Individuals pursuing criminology and justice jobs need to possess a deep understanding of human behavior and societal structures in addition to a comprehensive knowledge of the criminal justice system.

In the Bachelor of Science in Criminology and Justice Studies, you will gain crucial insights into the complexities of the criminal justice system, including the reasons behind illegal behavior and the broader societal impacts of crime. This criminology bachelor’s degree also covers the experiences of those who have been through the system, both as perpetrators and victims, and explores how to advocate for fair and just treatment. See the criminology and justice studies curriculum.

At Cal Lutheran, we pride ourselves on providing personal attention to each of our students. Our classes are intentionally kept small so that you can connect with your instructors and peers. You’ll also have access to a personal academic counselor who will guide and support you every step of the way.

This major is part of our Bachelor’s Degree for Professionals program, which is designed for working adults and lifelong learners resuming their education. Each student enters the program with a minimum of 24 transfer credits, with many bringing in even more credits.

Program Overview


Courses offered online or on campus in Oxnard


Evening classes once per week, Monday – Thursday


Flexible part-time and full-time options


Complete the degree in as little as one year

What You’ll Learn

Our bachelor’s in criminology and justice studies program covers the essential knowledge you need for a career in criminal justice or roles in the legal field or social services. Graduates of this program will be able to:

  • Define the scope and purpose of criminology and criminal justice
  • Understand major theories, perspectives, principles and concepts in the discipline
  • Create and share new knowledge and ideas based on existing theories and concepts
  • Think critically, communicate clearly and find ethical solutions to complex problems
  • Use research methods to analyze criminology and criminal justice-based issues
  • Apply criminology and criminal justice knowledge to real-world situations
  • Recognize and articulate individual and cultural differences in the field

“All classmates seem to be in the same position as myself with full-time jobs and more life experience than most, which is a big help! This program is so good that I recommended it to my veteran friends who are coming straight from active duty.”

Jessica Gonzalez

Criminology and Justice Studies Degree Curriculum

Required courses

All courses are 3 credits unless otherwise noted

Foundational courses

Research Writing for Professionals

Advanced Research Writing for Professionals

Essentials of Statistics

Introduction to Criminology

Introduction to Justice Studies

Criminology and Justice Studies Research Methods

Systems of justice for victims and offenders

Choose three courses from the following:

Contemporary Policing

Law and Criminal Courts

Corrections in the 21st Century

Forensic Psychology


Global systems of justice for victims and offenders

Global Justice Systems

Diversity, equity, inclusion and justice for victims and offenders

Choose two courses from the following:

Gender, Crime and Justice

Race, Ethnicity, Crime and Justice

Diversity, Crime and Justice

Justice and advocacy for victims and ex-offenders

Victim Assistance and Advocacy

Assistance and Advocacy for Ex-Offenders

Criminology and justice studies capstone

Senior Seminar in Criminology and Justice Studies

Total Credits to Complete the Degree

To graduate, students must complete 124 credits minimum. This total includes:

  • Major courses: At least 45 credits are completed through criminology and justice studies major courses. Out of these, at least 36 credits must be upper-division courses (these courses are identified by course numbers in the 300 and 400 ranges).
  • General education and other courses: The remaining credits can consist of general education courses, additional major courses if desired and any transferred credits.

Want to learn more about earning your criminology and justice studies degree with California Lutheran University? Download our brochure and explore our FAQ page. Ready to apply? Start your application now.

Request Information

To learn more about the Bachelor’s Degree for Professionals offered by the Cal Lutheran School for Professional and Continuing Studies and download a brochure, please fill out the form. You can also get in touch with an admission counselor directly by calling us at 866-944-8289.

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