Advance your career with a Michigan graduate degree from University of Michigan-Dearborn in the rapidly growing criminal justice profession.

Faculty, who are experts in their field, developed the Master of Science in Criminology and Criminal Justice to prepare students for research, management and policy positions or continuation into a Ph.D. program.

This flexible degree program is 30-32 credits and provides a thesis and non-thesis option, while offering traditional, evening and online courses. Public safety professionals from partnering organizations may qualify for a scholarship valued at 20 percent of tuition and fees through our community service personnel scholarship program.

Example prospective students include:

  • Individuals already working in the criminal justice field who want to advance to a policymaking or upper level administrative position.
  • Individuals who want to pursue an academic career in criminology and criminal justice and intend to further pursue a doctoral program in the field.
Criminology and Criminal Justice Program
Criminology and criminal justice today is no longer just being a beat cop. Criminology and criminal justice is about educated law enforcement and public safety professionals in our society.
Dr. Donald Shelton

What will I learn?

  • Strengthen the professional qualifications of those currently employed in the criminal justice field.
  • Develop skills in research and in criminology and criminal justice program planning and evaluation.
  • Develop skills in the organization and administration of public criminal justice systems.
  • Prepare students for doctoral study in Criminology and Criminal Justice.
Admission Requirements
  • Completion of a Bachelor's degree with at least a 3.0 undergraduate GPA
  • Completion of the following courses or equivalent:
    • CRJ 200 Introduction to Criminal Justice
    • CRJ 468 Criminology
    • CRJ 416 Criminal Law

Applicants who meet the GPA requirement but lack one or more required courses may be admitted conditionally with the permission of the Program Director. These course deficiencies may be completed concurrently with graduate courses in the program upon Program Director approval.

The GRE is not required.

Degree Requirements

A total of 30-32 credit hours is required as follows:

CRJ Core Courses (18-19 hours):

  • CRJ 553 Sociology of Law (3 hours) OR CRJ 560 Law and Culture (3 hours) OR PAPP 505 Introduction to Administration# (3 hours)
  • CRJ 580 Criminal Justice Theory (3 hours) OR PAPP 561 Organizational Development and Theory#  (3 hours)
  • CRJ 565 Deviant Behavior (3 hours)
  • CRJ 518 Criminal Justice Research Methods (4 hours - required for students completing the thesis option) OR PAPP 580 Information Systems and Statistics for Administrators# (3 hours)
  • CRJ 570 Current Issues in Criminal Justice (3 hours) OR CRJ 515 Principles of Restorative Justice (3 hours)
  • CRJ 588 Criminal Procedure and the Constitution (3 hours)

(#denotes a required course for the Criminal Justice Administration concentration. This concentration is appropriate for those individuals who intend to pursue career choices primarily in administrative or managerial roles.)


Elective Courses – 9 hours from the following:

  • CRJ 509 Intelligence and Homeland Security (3 hours)
  • CRJ 514 Civil Rights and Liberties (3 hours)
  • CRJ 515 Principles of Restorative Justice (3 hours)
  • CRJ 517 Crimmigration (3 hours)
  • CRJ 543 Gender Roles (3 hours)
  • CRJ 546 Marriage and Family Problems (3 hours)
  • CRJ 553 Sociology of Law (3 hours)
  • CRJ 560 Law and Culture (3 hours)
  • CRJ 566 Drugs, Alcohol and Society (3 hours)
  • CRJ 570 Current Issues in Criminal Justice (3 hours)
  • CRJ 572 Correctional Systems (3 hours)
  • CRJ 569 Juvenile Delinquency (3 hours)
  • CRJ 580 Applied CJ Theory (3 hours)
  • CRJ 582 Legal Ethics (3 hours)
  • CRJ 584 White Collar Crime (3 hours)
  • PAPP 520 Government & Nonprofit Leadership (3 hours)
  • PAPP 523 Administrative Law (3 hours)
  • PAPP 540 Government & Nonprofit Finance# (3 hours)
  • PAPP 561 Organizational Development and Theory (3 hours) (if not used to fulfill the core requirements)
  • PAPP 581 Strategic Management (3 hours)
  • PAPP 582 Policy Analysis & Development (3 hours)
  • PAPP 583 Program Evaluation (3 hours)

(#denotes a required course if pursuing the Criminal Justice Administration concentration. This concentration is appropriate for those individuals who intend to pursue career choices primarily in administrative or managerial roles.)


Thesis Option – 4 hours

CRJ 699 Criminology & Criminal Justice Master’s Thesis

Students must complete a thesis on a subject determined in consultation with their graduate faculty advisor. The completed thesis must be approved by the CRJ Program Director. Four hours of thesis credit are earned. Completion of CRJ 518 Criminal Justice Research Methods is a prerequisite for this class.

Non-thesis Option – 3 hours

CRJ 599 Criminology & Criminal Justice Master’s Essay

Non-thesis students must complete a major essay addressing the application of substantive or theoretical issues in criminology or criminal justice to current issues or practices in the field. The major paper may be based on papers completed in other graduate courses but must be of higher quality and depth than a usual term paper. The topic must be approved in advance, and approved upon completion, by the graduate faculty advisor.

Community Service Personnel Scholarships

The University of Michigan-Dearborn provides a scholarship valued at 20% of tuition and fees for public safety employees at partnering organizations.  The scholarship is available for degree-seeking students and can be used for undergraduate and graduate programs.

Accelerated Program: 4+1

The 4+1 accelerated program option allows current UM-Dearborn undergraduate Criminology and Criminal Justice majors to complete both the Bachelor of Arts and the Master of Science in Criminology and Criminal Justice in a format that offers substantial savings in both time and money. This is achieved by a double-counting allowance of up to 15 credits or 5 graduate level (500-level or above) courses. One additional year of graduate work (15-16 credits) would be needed to complete the Master's program enabling students to earn two degrees in a total of five years. 

Participation in the 4+1 program is limited to students who have completed at least 60 credit hours with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better. Admission to the 4+1 program is at the discretion of the Program Director and requires an admission interview. The "regular" online graduate application should be completed with a "Yes" response to the 4+1 accelerated program question. The only supplemental materials required for 4+1 applicants are a letter of recommendation from a CCJ faculty member and official transcripts.

Once admitted to the 4+1 program, the student must attain a grade of B- or better in each 500 level class elected.  Failure to do so may result in removal from the 4+1 program.  The courses to choose from are: 

  • CRJ 417/517 Crimmigration
  • CRJ 453/553 Sociology of Law
  • CRJ 465/565 Deviant Behavior
  • CRJ 418/518 Criminal Justice Research methods
  • CRJ 470/570 Current Issues in Criminal Justice
  • CRJ 415/515 Principles of Restorative Justice
  • CRJ 488/588 Criminal Procedure and the Constitution
  • CRJ 409/509 Intelligence and Homeland Security
  • CRJ 460/560 Law and Culture
  • CRJ 466/566 Drugs, Alcohol and Society
  • CRJ 482/582 Legal Ethics

Master of Science in Criminology and Criminal Justice Program Director

Paul Draus, Ph.D.

Professor of Sociology; Director, Master of Science in Criminology and Criminal Justice

Office of Graduate Studies

Administration Building
Back to top of page