Master of Science in Criminology and Criminal Justice

Degree Program

As communities grapple with complex contemporary issues related to crime, safety, and justice, those with graduate-level expertise are better equipped to navigate these challenges. Whether pursuing a career in law enforcement, corrections, re-entry, social justice, or academia, a graduate degree provides a deeper understanding of criminological theories, research methodologies, and ethical considerations, making graduates invaluable contributors to the development of effective and just criminal justice systems. In an era where the need for well-trained professionals is on the rise, a graduate degree in criminology and criminal justice serves as a crucial step towards fulfilling and impactful careers in this field.

The online Master of Science in Criminology and Criminal Justice (MSCCJ) degree is an accelerated program offered by the School of Criminology, Criminal Justice, and Emergency Management in partnership with the College of Professional and Continuing Education. The MSCCJ program at CSULB was named one of the Best Online Programs in 2024 according to U.S. News & World Report. Ranked in the Top 30 of the magazine’s Best Online Graduate Criminal Justice Programs list, the MSCCJ program’s selection was based on high performance across indicators of excellence including student engagement, student services and technology, admissions selectivity, faculty credentials and training, and peer reputation.

This fully online, accelerated program is designed for busy, working professionals who are interested in supervisory positions that require graduate credentials and those interested in pursuing advanced degrees in criminal justice. This program will expand and increase individual competency, develop and mature thought processes, aid in gaining insights into professional leadership and knowledge, permit an exchange between students and faculty, and further the spirit of research and scholarship to enhance professional and personal development.

The curriculum offers a balance of theory and practical application that will prove to be challenging to students and useful in the field. This program provides the requisite knowledge for individuals to be competitive for administrative positions in law enforcement, courts, corrections, private security, and probation and parole as well as those who are interested in working with social justice, rehabilitation, re-entry, and victims’ services organizations. It is also suitable for those who seek research and data analysis positions in criminal justice agencies or teaching positions at community colleges.

Please Note:

  • Out-of-state students who do not reside in California are not eligible to enroll in this fully online program. For more information, visit The National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA).
  • Students enrolled in this program are eligible for some forms of financial aid, with the exception of the State University Grant (SUG) and Cal Vet College Fee Waiver.  
  • GI Bill benefits can be used for this program. Click here to learn more about eligibility, rates, and other details.
  • Individuals interested in supervisory positions that require graduate credentials
  • Those interested in pursuing advanced degrees in criminal justice
  • Working professionals pursuing part-time teaching positions in colleges and universities
  • People who are unable to attend our traditional on-campus MS in Criminal Justice program
  • Fully online delivery
  • Can be completed in two years or less
  • Courses taught by full-time faculty in the School of Criminology, Criminal Justice, and Emergency Management and a select group of part-time scholar-practitioner instructors
  • Industry-relevant curriculum
  • Networking opportunities with other professionals in a team learning environment
  • Crime and Public Policy
  • Law and Social Control
  • Theories of Crime Causation
  • Legal Issues in Criminal Justice
  • Research Methodology and Statistical Analysis
  • Ethics, Values, and Diversity