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Master of Criminal Justice

A Career for Positive Change

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Program Quick Facts

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Nationally Recognized

Our program was ranked #17 in Top Online Criminal Justice Master’s Degrees for 2023.

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100% Online

Flexible, online classes make it easier to reach your goals while balancing work and family life.

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Affordable Tuition

NMSU Global Campus offers competitively priced tuition and scholarship opportunities.

Advance Your Criminal Justice Career

Take your criminal justice career to the next level with the Master of Criminal Justice program at NMSU Global Campus. Ranked #37 nationally by U.S. News & World Report for Best Online Master’s in Criminal Justice Programs, this 100% online program will train you in the best ways to analyze policy and conduct research related to the field of criminal justice.

Balancing theoretical inquiry with applied knowledge, this program will give you an in-depth study of criminological theory, data analysis, and the tension between ethics and punishment, all while considering complex factors such as gender, race, and juvenility.

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Career Pathways

With a Master of Criminal Justice from NMSU Global Campus, you will enjoy a wide range of employment options within the criminal justice system. Professional possibilities for our MCJ grads include:

  • Adjunct and Specialized Professor
  • Alcohol Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF)
  • Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
  • City and State Police Lieutenant
  • Customs and Border Protection (CBP)
  • Department of Justice (DOJ)
  • Drug Enforcement Agent (DEA)
  • Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
  • Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)
  • Homeland Security Officer
  • Private Investigator
  • Probation Officer
  • Research Analyst for a Federal Agency
  • Secret Service
  • U.S. Marshal
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“It has been critical to my promotions and growth in my career. It's amazing how much I can apply from my class straight to work.”

Sarah F., Class of 2022

One of the nation’s oldest programs for criminal justice degrees, our Master of Criminal Justice program prepares you for a career in the criminal justice system, the juvenile justice system, victim services, and not-for-profit organizations connected with criminal justice. It also equips you with the knowledge you need for continued study in law school or criminology doctoral programs.

A program for scholarly, experiential, and applied research endeavors, the Master of Criminal Justice degree gives you the theoretical foundation you need to thrive in this important field.

Some of the topics you’ll have the opportunity to study in this flexible, affordable program include a measurement of crime causation, an advanced analysis of the historical and contemporary relationship between race and crime in the United States, and an examination of the key ethical and decision-making dilemmas facing law professionals today.

Delivery Format: 100% online with optional synchronous sessions available
Program Credits: 36 credits
Program Length: 1.5 years full-time; 2 years part-time
Cost Per Credit Hour: $444.40*
Active Military Cost Per Credit Hour: $250*
Active Law Enforcement Cost Per Credit Hour: $250*
College: Arts and Sciences
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To earn a Master of Criminal Justice from NMSU Global Campus, you must either complete the focused coursework option (36 credits) or the thesis option (33 credits). Focused coursework students must pass a written comprehensive examination following completion of the required courses. Thesis students must submit a thesis proposal to their faculty committee for approval, and then complete the approved thesis project. 

Please note: the majority of NMSU Global Campus students will pursue the focused coursework option, as the thesis option is only offered on a case-by-case basis.

Sample Courses Credits
CJUS 511: Nature of Crime 3
CJUS 514: Advanced Race, Crime, and Justice 3
CJUS 525: Issues in Ethics, Law, and Criminal Justice 3
CJUS 501: Research Methods in Criminal Justice 3
CJUS 541: ​​Seminar in Criminal Justice Policy Analysis and Planning 3
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The program offers rolling admissions with 8-week courses in Fall and Spring and 5-week courses in Summer. You should apply at least 6 weeks before your first semester to ensure your admission files are reviewed.

Application requirements include:

  • A bachelor’s degree in any subject (with either a 3.0 GPA or three letters of recommendation)
  • 1-2 page personal statement of purpose
  • Resume or CV

Please note: The Department of Criminal Justice requires a minimum overall undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.0 or a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA for your last 60 hours of earned credit. If the student doesn’t meet the minimum GPA requirement, three letters of recommendation are welcomed to help supplement the application.

At NMSU Global Campus, we strive to offer competitively priced tuition to keep your tuition costs affordable. If you need financial aid, we’re ready to work with you to determine the best ways to finance your education.

Financial assistance includes loans, grants, and scholarship opportunities. To apply, use NMSU’s convenient Scholar Dollar$ one-stop scholarship application, which serves all students in the NMSU system.

NMSU and NMSU Global Campus students are also eligible for loans and grants. The first step in applying for financial aid is to complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Learn more about financial aid opportunities at NMSU.

Contact Financial Aid
Phone: 1-888-729-6678


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*For NMSU Global Campus programs and courses, the per credit hour cost is listed above. Special tuition agreements (Western Undergraduate Exchange, Descubre, etc.) are not applicable to NMSU Global Campus programs. Course fees still apply and are charged separately. Textbooks, uniforms, equipment, etc., are additional program costs. Additional per credit costs might be charged by the program, department or college.