Criminal Justice Undergraduate Certificate

The criminal justice system is comprised of three major components—law enforcement, the judiciary, and corrections. The Undergraduate Certificate in Criminal Justice curriculum provides a comprehensive and in-depth study of these components, beginning with introductory principles of criminal justice, and then laying the foundation for deeper study into the critical areas of the justice system—police, courts, and prisons.

The certificate program integrates scholarship about criminal justice within a student’s existing program of study at Boston University, or may serve as a stand-alone credential for nondegree students enrolled in Metropolitan College. For those who want to enhance their educational experience, improve their employment prospects, or prepare for post-baccalaureate study, the certificate lays a foundation in the discipline of criminal justice that could serve as preparation for graduate study or to enhance professional development.

Students who complete the Certificate in Criminal Justice will be able to demonstrate:

  • Proficient knowledge of the policies, operations, decision-making processes, and strategies of major institutions associated with the criminal justice.
  • Specialized knowledge of content areas connected to domains within the administration of justice (law, policing, adjudication, and corrections) and specific crime- and justice-related social problems.
  • A capacity to recognize and analyze legal and ethical constraints, their implications for criminal justice policy and decision-makers, and the effect of justice policy and practice on diverse sets of values and groups in society.
  • An ability to synthesize, evaluate, recognize implications, and communicate effectively using scholarly sources of information connected to crime theory and policy.

Program Requirements

(Four courses/16 credits)

MET CJ 101 Principles of Criminal Justice
Fall ‘14

This course provides a comprehensive overview of the criminal justice system (law enforcement, the courts, and corrections) while developing students' critical thinking skills. In addition to class lectures, the course provides multiple venues for learning, to include group activities, guest lectures, a prison tour, and carefully selected films that highlight some of the most contentious issues in criminal justice today.  [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
A1 IND Cadigan SHA 201 M 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
MET CJ 251 Police and Society

This course provides a foundation for understanding the implications of policing in the United States. The course examines the historical development of policing in the U.S., the role of police in our society, police organizations and decision-making, policing strategies, as well as issues of authority and accountability. Throughout the course, several contemporary issues and controversies facing the police will be discussed including: police discrimination, police use of force practices, and other special topics.   [ 4 cr. ]

MET CJ 271 Corrections: Concepts, Systems, and Issues
Fall ‘14

This course provides an overview of models of punishment and rehabilitation from the perspectives of the humanities and social sciences, including a review of correctional practices and procedures, institutional treatment, probation, parole, prison conditions, programs for juveniles, and comparative systems. Correction administration topics are covered including personnel, legal, operating practices, overcrowding, and planning.  [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
D1 IND Carney CAS 213 R 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
MET CJ 352 Courts, Society, and Criminal Procedure

Federal, state, and local criminal courts and their relationship to contemporary social and political issues. Historical background of the current criminal court system. Institutional functions of the courts. Role of the courts in reducing crime. Judicial process and criminal procedure, case studies and court decisions.   [ 4 cr. ]

View all Criminal Justice undergraduate courses.