you to graduate faster can help save money, too. Prior learning credits or transferred college credits can help save not just time, but costs, too. Financial aid options are available for those who qualify, and all students should begin the process of applying for financial aid by filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). We also offer a number of scholarships and grants to help you save on your degree. Our tuition and graduation date calculator can help you see estimated online criminal justice degree costs based on the information you supply.

Why Choose AIU’s Online Criminal Justice Degree Programs?

Earning your criminal justice degree at AIU could provide the flexibility necessary to help you balance your professional and personal obligations with the requirements of your college courses. Perhaps you’re interested in pursuing a criminal justice bachelor’s degree online because you’d like to graduate with an online master’s degree in criminology or in criminal justice someday, or maybe you’ve been researching career paths to pursue with a criminal justice degree and would like to seek out new opportunities. No matter what your personal goals may be, our online criminal justice degree programs are conveniently designed to allow you to fit your coursework into your life and not the other way around. Although you may sometimes feel stressed-out, overwhelmed, or short on time, our strong support network of faculty who have professional experience in the subjects they teach, a round-the-clock technical support team, a knowledgeable career services team, plus a staff of professional librarians are here to support you as you move through your educational journey.


1. Transfer credit is evaluated on an individual basis. Not all credits are eligible to transfer. See the University Catalog for transfer credit policies.

AIU cannot guarantee employment, salary, or career advancement. Not all programs are available to residents of all states.
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Meet Criminal Justice Faculty Members

Daniel Rinehart, AIU Houston Criminal Justice Faculty
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Dr. David Lounsbury, AIU Criminal Justice Faculty
DrDavidLounsbury

Recommended Reading

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Courses to Take and Skills to Study in a Criminal Justice Degree Program

Students choose to pursue criminal justice degrees for a number of different reasons, from seeking an administrative role at a corrections facility to pursuing a position with Homeland Security. Read more

How to Choose a Criminal Justice Specialization 3 Questions to Consider

One of the first steps in how to choose a criminal justice specialization is to think about in what stage of the system you want to work, and what motivates your interest in criminal justice in the first place. Read more

Classes Start June 10, 2020