Department of Criminal Justice Studies


Learning opportunities



Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice

Our bachelor's degree requires a minimum 45 credit hours in Criminal Justice Studies. We recommend students consider a minor program of study in addition to fulfill the 120-credit graduation requirement.

Each year, select criminal justice courses are offered online.

Criminal justice graduates are required to research, write and orally defend a senior thesis.

Law Enforcement Licensure Training

Our department has been certified by the Minnesota Peace Officers Standards and Training (P.O.S.T.) Board to provide the academic law enforcement licensing core.

We also partner with Alexandria Technical College to offer the P.O.S.T. skills training component each summer at St. Cloud State To attend the skills training, students must complete CJS 111, 421, 422, and 431.

The students must also complete a Minnesota Emergency Medical Services Regulatory Board (EMSRB) approved First Responder level or higher certification.  Graduate students may enroll in CJS 521, 522, 531 and 601 in lieu of the undergraduate courses.


Master of Science in Criminal Justice

The master's degree is course-centered and includes research, seminar and specialization courses that focus on a specific aspect of criminal justice.

Students complete a degree by developing a thesis or a professional portfolio of projects and papers.

All graduate coursework must be completed within the seven years before the awarding of the degree.

The master's degree requires a preliminary conference and a final oral examination.

Public Safety Executive Leadership

Our program is for mid-level managers who have three years or more of full-time public safety agency employment and work full-time in a public safety agency such as law enforcement, probation, corrections, court services, treatment programs, fire service, private security or other public safety organizations.

The program assesses personal leadership strengths, develops leadership skills and uses journaling to build personal leadership knowledge and skills.

The master's degree requires a preliminary conference and a final oral examination.