What Jobs can you get with a Criminal Justice Degree?

By | July 16, 2016
what jobs can you get with a criminal justice degree?

Completing a criminal justice degree will qualify you to get jobs in law enforcement.

What Jobs can you get with a Criminal Justice Degree?

If you are thinking of a career in the legal field, you might probably want to know what jobs you can get with a criminal justice degree in before you will be able to make up your mind about it.

This post will address that concern and show you the various things you can do with such degree, including Associate degree, Bachelor’s degree, Master’s, and Doctorate degrees in criminal justice.

When a criminal justice degree is mentioned, one may be inclined to wonder, ‘This must be the course for Justice League heroes’. As funny as it may sound, this line of thought is not entirely false as a degree in criminal justice does aid one in securing jobs in the legal and law enforcement field.

Criminal justice undergraduates study the causes and patterns of crime and go ahead to have careers in Police departments and Intelligence agencies.

They study criminal behavior and how the society reacts to crime by majoring in forensic psychology or criminology.

They can also on graduation serve as legal representatives, providing legal counsel and services to individuals and companies, or as a public official in a law court.

A course in criminal justice is one of America’s favorite as it ranks sixth most popular course in the U.S as published by USAToday College.

Criminal justice career indeed holds numerous job prospects and attractive remunerations depending on the type of degree, area of focus, and experience one has under his/her sleeves.

Now, what jobs can you do with a criminal justice degree? See below:

What can you do with a Criminal Justice Associate’s Degree?

As a step towards a career in criminal justice, an Associate degree can furnish you with the required basic knowledge about crime causes and their control policies among a number of other skills acquired, such as people-handling skills, ability to make informed decisions, to show self-restraint, and to have a sense of responsibility.

With an Associate degree in Criminal justice or a related course, you can get jobs in a wide range of legal and law enforcement fields among which include positions as:

  • Blood Spatter Analyst: Specializes in examining blood samples left at crime scene in either large or trace amounts using various lab technological methods to confirm or refute assumptions made about a case. On an annual basis, their median salary is pegged at $56,320 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
  • Court Clerk/Paralegal: Works in a law court providing administrative services such as scheduling hearings and appointments, proof-reading and drafting of legal documents, and generally helping out attorneys with their workload. The median salary according to BLS is predicted to be $51,840 annually.
  • Correctional Officer: Serves in prisons where they oversee every aspect of inmates’ lives. Their average salary is projected to be $39,780 annually by BLS.
  • Security Guard: Their roles involve protection of people and property by monitoring of building perimeters for suspicious activity, and enforcement of safety guidelines. Their annual median salary is pegged at $24,410.
  • Detectives/Private Investigator: Specializes in analyzing and finding out facts and information about personal, legal, and financial matter. Their services include finding missing persons, verifying people’s background, and investigating cyber-crimes. The median salary for detectives is estimated to be $44,570 annually.

In regard to the fact that most employers prefer people with a Bachelor’s degree or higher qualifications compared to an Associate degree, individuals with interest in law enforcement fields often take up their criminal justice Associate degree to a Bachelor’s level.

This is usually to get to federal or higher career positions, to increase competitiveness in the job market place, as well as to earn higher wages.

What can you do with a Criminal Justice Bachelor’s Degree?

Job positions you can get with a criminal justice Bachelor’s degree include:

  • Forensic Analyst: Conducts analysis on crime scene evidences such as hair, bullets, and finger print to obtain clues as to the occurrence of crime.
  • Police Officer: His/her duties involve arresting of criminals, interrogation of suspects, and public maintenance of law and order.
  • Parole Officer: His/her roles entail monitoring of parolees to ensure they abide by their probation terms and adjust properly to life.
  • Lawyer: A criminal justice Bachelor’s holders can attend a law school, pass bar exams and become attorneys serving as litigator arguing criminal cases or judges presiding over a case.

According to Payscale’s 2016 projection, the annual median salary range of criminal justice Bachelor’s degree holders is at $29,923-$59,883 for female earners and $33,867-$70,606 for male earners.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics in a recent report projected a growth rate of 10-28% through 2018 for criminal justice degree careers. This is an above average growth rate for all occupations and implies more opportunities.

What can you do with a Criminal Justice Master’s or Doctorate Degree?

Though most law enforcement careers focus on a decent degree and experience, there are few career profiles that an advanced degree such as Master’s or Doctorate can provide a competitive edge for, some of them include positions as:

  • Correctional/Treatment Specialist: Works with inmates to help them develop required skills that prevent them from re-offending. Their median salary is pegged at $49,360 with 4% growth rate through 2014-2024.
  • Computer Forensics Investigator: Specializes in revealing information on digital systems such as hard drives, flash drives and other electronic media. On average, their annual salary is projected to be $90,120.
  • Forensic Anthropologist: Works in the laboratory to observe and study direct crime evidences such as skeletons and body parts through technological means. They are estimated to earn $57,420 on average per year.
  • Secret Service Agent: Performs the patriotic duty of protecting presidents, Vice-Presidents, and high profile government officials as well as their families. Their salary range is pegged at $39,282-$43,812.
  • Forensic Psychologist: He/she studies human behavior through observation and questioning, and use available clues to predict how or why an individual behaves in a particular way. This position requires a doctorate degree and the remuneration is pegged at $72,580 with 19% growth rate through 2014-2024.


With a criminal justice degree, you will no doubt be able to get jobs in several areas, but mostly in the legal and law enforcement field.

How do you find this report on jobs you can get with criminal justice degree? Please make your comment in the box below; do also share more job opportunities that you know for individuals with criminal justice degree.