Online Crime Analysis Graduate Certificate
The online Graduate Certificate in Crime Analysis at Boston University’s Metropolitan College provides students with a set of courses that develops their ability to use and analyze a variety of data sources to inform the investigations, strategies, and policy decisions of criminal justice organizations. This set of skills is crucial to a growing field within law enforcement and related domains in criminal justice. Data-driven and intelligence-led approaches to crime have become the standard among contemporary criminal justice organizations. The certificate prepares students to fill in-house crime analyst roles or similar positions, while strengthening the skills of students working in investigations, management, and operations to utilize analysis more effectively.
Students who complete the Graduate Certificate in Crime Analysis will be able to:
- Understand the wide variety of data sources available for crime and intelligence analysis, including the methods of data collection, uses, strengths, and limitations.
- Prepare different sources of data for analysis (e.g. data reorganization, matching) for use in analysis processes.
- Conduct analysis using a variety of different techniques, including mapping and spatial analysis and other advanced techniques.
- Incorporate analyses into effective written and oral reports that are useful to investigation, strategy, and policy decisions within law enforcement organizations.
- Comprehend the ethical and legal rules and values that govern crime analysis within law enforcement organizations operating in a democratic society.
- Inform effective data-driven or intelligence-led investigations, strategies, and policies based on awareness of contemporary law enforcement and security approaches.
Why Choose BU’s Graduate Certificate in Crime Analysis?
- Four-course certificate program comprises courses shared by the Master of Science in Criminal Justice program, ranked #2 among the Best Online Master's in Criminal Justice Programs (U.S. News & World Report). The program has been in the top 4 since 2015.
- Students learn from leading criminal justice faculty with extensive field experience and scholarship in policing, the judicial system, and corrections.
- In the online classroom, students are able to network with a global community of criminal justice professionals.
5–9% increase in jobs through 2026
$81,920 median annual pay in 2018
Information Security Analysts
28% increase in jobs through 2026
$95,510 median annual pay in 2017
First-Line Supervisors of Police and Detectives
5–9% increase in jobs through 2026
$89,030 median annual pay 2018
Criminal Investigators and Special Agents
5–9% increase in jobs through 2026
$81,920 median annual pay in 2018
10% increase in jobs through 2026
$80,180 median annual pay in 2018
Police and Detectives
7% increase in jobs through 2026
$62,960 median annual pay in 2017
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2017-18 Edition
Boston University Metropolitan College (MET) offers competitive tuition rates that meet the needs of part-time students seeking an affordable education. These rates are substantially lower than those of the traditional, full-time residential programs yet provide access to the same high-quality BU education. To learn more about current tuition rates, visit the MET website.
Comprehensive financial assistance services are available at MET, including scholarships, graduate loans, and payment plans. There is no cost to apply for financial assistance, and you may qualify for a student loan regardless of your income. Learn more.
Boston University’s Graduate Certificate in Crime Analysis consists of four required online courses (16 credits).
Coursework from the Graduate Certificate in Crime Analysis can be applied toward the Boston University Metropolitan College Master of Science in Criminal Justice.
Current members of the American Jail Association (AJA) are eligible for a Graduate Application fee waiver ($25 for applications to the graduate certificate), and should email email@example.com with information confirming AJA membership.
(Four courses/16 credits)
METCJ591 Applied Analytical Methods
Evidence-based and data-driven approaches to crime problems are the industry standard among criminal justice agencies and non-governmental organizations. This course will cover a variety of statistical "tools" from three broad areas: (1) descriptive statistics, (2) inferential statistics and hypothesis testing, and (3) measures of association. Students will learn how to develop research questions, describe and draw conclusions from quantitative data, and interpret statistical research findings, and be able to present these findings to a variety of audiences in a clear and accurate way -- to be able to "tell a story" with numbers. In addition, students will develop a proficiency working with large data sets and conducting analysis with a critical lens, using the analytical software -- Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) -- commonly used in criminal justice and related fields. [4 credits]
METCJ612 Crime and Intelligence Analysis
Contemporary law enforcement agencies regularly employ crime and intelligence analysis to develop and inform effective responses to crime. This course provides an in-depth examination of crime and intelligence analysis techniques. It also explores the role of the crime and intelligence analyst within law enforcement organizations and processes, the historical evolution of this approach, key legal and policy issues, and challenges to implementation. Students have the opportunity to apply these skills to case study simulations involving an array of common crime problems and cases using real-world examples and sources of information. [4 credits]
METUA654 GIS and Spatial Analysis
Geographic Information Systems for Planners provides an introduction to Geographic Information Systems (GIS) specifically with a focus on applications in urban planning. The role of spatial analysis in local, state and regional planning has steadily increased over the last decade with the infusion of windows-based GIS software such as ESRI ArcGIS. The class focus is to prepare students to feel comfortable communicating with other GIS users, research spatial data, and produce high quality digital maps in an applied learning environment. [4 credits]
Plus one elective from the following list:
METCJ640 CJ Management & Accountability Analytics
Data analysis informs administration, management and accountability processes within criminal justice and related organizations. While traditional crime analysis often narrowly seeks to improve the organization's effectiveness towards public safety outcomes, management and accountability analysis seeks to also ensure fair, efficient, transparent, and accountable practices as well. This course examines contemporary management and accountability practices with an emphasis on the ways in which data can be employed to improve these practices. Students will learn skills to work with real data sources across justice-system domains, from policing to corrections, as well as community-based organizations. Contemporary challenges, such as disparate treatment, abuse of force, 'overpolicing,' frame discussions and assignments. Students will understand the strengths and limitations of data-informed approaches. The course is valuable to students seeking careers in analytical roles, other practitioners, non-profit managers, and those interested in justice reform more broadly. [4 credits]
METCJ840 Applied Crime Analysis Project
Students in the Crime Analysis (CA) concentration or certificate program are encouraged to engaged in a supervised project as part of their degree. The project is supervised by an instructor, typically the concentration area coordinator. It can be used to fulfill a 4-credit elective course within the concentration or certificate. Project-based and experiential learning activities are central to graduate professional education and to our own program's learning outcomes. The project gives students an opportunity to enhance and synthesize skills learned in other courses, apply skills to real-world problems and settings, and make connections into the professional field. Projects in the CA concentration or certificate will focus applied research and analytical methodologies and/or organizational processes connected to analysis within criminal justice or related agencies. [4 credits]
METCS521 Information Structures with Python
This course covers the concepts of the object-oriented approach to software design and development using Python. It includes a detailed discussion of programming concepts starting with the fundamentals of data types, control structures methods, classes, arrays and strings, and proceeding to advanced topics such as inheritance and polymorphism, creating user interfaces, exceptions and streams. Upon completion of this course students will be able to apply software engineering principles to design and implement Python applications that can be used in with analytics and big data. Effective Fall 2021, this course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Quantitative Reasoning II, Creativity/Innovation, Critical Thinking. [4 credits]
METCS555 Data Analysis and Visualization with R
This course provides an overview of the statistical tools most commonly used to process, analyze, and visualize data. Topics include simple linear regression, multiple regression, logistic regression, analysis of variance, and survival analysis. These topics are explored using the statistical package R, with a focus on understanding how to use and interpret output from this software as well as how to visualize results. In each topic area, the methodology, including underlying assumptions and the mechanics of how it all works along with appropriate interpretation of the results, are discussed. Concepts are presented in context of real world examples. Recommended Prerequisite: MET CS 544 or equivalent knowledge, or instructor's consent. [4 credits]
METCS677 Data Science with Python
Students will learn major Python tools and techniques for data analysis. There are weekly assignments and mini projects on topics covered in class. These assignments will help build necessary statistical, visualization and other data science skills for effective use of data science in a variety of applications including finance, text processing, time series analysis and recommendation systems. In addition, students will choose a topic for a final project and present it on the last day of class. Prerequisite: MET CS 521 or equivalent. Or, instructor's consent. [4 credits]
METCS699 Data Mining
The goal of this course is to study basic concepts and techniques of data mining. The topics include data preparation, classification, performance evaluation, association rule mining, and clustering. We will discuss basic data mining algorithms in the class and students will practice data mining techniques using data mining software. Students will use Weka and SQL Server or Oracle. Prereq: CS 546 and either CS 579 or CS 669. Or instructor's consent. [4 credits]
MET prioritizes the review and admission of applications submitted earlier in the rolling admission process. You are encouraged to submit your application as soon as possible and no later than the priority application deadlines for each term.
Applicants must have an earned bachelor’s degree, in any field of study, from a regionally accredited college/university (or the international equivalent) prior to enrollment at Metropolitan College. The following materials are required for a complete application:
Mary Ellen Mastrorilli
Associate Professor of the Practice, Criminal Justice; Chair ad interim, Applied Social Sciences
PhD, Northeastern University; MPA, Suffolk University; BA, University of Massachusetts, Boston
Director, Cybercrime & Cybersecurity
PhD, Indiana University of Pennsylvania; MS, Boston University; BS, Northeastern University
Shea W. Cronin
Assistant Professor, Criminal Justice; Coordinator, Criminal Justice Program
PhD, American University; BS, Northeastern University
Daniel P. LeClair
Professor, Applied Social Sciences
PhD, Tulane University; MA, Clark University; BA, University of Rhode Island
Danielle M. Rousseau
Assistant Professor, Criminal Justice
PhD, Northeastern University; MA, University of Denver; BA, University of Vermont
Associate Professor Emeritus, Applied Social Sciences
PhD, MA, Boston University; BA, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Francis J. Carney, Jr.
Lecturer, Applied Social Sciences
PhD, MA, Tufts University; BA, Boston College
Associate Professor of the Practice and Director of Digital Learning, Administrative Sciences; Coordinator, Applied Business Analytics
PhD, MS, BS, Dresden University of Technology
Lecturer, Administrative Sciences
To learn more or to contact an enrollment advisor before you get started, request information using the button below and tell us a little about yourself. Someone will be in touch to answer any questions you may have about the program and detail the next steps in earning your degree. You can also start your application or register for a course at Metropolitan College.