Master of Criminal Justice

The Master of Criminal Justice (MCJ) program is designed for those who want to enter, or advance in, the field of criminal justice, or those who seek a deeper understanding of crime and justice for application in related fields. The Master of Criminal Justice will give you a competitive edge whether you plan to enhance your career, teach, apply to law school, or pursue a doctorate. Degree candidates will take courses in which they will analyze criminal behavior, apply principles of leadership in organizational settings, learn theories of social control, and gain an informed perspective of law enforcement, the judicial system, and corrections. Ever-evolving and often misunderstood, crime and justice issues are complex and important areas of public policy.

Students who complete the master’s degree in Criminal Justice will be able to demonstrate:

  • Advanced knowledge and ability to evaluate criminological and criminal justice theories and their implications for public policy and practice.
  • Proficiency in research design and quantitative and qualitative analysis related to evaluation of criminal justice practices, programs, and policies, and the understanding of crime causation generally.
  • Competence sufficient to evaluate and resolve the ethical issues in criminal justice practice, policy, and research.
  • An ability to synthesize, evaluate, recognize implications, and communicate effectively using scholarly sources of information connected to crime theory and policy.
  • An understanding of leadership theories and skills as they pertain to managing and leading criminal justice organizations.

MCJ Concentrations

Program Options

Available on campus and in the following format:

Candidates for admission to the degree program are selected in part on the basis of transcripts of academic background, academic and professional references, career experience, and interviews or statements of intent.

There are no fixed application deadlines. The program allows for students to submit applications on a rolling basis. Admission decisions are announced promptly, pending receipt of all application materials. Students can also register and take two courses prior to applying to the degree program.

Additional Information

A maximum of two graduate courses (up to 8 credits) in criminal justice may be transferred from another accredited institution for credit toward the degree. No credit is allowed for courses used to fulfill another degree, and all transfer credit requires program approval. Up to two courses taken at Boston University outside the Criminal Justice program may be applied to the degree, with prior approval of the department chair.

A maximum of two criminal justice courses (8 credits) taken at Metropolitan College prior to acceptance into the degree program may be applied toward the degree. The courses must be of graduate level, with a grade of B (3.0) or higher.

Academic Standing

Minimum passing grade for a course in the graduate program is C (2.0) but a grade average of B (3.0) must be maintained to satisfy degree requirements.

A total of 40 credits is required.

Core Requirements

(Six courses/24 credits)

This course explores potential answers to complex and important questions about criminal behavior by drawing on the social science of criminology. Criminology is the interdisciplinary study of the development of law, criminal phenomena and societal responses to crime. The primary emphasis of this course will be discussing and evaluating major explanations or theories of crime. Because criminology is interdisciplinary, we will examine theories that are ground in a range of academic perspectives, including sociological, biological, political, psychological and economic explanations for crime. Course lectures and discussions focus on the historical development of the theories, their major assumptions and propositions, their relevance for public policy and practice. As we progress through each explanation for crime, we critically evaluate the validity of different explanations for crime as well as criminal justice policies and practices that they support.  [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
C1 IND Rousseau MCS B19 W 6:00 pm – 8:45 pm
O1 IND Rousseau ARR

The purpose of this course is to introduce the student to the discipline of victimology, an emerging area of specialization in the field of criminology. Emphasis will focus on crime victims and their plight, the relationships between crime victims and other social groups and institutions, such as the media, business, politicians, special interest groups, and social movements. The issues of Justice and Redress from the perspective of the victim as well as general society will be stressed. An overview of victim prevention programs and victim assistance programs will be presented. Topics such as the Restorative Justice Model, Victim Repayment, and Victim/Offender Mediation will be included in the course content. While the course follows an interdisciplinary approach and is designed for general interest and appeal, it has particular relevance for students drawn from disciplinary interests in the fields of criminal justice, psychology, sociology, education, health care administration, and political science.  [ 4 cr. ]

The purpose of this course is to examine the nature and extent of corporate and white-collar crime, including detection, deterrence, and criminal liability sanctions, as well as, the social and legal changes related to corporate illegality. Students will use case materials which address securities fraud, money "laundering", professional deviance, and political corruption, in addition to other topics. Students will also analyze policy responses including RICO and other laws, regulations and court processing.   [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
A1 IND LeClair MCS B33 M 6:00 pm – 8:45 pm
O1 IND LeClair ARR

This course introduces students to the use of quantitative data in analyzing the criminal justice system. It serves as an introduction to the statistical methods used in applied social science research and furthers students' understanding of the role statistical analysis plays in planning and policy development.  [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
O1 IND Cadigan ARR

This course introduces students to the practice, theory, and philosophy of social science research, with a special focus on criminal justice. It not only broadens students' knowledge of the ethical issues associated with research, but also introduces them to a variety of research techniques such as surveys, field research, and experimental designs. Research Methods will lay the foundation for students to become informed "consumers" of research, as well as "producers" of it.  [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
D1 IND Cronin CAS 222 R 6:00 pm – 8:45 pm

The challenge of administering, managing, and leading today's criminal justice organizations is becoming increasingly complicated due to many factors, ranging from terrorism and cyber crime to politicization and privatization. This course provides students with not only a conceptual and theoretical basis on which to manage these complex entities, but also practical approaches to organizational effectiveness, integrity, and innovation.   [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
O1 IND Mastrorilli ARR

Electives

Students who are not pursuing a concentration in Cybercrime Investigation & Cybersecurity or Strategic Management must select four courses (16 credits) from the following list*.

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. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
D1 IND Matesanz CAS 323A R 6:00 pm – 8:45 pm

Violence and Trauma examines the psychological impact of crime, terror and disasters on society and the individuals who are members of it. The class is geared toward students in the social sciences including Psychology, Urban Affairs, Criminal Justice, and Sociology. A variety of traumas will be examined (e.g., childhood abuse, domestic violence and crime, war combat, terrorism, and natural disasters). The course examines the social, cultural and political environments in which trauma, trauma research and treatment occur. This course provides an introduction and overview of the field of traumatic stress studies including the nature of trauma, responses to trauma and treatment for disorders of traumatic stress.   [ 4 cr. ]

This course examines the evolution of the criminal justice system in America, emphasizing the period from the 18th century to contemporary forms of social control. An appreciation of the historical antecedents of crime and justice will deepen students' understanding of the modern-day institutions of law enforcement, courts, and corrections.  [ 4 cr. ]

This course is designed to help students understand and apply the nature of computer crime in the criminal justice field. Several theories (both micro-level and macro-level) will be presented and will be analyzed in depth and applied to computer crime cases both past and present. Students will see how major theories have been re-developed to be applied to computer crime, and by using these theories, students will both develop and explore different strategies for future law enforcement. Students will be presented with common types of fraudulent schemes, as well as several laws that have been enacted and developed specifically for computer crime. In addition, causes, victimization, legal issues, control strategies, and societal costs regarding the "computer-crime" problem will be explored and evaluated.   [ 4 cr. ]

Throughout this course, students will analyze the policy issues concerning juvenile justice and youth crime. Emphasis will be put on the scope and nature of youth crime and the young offender, as well as juvenile justice procedures, programs and institutional roles. Over the semester, students will also be asked to consider delinquency prevention programs, violent offenders, dispositional alternatives, and crimes against youth.   [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
O1 IND Carney ARR

This course will include a general introduction to the overt as well as underlying ideology, history, reasons and causes of terrorism. Both domestic and international terrorism will be discussed. Domestic hate groups will also receive particular attention. The roles of politics and the media will be discussed. Students will be exposed to the philosophies of terrorists and terrorism. Counter terrorism will also be discussed at length. Students are expected to participate actively in the course. There will be written assignments, a midterm, a class presentation, and a final paper.  [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
O1 IND Cadigan ARR

Forensic Criminal Investigation is an examination of the strategies, techniques, and procedures implicated in the process of conducting forensic criminal investigations, i.e. cases that will seek adjudication in the criminal court. Students will examine cold cases, concluded successful investigations, ongoing investigations as well as the perspective and worldview of the perpetrators and victims of violent crimes in an effort to deconstruct and disassemble crimes, crime scenes and the criminal mind.   [ 4 cr. ]

This course examines the role of gender in both criminal behavior and the societal response to crime. Gender affects criminal behavior, structures our responses to crime, and presents unique challenges for the criminal justice system. While the course examines the role of gender in these ways for both men and women, the course focuses on the limitations of research, policy and practice that has focused traditionally on male offenders. The course also examines the role of gender in criminal justice organizations and processes.   [ 4 cr. ]

Police officers, corrections officers, probation and parole officers, youth service officers, federal law enforcement agents, and court professionals are all called upon on a daily basis to make critical decisions that significantly affect the lives of those entrusted to them. Students in this course will consider applications of ethical actions as they pertain to issues of social justice. Toward that end, we will forge a strong notion of our definition of just what constitutes social justice.   [ 4 cr. ]

This course is designed to engage students for conducting successful forensic examinations of digital devices and computer networks with hands-on-experience within the Virtual Security Lab. The course introduces EnCase forensic software, which has received the high acceptance rate in a court of law as an expert witness. The course aims to cover various cybercrime topics and digital forensic investigation practices using digital evidence samples. In the process of learning, students will explore the nature of specific cybercrime and be able to successfully analyze and document the digital evidence related to the crime.   [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
B1 IND Choi SHA 111 T 6:00 pm – 8:45 pm
O1 IND Choi ARR

This course will introduce you to the concepts of criminal justice policy and planning. You will be introduced to two major theories of planning and apply them to criminal justice settings. Additionally, you will learn the techniques for analyzing problems, developing programs and policies resulting from problem analysis, along with program and policy monitoring and evaluation.  [ 4 cr. ]

Trauma and Crisis Intervention examines the psychological impact of trauma on individuals and society. This course will address the important role trauma plays in criminal justice settings, providing a practical understanding of trauma and trauma informed care. This understanding will serve to benefit practitioners in this field. The course will cover key issues in trauma and crisis intervention, addressing both theory and practice. The course examines the social, cultural and political environments in which trauma, trauma research and treatment occur. This course provides an introduction and overview of the field of traumatic stress studies including the nature of trauma, responses to trauma and treatment for disorders of traumatic stress. A variety of traumas will be examined (childhood abuse and neglect, ongoing and complex trauma, interpersonal trauma, international trauma, etc.) In addition, trauma will be explored in a variety of contexts. Students will gain an understanding of the impact of trauma and crisis intervention both within the United States as well as globally. The capacity to foster resilience in survivors as well as the importance of self-care in reducing vicarious trauma will be stressed.

This course is designed to provide an understanding of trauma and crisis response for students who may work in a variety of criminal justice settings. The course will be geared toward and benefit both mental health practitioners as well as those working in law enforcement and correctional settings. The field of criminal justice more generally is clearly moving toward recognition of the importance of trauma informed care and services. The course will address trauma theory and practice in a practical way. The course will be interactive in nature and derive course work and material from real world examples.   [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
O1 IND Rousseau ARR

This course will examine the fascinating world of forensic psychology. It will examine the way in which the law and mental health intersect and forensic psychologists help the court in addressing a variety of cases and issues. The course will explore how expert opinions are formed and provided on a variety of issues including; not guilty by reason of mental illness pleas, competency to stand trial, prediction of future violence, sexual predators; psychopaths, the forcible medication of mentally ill patients, and civil commitment. The difference between sound and "junk" science will be discussed.   [ 4 cr. ]

Police agencies play a critical role in a democratic society. While seeking to maintain order, enforce the law and deliver services effectively, police agencies are held accountable to a wide-variety of values by a number of powerful stakeholders. Police leaders, managers, and other personnel must understand the complexities of the police role in society, the political and legal constraints placed on them in addition to being experts in effective, evidence-based approaches to dealing with crime problems in the community. By applying theory, policy, and evaluation literature to the cutting-edge practices in the field, this course provides students with an advanced understanding in the field of police leadership, management, strategy, and accountability within a democratic society. 4 cr.   [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
O1 IND Cronin ARR

This course examines the origins and evolution of contemporary criminal procedure. Case law governing criminal justice functions such as stops, interrogations, arrests, warrants, identification practices, the use of informants, and searches and seizures will be explored through the prism of the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights.   [ 4 cr. ]

Individual faculty supervision of an independent student project demonstrating application of previous program coursework to a selected topic, issue, or theme in criminal justice.   [ 4 cr. ]

The challenge of administering, managing, and leading today's criminal justice organizations is becoming increasingly complicated due to many factors, ranging from terrorism and cyber crime to politicization and privatization. This course provides students with not only a conceptual and theoretical basis on which to manage these complex entities, but also practical approaches to organizational effectiveness, integrity, and innovation.   [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
O1 IND Mastrorilli ARR

*The following courses offered by other Metropolitan College departments are allowed with advisor and course faculty approval.

This course examines emergency management from national, state, local, and family perspectives of prevention, preparedness, response, and recovery. The course encompasses knowledge of the specific agencies, organizations, and individual behaviors in emergency management as well as the interlinking partnerships between/among these groups. Areas of discussion include: responsibilities at federal, state, community and individual levels; guidelines and procedures for operations and compliance such as the National response Plan; Incident Command Systems (ICS); exercises; plan development, command, and control; communication; partnership development and maintenance; leadership; and numerous other elements related to effective emergency management. The unique and critical roles of private and public partnerships are reviewed and particular attention is paid to the interplay and interdependency among national, state, community, business (public and private), and the individual. 4cr.  [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
C1 IND Morash CAS 428 W 6:00 pm – 8:45 pm

The course examines the concepts and applied techniques for cost effective management of both long-term development programs and projects. Project management principles and methodology are provided with special focus on planning, controlling, and coordinating individual and group efforts. Key topics of focus include overview of modern project management, organization strategy and project selection, defining a project and developing a project plan and scheduling resources, project risk analysis, work breakdown structures, and project networks. MS Project will be introduced in this course to provide hands-on practical skills with the above topics. Mastery of key tools and concepts introduced in this course provides a significant competitive advantage in the marketplace.   [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
A1 IND Keegan CAS 227 M 2:30 pm – 5:15 pm
B1 IND Cipriano SHA 206 T 6:00 pm – 8:45 pm
O1 IND Greiman ARR

Prereq: MET AD642
To succeed in project management, you must be a strong leader and an effective communicator. This course examines the current philosophies of leadership as applied to project management and identifies various styles of communication and conflict resolution. Through case studies and various exercises, you will develop enhanced leadership, communication, conflict management, and negotiation skills.   [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
C1 IND Leybourne CAS B06B W 6:00 pm – 8:45 pm
O1 IND Leybourne ARR
BCP IND Lesko S 8:30 am – 4:00 pm

Explores decision making and policy formulation in organizations. Includes goal setting and the planning process, rational models of decision making, evaluation of alternatives, prediction of outcomes, cost-benefit analysis, decision trees, uncertainty and risk assessment, and procedures for evaluation of outcomes.   [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
B1 IND Zlatev PHO 203 T 6:00 pm – 8:45 pm
B2 IND Zlatev FLR 134 T 12:30 pm – 3:15 pm
O1 IND Zlatev ARR

This course enables IT professional leaders to identify emerging security risks and implement highly secure networks to support organizational goals. Discussion of methodologies for identifying, quantifying, mitigating and controlling risks. Students implement a comprehensive IT risk management plans (RMP) that identify alternate sites for processing mission-critical applications, and techniques to recover infrastructure, systems, networks, data and user access. The course also discusses related topics such as: disaster recovery, handling information security; protection of property, personnel and facilities; protection of sensitive and classified information, privacy issues, and criminal terrorist and hostile activities.  [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
D1 IND Burgoyne SHA 210 R 6:00 pm – 8:45 pm
E1 IND Burgoyne SHA 210 R 6:00 pm – 8:45 pm

Provides a comprehensive understanding of digital forensics and investigation tools and techniques. Learn what computer forensics and investigation is as a profession and gain an understanding of the overall investigative process. Operating system architectures and disk structures are discussed. Studies how to set up an investigator's office and laboratory, as well as what computer forensic hardware and software tools are available. Other topics covered include importance of digital evidence controls and how to process crime and incident scenes, details of data acquisition, computer forensic analysis, e-mail investigations, image file recovery, investigative report writing, and expert witness requirements. Provides a range of laboratory and hands-on assignments either in solo or in teams. With rapid growth of computer systems and digital data this area has grown in importance. Prereq: Working knowledge of windows computers, including installing and removing software. Access to a PC meeting the minimum system requirements defined in the course syllabus.  [ 4 cr. ]

Section Type Instructor Location Days Times
O1 IND Navarro ARR

Operation of the criminal justice system in the urban setting. Special attention is paid to the problems of safeguarding individual rights. Examines relationship between social and economic structure of cities and workings of the system of justice.  [ 4 cr. ]

Other Requirements

Upon completion of the Core Requirements, all degree candidates must pass a comprehensive examination.

Degree requirements for the online Master of Criminal Justice can be viewed here.

View all Criminal Justice graduate courses.