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Q&A - Bachelors Degrees in Criminology

Can I work while studying for my bachelors degree in criminology?

Many people begin a bachelors degree program in criminology while they are already working in the criminal justice field. Those who previously completed a certificate program or associates degree will find that some colleges offer an accelerated bachelors degree program specifically to acknowledge their expertise in the field or to honor transfer credits.

If you are not working at a job related to criminology, it may be a good idea to look for an entry-level position in victim services, rehabilitation services, border patrol or customs, federal law enforcement, private security firms or similar agencies.

Criminology and criminal justice programs adapt so well to the online realm that most traditional criminology colleges now offer criminology online courses. Accredited bachelors in criminology online programs accommodate those who work and go to school. Most of the top bachelor in criminology programs require identical coursework whether online or on campus, and online degrees in criminology are highly respected in the industry. Members of the military and civilians who work full-time often attend online universities to pursue their bachelors in criminology.

Are there any traditional colleges that offer an online criminology bachelors degree program?

Many traditional colleges with campus-based bachelors degrees in criminology also make an online criminology program available. Portland State University’s bachelors program in criminology and criminal justice awards the same accredited bachelors degree whether earned online or on-campus. Portland State University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, and its criminal justice program is nationally renowned. It ranks seventh on U.S. News & World Report‘s “Up & Coming National Universities” list.

Colorado Technical University (CTU) offers an online bachelors degree in criminal justice with a concentration in forensic investigation. You can attend an on-campus version as well. Moreover, CTU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. Its reputation among online criminology schools earned approval by the Higher Education Coordinating Board of Missouri and there is now a CTU campus in Kansas City, Missouri.

You can also find online and campus-based criminology degree programs at Kaplan University, which is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. Kaplan’s criminal justice programs are known for providing hands-on experience working on real cases.

Are there any scholarships for traditional or online bachelors degree students in criminology?

So, you are in a program that is the best online bachelor degree in criminology and you are looking for a scholarship. Luckily, there are a few that are applicable to your situation.

StraightForward Media’s law enforcement scholarship of $500 is awarded every 3 months to students pursuing a career in police work, corrections and other criminal justice fields.

National Technical Investigators’ Association scholarship for high school seniors or those already enrolled in a law enforcement or criminal justice program is a $500 merit-based award given to 2 students on the basis of academic record, leadership ability and extracurricular activities.

There are also many scholarships geared toward particular demographics, such as race, ethnicity, gender and geographic location. For example, the National Association of Blacks in Criminal Justice awards $2,000 to a candidate pursuing a bachelors degree in criminal justice who demonstrates academic excellence and financial need. A 1,000-word essay is required, along with a 3.0 GPA average and proof of financial need.

Can I study abroad during my on-campus or online bachelors degree program in criminology?

The University of Missouri, St. Louis offers study abroad opportunities for criminology and criminal justice students. Students can take classes taught in English in Australia, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Korea and South Africa. Programs range from 6 months to 1 year and require you to be an upperclassman with a minimum GPA of 2.5.

Some programs even offer scholarships for studying abroad, such as La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia. The program is based on the role of social sciences in criminology and gives students opportunities to observe global crime trends and discuss differences in perceptions of justice around the world.

There are also short-term study abroad programs in criminology. For example, Arizona State University offers a 14-day summer study abroad program that takes students to Israel to learn intelligence gathering, national security and counter-terrorism strategies. Presentations focus on fundamentalist terrorism, the origins of jihad, suicide attacks and tactical medicine. This program is open to campus-based as well as online criminology students.

Northeastern University in Boston offers a bachelors in criminology with a global concentration focusing on international terrorism and homeland security. It includes co-op semesters where students can intern at organizations worldwide.