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Estimated Completion

120 credit hours (2-4 years)

*Minimum 30 hours must be done at Tarleton

Application Process


Locations Available

1Admission to the off-campus locations such as Fort Worth, Midlothian, Waco, and Online requires a minimum of 30 transferable credit hours, a 2.0 GPA and that a student be TSI complete.


Bachelor of Applied Arts and Sciences in Criminal Justice Administration

Our two-year, bachelor's completion degree program in criminal justice administration develops your knowledge, insight and skills to be more effective leaders in your jobs — and communities. This prepares you for career changes, job promotions or graduate school.

Designed for working professionals who already have experience in criminal justice and want to advance their careers, the criminal justice BAAS degree program awards 12 to 33 academic credits for previous professional training in the field, including some military training.

We integrate professional practice with academic research to provide a unique, applied perspective on the criminal justice system. The coursework is available in face-to-face, online, hybrid and accelerated formats for flexibility in earning your bachelor's degree. You can also specialize in crime analysis with a professional certificate.

What is Criminal Justice?

A bachelor’s degree in criminal justice administration can lead to higher salaries and job promotions for program graduates. It can also provide a direct pathway to graduate school programs, such as Tarleton's master's in criminal justice, and career advancement.

Guided by our Advisory Board of criminal justice professionals, we respond to the changing criminal justice system to help meet our students’ academic and professional needs, as well as the needs of your communities.

What Can You Do With Your Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice Administration?

Our criminal justice administration majors graduate with practical knowledge and leadership skills. A criminal justice administration BAAS degree can open up opportunities for career advancement, as well as new job opportunities in a variety of fields, including jobs and careers with law enforcement, the judicial system and law, social services, education and business.

Our graduates are prepared for mid-level jobs in criminal justice administration, such as:

  • Law Enforcement Officer
  • Correctional Officer
  • Security Consultant
  • Parole Officer
  • Probation Officer
  • FBI Agent
  • Private Investigator

Many of our graduates choose to earn an advanced degree in law school or graduate studies. The Department of Criminal Justice also offers a Master of Criminal Justice degree and PhD in Criminal Justice for a seamless and direct pathway to a successful, long-term career in criminal justice. Some of our graduates earn a Master of Public Administration degree, also available at Tarleton.

Careers in Criminal Justice Administration

Criminal justice BAAS graduates are highly motivated: 98% of them are employed or planning to attend graduate school.

How Much Do Criminal Justice Administration Graduates Make?

The majority of criminal justice BAAS graduates earn $60,000 or more, with several earning over $100,000.

Why Major in Criminal Justice?

Our small class sizes create an intimate, student-focused learning environment that fosters critical thinking, creativity and technological expertise.

student talking to a professor

Engage in undergraduate research with faculty

Our curriculum allows you to get involved with academic research that can be applied to real-world issues. Work with faculty and community partners in evaluating and solving problems that impact our local communities. You may also have opportunities to present research with faculty at regional and national conferences.

student speaking to an officer

Gain a global perspective on criminal justice

Study abroad provides first-hand exposure to a variety of criminal justice systems and the issues within them. This experience offers greater knowledge of criminal justice in America by comparison. Most recently, criminal justice administration majors have traveled to Scotland and Prague. You can also study away by traveling within the United States to destinations such as San Francisco and Atlanta.

male student holding a scholarships sign

Get help paying for college

Program scholarships are available through the Office of Scholarships. Simply fill out the university’s general scholarship application to be considered. The criminal justice school also accepts Texas Peace Officer Tuition Exemption.

What Classes Will You Take as a Criminal Justice Major?

Designed in collaboration with criminal justice field experts, our broad curriculum encompasses a variety of components within the criminal justice system, including law enforcement, homeland security, criminal law and crime analysis. Explore topics in criminal justice supervision and management, community corrections, criminal justice statistics, criminal investigation, forensic science, homeland security, serial killers and more.

View all required classes for the criminal justice administration bachelor’s degree.


How Do You Get Started on Your Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice Administration?

Take the next step toward earning your bachelor's degree in criminal justice administration. We have the resources to help you get started.

School of Criminology

School of Criminal Justice, Criminology and Strategic Studies offers five undergraduate and graduate degree programs, as well as a variety of complementary minors, through the departments of Leadership and Strategic Studies, Criminal Justice and Military Science.

professor at a book signing

Learn From Diverse Faculty with Extensive Experience

With small class sizes, we are student-focused to help you succeed. You will encounter faculty with extensive academic experience, as well as professional experience, such as district, county and federal judges, police chiefs and other law enforcement professionals. Our areas of expertise include comparative criminal justice, crime analysis, criminal law, cybersecurity, family violence, human trafficking, juvenile justice and racial profiling.

Alpha Phi Sigma crest

Student Activities

Student and professional organizations offer additional educational opportunities, professional development and networking. For example, you can join:


student and professor pose in front of a board

Research Institutes

Our dedicated research institutes set us apart from other schools and colleges of criminal justice with specialized work that is addressing changing challenges and issues in the criminal justice system.


What Bachelor's Degrees are Related to Criminal Justice?

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