School Level Program Admissions

Campbellsville University

Associate AS in Criminal Justice Administration Website

Campbellsville University

Bachelor BS in Criminal Justice Administration Website

Utica University

Master MBA Economic Crime and Fraud Management Website

American University

Master Online Master of Science in Counter-Terrorism and Homeland Security Website
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View more online criminal justice programs currently accepting applications.

We have 549 criminal justice administration and management programs in our database.

The criminal justice system is divided into three specific areas: law enforcement, the courts, and corrections. While each branch has a different focus, all three rely on individuals skilled in administration and management to continue operating smoothly. Criminal justice professionals working at the management or administration level combine a thorough understanding of how the system works with strong leadership and supervisory skills.

What Can I Do with a Degree in Criminal Justice Management and Administration?

Administration and management positions are available at the local, state, and federal level within the criminal justice system. Prisons, for example, rely on corrections administrators to oversee day-to-day operations to ensure the safety of both inmates and employees. At the top of the administrative hierarchy is the warden, who is responsible for managing the facility, including fiscal operations, as well as providing leadership and supervision for employees.

Court administrators are responsible for performing managerial tasks within the court system, such as maintaining the case docket, developing policy and procedures, making sure case records are organized and up-to-date, balancing the budget, acting as media contacts and managing employee payroll. Court administrators may also participate in certain human resources operations, such as overseeing the hiring and training of new employees or conducting employee performance reviews.

Leadership positions in law enforcement may range from serving as police chief to working as a manager for the Federal Bureau of Investigation. For example, compliance officers perform oversight to ensure that professional standards within a particular law enforcement agency are being met. The Federal Law Enforcement Training Center offers specialized training programs for individuals who are interested in management positions.

What Classes Do I Need to Complete an Administration and Management Degree?

Depending on the type of employment you’re interested in, you could choose to earn a degree in criminal justice administration and management at the associate’s, bachelor’s, or master’s level. Certificate programs are also an option if you’re already completed a two- or four-year degree. The types of classes you’ll have to take will vary depending on how exhaustive the program is. Some of the subjects you may cover include policing, corrections, ethics, communications, criminology, accounting, public administration, criminal law and procedure, juvenile justice, criminal justice theory, research methods, organizational behavior and management, computer information systems, business writing, and constitutional law. A research thesis or capstone seminar is typically required if you’re pursuing a degree at the graduate level.

Criminal Justice Administration Degree Profiles

We’ve selected a couple of programs to try and highlight how different one program might be from the next. As we’ve already mentioned, there are a variety of options to choose from when looking at what branch you would like to pursue an administration career in upon graduation.

Bachelor’s in Justice Administration – DeVry University

If you’re looking for a degree at the Bachelor’s level, you’ll probably notice that the classes will cover an array of different criminal justice topics. The DeVry program has courses like Research Methods in Criminal Justice to a course on drug usage in society. You’re likely looking at some kind of leadership role in criminal justice if you decide to enroll in this program which is what they will focus around. Whether it be a focus on policy making or how politics play a role in budgets, their justice administration degree will try to prepare you for it all. They also offer the program online so if you’re already in the workforce and need flexibility while earning your degree, online options could be beneficial.

Master of Science in Justice Administration and Crime Management – Bellevue University

If you’ve already earned a bachelor’s level degree related to criminal justice, you might be looking for an advanced degree in criminal justice administration. The Bellevue master’s program will have courses that help you better understand criminal justice administration at the local, state, and federal levels. Their master’s program will also focus around improving your experience with writing related to legal matters as well as requests for grants (as that plays a big part in many criminal justice administration career roles). While their program focuses heavily around criminal justice specific items like forensic data, it should also be noted that they have classes focuses around leadership too.

Common Criminal Justice Administration Questions

  • Q: What’s the difference in subject-matter between a Bachelor’s level degree versus a Master’s? A: Each degree is different but the overall theme of difference is the Bachelor’s level will focus on criminal justice subjects in a much broader approach. The master’s level degree will likely get much more detailed and could be specialized to a certain criminal justice branch (depending on the school program).
  • Q: What could be a surprising course that I see while earning a justice administration degree? A: The degree focuses around the management and leadership aspects of criminal justice agencies so you might find courses learning about how to set budgets to be surprising. You might also see courses related to effectively communicating across an entire agency (specifically related to criminal justice procedure changes, etc.).
  • Q: What’s the difference between a Criminal Justice Administration degree versus a Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice? A: A bachelor’s degree in criminal justice will typically focus around strategies and theories related to deterring crime and the proper ways to deal with those that break laws.

Criminal justice administration will typically focuses on managing resources related to criminal justice. While the goal is similar (to keep laws enforced), criminal justice administration focuses on managing budgets, personnel, and other items related to various criminal justice agencies.

Career Outlook and Salary Information

Government BLS data (source) shows an average annual salary of $72,300 as of May 2016 for what they classify as “Protective Service Occupations”. It should be noted that number includes a wide variety of different jobs and roles within criminal justice.

When you look at that same source and drill down to the “First-Line Supervisors of Police and Detectives” classification, you’ll see a median annual salary average of $88,400. As you travel upwards from local government into the state and federal levels, those numbers go up with local at an annual salary of $91,970 and federal being $119,540. New York, Illinois, and Massachusetts are the top three states in the number of people employed in this field which isn’t surprising when you look at the major metro cities in each (New York City, Chicago, and Boston).

Still Looking for a Criminal Justice Program?

Below are some of the top criminal justice degree writeups. You can review the program page, or schools by state to find detailed information about the degree or career.