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Master's Degree in Criminal Justice

Why Earn Your Criminal Justice Degree at Saint Leo University?

Become an agent of change with a Master's in Criminal Justice. Saint Leo University’s innovative Master of Science in Criminal Justice program enhances the effectiveness and professionalism of both aspiring and active law enforcement professionals. Taught by practitioners with extensive experience in the field, students will examine leading edge strategies to keep citizens and communities safe in today’s ever-changing world.

Ranked among the nation's most military-friendly institutions by G.I. Jobs and Military Advanced Education magazines, Saint Leo University has been educating professionals with their Master's in Criminal Justice for more than three decades.

Learning Experience:
Education Center Online
Est. Time to Complete:
2 years
Credit Hours:
36 hours
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Master's in Criminal Justice Program Details

As a criminal justice graduate student at Saint Leo, you will study ethical standards in the administration of justice, insights into criminal behavior and activity, effective leadership principals and practices, public policy making processes, criminal law, professional regulations, and civil liability, application of new and emerging technologies, and more.

Next Level Grad Award

At Saint Leo University, we believe that investing in our students is an investment in our community, so we are committed to helping qualifying students finance their education through the Next-Level Grad Award. This award offers substantial cost savings to our graduate students. 

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Specialization Options

Saint Leo University offers specialization options for criminal justice students. You can customize your degree to match your passions by choosing one of the following concentrations.

Behavioral Studies teaches how criminal behavior and the criminal code interact, as well as how behavioral disorders impact individuals and criminal behavior.

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Corrections is designed to provide a better understanding of complex issues of offenders, trends of the 21st century and the problems associated with recidivism.

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Criminal Investigations introduces students to violence, sexual deviance, environmental and juvenile crimes.

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Critical Incident Management teaches law enforcement skills to manage complex global risks and disasters.

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Forensic Science provides the opportunity for you to gain the knowledge required to assist with operations during incidents in which forensic science is a factor through modern, hands-on instruction.

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Legal Studies provides students with a well-rounded understanding of legal procedures and how the judicial system operates within the civil and criminal domain.

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Learn Your Way: 

Online, On Campus, or Near You

  • Saint Leo students and instructor in classroom
  • What are the on-campus facilities like?

    Students who pursue their degrees at Saint Leo’s main campus near sunny Tampa Bay, Florida, join a community of enthusiastic learners just like them. 

    Criminal justice students enjoy plenty of engaging learning opportunities both inside and outside the classroom, as well as exciting departmental events.

    Learn about the On-Campus Experience

  • What are the benefits of earning your criminal justice degree online?

    Saint Leo University’s online learning experience provides a well-rounded education with the flexibility to tailor your course of study to meet your individual needs. We know our students have lives outside school, and we seek to meet them where they are. Online students can count on receiving excellent academics as well as opportunities for hands-on learning.

    Learn about the Online Experience

    Visit Online Admissions

  • Taking online classes has afforded me the opportunity to learn while maintaining a job. They give me some flexibility to study at times that work more cohesively with my schedule and allow me to utilize resources such as the library 24 hours a day.

    Bentley Streat | Hayes, VA

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Are education centers near you offering criminal justice degree programs?

You may also choose to pursue your degree through one of our education centers, which merge a traditional in-person education with the flexibility to match your lifestyle. Education centers offer eight-week academic terms as well as evening and weekend classes.

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Career Outlook

No matter which learning experience you choose, you will receive plenty of professional development opportunities, industry knowledge from expert professors, and support from the Saint Leo community. All this together means that you will be ready for a successful career or continued studies upon graduation.

  • Saint Leo University students in Psychology classroom
  • What skills you will learn?

    • Computerized databases;
    • Ethical standards in the administration of justice;
    • Human resource management;
    • Fiscal resource management;
    • Personnel law, civil liability, and substantive and procedural laws;
    • Information resources and systems;
    • Policymaking;
    • Organizational leadership in criminal justice agencies

How will you gain real experience?

Hands-on learning

In a capstone course, you’ll address an important problem or launch a program initiative related to the administration of criminal justice.


Find an internship close to home or work, or with federal agencies such as the U.S. Secret Service, U.S. Customs, Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S. District Court and Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

FBI National Academy Associates

Saint Leo is an approved educational partner by the FBI National Academy Associates.

Experienced faculty

Learn from the best. Saint Leo faculty have served as local and federal agents, chief deputies, detectives and FBI advisors, and are leading experts on all the skills you need to advance to the next stage of your career: interrogation, non-verbal communication, hostage negotiation, and international sex and organ trafficking.

What can you do with a master's in criminal justice degree?

Graduates are prepared for administrative positions in law enforcement, corrections, the courts, private security and security-related positions at the local, state or federal government levels.

What are the top criminal justice degree jobs?

Career Growth Salary
Law enforcement officer 7% (As fast as average) $67,290 per year
Forensic Science Technician 16% (Much faster than average) $60,590 per year

From the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020.

College of Arts, Sciences, and Allied Services

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  • Saint Leo’s College of Arts, Sciences, and Allied Services offers students a holistic education that lays a strong foundation for critical and independent thinking. The curriculum is designed to help students broaden their horizons and build valuable skills sought by employers. From biology to sociology, the College offers 17 high-quality and flexible programs on campus, online, and through our education centers.

    Explore the College of Arts, Sciences, and Allied Services