Criminal Justice Degree Program

Earn your specialized associate degree in criminal justice at our State College, Pennsylvania, campus

Our Criminal Justice Program At-a-Glance

  • Earn your specialized degree in just 2 years
  • Accredited by ACCSC
  • Licensed by the PA Department of Education, Department of Private Licensed Schools

What You Need to Know About Our Criminal Justice ASB Degree

The modern criminal justice system is complex and rapidly growing, and all those who work within it have to balance all of the different sociological, psychological, political and economic factors affecting us today. It’s a challenging career field, one that encompasses everything from criminal law and behavior to ethics and criminology to law enforcement and corrections. With the Associate of Specialized Business Degree in Criminal Justice from South Hills School of Business & Technology, you can gain the foundational knowledge you need to step into a number of different roles in the criminal justice system. Additionally, this program fulfills the education requirement for the Pennsylvania Police Academy officer training program.

At South Hills, our comprehensive training utilizes experiential learning through field visits and certification trainings, uniting theory, practice, and application all in one program. Our experienced instructors cover topics like:

  • Evaluating the nature, extent, causation, and prevention of crime, including how to apply and critique the major theories relevant to those causes
  • Applying an understanding of the constitutional concepts of due process, equal protection, and fundamental fairness in policing, courts, and corrections to case study scenarios
  • Assessing and applying Pennsylvania law — which includes the PA Crimes Code and the PA Rules of Criminal Procedures — to criminal cases
  • Processing crime scenes by utilizing various investigative techniques
  • Understanding victimology, rehabilitation theories and practices, and inherent human rights issues in modern criminal justice
  • Applying crime scene investigation skills, PA Crimes Code, legal issues and courtroom processes, sentencing, and probation/parole to mock crime scenarios

Part of our program includes a capstone project, as well as a 12-week internship with one of our partner employers, so you’ll have the opportunity to put what you’ve learned to work. Previous internship locations have included:

  • Centre County Correctional Facility
  • Centre County Sheriff's Office
  • Clearfield County District Attorney’s Office
  • Clinton County Correctional Facility
  • Huntingdon County Emergency Management Agency
  • Lewistown Borough Police Department
  • State Correctional Institution at Houtzdale
  • State Correctional Institution at Rockview
  • State College Police Department
  • Tiadaghton Valley Regional Police
  • Trough Creek Forestry Camp
 
 

Why You Should Choose South Hills

South Hills School of Business & Technology has been in the business of helping our students gain the specialized career skills they need for over 50 years. We know that we can help you, too, as you prepare for your future career. Here are just a few reasons why:

  • Important internship and networking opportunities — Every specialized degree program we offer at South Hills includes a 12-week internship component, which gives you not only hands-on experience, but also a chance to network and connect with our partner organizations.
  • Small class sizes — It’s important to us that each of our students feels seen, both in what they need out of their education and what their goals are. It’s why we keep our class sizes small, so you can build a personal relationship with your teachers.
  • Experienced instructors and mentors — Our instructors are also experienced professionals who know what it takes to be successful in the job market. Criminal justice classes are taught by real-world professionals who incorporate their experience into the curriculum.
  • Convenient campus location — We’ve been providing specialized skills training in Pennsylvania since 1970 at our campus location in State College.
  • Career Services — South Hills is an education community, there for you from the day you enroll to graduation and for years afterward. We have a dedicated Career Services team to help ready you for finding and securing a job.
  • Financial aid and scholarships — Finances shouldn’t stand in the way of you being able to train for the career you want. South Hills offers a number of ways to help pay for your program for those who qualify. Grants, loans, and special funding for veterans are just some of the possibilities we can explore with you, and our Financial Aid team is available to help you navigate these options.

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Complete Course List

Criminal Justice Course List

Criminal Justice Course List for 2020-21

TermCourse #Course NameCreditsClock Hours
First TermGE183Business English I460
CJ123Introduction to Criminal Justice560
CJ125Introduction to Law Enforcement4.548
GE181Introduction to Statistics for CJ336
PD110Professional Development224
CJ128Sociology for CJ448
Totals:22.5276
Second TermLE118American Constitutional Law4.548
GE180Applied Psychology336
GE184Business English II460
CD104Career Development I224
CJ122Introduction to Corrections560
CP283Microsoft Office460
Totals:22.5288
Third TermCJ237Criminal Investigations4.560
CJ227Criminology560
CJ124Introduction to Criminal Law560
CJ126Introduction to Victimology4.560
GE213Oral Business Communications224
CJ232Terrorism & Homeland Security336
Totals:24300
Fourth TermCJ129PA Crimes Code336
CJ224Criminal Evidence336
CJ226Criminal Procedures560
CJ238Forensic Science4.560
CJ127Rehabilitation of the Offender336
GE182Writing for CJ4.560
Totals:23288
Fifth TermCD105Career Development II224
CJ233Criminal Justice Capstone Project460
CJ234Criminal Procedures II336
CJ228Drugs, Crime and Criminal Justice336
CJ229Emergency Procedures224
CJ239Private Security224
CJ121Human Rights Issues in Criminal Justice336
CJ230Juvenile Delinquency4.560
Totals:23.5300
Sixth TermCD106Career Preparation0.510
CJ236Criminal Justice Internship11330
CJ235Specialized Certifications for CJ2.536
Totals:14376
CJ PROGRAM TOTAL CREDITSCJ PROGRAM TOTAL HOURS
129.5 Credits1,828 Clock Hours

Careers in Criminal Justice


With two years of hands-on training and strong skillsets, our Criminal Justice graduates are prepared for a variety of career options, including:


Each student completes a summer-long internship before graduation, providing real world experience. We have placed interns at locations including:


South Hills Criminal Justice graduates are well-trained and in demand for their knowledge and work ethics. Some of the many locations employing our graduates include:

Meet the Faculty

Jennifer Stover

Program Coordinator / Instructor
State College Main Campus


Jennifer's Biography

John McCullough

Adjunct Instructor
State College Main Campus


John's Biography

Greg Brauser

Adjunct Instructor
State College Main Campus


Greg's Biography

Program Advisory Committee

State College Main Campus
Member NameJob TitleCompany
Tina Baronio Loss Prevention Supervisor Kohls Department Store
Josh Brown Corrections Officer SCI Rockview
Dana Droll Assistant Administrator Central Counties Youth Center
Catie Harpster Centre House Case Manager Housing Transitions
Adam Salyards Community Relations & Crime Prevention Specialist State College Police Department
Brandon Wheeler Corrections Officer SCI Benner
Joseph Yedlosky Corrections Officer Centre County Correctional Facility

Ready to enroll in the Criminal Justice program?

Apply Now >>