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Advance Your Criminal Justice Career

Develop greater criminology expertise for professional growth or doctoral preparation

Criminal Justice (Master of Arts)

Offered by: Criminology and Criminal Justice


Join SRU Graduate Admissions along with the program coordinator to learn about the application process; program highlights; curriculum; program specific admission requirements; how to pay for graduate school and other pertinent information. Register here for a virtual zoom session on Thursday, September 24th during common hour, 12:30-130 pm.


Our society rests on a foundation of honor and justice. That's why the Master of Arts in Criminal Justice at Slippery Rock University is such an important program. This program is ideal for both working professionals in the criminal justice field and traditional graduate students who value the accessibility of online learning. This program's 30-credit curriculum can be completed in 12 to 18 months, and includes a combination of coursework focused on theory, practical skills, and research. All online classes are taught by expert faculty members with doctorate degrees in criminology. Whether you're pursuing a career in public service or law enforcement or aspire to doctorate-level education, Slippery Rock University will help you build a rock-solid plan for the future.

Top Criminal Justice Schools AwardCriminal Justice BadgeCriminal Justice BadgeBest Value Master's in Criminal Justice


SRU's Master of Arts in Criminal Justice program offers coursework on the three components of the Criminal Justice System, as well as criminological theory, research, and statistical methodologies. This program is designed to serve the educational needs of working criminal justice professionals in Western Pennsylvania and elsewhere. The curriculum offers flexibility for professionals in the field who desire an advanced criminal justice degree for workforce enhancement purposes, and quality credentials for students who aspire to earn doctorate degrees in criminology.


SRU's online Master of Arts degree in Criminal Justice offers:

  • 100% online
  • Best Online Master's Degree in Criminal Justice (via
  • A 30-credit curriculum that can be completed in 12 to 18 months
  • A combination of coursework that focuses on theory, practical skills and research
  • Faculty with earned doctorate degrees in the field of criminology
  • Degree options:  General, Non-Thesis (internship), or Thesis

* The thesis option requires the completion and defense of an original research project and requires 30 hours: 24 semester hours of course work and 6 hours of thesis credits.

* The internship option requires the passing of comprehensive exams, one elective course, and an internship experience with a criminal justice agency.

* The general option requires the passing of comprehensive exams and the successful completion of two additional electives.


  • Online Application
  • Application Fee
  • Essay* - (Approximately 600 words) on a specific topic of interest to you in the field of Criminal Justice
  • Two Electronic Reference Forms (Student is responsible for sending form link to evaluator) 
  • Reference Release Form
  • Resume*
  • Official Transcripts- Undergraduate/Graduate (Official transcripts must be sent by institution via electronic transcript e-share to or via mail- faxed copies will not be considered official) Students with a minimum undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 will be considered for unconditional admission. Students with a grade point average below a 3.0 must submit Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or Miller Analogies Test (MAT) scores to the Graduate Admissions Office. SRU's GRE code is 2658 and MAT code is 1660.

*Applicants may submit supplemental application materials as a PDF or JPEG file via email (, fax (724.738.2146), or mail. Applicants may also choose to submit their supplemental materials via the electronic forms linked above. 

* If you are not a resident of Pennsylvania, please check the list of most recent states approved for online classes and internships by clicking here to see if SRU is authorized to offer distance education and/or field experiences in your state of residency.

Alumni Spotlight

"The Criminal Justice department at Slippery Rock University goes above and beyond to provide their students with a remarkable education and support for any dream that their students may have. The program prepares students for the challenges they may face while employed within the criminal justice system, such as utilizing critical thinking and applying specific methods to enhance communication with the criminal justice population. The professors are always eager to help their students before, during and after graduation. You couldn't put together a more caring, supportive and knowledgeable group of people if you tried! I am forever so grateful for the education I received, the relationships I've built, and the ongoing support that the Criminal Justice department has given me. After graduation, I felt prepared to enter the workforce with a well-rounded education in a difficult field to work in today. I also knew that my relationships within the department wouldn't end there, and that they were always there for me if I would ever need them again. I will always be very proud to share that I've received my Bachelors and Masters degree in Criminology/Criminal Justice from Slippery Rock University!"

Alexa Webster, 2016