The Law Dictionary

Your Free Online Legal Dictionary • Featuring Black’s Law Dictionary, 2nd Ed.

How to Get a Job in Criminal Justice

Anyone interested in learning more about the law and law related careers will benefit from a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice.

Possible Careers with a Degree in Criminal Justice

Earning a Criminal Justice degree educates students in a wide range of legal topics. Criminal Justice majors learn about the criminal justice system, legal procedures, criminal investigation, law enforcement, the court system, and corrections.

A Criminal Justice degree opens up a broad range of career opportunities for graduates. Possible careers in law enforcement include police officer or detective, probation officer, or correctional officer. One example of a career in corrections is a prison warden or guard.

For those who want a covert position, consider a career as a secret service officer, FBI agent, or private detective.

Other career possibilities include border patrol officer, customs agent, or immigration guard.

If graduates enjoy working in a legal office or court room, available careers include paralegal, law clerk, court clerk, or court transcriptionist.

For those interested in understanding criminal behavior, consider becoming a criminologist. Employees in this field learn about what causes criminal behavior and how to control or prevent such behavior.

How Much Can One Expect to Earn in Criminal Justice?

With such a wide variety of available career opportunities, salaries differ depending on a graduate’s career of choice.

Private detectives or private investigators can expect to earn over $40,000 per year.
Court clerks earn close to $50,000 annually. Paralegals earn approximately $45,000 per year. A police officer can make over $50,000 annually. Prison wardens earn close to $40,000 per year.

Criminologists earn an average of $45,000 annually. Secret Service agents can earn as much as $75,000 per year. Customs agents can make up to $45,000 annually.

Job Requirements

Since a criminal justice degree opens up the way to numerous careers, job requirements do vary. In order to have hope of advancement and the opportunity for a higher salary, consider earning a bachelor’s degree.

Some criminal justice careers require extensive training. For example, new federal correction officers need to attend 200 hours of training during their first year of employment.

Paralegals have voluntary certifications they can earn. Certifications usually involve extensive study in preparation for a comprehensive exam.

Those interested in criminology will benefit from psychology and sociology classes to understand the criminal mind and criminal behavior.

Schools For Criminal Justice

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This article contains general legal information but does not constitute professional legal advice for your particular situation. The Law Dictionary is not a law firm, and this page does not create an attorney-client or legal adviser relationship. If you have specific questions, please consult a qualified attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.