The Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminal Justice is intended to provide students with a critical understanding of the nature and causes of crime and delinquency, the origins and meaning of law and social control (with emphasis on criminal law), the nature of the criminal justice system and the processing of cases through that system, and proposals for reducing crime and delinquency. The program is designed to broadly educate students, to prepare students for careers in various criminal justice settings, and to pursue graduate education.


For information regarding accreditation at UNLV, please head over to Academic Program Accreditations.

Learning Outcomes

Upon completing an undergraduate program in Criminal Justice, a student will:

  • Have demonstrated an awareness of the history and nature of the major components of the criminal justice system: police, courts, and corrections.
  • Be familiar with the basis of the law and the legal system, as well as decision-making in the criminal justice process, the social and political context of the legal system, important constitutional issues, and how criminal law differs from other forms of law.
  • Have demonstrated knowledge of the overall problem of crime in the United States, in terms of being familiar with different types of crimes committed in society, as well as possessing knowledge of the distribution of these crimes.
  • Understand issues related to crime prevention and the rehabilitation of offenders.
  • Be familiar with various methods of social science research including survey research, field research, experimental research, and evaluation research, and demonstrate awareness of the linkage between theory and research.
  • Have basic knowledge of statistical procedures commonly used in the social sciences, in particular, those involved with descriptive research and hypothesis testing.
  • Be able to conduct a research project from beginning to end, including how to locate existing sources of relevant information, operationalize concepts of interest, collect data, interpret findings, and present information in a professional manner.
  • Be cognizant of various ethical concerns relevant to the study of criminal justice issues, and the distribution of justice in society.

Career Possibilities

Individuals with a Criminal Justice background have a wide range of career opportunities.

Law enforcement

  • Federal Agent (FBI, DEA, Immigration, Secret Service, Federal Air Marshal, etc.)
  • State of Local Police Officer
  • Park Ranger
  • Private Security
  • Private Investigator
  • Campus Police Officer
  • Military Officer
  • Cooperate Loss Manager


  • Arson Investigator
  • Gaming Investigator
  • IRS Special Agent
  • Postal Inspector
  • Coroner


  • Attorney
  • Law Clerk
  • Paralegal
  • Court Administrator
  • Pre-Trial Services Officer
  • Forensic Psychologist
  • Drug Court Coordinator
  • Crime Scene Investigator


  • Correctional Officer
  • Correctional Treatment Specialist
  • Warden
  • Parole Officer
  • Juvenile Detention Officer

Technical Support and Analysis

  • Crime Analyst
  • Forensic Technician
  • Ballistics Expert

Social Services

  • Social Worker
  • Youth Advocate
  • Victim Advocate
  • Teacher


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Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice


Department of Criminal Justice

The Department of Criminal Justice provides undergraduate and graduate degree programs designed to give students comprehensive understanding of the nature and causes of crime. Our students also learn about the criminal justice processes, criminal justice organizations and agency practices, and the law and legal system.


Greenspun College of Urban Affairs

The Greenspun College of Urban Affairs is committed to creating contemporary solutions for resilient communities. Our academic programs focus on making effective public policy, creating support structures to meet behavioral and mental health challenges, ensuring cities are safe and prepared to meet emergency situations, effective and ethical journalism, and interpersonal and public communication strategies.