Alabama Criminal Justice Schools

  • 28 schools offering criminal justice degrees in Alabama are in our database. (see below)
  • 12 offer associate’s degrees or certificates, 14 of them offer bachelor’s degrees and above, and 2 offer a mix of associate’s, bachelor’s, and master’s.
  • We found 3 schools in Alabama ranked in US News and World Reports that have criminal justice programs: #31 University of Alabama — Tuscaloosa, AL; #73 University of Alabama — Birmingham; #108 University of Alabama — Huntsville, AL
  • According to Kiplinger’s, Alabama has two universities ranking in the top 100 for “Values in Public Colleges”, The University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, and Auburn University.  For value, they rank 89th and 90th nationwide, respectively.
  • 10 campus-based and online schools in Alabama are available for requesting information.

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Comparison of Schools with a Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice Program

School Student Faculty Ratio In-State Undergrad Tuition (2012-13) Bachelor’s in CJ Awarded (2011-12) Graduation Rate (for freshman in 2005) Student Loan Default (2009)
Alabama State University 17 to 1 $7,932 53 26% 21.0%
Jacksonville State University 20 to 1 $6,360 67 32% 13.4%
University of Alabama at Birmingham 18 to 1 $6,798 63 45% 5.9%
The University of Alabama 19 to 1 $9,200 93 66% 5.6%

Source: National Center for Education Statistics

Profiles of Well Known Schools in Alabama

University of Alabama: The University of Alabama’s Department of Criminal Justice offers both undergraduate and graduate programs within the College of Arts and Sciences. The masters course of study provides students with the option of pursuing a career-oriented track, choosing from criminal justice/criminology, law or social sciences. While department research interests vary greatly, the faculty are world-renowned specialists in terrorism, drug addiction, HIV/AIDS, domestic violence, and sexual disorders. This university has four student organizations for those pursuing a degree in criminal justice as well as numerous internship opportunities with both state and federal agencies.

Jacksonville State University: Criminal justice students at Jacksonville State University have access to top quality resources since the campus placed 3rd in 2011 and 1st in 2010 in the Southern Association of Institutional Research (SAIR) Best Publication Category. Individuals interested in the criminal justice professional arena can pursue a Bachelor of Science or a Master of Science. Undergraduates can choose from four different concentrations (corrections, forensic investigations, law enforcement, and security administration/ loss prevention) to better prepare themselves for their specialized objectives. Additionally, the department has a long standing internship program for its majors that connects them to the agencies that best fit their concentrations. Jacksonville State University provides financial assistance for its criminal justice majors with four different scholarships such as the Criminal Justice Alumni Association Scholarship.

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Alabama Criminal Justice Salary and Jobs

Occupation Number Employed Average Annual Salary
Correctional Officers and Jailers 5,830 $33,910
First-Line Supervisors of Police and Detectives 1,000 $65,570
Detectives and Criminal Investigators 1,100 $59,840
Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers 11,370 $39,990

Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics as of May 2011.

Alabama Criminal Justice Degrees

Degrees at all levels are offered in Alabama both from local colleges and universities as well as online schools for those who choose to earn their degree from home. There are several online degree programs that serve students in Alabama with the benefit of flexible scheduling for working professionals and less time and cost of commuting to and from campus. If you live in Alabama, we recommend requesting information from the following accredited campus-based and online criminal justice programs for students interested in pursuing associate’s, bachelor’s and master’s degrees in the field of criminal justice.

Respected leaders who have graduated from universities in Alabama

  • Morgan County Alabama Sheriff Ana Franklin – Jacksonville State in Jacksonville, AL
  • Calhoun County Alabama Sheriff Larry Amerson – Jacksonville State in Jacksonville, AL
  • Blount County Sheriff Loyd Arrington – Troy State University, AL
  • Birmingham Police Chief A.C. Roper – University of Alabama – Birmingham, AL
Police Quote “It is important to get a college education for a couple reasons. First, people watching TV often get the wrong idea of law enforcement. People don’t always last in this career and so a fallback is good to have just in case. For those staying, the education can help them be more effective in the job. I need someone who can do a good job of writing logically laid out reports – you have to be articulate in doing police work. Note these benefits from education benefit both the patrol and corrections side. I need dependable people who can do a good, reliable job. In getting an advanced degree, I know the requisite skills are covered well.” -Sheriff Glenn Palmer

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Alabama’s Criminal Justice Employment Outlook 4, 5, 6, 7

At the start of 2012, Alabama’s unemployment has now dropped to 8.1%, and is lower than the national average (8.5%). Employment is expected to slowly grow back toward prior peak employment levels by mid 2014. Government related employment, which is a good proxy for Alabama criminal justice jobs, has not dipped far off employment peaks, but will recover by Q1 2014. Alabama’s Department of Industrial relations offers such criminal justice jobs as Paralegals (74 annual openings / 88% in positions report some college or bachelor’s degrees), Police and Sheriff Patrol (371 annual openings / 88% in positions report some college or bachelor degrees) and Detectives and Criminal Investigators (45 annual openings), Correctional Officers (184 annual openings / 60% in positions report some college or bachelor’s degrees) and Security Guards (463 annual openings) as hot criminal justice careers. According to 24/7 Wall St, since the challenging year of 2010, the Alabama state budget situation has continued to improve along with employment gains, but they continue to face difficult choices around cutting some education and government programs. You can learn more. We suggest requesting free information from several Alabama criminal schools to best understand your education options.

Online and Alabama Criminal Justice Schools

Below is a list of online and campus-based schools with accredited programs.

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University of Phoenix
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • A.A. in Criminal Justice
  • B.S. in Criminal Justice Administration

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Keiser University
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • Criminal Justice, AA (Online)
  • Criminal Justice, BA (Online)
  • Homeland Security, BA (Online)

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Walden University
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • PhD in Criminal Justice - Public Management and Leadership-Advanced
  • PhD in Criminal Justice - Online Teaching in Higher Education-Advanced
  • B.S. in Criminal Justice - Crime and Criminals

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Florida Tech University Online
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • Associate of Arts in Criminal Justice
  • Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice/Homeland Security
  • Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice

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Post University
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • B.S. in Human Services / Criminal Justice
  • B.S. in Criminal Justice - Law Enforcement
  • B.S. in Criminal Justice

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Grand Canyon University
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • B.S. in Justice Studies
  • M.S. in Criminal Justice: Legal Studies
  • M.S. in Criminal Justice: Law Enforcement

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Capella University
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • MS - Criminal Justice
  • PhD - Criminal Justice
  • BS - Criminal Justice

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Liberty University
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • BS in Criminal Justice
  • AA in Criminal Justice
  • Masters in Criminal Justice: Command College

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University of Cincinnati Online
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • Master of Science in Criminal Justice

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Kent State University
Campuses: 1Online
Popular Degrees:

  • Master's - Criminology & Criminal Justice - Victimology
  • Master's - Criminology & Criminal Justice - Corrections
  • Master's - Criminology & Criminal Justice - Police


Tip: If you don’t live near a campus-based school that offers a program of interest, consider an online degree or a university in an adjacent state (Mississippi, Tennessee, and Florida).

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Salary Information for Graduates in Alabama

Depending on what agency you work for, a degree can result in an automatic increase in your starting salary. According to the Alabama Department of Public Safety, applicants without a degree receive a base wage of $35,589.60, recipients of either an associate’s or bachelor’s degree will enjoy a higher starting base pay ($36,489.60 or $38,347.20).1

Furthermore, your degree will make it easier for you to advance in any law enforcement career. In addition to state positions, jobs are available for criminal justice graduates with a number of city police and county sheriff’s departments throughout Alabama. The Alabama Department of Corrections needs to add on to their current pool of approximately 3,100 correctional officers and offers a full benefit package including 27 leave days per year in conjunction with 12 paid holidays.2 Like state patrol officers, a bachelor’s degree increases pay for a correctional officer by almost $3000 per year.3

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Directory of Alabama Universities Offering Criminal Justice Degrees

Alabama State University (Montgomery, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Bachelor of Science | Corrections
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice
Bachelor of Science | Juvenile Justice
Bachelor of Science | Law Enforcement

Athens State University (Athens, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Bachelor of Arts | Justice Studies

Auburn University at Montgomery (Montgomery, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice (online program)
Bachelor of Science | Justice and Public Safety (online program)

Student Review: “Auburn University is a place you instantly fall in love with. A large research university with about 25,000 students that is set in a classic southern college town it provides the complete college experience. Socially the students are friendly and almost like family, while the bar scene is vibrant and varied. Educationally speaking the college of business is superb with a complete financial trading room that teaches the true fundamentals of business. Aside from the sister cities of Auburn and Opelika the surrounding area others beautiful countryside, fantastic swimming holes, and excellent wildlife viewing if your an outdoor enthusiast like myself.” -Wesley D., student at Auburn University
4 star review

Calhoun Community College (Tanner, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate of Science | Criminal Justice

Columbia Southern University (Orange Beach, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate Degree | Criminal Justice (online program)
Associate of Applied Science | Criminal Justice (online program)
Bachelor Degree | Criminal Justice (online program)
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice Administration (online program)
Master of Science | Criminal Justice Administration
Masters Degree | Criminal Justice (online program)

Enterprise State Community College (Enterprise, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate of Science | Criminal Justice
Certificate | Criminal Justice

Faulkner State Community College (Bay Minette, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate of Arts | Criminal Justice

Faulkner University (Montgomery, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate of Science | Criminal Justice
Associate of Science | Criminalistics
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice
Master of Science | Criminal Justice

Gadsden State Community College (Gadsden, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Office Administration Technology | Administrative Assistant | Legal
Associate of Applied Science | Public Safety Telecommunications
Associate of Arts/Associate of Sciences | Criminal Justice
Short-term Certificate | Realtime Reporting | Litigation Assistant

Herzing University (Birmingham, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Criminal Justice
Associate of Science | Criminal Justice
Associate of Science | Criminal Justice (online program)
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice (online program)
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice (Homeland Security Concentration) (online program)
Bachelor of Science | Homeland Security and Public Safety
Bachelor of Science | Homeland Security, Public Safety, Criminal Justice (online program)
Bachelor of Science | Homeland Security, Public Safety, Emergency Tech

ITT Technical Institute (Bessemer, AL; Mobile, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Criminal Justice
Associate of Applied Science | Criminal Justice (online program)
Associate of Science | Criminal Justice
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice (online program)
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice | Cyber Security (online program)
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice-Cyber Security

Jacksonville State University (Jacksonville, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Public Safety Communications (online program)
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice | Corrections
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice | Forensic Investigations
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice | Law Enforcement
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice | Security Administration; Loss Prevention
Bachelor of Science | Emergency Management
Bachelor of Science | Emergency Management | Homeland Security
Bachelor of Science | Emergency Management | Public Safety Communications
Certificate | APCO International
Certificate | Emergency Management
Master of Public Administration | Emergency Management
Master of Science | Criminal Justice
Master of Science | Emergency Management

Jefferson State Community College (Birmingham, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Law Enforcement (online program)
Associate of Arts | Criminal Justice
Certificate | Law Enforcement (online program)

Lawson State Community College (Birmingham, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Criminal Justice

Miles College (Fairfield, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice

Northwest-Shoals Community College (Muscle Shoals, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Criminal Justice

Prince Institute of Professional Studies Inc (Montgomery, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Certificate | CART Captioning
Certificate | CART Captioning (online program)
Certificate | Judicial Reporting
Certificate | Judicial Reporting (online program)
Certificate | Scoping
Certificate | Scoping/Proofreading

Remington College (Mobile, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate of Science | Criminal Justice

Samford University (Birmingham, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:

Shelton State Community College (Tuscaloosa, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate in Applied Science | Legal Secretary
Associate of Science | Criminal Justice
Certificate | Legal Secretary

South University (Montgomery, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice (online program)
Bachelor of Science | Legal Studies
Master of Science | Criminal Justice (online program)

The University of Alabama (Tuscaloosa, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice

Student Review: “The criminal justice program at the University of Alabama is one that I thoroughly enjoy and am currently taking a part in in my course of study. Although many lower level classes in many fields are considered mundane, all that I have taken have been relevant and interesting. Professors in my upper division classes have all had significant, real world experience and ethos in the criminal justice system, and have have been able to make the courses much more exciting as a consequence. I feel that I have and continue to take a great deal from my school’s department and that the courses I’ve taken will help me gain a greater understanding of this field once I graduate.” -John M., student at University of Alabama
4 star review
Student Review: “The University of Alabama is located in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. The campus is beautiful and very historical. The school is acadmically superb. It is ranked on Princeton Review’s top 100. The city is not very metropolitan but there is always something to do. Most students and vistors enjoy spending their spare time on the strip located on campus or the quad. The biggest attraction at the University of Alabama is football season. The university has 14 national titles under its belt. Games are held at Bryant Denny stadium. Bryant Denny stadium holds up to 90,000 visitors. Games are an experience of a lifetime. The fans are crazy. At Alabama football isnt just a sport its a lifestyle. All in all the University prides itself on traditon, you will see die heart fans and alumni wear houndstooth in rememberance of Paul Bear-Bryant. Theres something for everyone at Alabama. You will get a great education and have a great time while doing it. Roll Tide.” -Kanise W., student at University of Alabama
5 star rating

The University of Alabama at Birmingham (Birmingham, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice
Graduate Certificate | Computer Forensics
Master of Science | Criminal Justice
Master of Science | Forensic Science

Student Review: “I attended UAB early in the 2000′s. My intention was to enroll in their “5th year program” which allowed for a Masters in secondary education depending on your bachelor’s field. I took several prerequisite classes in order to become a secondary teacher in social sciences. The campus is large and is all but completely in a downtown urban environment. This made for an exciting and bustling campus. The campus comprises many cultures, ages, backgrounds, and ethnicities, which I found very stimulating. I attended a small school for undergrad, so I was worried about “becoming just another number” in a large, dissociated classroom, but my experience was completely opposite. Even in some 100 and 200 level classes, the teachers and students were engaged and the class size was surprisingly manageable. The buildings are kept up very well, and the resources were good (e.g., several food service locations, many study areas, good library resources, online information easy to find, etc.). I lived off campus, so parking could be tricky, but I was generally able to get close enough. Recent additions of green spaces have made the campus more attractive.” -Cari O., student at University of Alabama – Birmingham
5 star review

University of North Alabama (Florence, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice
Master of Science | Criminal Justice

University of South Alabama (Mobile, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Bachelor of Arts | Criminal Justice
Bachelor of Science | Political Science/Criminal Justice
Master of Public Administration | Political Science/Criminal Justice

Virginia College (Birmingham, AL; Huntsville, AL; Mobile, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate Degree | Criminal Justice (online program)
Associate of Science | Criminal Justice
Associate of Science | Criminal Justice (online program)
Bachelor Degree | Criminal Justice (online program)
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice (online program)
Master of Science | Criminal Justice (online program)
Master of Science | Cyber Security (online program)
Masters Degree | Criminal Justice (online program)

Wallace Community College (Dothan, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
AAS in Criminal Justice | Forensic Investigations
AAS in Criminal Justice | Law Enforcement

Wallace Community College-Selma (Selma, AL)
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered:
Associate of Applied Science | Criminal Justice

 

References:
(1) Alabama Department of Public Safety: http://www.dps.state.al.us/Home/wfContent.aspx?ID=70&PLH=plhInformation-Employment
(2) Alabama Department of Corrections: http://www.doc.state.al.us/Employment.aspx
(3) Alabama Department of Corrections: http://www.doc.state.al.us/employment.aspx
(4) Alabama Department of Industrial Relations: http://www2.dir.state.al.us/LAUS/default.aspx
(5) USA TODAY/Moody’s Analytics/BLS: http://www.usatoday.com/money/economy/2009-02-06-new-jobs-growth-graphic_N.htm
(6) Bureau of Labor Statistics’ State Occupational: http://www.projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm
(7) 24/7 Wall St: http://247wallst.com/special-report/2013/11/21/the-best-and-worst-run-states-in-america-a-survey-of-all-50-2/

Page Edited by Charles Sipe.