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Rhode Island Criminal Justice Schools

  • 6 schools offering criminal justice degrees in Rhode Island are in our database (see below).
  • Of the criminal justice programs in Rhode Island, 4 offer associate’s degrees or certificates, 5 offer bachelor’s degrees and above, and 3 offer master’s or doctoral degrees.
  • 2 schools offering online criminal justice degrees in Rhode Island ranked in US News & World Report’s Best Online Bachelor’s Programs: New England Institute of Technology (#49), Johnson and Wales University (#172).
  • 0 schools in Rhode Island are on Kiplinger’s Best College Values.

Profiles of Well-Known Schools

University of Rhode Island: The University of Rhode Island’s Department of Sociology and Anthropology has an undergraduate program in Criminology and Criminal Justice that is labeled as a BS in Sociology. The department also has a Justice, Law, and Sociology minor which emphasizes crime and social change. Nine full-time faculty specifically teach the sociology courses and most have strong research interests in methods, juvenile delinquency, and inequalities. Students with the Criminology and Criminal Justice concentrations as well as those pursuing the BA in Sociology are active within the Iron Cage Society, a student organization dedicated to humanitarian efforts.

Johnson and Wales University: Johnson and Wales University offers students the opportunity to pursue a Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice as well as a Master of Science in Criminal Justice Management. Students often become members of the Criminal Justice Association, providing peer support and professional networks. The university encourages its students to seek out supplemental experience through one of its many study abroad programs, which are active in over a dozen different countries in Europe, Asia, and Latin America. The faculty consists of top-rated criminal justice experts, including former employees of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

Rhode Island Criminal Justice Salary and Jobs

OccupationNumber EmployedAverage Annual Salary
Correctional Officers and Jailers1,140$58,690
First-Line Supervisors of Police and Detectives600$79,900
Detectives and Criminal Investigators320$82,720
Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers2,040$55,790

Data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics as of May 2015.4,5,6,7

Respected leaders who have graduated from universities in Rhode Island

  • Providence, RI Police Chief Hugh T. Clements – Roger Williams College, University of Rhode Island
  • Warwick, RI Police Chief Stephen McCartney – Salve Regina University, Roger Williams College, Providence College
Police Quote: “You have to be willing to relocate. You have to move to the opportunities. There are more opportunities in the bigger organizations. They need to put their best personal foot forward by working hard and being diligent. You have to learn how to get along with people even when it isn’t easy. You have to move with the group but find some way to stand out. And you just have to be a solid writer and communicator.” -Dr. Scott Thornsley, Associate Professor at Mansfield University

Rhode Island Criminal Justice Degrees

With the state’s population estimated to grow to more than 1.1 million by 2020 and an anticipated decline in the number of working age residents, it is important for the state of Rhode Island to recruit criminal justice professionals who will be able to provide legal, public safety, and other protective services to the state’s growing elderly and youth populations.

State agencies that hire professionals with backgrounds in criminal justice include the Rhode Island State Police, Department of Corrections, Department of Public Safety, Department of Environmental Management, and others. The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) also employs criminal justice professionals in Rhode Island. Job opportunities with the DHS include criminal investigators, special agents, disaster assistance specialists, and transportation security agents.

Rhode Island Criminal Justice Salary

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average yearly salary for police officers in Rhode Island is $55,790.7 First-line police supervisors earn an average of $79,900.5 For detectives and criminal investigators the average annual salary is $82,720 while paralegals and legal assistants in the state earn an average of $55,190.6,8

Rhode Island Criminal Justice Employment Outlook

As of May 2016, Rhode Island had an unemployment rate of 5.4%, higher than the national average of 4.7% yet lower than the state’s 10-year peak unemployment rate of 11.9%, which occurred in January 2010.9 Government-related employment is a good proxy for criminal justice jobs in Rhode Island. Projections Central includes the following criminal justice job estimates for Rhode Island:

  • Police and Sheriff Patrol: 70 annual openings; 46% in these positions report completing at least some college, with 24% holding an associate’s degree.10,11
  • Correctional Officers: 30 annual openings; 37% in these positions report completing at least some college, with 15% holding a post-secondary certificate.10,12
  • Detectives and Criminal Investigators: 10 annual openings; 37% in these positions report completing at least some college, with 21% holding an associate’s degree.10,13
  • Security Guards: 60 annual openings; 4% in these positions report completing at least some college.10,14
  • Paralegals and Legal Assistants: 40 annual openings; 86% in these positions report completing at least some college, with 30% holding an associate’s degree and 44% holding a bachelor’s degree.10,15

These open position estimates are based on both replacements and jobs growth.

The Mercatus Center is a conservative think tank that rated and analyzed the long-term solvency of each state. Budgets, cash/tax collections, and pensions were analyzed, and Rhode Island was ranked 37th in the nation.16 This means that new employees should closely watch the state’s ability to pay out employee pensions.

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Directory of Rhode Island Universities Offering Campus-based and Online Criminal Justice Degrees

If you live in Rhode Island and are interested in pursuing an associate’s, bachelor’s, or master’s degrees in the growing field of criminal justice, we recommend finding an accredited campus-based or online program.

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 (Massachusetts or Connecticut).

Note: Student Reviews are based on the experiences of a few individuals and it is unlikely that you will have similar results. Please review the “Data, Student Reviews and Other Information” section in our Terms of Use and Disclaimers.

Community College of Rhode Island (Warwick)
Associate of Science | Law Enforcement

Johnson & Wales University (Providence)
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice
Master of Science | Criminal Justice (online program)
Certificate | Criminal Justice

New England Institute of Technology (East Greenwich, Warwick)
Associate in Science | Criminal Justice
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice (online)
Bachelor of Science | Information Technology: Cyber Security and Network Engineering

Rhode Island College (Providence)
Bachelor of Arts | Justice Studies
Minor | Justice Studies

Roger Williams University (Bristol)
Bachelor of Science | Criminal Justice
Bachelor of Science | Security Assurance Studies
Bachelor/ Master of Science | Criminal Justice (accelerated 4+1 program)
Bachelor of Science/Juris Doctor | Criminal Justice/Law Degree (accelerated 3+3 program)
Master of Science | Criminal Justice
Master of Science | Cybersecurity

Salve Regina University (Newport)
Bachelor of Arts | Administration of Justice
Master of Science | Administration of Justice and Homeland Security
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Cybersecurity and Intelligence
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Digital Forensics
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Leadership in Justice

1. National Center for Education Statistics College Navigator: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. US News & World Report, Best Online Programs: https://www.usnews.com/education/online-education
3. Kiplinger’s Best College Values: https://www.kiplinger.com/tool/college/T014-S001-kiplinger-s-best-values-in-public-colleges/index.php
4. US Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2015 Occupational Employment and Wages, Correctional Officers and Jailers https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes333012.htm
5. US Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2015 Occupational Employment and Wages, First-Line Supervisors of Police and Detectives: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes331012.htm
6. US Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2015 Occupational Employment and Wages, Detectives and Criminal Investigators: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes333021.htm
7. US Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2015 Occupational Employment and Wages, Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes333051.htm
8. Y Charts 10 Year Unemployment Chart: http://https://ycharts.com/indicators/alabama_unemployment_rate
9. Y Charts 10 Year Unemployment Chart: http://https://ycharts.com/indicators/rhode_island_unemployment_rate
10. Projections Central, Long Term Occupational Projections: http://www.projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm
11. O*Net OnLine, Police Patrol Officers: https://www.onetonline.org/link/details/33-3051.01
12. O*Net OnLine, Correctional Officers and Jailers: https://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/33-3012.00
13. O*Net OnLine, Police Detectives: https://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/33-3021.01
14. O*Net OnLine, Security Guards: https://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/33-9032.00
15. O*Net OnLine, Paralegals and Legal Assistants: https://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/23-2011.00
16. Mercatus Center, George Mason University, Ranking the States by Fiscal Condition 2016 Edition: https://www.mercatus.org/statefiscalrankings