Program at a glance

How much does it cost? 

Learn more about how to afford a degree from the University of Nevada, Reno.

How can I learn more?

Request information about our programs and sign-up to connect with a recruiter.

How do I apply?

Open to all undergraduate students. Applicants must have a high-school diploma or GED. Learn how to apply.

What will I learn in a criminal justice degree program?

Curriculum in the Department of Criminal Justice focuses on the legal, ethical, administrative, theoretical and behavioral aspects of the justice system and its various parts.

The criminal justice major broadly focuses on the various components of the criminal justice system, criminological theory and issues of diversity, mythology and ethics. Students attracted to the program are interested in a variety of careers including criminal justice, behavioral science, politics and treatment services.

Areas of emphasis in the criminal justice program

  • Law and Justice Specialization

    The interdisciplinary Law and Justice Specialization concentrates on the context of law and justice in a heterogeneous society including coursework in law and justice theory and policy as well as practical courses in legal research and writing and coursework in other disciplines such as philosophy. This track largely attracts students interested in the context of law in a diverse society and a variety of careers.

  • Accelerated B.A./M.A.

    The Accelerated B.A./M.A. combination degree option allows undergraduate students to pursue coursework to complete their Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts criminal justice degrees in five years. This accelerated program employs a curriculum that allows students to complete 120 undergraduate level credits and 30-36 graduate level credits in five years. Undergraduate students begin graduate level coursework in their fourth year. The program culminates in either a thesis or non-thesis M.A. degree suitable for students pursuing careers in law enforcement or courts administration, or further study in a law school or doctoral program outside the University of Nevada, Reno. The courses in criminal justice cover a full range of the discipline, both in terms of substance and methodology.

    Students apply for admission to the accelerated program in the Spring semester of their third year at the University of Nevada, Reno. 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 B.A. and M.A. 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 that focus broadly on the criminal justice system and its components. The accelerated B.A. and M.A. in criminal justice program focuses on the criminal justice system, its components, and administration, criminological theory and issues of theory, diversity, myth and ethics.

You can afford the University of Nevada, Reno

46% of undergraduate students receive financial aid

Almost everyone is eligible to receive financial aid. If you think your family’s income is too high to qualify for financial aid, you might be surprised.

50%+ of all students graduate with no debt

That's right. More than half of our students leave the University of Nevada, Reno with no student debt.

Life's a journey. Honors makes it meaningful.

At the University of Nevada, Reno Honors College, our students maximize their unique gifts and passions through a series of personalized experiences that deepen their capacity for transformative societal impact.

Visit the Honors College
Four honors students standing near Manzanita Lake; one is holding a soccer ball.