Associate degree in Criminal Justice degree, any advice?

Associate degree in Criminal Justice degree, any advice?

This is a discussion on Associate degree in Criminal Justice degree, any advice? within the Law Enforcement, Military & Homeland Security Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; is it worth the time and money if i want to get into LE?...

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  1. #1
    Member Array 40S&WMAN's Avatar
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    Associate degree in Criminal Justice degree, any advice?

    is it worth the time and money if i want to get into LE?


  2. #2
    Senior Member Array mi2az's Avatar
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    I would say yes, it gives you one step up above the competition that only has a high school education. I would continue with a BA, 4-year degree, then you can also qualify for FBI, NSA, CIA or Homeland Security
    "When the people fear the government you have tyranny...when the government fears the people you have liberty."

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  3. #3
    Senior Member Array BeefyBeefo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mi2az View Post
    I would say yes, it gives you one step up above the competition that only has a high school education. I would continue with a BA, 4-year degree, then you can also qualify for FBI, NSA, CIA or Homeland Security
    I agree. I would at least get the CJ degree. I went with a BA in Psychology with a minor in Business Administration so that I would have other options is necessary. This has proved to be a wise move since I need to find employment while testing for law enforcement. I'm sure the LEOs on this forum will chime in.

    -Jeff-

  4. #4
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    I'd say it's better than a lot of job possibilities...go for it!

    As times get tougher, it's not like you won't be able to find a job.
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  5. #5
    Member Array user's Avatar
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    IF it comes from an accredited school, such as a local community college. If it's from the "Matchbook Academy of Welding, Criminal Justice and Auto Repair", probably not. There are a lot of scams out there posing as colleges and offering degrees. Anyone can offer a degree, but check and make sure the degree is accredited by a recognized agency. You might want to make an appointment with the personel officer at your local police or sheriff's department and have a chat about it, with the specific school you've got in mind - ask that person what he/she thinks about it.
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  6. #6
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    I would say definitely. Many LEO agencies these days want college credit, if possible. Many pay extra for degrees, as an incentive. I would pursue a BA in CJ if possible. You could start with the Associate's degree, start working and complete the BA, later. Some agencies may even reimburse you for classes.
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  7. #7
    Senior Member Array BeefyBeefo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TX-JB View Post
    Many LEO agencies these days want college credit, if possible.
    That's right. I forgot to mention that the agencies in my area require at least 60 semester hours of college.

    -Jeff-

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    Member Array PiperLambie's Avatar
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    I don't know about your area, but I am currently seeking my Associate's degree in CJ because the Police Academy will not accept anyone without either an Associate's Degree or 60 college credit hours. One doesn't have to have a degree around here, but 60 hours is the requirement for an A.A./A.S. I asked, and the reason given is the modern complexities of police work.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Array mercop's Avatar
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    I believe the area of study that would be most helpful would be psychology.

  10. #10
    VIP Member Array matiki's Avatar
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    In my opinion, for the AA you should consider a general degree so that future efforts to complete a BA require fewer additional classes.
    "Wise people learn when they can; fools learn when they must." - The Duke of Wellington

  11. #11
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    Here is some honest, real world advice

    I wouldnt touch a CJ degree with a ten foot pole. Other than LE, whats it good for? Everybody and their brother has a CJ degree, and there are plenty of CJ degree's working in the fast food industry. If you don't get hired in LE, or you get hurt ten years into your career, it would be nice to have something else you can do. You'll learn everything you learn with a CJ degree plus some at academy that you have to go through anyway. Nobody cares what your degree is in.
    A degree is worth it for sure, but something like an education, communication or public admin degree is far more applicable.
    "Just blame Sixto"

  12. #12
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    its worth it
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  13. #13
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    Read what Sixto wrote. Forget the CJ degree. Get your degree in something/anything else. LEAs that require degrees only require a degree. Rarely does it matter the field. If you get a CJ degree it doesn't mean you'll get hired by a LEA. Then what are you going to do with that degree? A CJ degree isn't going to teach you to be a LEO and you're limited if things don't work the way you wish.
    You want to stand out from the others who are applying. Too many get CJ degrees and the applicant pool is full of them. Get your degree in something useful. Look at one of the sciences, languages, statistics, math. Get it in something you are interested in and something you would want to do if you don't get hired as a LEO. Also take some courses in journalism, speech, writing, English, literature if you want to progress in the LE field. A LEO who is an accomplished writer will progress. You are what your reports reflect of you. Sadly too many LEOs are terrible writers.
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  14. #14
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    If you go the Community College/AA route make sure that everything you take will transfer to a 4 year college just in case you decide to continue your education in the future.
    Rick

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  15. #15
    VIP Member Array stormbringerr's Avatar
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    get a degree in science and/or languages....
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