Many people who are interested in a criminal justice career elect to take online classes to help them prepare for it. An online criminal justice degree can be beneficial for a number of reasons-here are just a few of them.
Opportunity to Specialize
There are a wide variety of careers available in the criminal justice field. To better prepare yourself for one, you may decide to specialize in a particular area of criminal justice. Finding a school that allows you to specialize in a certain area may be more difficult when taking campus-based classes, since not all fields of study are available everywhere. As such, you are more likely to be offered broader-based classes that may or may not help you reach your career goals.
Online degree programs will allow you to specialize in one or more of the following areas, regardless of where you live:
- Corrections officer
- Probation or parole officer
- Crime scene investigation
- Forensic psychology
- Homeland security
- Juvenile justice
- Paralegal studies
- Security officer
- Private investigation
You may also be offered a wider variety of electives, which can be especially nice if you would like to vary your course of study without changing your area of focus.
Varying Degree Levels
An Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree is normally needed to begin a criminal justice career. Those who are already working in this field may prefer a Master’s degree or doctorate in order to advance. Undergraduate programs are plentiful; however, there are fewer graduate programs available. This means you could have a limited number of colleges to choose from if you live in a fairly remote area. That’s not the case with online classes, since you can take them from anywhere. As a result, you will be in a better position to choose an advanced program that best suits your needs.
Course Material Ideal for Online Study
Much of the course work required for a criminal justice degree is lecture-based, and is therefore ideal for online study. Most criminal justice topics can easily be researched on your own, which will help you tremendously when it is time to complete special projects. Some of the things you will learn while studying criminal justice include:
- Constitutional law
- Courts and courtroom procedures
- Gangs and gang history
- White collar crime statistics
- The juvenile justice system
- How race, class and gender play a role in the commission of crimes
Focus on What Interests you Most
You may find certain topics are more interesting to you than others. When taking online classes, this can be an advantage because you can perform a more in-depth study on the things that interest you most. In fact, being able to spend more time on certain subjects can actually help you narrow down your career choices if you are undecided.
Finally, online criminal justice degrees provide a number of the same benefits as other online degree programs including:
- Flexibility in scheduling that allows you to fit classes in around work and family life
- The ability to attend class anywhere there is an Internet connection
- Lower tuition costs, since online colleges have reduced operating expenses
- Fewer fees
- Smaller class sizes
- The ability to learn at your own pace
- Saving money on transportation, parking and child care
- No need to worry about classes being cancelled due to inclement weather
An online criminal justice degree program has numerous advantages over campus-based classes. There are plenty of options available that will allow you to specialize in the area of criminal justice that interests you most. In fact, there are so many choices that finding the right program can often seem overwhelming. For help in choosing the right degree program, feel free to contact us. We can help you narrow down your options in order to find the one that best suits your needs.