Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice

Our graduates have impressive careers. Thousands of our graduates have gone on to careers with the public sector, private sector and nonprofit organizations, including jobs such as FBI agent, intelligence analyst, police officer, evidence technician, border patrol agent, computer security expert, probation officer, customs inspector, and private investigator.

Located in the largest city in Wisconsin, the school provides an unmatched environment for students to study criminal justice. Students can specialize in crime analysis, learn through fieldwork and earn credits while studying abroad.

UWM Criminal Justice majors study three broad areas of this diverse profession: law enforcement, the courts, and corrections. Students study the nature and causes of crime, the impact of crime on individuals and society, and the workings of the criminal justice system. The program prepares students as generalists in criminal justice and is well suited for those who want to pursue graduate work in criminal justice, law, public administration, and the social sciences.

Those best suited to criminal justice work are those who have a strong liberal arts base and good interpersonal skills. They draw on skills in communication such as listening, speaking and writing, as well as skills in assessing, analyzing, and evaluating.

Employment can be found in government agencies, the private sector, and nonprofit agencies. Advanced technology and increasingly complex legal issues have led to specialized work in technology, computer security, and intelligence.

Specific entry-level career options include:
Law Enforcement: Police Officer, Private Investigator, Detective, Research Intelligence Analyst
Courts: Victim-Witness Coordinator, Court Security Officer, Legal Assistant, Jury Analyst
Corrections: Corrections Officer, Juvenile Counselor, Probation Officer, Case Manager

How to Apply
  • Applications for the Criminal Justice major will only be accepted in the following periods: September 1 – October 1, February 1 – March 1, and May 1 – June 1.
  •  You must apply to the major prior to your last semester at UWM in order to apply for graduation on time.
Follow the steps below to apply for the Criminal Justice major
  • The Admissions Committee will only consider complete applications.
  • STEP 1: Review all information below about the requirements to be admitted to the major. All requirements must be met at the time of applying (i.e., you may not have any requirements in progress at the time of applying).
  •   Completed English and Math proficiency requirements
  •   Junior standing (58+ credits)
  •   At least one full-time semester or equivalent at UWM
  •   A cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher, including all transfer work
  • STEP 2: Complete the online Application for Admission to the Criminal Justice Major. The application must be typed to be reviewed.
  • STEP 3: Email your completed online application to the Admissions Committee at hbssw-admis@uwm.edu (may be emailed in either Microsoft Word or PDF format). In the subject line of your email, please type your full name and student ID number. Completed applications include a completed Application Form and typed Personal Statement. Completed applications will only be accepted via email.
  • STEP 4: You will be notified via email regarding your admission to the major.
  •   Transfers: Upon admission, the UWM Registrar’s Office will evaluate and apply a student’s previous coursework (allow two to four weeks for this process). A student who transfers from a campus within the UW System or the Wisconsin Technical College System can transfer up to 72 credits toward a degree in the Helen Bader School of Social Welfare. Students transferring from a school within the UW System or the Wisconsin Technical College System can learn how credits may transfer by using the Online Transfer Wizard. Students transferring from other two- or four-year colleges can evaluate transfer equivalencies by visiting UWM’s Transfer Equivalency Database in the Registrar’s Office. As soon as they are admitted, transfer students should meet with a Social Work Department academic advisor to review transfer course equivalencies, discuss program requirements, and create an academic plan for coming semesters.
Curriculum & Degree Requirements

Criminal justice majors initially complete a two-year liberal arts foundation, including the university’s General Education Requirements. Next, they earn 36 credits in criminal justice (24 credits of mandatory courses and 12 credits of elective courses). A minimum of 120 credits are required for graduation. Some courses may be taken online or partially online.

Elective courses include those in  juvenile justice, victimology, jails, and women and the criminal justice system. Students may use elective courses to specialize in crime analysis, participate in field education, study abroad, pursue a forensic science certificate, or pursue a minor relevant to their career goals.

Courses required for criminal justice major:

COURSE # COURSE NAME CREDITS
CRM JST 110 Introduction to Criminal Justice 3
CRM JST 271 Police Process 3
CRM JST 273 Correctional Process 3
CRM JST 275 Criminal Court Process 3
CRM JST 305 Crime and Criminal Justice Policy 3
CRM JST 370, 380, 410 OR 671 Administrative Elective 3
CRM JST 662 Methods of Social Welfare Research 3
CRM JST 663 Criminal Justice Capstone Seminar 3
CRM JST Electives in Criminal Justice 12
TOTAL 36
Sample Course of Study Covering 8 full-time semesters
This is only one model of selecting courses for a four-year sequence to degree requirements. This chart is not intended to be a guide for the selection of specific courses or to substitute for academic advising. For suggestions about specific courses and other schedule options, students are strongly encouraged to meet with their academic advisors.
  • First Year
    Semester I
    CRM JST 105: Orientation 1 cr
    English 102 3 cr
    Math 103 or 105 3 cr
    Social Science 3 cr
    U.S. History 3 cr
    General Elective 3 cr
    TOTAL 16 credits
    Semester II
    CRM JST 110: Intro to Criminal Justice 3 cr
    COM 103: Public Speaking 3 cr
    Social Science 3 cr
    U.S. History 3 cr
    GER Arts Course 3 cr
    TOTAL 15 credits
  • Second Year
    Semester I
    Humanities 3 cr
    Natural Science 3 cr
    Social Science 3 cr
    First General Elective 3 cr
    Second General Elective 3 cr
    TOTAL 15 credits
    Semester II
    CRM JST 273: Correctional Process 3 cr
    CRM JST 295: Crime & CJ Policy 3 cr
    Humanities 3 cr
    Social Science 3 cr
    General Elective 3 cr
    TOTAL 15 credits
  • Third Year
    Semester I
    CRM JST 271: Police Process 3 cr
    CRM JST 275: Courts Process 3 cr
    Natural Science 3 cr
    Social Science 3 cr
    General Elective 3 cr
    TOTAL 15 credits
    Semester II
    CRM JST 662: Social Welfare Research Methods 3 cr
    First Criminal Justice Elective 3 cr
    Second Criminal Justice Elective 3 cr
    First General Elective 3 cr
    Second General Elective 3 cr
    TOTAL 15 credits
  • Fourth Year
    Semester I
    Criminal Justice Elective 3 cr
    First Social Science 3 cr
    Second Social Science 3 cr
    First General Elective 3 cr
    Second General Elective 3 cr
    TOTAL 15 credits
    Semester II
    CRM JST 663: Capstone Seminar 3 cr
    CRM JST 311: Field Placement 3 cr
    Social Science 3 cr
    Humanities 3 cr
    General Elective 3 cr
    TOTAL 15 credits

Students earn 3 credits for each semester of field placement. Field Placement is elective; however, it is strongly encouraged. A student must commit a minimum of eight hours per week to the agency, for the entire semester. Some agencies require more than eight hours per week from a student. Students can apply for field placement in their junior year, after being formally admitted to the criminal justice major.

Field Placement  

Criminal Justice Minor
      A minor in Criminal Justice can strengthen your education.

It is a strong complement for:

        • students studying journalism, politics, sociology, social work, philosophy.
        • students who plan on attending law school.
        • students who seek careers in public service.

This track requires a minimum of 19 credits in the following courses. Six elective credits in Criminal Justice courses at the 300 level or above are required. Credits earned in CRM JST 311 (Field Experience) and CRM JST 599 (Independent Reading) do not count toward the minimum 19 credits required for this minor.

COURSE # COURSE NAME CREDITS
CRM JST 110 Introduction to Criminal Justice 3
CRM JST 271 Police Process 3
CRM JST 273 Correctional Process 3
CRM JST 275 Criminal Court Process 3
300 level Upper Level Criminal Justice Electives (2) 6
TOTAL 18

 

To learn more, contact:
Criminal Justice Department
Enderis Hall, Room 1110
1-414-229-4851
hbssw@uwm.edu

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