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 Apply by: 11/30/21      Start in: January

Prepare for the next step in your career.

Online Criminal Justice Degrees and Certificates


100% Online

Learn from anywhere, on your schedule

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Free Application

No fee to apply


Accelerated Terms

Earn your credits in accelerated 8-week terms

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Free Tutoring & Career Services

Access to the tools and support you need to excel

Prepare for a Rewarding Career in the Criminal Justice Field

Continuing education and training helps police officers, detectives, and special agents improve their job performance and their chances for advancement. Eastern Kentucky University, a recognized leader in the fields of criminology and criminal justice, can prepare you to advance. With some of the finest degree options in the nation, EKU’s criminal justice programs will position you to take on leadership roles in the field, serve your community, and promote equality under the law. Whether you want to start a new career or advance in your current one, EKU’s online criminal justice degree programs can help you reach your goals.

Prepare for career opportunities including:

  • Police officer
  • FBI agent
  • Crime analyst
  • Policy analyst
  • Police chief
  • Court administrator

Learn More


When you talk about a criminal justice program, almost immediately EKU is at the top of the list. And that’s nationwide. The professors and my classmates are so supportive. You feel like you’re set up for success from day one.

Dominique BlessinEKU Online Criminal Justice Student
Sample Courses

Benefits of EKU Online

EKU provides a balanced degree program that promotes respect, tolerance and sensitivity, leading to a deep, practical understanding of justice problems.

Program benefits include:

  • Accelerated 8-week terms
  • No campus visits required
  • Free text books for undergraduate students
  • Free online tutoring and career services assistance
  • No application fee
  • Law enforcement officers that have completed Kentucky’s DOCJT training can receive 9 hours of college credit
  • Courses begin 6 times per year
  • Generous credit transfer policy
  • Reduced tuition for active duty service members
  • Personal advisors stay with you from application to graduation
  • Study anytime, from anywhere
  • Dynamic, supportive learning environment

Criminal Justice Careers

EKU’s online criminal justice degree combines the professional skills of specialized areas of criminal justice with the analytical skills needed to help you enhance your qualifications and pursue more challenging responsibilities in criminal justice agencies and organizations.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment of police and detectives is projected to grow 5 percent before 2028, and employment of probation officers and correctional treatment specialists is projected to grow 3 percent from before 2028.

Job Opportunities Include:

  • Victims advocate
  • Crime analyst
  • Court administrator
  • Police officer
  • Border patrol agent
  • FBI agent
  • Case manager
  • Correctional officer
  • Counselor
  • Bailiff
  • Pretrial services officer
  • Parole officer
  • Adult probation officer
  • Juvenile probation officer
Find your career

For a full list of course descriptions please see section 7 of the University undergraduate catalog.

PLS 220 Criminal Investigation (3)
Fundamental of criminal investigation, crime scene search and recording, collection and preservation of physical evidence, scientific aids, modus operandi, sources of information, interviews and interrogation, follow-up, case preparation and case management.

CRJ 313 Criminal Justice Ethics (3)
Examines the moral, legal and normative obligations of the state and criminal justice professionals. Surveys the philosophies and theories of ethics and deviance

COR 360 Rehabilitation Strategies for Adult and Juvenile Offenders (3)
Debates the rehabilitative goal of corrections and juvenile justice. Examines contemporary strategies and their effectiveness in controlling/changing offender behavior.

PLS 415 Contemporary Police Strategies (3)
Review of contemporary police issues, programs, and strategies. Detailed analysis and evaluation of police practices, including impact on the relationship between the police and the community. Assessment of police reform measures and accountability mechanism.


For a full list of course descriptions please see section 7 of the University graduate catalog.

JPL 810 Criminological Theory for Policy and Leadership (3)
Presents and critiques explanations of crime, delinquency, and criminalization processes, with emphasis on application of explanations to criminal/juvenile justice policy/leadership issues.

JPL 812 Leading with Political, Ethical and Emotional Intelligence (3)
This course examines leadership within the justice field, focusing on three competencies essential for effective, just leadership: political, ethical, and emotional intelligence. Understanding mindset/tactics associated with administrators that do/don’t lead with these competencies.

JPL 835 Advanced Justice Administration and Leadership (3)
An examination of theoretical bases and contemporary approaches to justice organizations, administration and leadership. Emphasis placed on the social, cultural, and political setting of justice administration and management.

Online Criminal Justice Degrees & Certificates

AA in Police Studies

EKU’s 100% online associate degree in police studies prepares students to enter the policing profession quickly and successfully or meet base education requirements for current officers seeking promotions. Graduates are well positioned to become part of the policing tradition and to complete their bachelor’s degree to further increase their employment opportunities.

BS in Corrections & Juvenile Justice Studies

EKU’s 100% online bachelor’s in corrections and juvenile justice studies is designed to prepare you for a career in offender rehabilitation and community-based programs. Learn the skills needed to help shift the focus in the criminal justice system from containment to rehabilitation.

BS in Criminal Justice

EKU’s 100% online criminal justice degree provides students with the leadership skills and theoretical, ethical, and practical approaches needed to successfully serve and protect their communities. Graduates are prepared to take on key positions in law enforcement, courts, social service agencies and corrections, or to pursue law school or other graduate studies.

BS in Police Studies

EKU’s 100% online bachelor’s degree in police studies prepares students to meet the unique challenges of law enforcement and to successfully enter the policing profession or meet education requirements for current officers wanting to advance their career. Graduates gain theoretical, ethical and practical approaches to policing and are well positioned to become excellent officers, community representatives and effective change agents.

MS in Criminal Justice, Policy & Leadership

EKU’s 100% online master’s degree in criminal justice, policy and leadership prepares individuals for leadership roles that challenge injustice, value diversity, and support the equitable treatment and human rights of all people. The program allows for in-depth specialization with concentrations available in law enforcement, corrections and juvenile justice. This program prepares you to be a leader in the criminal justice field with the knowledge and skillsets needed to be an effective change agent in your community, region and state.

Certificate in Correctional Intervention Strategies

EKU’s 100% online correctional intervention strategies certificate prepares students to identify and address contemporary issues in adult corrections, including mass incarceration, offender reentry and evidence-based practices in offender rehabilitation.

Certificate in Youth Services

EKU’s 100% online youth services certificate prepares students with the essential knowledge and skills for a successful career as juvenile justice professionals. Students will learn about trends in delinquency, the role of juvenile courts and evidence-based delinquency interventions.

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About Our University

Eastern Kentucky University is consistently recognized as being one of the best online colleges in the nation.

Eastern Kentucky University is a nationally recognized public university located in Richmond, Kentucky. Established in 1874, EKU strives to make quality education available to everyone. A brick-and-mortar accredited institution, EKU began offering online degrees in 2006 and continues to service all students with our on-campus offerings.

The University offers more than 50 online programs in various areas of study, designed for adult learners who want to earn a college degree or certificate while working full-time or juggling other life priorities. Online programs are available through the College of Letters, Arts and Social Sciences, College of Business, College of Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics, College of Education & Applied Human Sciences, College of Health Sciences, and College of Justice, Safety & Military Science.