Criminal Justice Curriculum

Our curriculum emphasizes theory and research. You will acquire advanced knowledge of current and developing criminological theory, data analysis and criminal justice policy and practice. Our curriculum helps students develop the competence to conduct sophisticated crime analysis, policy development and problem solving, preparing students for leadership roles in their chosen fields.

The program is 36 credit hours and consists of courses in three areas: core, concentration and elective. Enrollment is part-time, and you can complete the program in two years by taking two courses per semester, including two summers. Choose between two capstone options, either thesis or non-thesis. In addition, there is a comprehensive examination offered three times a year. We schedule courses in the evening so you can balance educational, work and personal commitments. 


Students can pursue one of three concentrations: criminology, administration of criminal justice or geo-information science (GIS). The GIS concentration is unique to Salem State. GIS uses computerized mapping to problem solve, develop policy and analyze crime and is particularly helpful to those pursuing a career in law enforcement.

"I have already recommended this graduate program to others. I was challenged by the caliber of the curriculum and professors. The presentations, public speaking, research, and in-depth analysis of all aspects of criminal justice were some of my favorite aspects of the program."
Mark Schmink, ’08G
Police Sergeant, Rockport Police Department