UWM School & College Realignment: The Helen Bader School of Social Welfare, School of Education and School of Information Studies will be housed under the new College of Community Engagement and Professions on July 1, 2023. Learn more.

Our criminal justice degree graduates have impressive careers. Thousands have gone on to work in government agencies, the private sector and nonprofit agencies. They work as FBI agents, investigators, crime analysts, probation officers/agents, chiefs of police departments and more.

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Criminal Justice & Criminology Highlights

The BS in Criminal Justice and Criminology program at UW-Milwaukee connects students to agencies, police departments, businesses and government entities.

Students can specialize in crime analysis, which is one of the fastest growing areas of criminal justice, or complete their bachelor’s and master’s degrees in criminal justice and criminology in as little as five years with the criminal justice and criminology accelerated master’s program.

The criminal justice field program offers students the opportunity to earn course credit and make career connections while working in criminal justice settings through the criminal justice field program.

Portrait of Garret Knuth (white man), graduate of the Criminal Justice and Criminology program working at a computer
Garret Knuth ’15 BS specialized in crime analysis at UW-Milwaukee.

Located in the largest city in Wisconsin, the school provides an unmatched environment for students to earn their criminal justice degree. 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 criminal justice system.

The curriculum 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.

Videos about Criminal Justice & Criminology at UWM

Criminal justice and criminology majors beginning in Fall 2020 or later will complete 33 credits of general education requirements, 45 credits in the criminal justice and criminology major (27 credits of mandatory courses and 18 credits of elective courses), and 42 credits of general electives. A minimum of 120 credits are required for graduation.

Criminal justice and criminology elective courses address criminal profiling, criminal evidence and investigation, white-collar crime, juvenile justice, victimology, jails, women and the criminal justice system and more.

Criminal justice degree students may also use elective courses to specialize in crime analysis, participate in field education, study abroad, or pursue a forensic science certificate. General electives (42 credits) can be used to add an additional major, minor or certificate.

All students must meet UWM’s General Education Requirements. Students must complete English and math within their first 30 credits.

Criminal Justice & Criminology Field Education

Students earn three 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.

Transfer Students

Upon admission, the UWM Registrar’s Office will evaluate and apply a student’s previous coursework (please 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 Transfer Wisconsin.

As soon as they are admitted, and the UWM Registrar’s Office has completed the transfer credit evaluation process, students should meet with an academic advisor to review transfer course equivalencies, discuss program requirements and create an academic plan for coming semesters.

  • Criminal Justice 110: Introduction to Criminal Justice, 3 credits
  • Criminal Justice 271: Introduction to Policing, 3 credits
  • Criminal Justice 273: Introduction to Corrections, 3 credits
  • Sociology 261 or Information Studies 370: Introduction to Statistical Thinking in Sociology or Data Analysis and Visualization for the Information Professional, 3 credits
  • Criminal Justice 275: Introduction to Criminal Courts, 3 credits
  • Criminal Justice 305: Criminological Theory and Policy, 3 credits
  • Criminal Justice 310: Race, Ethnicity, and Justice, 3 credits
  • Criminal Justice 662: Methods of Social Welfare Research, 3 credits
  • Criminal Justice 663: Criminal Justice Capstone, 3 credits
  • Criminal Justice Electives: Electives in Criminal Justice, 18 credits
  • TOTAL Credits: 45

Curriculum and degree requirements for students who began between 2017-2019 (PDF)

Sample Course of Study Covering Eight 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.

Year 1

Fall Semester

CourseCredits
CRM JST 105: Orientation1
CRM JST 110: Introduction to Criminal Justice3
Math (if necessary)3
English (if necessary)3
GER Humanities3
GER Social Science3
TOTAL16

Spring Semester

CourseCredits
CRM JST 271: Introduction to Policing3
GER Arts3
GER Humanities3
HIST 151 or 152: American History: 1607 to 1877 or American History: 1877 to Present3
General Elective3
TOTAL15

Year 2

Fall Semester

CourseCredits
CRM JST 273: Introduction to Corrections3
CRM JST 275: Introduction to Criminal Courts3
COMMUN 103: Public Speaking3
GER Natural Science3
HIST 151 or 152: American History: 1607 to 1877 or American History: 1877 to Present3
TOTAL15

Spring Semester

CourseCredits
CRM JST 305: Criminological Theory and Policy3
GER Natural Sciences Lab3
GER Social Science3
General Elective3
CRM JST Elective2
TOTAL14

Year 3

Fall Semester

CourseCredits
CRM JST Elective3
CRM JST 310: Race, Ethnicity, and Justice3
GER Social Science3
General Elective3
General Elective3
TOTAL15

Spring Semester

CourseCredits
SOCIOL 261: Introduction to Sociological Stats3
CRM JST Elective3
General Elective3
General Elective3
General Elective3
TOTAL15

Year 4

Fall Semester

CourseCredits
CRM JST 663: Capstone Seminar3
CRM JST Elective3
General Elective3
General Elective3
General Elective3
TOTAL15

Spring Semester

CourseCredits
CRM JST 662: Methods of Social Welfare Research3
CRM JST Elective3
General Elective3
General Elective3
CRM JST Elective3
TOTAL15
Total Credits120
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