Sep 29, 2022
I. Brief Description
The Department of Criminal Justice offers outstanding students the opportunity to earn both a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice and a Master of Arts in Criminal Justice in five years. Admitted students take graduate courses during their 4th and 5th years of study. Up to 12 graduate units may apply toward the BA of Criminal Justice degree requirements.
Students apply for admission to the accelerated program in the Spring semester of their third year. Students in the accelerated program complete social science degrees preparing them for advanced criminal justice careers, criminal justice doctoral programs, and law school.
The accelerated BA and MA in Criminal Justice program is recommended for students who desire an advanced understanding of the criminal justice system, law, and related areas. The accelerated program is not intended to serve as a professional training program; rather it is an academically centered program that focuses on the ethical, administrative, scientific, and behavioral aspects of the criminal justice system and its various parts. All students must complete a core of required courses which focus broadly on the criminal justice system and its components. The accelerated BA and MA in Criminal Justice program focuses on the criminal justice system, its components, and administration, criminological theory, and issues of theory, diversity, myth, and ethics. The M.A. program offers both non-thesis and thesis tracks.
II. Contact Information
Eric Lambert, Professor and Chair
Department of Criminal Justice
College of Liberal Arts, AB 601D
Mail Stop 0214
University of Nevada, Reno
Matthew Leone, Professor and Criminal Justice Graduate Coordinator
Department of Criminal Justice
College of Liberal Arts, AB 606
Mail Stop 0214
University of Nevada, Reno.
Department website: http://www.unr.edu/criminal-justice
III. Admission Requirements
The application deadline for the accelerated BA and MA in Criminal Justice program is April 15th for the following Fall; however, applications are accepted year-round if there are openings in the program after this date. Typically, students apply in Spring of their third undergraduate year. Students interested in applying in the Fall of their fourth year should contact the Criminal Justice graduate director.
Students who wish to be considered for the accelerated BA and MA in Criminal Justice program must:
- have a 3.2 overall cumulative undergraduate grade point average (GPA);
- have a 3.5 overall GPA in Criminal Justice classes;
- have completed 75 credits of undergraduate coursework;
- have completed 30 undergraduate units at UNR;
- have earned a grade of “B” or better in an undergraduate statistics course; and
- be a current student in the Criminal Justice undergraduate program.
- provide three letters of recommendation, including two from full-time faculty within the department. The third may be from a full-time faculty, an adjunct, or other instructor or person outside the department who can speak about the student’s academic and educational abilities and likelihood of success in an accelerated BA/MA Criminal Justice program.
- complete the Supplemental Questionnaire, including writing sample which is available from the Criminal Justice Graduate Director or at https://nevada.formstack.com/forms/criminal_justice_masters_program_application_questionnaire%20.
- meet all Graduate School admission requirements.
- submit alll application material through the Graduate School, following normal graduate admission procedures.
Steps in the application process:
- An interested student meets with the Criminal Justice Graduate Director;
- Student completes and submits the Supplemental Questionnaire to the Criminal Justice Graduate Director;
- Student requests letters of recommendation to be submitted to the Criminal Justice Graduate Director either by U.S. mail or by email;
- The Criminal Justice Graduate Admission Committee reviews all applications and makes a recommendation; and
- All application materials should be submitted through the Graduate School, following normal graduate admission procedures.
IV. Program Requirements
These guidelines comply with Graduate School rules and regulations and established practices for accelerated BA/MA programs at the university.
- Up to 12 credits of graduate work may apply to both the BA Criminal Justice degree program and the MA Criminal Justice degree program.
- Students must be admitted to the program before graduate courses can be taken.
- Students who do not finish the requirements for the MA in Criminal Justice degree program will be allowed to finish their BA in Criminal Justice degree; these students must get permission from the Graduate School to apply any graduate credits to their BA in Criminal Justice degree.
- Students may begin graduate coursework in the summer semester of their third year, or as soon as they are accepted into the program.
- The MA in Criminal Justice graduate degree culminates in a thesis or non-thesis.
- Students planning on entering a PhD program later will have the option to complete a thesis under their faculty supervisor.
- Students entering the work force with no plans for a PhD degree will be encouraged to complete the comprehensive examination non-thesis option. Non-thesis students may participate in research type activities through enrolling in other courses or volunteering.
- Students in the accelerated BA and MA in Criminal Justice program are not eligible for departmental consideration for graduate funding on normal departmental graduate assistant funding lines.
- Students must maintain at least a 3.2 GPA in both BA in Criminal Justice and MA in Criminal Justice coursework;
- A lower GPA than 3.2 will result in probation with the requirement to raise the GPA to 3.2 or higher by the end of the following term.
- Failure to do so will result in dismissal from the accelerated BA and MA in Criminal Justice program with the option to finish the BA in Criminal Justice degree.
- Undergraduate credit may not be used to meet the requirements of the graduate program in Criminal Justice.
- Students must consult with their Financial Aid advisor each semester to determine their eligibility for financial aid.
- The Program of Study (POS) must be completed after the student’s first semester in the program.
- Students on the thesis track should take the approved graduate level research methods and statistics courses during year four to prepare them to complete the thesis in a timely manner.
- Students on the non-thesis track must complete the following courses (CRJ 740 , CRJ 750 , CRJ 785 , and CRJ 788 and an approved research methods course) by the Fall of year five. These are the courses that will be tested on the comprehensive exam and must be completed before enrolling in the comprehensive exam course (CRJ 795 ).
V. Total Units
- At least 120 units are required to complete the requirements for the BA in Criminal Justice degree, and
- At least 33 units are required to complete the requirements for the MA in Criminal Justice degree.
- Twelve graduate-level units (600-700 level) may apply to both the BA in Criminal Justice degree and MA in Criminal Justice degree.