The Bachelor of Science (BS) in Criminal Justice degree program at Boston University’s Metropolitan College (MET) builds on methods and theories of social science while developing a specialized understanding of criminal activity, policing, corrections, criminal court procedures, and social policy as it relates to crime control. Graduates will be adept in critical thinking, computer applications, and quantitative analysis in relation to criminal study.
Program at a Glance
- Part-Time Study
- 128 Credits Required
- 24—36 Months to Completion
A Foundation for Criminal Justice Success
Metropolitan College’s Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice equips you with:
- Proficient knowledge of theoretical perspectives of crime causation and their implications and applications for public policy and practice.
- 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 foundation for conducting, interpreting, and evaluating research designs, as well as the quantitative and qualitative analytical methods for understanding 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.
Explore Careers in Criminal Justice
Use the Career Insights tool to explore jobs that are the right fit for you. Filter by career area and job title or by industry sector to explore employment demand and average salaries. Select “Learn More” for a downloadable career report, or “Explore Other Options” to find the BU MET degree or certificate program that will prepare you for the job you want.
Why Complete Your Criminal Justice Bachelor’s at BU?
- Engaged Faculty: In BU MET’s criminal justice bachelor’s program, an exceptional student-to-instructor ratio ensures close interaction with highly qualified faculty who draw from active research and substantial professional achievements in areas such as law enforcement, corrections, cybercrime investigation and digital forensics, research and policy, forensic mental health, the judicial system, strategic management, and many other areas.
- Track Record: Learn from the best—BU MET has offered criminal justice education since 1973, introducing the master’s degree in criminal justice in 1980, which became BU’s first fully online program in 2002.
- Extensive Network: Study principles of criminal justice alongside peers with professional experiences, learn from faculty who have valuable contacts in community outreach, law enforcement, research, and corrections, and benefit from a global alumni community with strong connections.
- Student Support: Benefit from access to personalized professional academic advice from the team of academic counselors in MET Student Services.
- Valuable Resources: Make use of Boston University’s extensive resources, including the Center for Career Development, Fitness & Recreation Center, IT Help Centers, Mugar Memorial Library, Frederick S. Pardee Center for the Study of the Longer-Range Future, Center for Antiracist Research, Initiative on Cities, Howard Thurman Center for Common Ground, George Sherman Union, and many others.
- Flexible Schedule: Pursue your studies part-time, at the pace that works for you, evenings on campus.
- Affordable Tuition: Complete your bachelor’s part-time at BU at a substantial savings compared to full-time study.
- Financial Assistance: Undergraduate students at BU MET are eligible for a range of financial aid and community-minded scholarship opportunities designed to support those investing in their education part-time who still need to navigate full-time responsibilities.
Flexible, Part-Time Degree Completion—at Boston University
The BS in Criminal Justice at Boston University’s Metropolitan College is a self-paced bachelor’s degree completion program offered in a convenient, part-time evening format—ideal for busy professionals who seek to earn a Boston University degree without turning their personal lives upside down or putting their careers on hold. Along with self-paced programs in a variety of majors, MET also offers the structured, two-year Accelerated Degree Completion Program—leading to a bachelor’s degree in either Computer Science or Management Studies—and an online Undergraduate Degree Completion Program.
A variety of undergraduate certificate programs provide the opportunity for focused study in a specific subject. Certificates can work into select degree programs at MET, offer breadth to current studies, or build professional skills and knowledge.
BU MET’s Criminal Justice bachelor’s degree program can serve as a preparatory building block to future graduate education opportunities—including the Master of Science in Criminal Justice and the Graduate Certificate in Criminal Justice. By mastering the fundamentals of the field under the tutelage of MET’s world-class Criminal Justice faculty, you develop both the skills and the habits necessary for continuing graduate studies, and vital University connections. To be eligible for the degree, you must apply for admission and be accepted into the degree program. Consult with an admissions advisor to learn more about this option.
Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice Curriculum
Candidates for the bachelor’s degree at Metropolitan College are required to complete a minimum of 32 courses (128 credits), including Hub requirements, major requirements, related courses, and electives.
As of fall 2021, all students in the program will pursue coursework in the BU Hub, a general education program that is integrated into the entire undergraduate experience. Students will complete the BU Hub requirements for transfer students. BU Hub requirements are flexible and can be satisfied in many different ways, through coursework in and beyond the major. Students majoring in Criminal Justice and taking MET SO 300 will satisfy BU Hub requirements in Social Inquiry I, Critical Thinking, and Research and Information Literacy.
Major and Related Courses
A total of 16 courses (64 credits), completed with a grade of C or higher, is required.
The following six courses (24 credits) are required:
MET CJ 101 Principles of Criminal Justice
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. ]
|A1||IND||Walters-Sley||SOC B57||T||6:00 pm – 8:45 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. ]
|A1||IND||Evans||CAS B06B||M||6:00 pm – 8:45 pm|
MET CJ 271 Corrections: Concepts, Systems, and Issues
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. ]
|A1||IND||Matesanz||CAS 229||R||6:00 pm – 8:45 pm|
MET CJ 351 Criminal Law
Theory and practice of criminal law, including sanctions, individual liability, limitations on state action, criminal and victim rights, evidence, defense, deterrence, mandatory sentencing, decriminalization, intent, entrapment, vagueness, and capital punishment. Case studies of recent court decisions. [ 4 cr. ]
|A1||IND||Bryant||CAS 218||M||6:00 pm – 8:45 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. ]
|A1||IND||Bryant||PHO 201||R||6:00 pm – 8:45 pm|
MET SO 201 Sociological Methods
Scientific method, measurement, experimentation, survey research, observational methods, projective techniques, and content analysis used in social science research. [ 4 cr. ]
|A1||IND||Cadigan||CAS 214||T||6:00 pm – 8:45 pm|
Choose an additional seven courses (28 credits) from the following (at least 16 credits must be at the 300 level or higher):
MET CJ 209 Crime and Delinquency
Analysis of criminal and delinquent behavior. Evaluation of current theories and research into causes and sociological implications of these behavior patterns. Examination of criminal justice systems, including police, courts, and corrections. [ 4 cr. ]
MET CJ 305 Violence in the Family
This course will look at American family violence across the life span including child abuse, teen dating violence, wife battering and elder abuse. Physical, emotional and sexual abuse will be examined. We will consider how family violence differs by class and ethnic group and its differential impact on women. Institutional responses to family violence in the legal, medical and social service systems will be included as well as the role played by the women's shelter movement. Ideological supports for family violence in gender expectations, religious teaching and the media will also be studied. [ 4 cr. ]
|A1||IND||Davis||MCS B33||W||6:00 pm – 8:45 pm|
MET CJ 344 Drugs and Society
Introduction to the sociology of a wide range of legal and illicit drugs. Examines social definitions of drugs and conditions of their use. Considers deviant drug use and effects of social control on definitions and use. [ 4 cr. ]
MET CJ 420 Directed Study
Independent study in criminal justice under faculty guidance. Prior approval by program director required. [ Var cr. ]
MET CJ 510 Special Topics in Criminal Justice
CJ510 is the designation for "Special Topics in Criminal Justice". The subject matter for CJ510 courses changes from semester to semester, and more than one CJ510 can be offered in a given semester. For course descriptions, please contact the Department or the Graduate Student Advisor, Professor Cronin, at email@example.com.
Fall 2018 -- Special Topic: "Crime and Intelligence"
Crime and Intelligence will examine how major city law enforcement agencies have prioritized the importance of intelligence in their day to day operations. Students will learn about the role of the Crime Analyst and how they provide both tactical and strategic advantages to Department leadership to help them make informed decisions. There will be time focused on new innovations like Real Time Crime Centers and it's use of technology to give street officers an advantage at crime scenes. The class will learn about the National Fusion Center Network that was created post 9-11 to allow local police to share information with each other as well as with Federal Agencies to avoid another major terrorist attack. Instructors and guest speakers will be former and current practitioners who've implemented and executed intelligence operations locally and nationally. [ 4 cr. ]
MET CJ 511 Rehabilitation and Re-Integration
Community re-integration following imprisonment has long been recognized as a significant problem. Longer sentences and rapid changes have created new problems for both returning inmates and those who provide services both inside and outside the criminal justice system. This course will examine rehabilitation philosophy in theory and practice. Lectures and seminars will address such issues as: the special problems in providing rehabilitation and education in the correctional system, the effect of inmate subculture on rehabilitation, and balancing demands for custody and rehabilitation. [ 4 cr. ]
|A1||IND||Matesanz||CAS 218||T||6:00 pm – 8:45 pm|
MET CJ 531 Youth Crime Problems
Analysis of policy issues concerning juvenile justice and youth crime. Scope and nature of youth crime and the young offender. Juvenile justice procedures, programs, and institutional roles. Considers delinquency prevention programs, violent offenders, dispositional alternatives, and crimes against youth. [ 4 cr. ]
MET PS 241 Developmental Psychology
Critical and technical review of theories on intellectual and social development of infants and children. Emphasis is on the role of early experiences and biological factors in the later formation of personality and intellectual motivational behaviors. Discusses the work of Erikson, Piaget, and Freud. [ 4 cr. ]
|B1||IND||Gotthelf||COM 217||T||6:00 pm – 8:45 pm|
MET PS 251 Psychology of Personality
Provides a conceptual framework for understanding the development, organization, and change of the normal individual according to such diverse theoretical positions as the psychoanalytic, humanistic, and social learning schools. [ 4 cr. ]
MET PS 261 Social Psychology
Manner in which the behavior, feelings, and thoughts of one individual are influenced and determined by the behavior and/or characteristics of others. Attraction, attitudes, aggression, person perception, and groups. Readings cover theories, experimental research, and application. [ 4 cr. ]
MET SO 204 Contemporary Social Problems
Relationship between individual and society in the postindustrial world. Problems in areas of work, education, cities, inequality, sexism, medicine, and law. Broad coverage of concepts dealing with alienation, institutional malaise, and societal ills. [ 4 cr. ]
MET SO 207 Sociology of Minority Groups
Relations among various racial, national, cultural, and religious groups, emphasizing the development of black-white relations in American society. Also covers the problems of contemporary minority peoples in America and other societies. [ 4 cr. ]
MET SO 308 Individual and Society
Examination of current theories and research bearing on relationship between personality and social structure; contributions and convergent developments in psychology, anthropology, and sociology. [ 4 cr. ]
MET SO 335 Technology, Environment, and Society
Relationship between technology, environment, and social life. Impact of actual cases of technological development and environmental degradation. Emergence of social problems, and strategies for their solution. [ 4 cr. ]
MET UA 301 Introduction to Urban Affairs
This course takes an interdisciplinary approach to urban affairs and urban problems, including an overview of prominent theories about the nature and causes of urban problems. We will examine the metropolitan area as a complex system with interdependent institutions and problems and consider present as well as future urban policy options in areas such as housing, transportation, crime, education, environment and economic development. [ 4 cr. ]
Additional courses may be chosen with academic counselor’s approval.
Three courses (12 credits) from any department, with at least one at the 300 level or higher, selected with the advice and approval of the Criminal Justice Advisor, to supplement the curriculum to allow students to develop further specialization in such areas as computer sciences, foreign languages, psychology, sociology, and other closely related fields.
Electives are chosen with the advice of an academic counselor. The number of electives varies depending on transfer credit.
Tuition & Financial Assistance
Competitive TuitionOur part-time rates are substantially lower than those of the traditional, full-time residential programs yet provide access to the same high-quality BU education.
Comprehensive Financial AssistanceOur services include scholarships, graduate loans, and payment plans.
News & Events
November 30th, 2021 at: 6:00pm - 6:45pm
Graduate Admissions Webinar
December 2nd, 2021 at: 8:00am - 8:30am
International Graduate Admissions Webinar (morning session)
December 6th, 2021 at: 6:00pm - 7:30pm
Beyond Halal and Hijab: Intersectionality in the Muslim South Asian-American Middle Class Lifestyle Consumption