Criminal Justice (Master of Science)

Application Deadlines

Deadline dates for applications and receipt of all required application materials are:

Date Event
July 1 Fall Admission
November 1 Spring Admission
April 1 Summer Admission

Any exceptions to these deadlines must be granted by the graduate program chair.

Application Materials Required for the MS in Criminal Justice

Applicants for the MS with a major in Criminal Justice will be permitted to enroll for one semester of graduate coursework (only after degree posted transcripts have been received) while completing all other general application procedure requirements.

Applicants for the MS in Criminal Justice must submit the following documentation to Graduate Admissions to be considered for admission:

Graduate Admissions
Jacksonville State University
700 Pelham Road North
Jacksonville, Alabama 36265-1602

  1. Completed JSU Graduate Application for Admission.
  2. Non-refundable $35.00 application processing fee.
  3. Official transcripts from all colleges/universities with degrees posted. (Students who have previously attended JSU do not need to request a transcript from the university.)
  4. Three Graduate Reference Forms completed by individuals who can provide qualitative assessment of the applicant’s potential for success in graduate coursework. At least two of these must be academic or professional references. Reference forms will be submitted electronically. Instructions for submission will be sent through email to the applicant upon submission of the online graduate application.
  5. International student applicants must see the International Student Applicants section of this catalog for other application and enrollment requirements.

Admission Requirements for the MS in Criminal Justice

Applicants for the MS in Criminal Justice must meet both Graduate Studies requirements and Department of Criminal Justice and Forensic Investigation requirements.

Unconditional Admission

  • Applicants to the MS in Criminal Justice must have an undergraduate major in Criminal Justice or its equivalent, as determined by the Department of Criminal Justice and Forensic Investigation.
  • Applicants with an undergraduate GPA of at least a 3.00 (on a 4.00 scale) are eligible for unconditional admission.

Conditional Admission

  • Any applicant failing to meet the requirements for unconditional admission may be conditionally admitted with the recommendation of the graduate faculty in the Department of Criminal Justice and Forensic Investigation and approval of the Director of Graduate Studies.

Applicants who are granted conditional admission must achieve a GPA of at least 3.00 on the first 12 graduate hours attempted. Failure to meet these conditions will result in the student being dropped from graduate studies.

Minimum Requirements for the MS in Criminal Justice

An overall 3.00 GPA is required on all coursework attempted for the master’s degree. Transfer credit cannot be used to raise the GPA to the required 3.00.

Non-Thesis Option

Course Title Credits
Required Criminal Justice Courses
CJ 500Seminar in Contemporary Criminal Justice Issues3
CJ 501Applied Data Analysis for Criminal Justice3
CJ 502Research Methods in Criminal Justice3
CJ 505Criminal Justice Administration3
CJ 521Seminar in Criminological Theory3
Select nine semester hours of graduate Criminal Justice electives9
Select six semester hours of graduate courses in Criminal Justice OR in a related field 16
Total Hours30

30 Graduate Semester Hours Required for this Degree

Thesis Option

Course Title Credits
Required Criminal Justice Courses
CJ 500Seminar in Contemporary Criminal Justice Issues3
CJ 501Applied Data Analysis for Criminal Justice3
CJ 502Research Methods in Criminal Justice3
CJ 505Criminal Justice Administration3
CJ 521Seminar in Criminological Theory3
Six semester hours of Thesis CJ 5996
Select three semester hours of graduate Criminal Justice electives3
Select six semester hours of graduate courses in Criminal Justice OR in a related field 16
Total Hours30

 30 Graduate Semester Hours Required for this Degree

Thesis students should contact Graduate Studies to receive an orientation to the thesis process prior to enrolling in the first three semester hours of thesis, CJ 599. This orientation can be completed either in person or via email. The purpose of the orientation is to provide the thesis student with information concerning required forms, due dates, and to answer any questions concerning thesis options and/or procedure. For further information concerning this orientation, please contact LaRilda VanSandt, vansandt@jsu.edu, 322 Bibb Graves, (256) 782-5345. See Thesis Options and Procedures in this catalog for more information.

Graduation and Comprehensive Exam

A comprehensive exam is required for the non-thesis option of this degree; please see the graduate advisor for full details. For students choosing the thesis option, the thesis defense serves as the comprehensive exam. All students must apply for graduation by the given deadline of the semester in which they plan to graduate. Please see the Graduation and Comprehensive Exam section of this catalog for more information.