Criminal Justice


Why study Criminal Justice?

Why pursue a Master of Science in Criminal Justice?

For many career paths in criminal justice, a graduate degree is becoming a standard requirement. Whether you currently work in or strive to enter law enforcement, crime prevention, corrections, or criminal justice, the Master of Science in Criminal Justice graduate program at the University of Cincinnati can help you advance. You will gain research-based knowledge from an interdisciplinary perspective, drawing insights from sociology, law, public administration and criminal justice fields. The program emphasizes the role of research in policy-making and practice as well as theoretical and research skills. Graduates leave the program with a broad understanding of crime as well as different parts of the justice system.

The University of Cincinnati’s Master of Science in Criminal Justice curriculum is structured to meet four objectives:

  • Provide students with the conceptual and research skills needed to undertake advanced analyses of the criminal justice system.
  • Furnish law enforcement, corrections, and court practitioners with knowledge of justice administration, social science perspectives of human behavior, policy analysis, and criminal justice theory.
  • Train those who will become leaders in the criminal justice system by providing the skills needed to upgrade levels of professional practice, improve supervisory standards, initiate fresh perspectives, and act as agents of social change.
  • Prepare social scientists to pursue careers in university and research settings.

Admission Requirements

Prospective students will complete the UC Graduate School online application for admission. It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that all required materials and support documents are successfully submitted. Incomplete applications will not be processed or reviewed.

Full-time students are generally admitted only for Fall Semester. We accept part-time students on a limited basis for both Fall and Spring Semester.

Admission requirements include:

  • A baccalaureate degree (any major) from an accredited institution
  • A minimum undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale)
  • At least two (2) letters of recommendation
  • A personal statement describing relevant qualifications, goals, and program fit

Additional requirements for International applicants:

Master's degree students in Criminal Justice will leave the program with a broad understanding of crime as well as the different parts of the justice system. Students will become adept at understanding research-based knowledge and how it applies to real-world situations. Although students follow a variety of career paths, the skills learned in the program will help them in information processing and problem-solving regardless of their chosen career.

Graduate training is growing in significance in the field of criminal justice. Agencies are equating professionalism with higher educational attainment. For many careers, a Master's degree in Criminal Justice is becoming the minimum qualification for employment. Former students have found the master's degree to be useful in obtaining a wide range of employment. Our alumni currently hold positions such as:

  • Lieutenant in the State Police
  • Police Officer
  • Chief of Police
  • Probation Officer
  • Counselor in a Halfway House
  • Research Analyst for a Federal Agency
  • Drug Enforcement Agent
  • Crime Reporter
  • College Professor

For advising questions, please contact Betsy Yeakle at

Students admitted to the on-campus Master’s program typically receive Graduate Incentive Awards that fund tuition up to 100 percent.

Application Deadlines

The application deadline for Fall Semester admission to the on-campus master’s program is July 1.

Review of completed applications typically begins in early February. For best consideration, please apply by February 1.

The University of Cincinnati and all regional campuses are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Contact Information

Betsy Yeakle
2610 University Circle
School of Criminal Justice
Cincinnati, OH 45221
(513) 556-1819

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Program Code: 18MAS-CJ-MS