Education & Social Sciences


Criminal Justice

Program Opportunities

  • Major in criminology
  • Minor in criminology
  • Two-year associate of arts degree is available with the option of merging into a four-year degree.


The MU Criminology Program emphasizes excellence, diversity and inclusiveness, critical thinking, honesty and integrity, service, justice, and community. Students work closely with faculty and have ample opportunity to develop professional skills through stimulating coursework and hands-on field experiences.

Coursework focuses on answering criminological questions, such as:

  • Why do people commit crime?
  • How do police respond to crime?
  • How do the courts respond to crime?
  • Which victims are targeted and why?

The Criminology coursework will give you a foundational understanding of criminological theory, research methods, the criminal justice systems, criminals, victims, and current issues and concerns within the field.

Students will also be able to participate in many unique learning experiences as a Criminology student at Manchester. These opportunities include a wide variety of service projects, research opportunities, volunteer opportunities, study abroad programs and internships. Past student internships have taken place at local police departments, Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). Our study abroad program is currently planning to take sociology and criminology students to Belize as travel restrictions lessen.

Careers in Criminology

  • Police Officer
  • Private Security
  • Corrections Officer
  • Probation Officer
  • Detective / Investigator
  • Law School
  • Graduate School in Criminology
  • Social Services
  • Paralegal
  • Loss Prevention Officer
  • Field Investigator
  • Forensic Psychologist
  • Investigative Reporter
  • Investigative Analyst
  • Internal Affairs Investigator
  • Police Analyst

Learning Goals

Students enrolled within Criminology have the following learning goals:

  1. Understand the discipline of criminology
  2. Understand the role of criminological theory
  3. Understand the role of evidence, including qualitative and quantitative methods in sociology and criminology
  4. Understand the basic concept in sociology and criminology
  5. Understand the relationships between individuals and society
  6. Understand the diversity of the U.S. and other societies
  7. Understand one or more areas of study in criminology

Based on student evaluations, the Criminology Program at Manchester University is a welcoming and engaging learning environment where students feel they have improved in the following areas:

  • writing
  • oral communication and critical thinking
  • became more open-minded

Why Manchester?

The Criminology Program at Manchester University is designed to provide students with an overview of the origins of criminal behavior, the consequences of crime for society, and the legal responses societies develop to combat crime. This interdisciplinary major encourages students to take courses in sociology, social work, psychology, and political science. Students are required to complete a practicum that provides the opportunity to apply knowledge learned in the classroom to a workplace setting. Observing and participating in a professional setting exposes students to relevant social service delivery systems and potential careers. 

The criminology major strives to build a community of engaged learners and change-makers, who are invested in critically analyzing their social world and taking steps to create positive change. Majors will cultivate a sociological perspective on criminology, while developing an understanding of theoretical, methodological, and substantive issues in the field. A rigorous and intellectually grounded understanding of the social world will equip graduates to question critically, reason soundly, and act purposefully to improve all elements of the social and criminal justice systems in which they participate to promote social and economic justice. A graduate's foundational belief is in the infinite worth of every human – even if that individual is considered “bad” by society’s standards.