Criminology and Criminal Justice, B.A.

Criminology and criminal justice (CCJ) are fields of study that incorporate an interdisciplinary perspective to examine the causes and correlates of criminal behavior, as well as the institutions that respond to such behavior. A degree in criminology and criminal justice provides a comprehensive academic foundation into the nature of criminal offending, victimization, law enforcement, court administration, the law, and both community and institutional corrections.

Consistent with Saint Louis University’s Jesuit tradition, the criminology and criminal justice program seeks to strengthen the criminal justice systems and, more importantly, communities, by focusing on the factors that cause crime and violence and on the humanity of victims, offenders and practitioners. This major is a good fit for students interested in legal studies, law enforcement at the local, state or federal levels and working with adults and/or juveniles in correctional settings, as well as those pursuing graduate education or a law degree. 

Faculty within the program are great mentors and easy to connect with. Each professor I have had has always been more than willing to meet with me whether to answer any questions about the course or for any career advice." —Kalie Yeager-Thompson, Class of 2021

Program Highlights

  • SLU's B.A. in Criminology and Criminal Justice is innovative in its approach to improving the justice systems by focusing on the humanity of those involved in and impacted by crime and violence in communities.
  • The program challenges and engages students intellectually with the latest in criminological and criminal justice theory, research and practice.
  • The major offers students the opportunity to live what they learn through compassionate service.

Curriculum Overview

SLU's criminology and criminal justice curriculum covers a wide array of topics including theories of crime, criminal justice ethics, law enforcement, corrections, legal procedures and criminal justice research. In addition, students tailor the major to their individual needs and interests by selecting from elective courses focused on criminal justice systems and those examining the nature of crime.

The B.A. in Criminology and Criminal Justice requires a minimum of 120 credits for graduation. The program offers coursework that provides students with a foundation for understanding the causes and correlates of crime and the systems that respond to criminal and delinquent behavior. The program’s unique focus on human justice supports students’ understanding of the humanity of all who are involved in the justice system including victims, offenders and practitioners. Through rigorous academic coursework, students become educated consumers of information and research that can be applied to justice settings. Community-based experiential learning opportunities train students to be effective and transformative practitioners and citizens. Through the integration of scholarship and community-engaged service, students become aware of issues related to human and social justice in an increasingly diverse and globalized world.

Additional degree options include:

  • Accelerated program: High-achieving students may apply to this selective program during their junior year of study. This accelerated program allows students to begin taking graduate-level criminology and criminal justice courses in their senior year of undergraduate studies. 
  • Honors courses: The criminology and criminal justice program offers advanced coursework approved for Honors credit.
  • Minor: For those pursuing other majors but who are also interested in criminology and criminal justice, the program offers a minor that provides students a foundation for understanding a variety of criminology and criminal justice professions and the core values of the field.

Fieldwork and Research Opportunities

The benefits of the program also include internships and job opportunities. Students have the opportunity to complete an internship, allowing them to gain valuable hands-on experience and make professional contacts prior to pursuing employment. Partnerships with a wide variety of agencies and organizations all over St. Louis City and St. Louis County provide students with diverse options for their internship and/or externship experiences. Placement options include working with juveniles or adults in private or public agencies at the local, state or federal level and a number of local community-based agencies working with at-risk individuals.

Saint Louis University has a strong service-learning foundation. Students embody SLU's Jesuit mission by using the knowledge they gain in the classroom to serve others. Service-learning also provides valuable field experience for criminology and criminal justice students, and enhances their connectedness with the St. Louis community.

Students can also volunteer at organizations around St. Louis as the criminology and criminal justice program collaborates with more than 250 social service agencies where students can explore criminology and criminal justice professions with guidance from seasoned experts.

For students interested in studying abroad there are a wide variety of programs, including a campus located in Madrid, Spain.

Careers

A B.A. in Criminology and Criminal Justice from SLU opens doors to employment in the criminal and juvenile justice systems and many nonprofit organizations. Graduates might also pursue further education in law or other social sciences in preparation for academic, research or other professional careers.

Career opportunities in criminology and criminal justice include:

  • Correctional officer
  • Criminal investigator
  • Detective
  • Federal agent
  • Juvenile justice staff/administrator
  • Lawyer
  • Police officer
  • Policy analyst
  • Private security
  • Probation/parole officer
  • Researcher
  • Youth worker
  1. Graduates will be able to apply criminology/criminal justice theory.
  2. Graduates will be able to conduct criminology/criminal justice research.
  3. Graduates will be able to identify multicultural criminology/criminal justice competence.
  4. Graduates will be able to apply criminology/criminal justice theories and/or practices/policies of social, human, and criminal justice.
  5. Graduates will be able to assess the ethical implications of criminology/criminal justice and practice ethical principles.
University Undergraduate Core32-35
Criminology and Criminal Justice Required Courses
CCJ 1010Introduction to Criminal Justice3
CCJ 2050Multiculturalism for Criminal Justice Professionals3
CCJ 2150Criminology: Nature of Crime 23
CCJ 3200Ethics in Criminal Justice3
CCJ 2200Policing & Society3
CCJ 2250Institutional & Community Corrections3
CCJ 3450Gender, Sexuality, and the Criminal Justice System3
or CCJ 3500 Race, Ethnicity, and the Criminal Justice System
CCJ 3700Research Methods in Criminology and Criminal Justice 23
CCJ 3750Statistics in Criminology and Criminal Justice3
CCJ 4050Criminal Law & Procedure3
CCJ 4960Criminology and Criminal Justice Capstone3
CCJ Electives
Select any 3 of the following:9
Juvenile Justice & Delinquency
Contemporary Theories of Crime
Corporate & White Collar Crime
Understanding Serial Killers
Victimology & Victimization
American Incarceration
Mental Health & Crime
Violence Against Women
Criminology and Criminal Justice Internship
General Elective Courses
Select an additional 46 credits of general electives to achieve the minimum 120 credits for graduation.43-46
Total Credits120
1

Students are advised to take CCJ 2150 Criminology: Nature of Crime (3 cr) prior to CCJ 3150 Contemporary Theories of Crime (3 cr) and CCJ 3700 Research Methods in Criminology and Criminal Justice (3 cr) prior to CCJ 3750 Statistics in Criminology and Criminal Justice (3 cr).

2

Students can take either CCJ 3450 Gender, Sexuality, and the Criminal Justice System (3 cr) or CCJ 3500 Race, Ethnicity, and the Criminal Justice System (3 cr) to meet the CCJ Requirements. (Students may take both CCJ 3450 Gender, Sexuality, and the Criminal Justice System (3 cr) and CCJ 3500 Race, Ethnicity, and the Criminal Justice System (3 cr) and one will count towards CCJ Requirements and the other toward CCJ Electives

Continuation Standards

  • Cumulative GPA of at least 2.00.
  • Minimum grade of C in all Criminology and Criminal Justice courses.

Roadmaps are recommended semester-by-semester plans of study for programs and assume full-time enrollment unless otherwise noted.  

Courses and milestones designated as critical (marked with !) must be completed in the semester listed to ensure a timely graduation. Transfer credit may change the roadmap.

This roadmap should not be used in the place of regular academic advising appointments. All students are encouraged to meet with their advisor/mentor each semester.  Requirements, course availability and sequencing are subject to change.

Plan of Study Grid
Year One
FallCredits
CORE 1000 Ignite First Year Seminar (Must be taken in first 36 hours at SLU/ Cannot carry attributes) 2-3
CORE 1500 Cura Personalis 1: Self in Community (Must be taken in first 36 hours at SLU/ Cannot carry attributes) 1
CORE 1900 Eloquentia Perfecta 1: Written and Visual Communication (Should be taken in first 36 credit hours at SLU/Cannot carry attributes. Or semester two.) 3
CCJ 1010 Introduction to Criminal Justice 3
General Electives 3
General Electives 3
 Credits15-16
Spring
CORE 3200 Ways of Thinking: Quantitative Reasoning (Should be taken in first 45 credit hours at SLU) 3
CORE 1600 Ultimate Questions: Theology 3
Required Program Courses (optional) 6
General Electives 3
General Electives 3
 Credits18
Year Two
Fall
CORE 1200 Eloquentia Perfecta 2: Oral and Visual Communication (Should be taken in first 60 credit hours at SLU) 3
CORE 1700 Ultimate Questions: Philosophy 3
CCJ 2150 Criminology: Nature of Crime 3
CCJ 2050 Multiculturalism for Criminal Justice Professionals 3
General Elective 3
 Credits15
Spring
CORE 3800 Ways of Thinking: Natural and Applied Sciences 3
CORE 2500 Cura Personalis 2: Self in Contemplation 0
CCJ 3200 Ethics in Criminal Justice 3
CCJ Elective 3
General Electives 3
General Electives 3
 Credits15
Year Three
Fall
CORE 2800 Eloquentia Perfecta 3: Creative Expression 2-3
CORE 3400 Ways of Thinking: Aesthetics, History, and Culture 3
CCJ 3700 Research Methods in Criminology and Criminal Justice 3
CCJ 2200 Policing & Society 3
CCJ 2250 Institutional & Community Corrections 3
General Electives (optional)  
 Credits14-15
Spring
CORE 3600 Ways of Thinking: Social and Behavioral Sciences 3
CORE 4000 Collaborative Inquiry 2-3
CCJ 3750 Statistics in Criminology and Criminal Justice 3
CCJ 4050 Criminal Law & Procedure 3
CCJ Elective 3
General Electives (optional)  
 Credits14-15
Year Four
Fall
CORE 3500 Cura Personalis 3: Self in the World 1
CCJ 3450
Gender, Sexuality, and the Criminal Justice System
or Race, Ethnicity, and the Criminal Justice System
3
CCJ Elective 3
General Electives 3
General Electives 3
General Electives 3
 Credits16
Spring
CCJ 4960 Criminology and Criminal Justice Capstone 3
General Electives 3
General Electives 3
General Electives 3
General Electives 3
 Credits15
 Total Credits122-125

Apply for Admission

For additional admission questions please contact:

Joseph A. Schafer, Ph.D., M.S.
Criminology and Criminal Justice Program Director
joseph.schafer@slu.edu
314-977-2114

2+SLU programs are formal  transfer agreements for students seeking an associate degree at a partner institution.