Prospective students who have finished secondary school can enroll in associate or bachelor degree programs; the latter is the most commonly suggested to all students, however certain candidates to law enforcement academies may be accepted with an associate’s degree. If you have any doubts about which choice is best for you, contact the admissions counselors of your university.
Requirements for a Criminology Degree
Criminal Justice Associates
It takes 60 credits to complete the Associate of Arts in Criminal Justice degree program. A bachelor’s degree can be obtained afterward.
Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree
The FNU Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice degree program requires 120 credits to finish and can be followed up with a master’s degree in criminology or other subjects. When this degree is combined with another, such as a Master of Business Administration, the prospects of landing a profitable job in the fields of loss prevention and retail security grow dramatically.
Criminology is a branch of sociology that studies the causes for crime’s occurrence and persistence in society. Bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate degree programs are available, and many of them are very multidisciplinary. Students learn analytical skills that will prepare them for entry-level roles as forensic experts, private investigators, law enforcement officials, and other criminal justice occupations. Salary ranges significantly in this sector, based on one’s degree of education, job title, and overall career path.
Crime has always been a source of debate and investigation, but until the 18th century, it was primarily regarded as a form of deviance. The roots of criminology gradually developed during the Golden Ages of Research and Theory, until Magistrato Garofalo proposed the idea of applying scientific research to the study of crime; he essentially believed that crime could not be dismissed as a matter of free will because it appeared to be born within society with the intent of affecting society.
Because of its complexity, the ancient Code of Hammurabi may be argued to necessitate a certain amount of criminology research. The Bible contains a lot of punishment, which can be linked to society’s frustration with crimes. The Roman Empire learnt from Hammurabi’s Code, but it was mostly pushed aside for religious contemplation during the Middle Ages. Later, St. Thomas Aquinas used logical argument to justify illegal behavior.
In the same way that economics and criminology both evolve organically, criminology does as well. Criminology was augmented shortly after the introduction of demography, statistics, and behavioral research; in fact, these two fields frequently interact due to the financial motivating reasons behind many crimes.
What Kinds of Jobs Can You Get With a Criminology Degree?
Loss Prevention Officer
Loss prevention officers are experts in preventing theft and catching criminals. They are usually engaged by retail establishments to patrol their premises in order to dissuade and apprehend shoplifters. Loss prevention officers with a criminology degree would be qualified to work at high-end, high-paying establishments. They’d utilize their knowledge of criminology to aid in the implementation of anti-theft measures.
Individuals engage private investigators to look into a certain crime. They work independently of the police and must solve crimes using their own means. To potential customers, a criminology degree would make private investigators look more experienced and trustworthy. The degree also gives a private investigator excellent insight into the criminal psyche, which may help them conduct investigations more efficiently.
Correctional officials are responsible for designing and implementing the prison’s laws and regulations. They deal with the convicts on a regular basis, overseeing their activities, settling any conflicts, and maintaining peace among all residents. A criminology major might apply their understanding of criminal psychology to better understand the convicts and affect their rehabilitation.
Jury advisors help in the selection and appointment of jurors in court trials. They interview possible jurors, look into their history, and decide whether or not they will be objective while making a decision. Jury consultants with a criminology degree are well-prepared to choose jurors in certain instances. They can forecast how jurors will react to specific trials based on their understanding of criminal sociobiology.
Probation officers help offenders who have been released from jail and are attempting to reintegrate into society. They suggest rehabilitation strategies, visit with probationers on a regular basis to check on their progress, and notify the courts if someone violates their parole. A probation officer who has earned a criminology degree is usually able to communicate effectively with other probationers and can put together appropriate necessary treatment strategies by tapping into their knowledge of criminal psychology.
Police detectives are responsible for resolving criminal situations, arresting frausters, and ensuring peace in the wider communities. They need to know how criminals think, why they do what they do, and how to stop them in order to execute their duties properly. Criminology majors thrive at this position because they can use their extensive knowledge of criminals to quickly solve cases.
In certain circumstances, a college diploma is not required to work as a police detective. A degree in criminology or criminal justice, on the other hand, will set you apart from the competition and prepare you for rapid development.
Social Worker (Clinical)
Clinical social workers work with clients who are struggling with substance misuse, domestic violence, unemployment, and other significant issues. Clinical social workers frequently engage with police, parole officials, and other law enforcement authorities in the course of their work, even though many of their clients are not criminals. Because criminology is a subset of sociology, it is a suitable fit for professionals who want to learn more about how they may better serve their communities.
To aid police in arresting criminals, forensic scientists examine crime scenes and physical evidence. Forensic scientists with a criminology degree can use their understanding of criminal mindset and motivation to appropriately evaluate the evidence. If you are passionate about this path, you will be expected to take forensic science classes in college.
Professor of Criminology
Criminology professors spend their days instructing students in criminal psychology, sociology, and law. They usually teach in college or university classes, and their research may be published in scholarly journals or books. Criminology majors who loved their studies may find it fulfilling to pass on their knowledge to future generations of criminologists.
Why Should You Pursue a Criminology Degree?
Criminologists have enthralling and well-paying careers.
It is everything but dull to try to comprehend criminals and why they perform crimes that we deem violent, immoral, or startling. Criminologists are frequently required to have knowledge from various fields, such as psychology, sociology, anthropology, and biology, in order to do their jobs.
A criminologist with strong research abilities can frequently serve as a public policy consultant or expert, assisting the government and local governments in enacting legislation that prevents future crimes and protects innocent people.
Enhance your community’s safety and well-being.
As a criminologist, you have the potential to make a significant contribution to the reduction of criminal activity in your community. However, because criminology is an interdisciplinary field, you won’t be able to accomplish this on your own. Collaboration with police and legal departments, as well as social work organizations and other government authorities, will be a part of your job.
This is because, in order to prevent crimes, you must first understand why they occur. If, for example, poverty is the primary cause of thefts and robberies in your community, incarcerating offenders will not help the problem in the long run.
You must work with other specialists to lower poverty levels and assist individuals in obtaining basic human necessities (e.g. food, shelter, health, security, education). It’s easier said than done, but with enough individuals like you on board and the ability to see the big picture, it’s quite feasible.
Learn about the other side of crime and criminals and share what you’ve learned.
Most people have a (bad) emotional reaction when they think about crimes and criminals. It’s reasonable, because people who flout the law can inflict significant harm and loss to other members of the community.
However, this is merely one perspective on the situation. “It’s hard to light a candle, but it’s easy to curse the dark instead,” says the narrator. Lawbreakers have their own motivations for breaking the law. It might be because they grew up in toxic or violent environments, were bullied, or were socially marginalized for a variety of reasons.
While these elements aren’t excuses and don’t justify a criminal’s acts in any way, they can assist us gain a better understanding of their minds and see their side of the story. And, you got it, criminologists are the ones who contribute the most to the finding of these insights.
Crime and criminology are always changing.
The continual evolution in this field is one of the most interesting elements of studying criminology. Criminals utilize a variety of tools and tactics across the world, and as technology and contemporary cultures advance, so do criminals’ tools and methods.
For example, some historical judgments have been reversed and persons who were wrongfully accused in the past have been set free owing to contemporary forensic technology and procedures.
Another noteworthy illustration of progress in this field is the fact that cybercrime, data breaches, online identity thefts, online scams, and other similar issues did not exist 20 or 30 years ago.
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What Kind of Education Will I Require?
People who want to work as criminologists typically need at least a master’s degree in the area. A bachelor degree in criminology, psychology, or sociology is a good place to start. Criminologists must also be familiar with laws and law enforcement processes, therefore you may need to attend criminal justice classes. Internships are included into many curricula to give relevant job experience.
Because graduate schools place a strong emphasis on experiment design and analysis, you’ll most likely take courses in research methodology and statistics. A doctorate degree is appropriate for those who want to perform advanced research or teach at the university level.
Is There Anywhere I Could Work?
You might cooperate directly with law enforcement officers or look at broader data to see if there are any trends or habits. Many sociologists, including criminologists, are employed as policy analysts by state or federal government agencies, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov). Many advanced research jobs and professorships require a PhD. Bachelor’s degree holders may be qualified for jobs with the CIA, DEA, or as a court counselor.
What Are Some Alternative Careers That Are Related?
Criminologists lend themselves to careers in the field of research, and many allied fields, like as statisticians and survey researchers, come into this category. Economists, political scientists, psychologists, and social workers are all connected professions. A master’s degree is required for all of these jobs. People who work in these sectors will be directly involved with data and numbers, studying them to uncover patterns and making predictions based on the findings of the research. Psychologists and social workers research behavior and work with clients to address emotional or cognitive disorders.
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