The benefits of getting a master’s degree in criminal justice include more job opportunities and consideration for advanced positions. Public service workers pursue a master’s in criminal justice as a way to secure leadership roles within their industries. As an example, a masters in criminal justice is worth it for those in federal government agencies because the degree qualifies them for jobs like FBI special agents. Also, assistant director and director positions within local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies will likely require a master’s degree in criminal justice.

Why Should I Get a Master’s in Criminal Justice?

A master’s degree will also give the student specialized knowledge in the field. For instance, masters level courses delve into topics such as forensics, special investigations, criminal rehabilitation, and criminal profiling. For those looking for a job change, a master’s degree provides more options within the law enforcement field.

The salaries associated with a higher degree also make a master’s in criminal justice worth it. On average, detectives and criminal investigators earn a median wage of almost $80,000. In comparison, police officers make an average of $63,000 per year. Supervisory roles within law enforcement agencies allow the degree holder to make upwards of $95,000 per year. A Master’s in Criminal Justice degree offers a good return on investment. Many professionals are at the mid-point of their careers when choosing to pursue a graduate degree. They can continue to work while attending classes by enrolling in an online master’s degree program.

What are Some Jobs I Can Get with a Master’s?

Masters in criminal justice jobs are mostly found through law enforcement agencies. At correctional institutions, a degree holder is qualified to fill a supervisory role like warden. Within a municipal police department, types of criminal justice jobs for masters degree holders include police sergeant, lieutenant, captain, or chief. Supervisors within these departments are responsible for scheduling, training, and enforce policies. Special investigator positions are another option when looking at types of criminal justice careers. The degree prepares professionals to not only enforce laws, but also look for the reasons that a criminal pay commit violent acts. Criminal justice jobs with a master’s degree can also include criminal profiler, criminologist, forensic psychologist, and forensic examiner.

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Individuals can also work as consultants or within the private sector after earning a master’s degree in criminal justice. For instance, the degree qualifies the individual for positions within emergency management. Emergency management jobs involve developing policies and plans in case of events such as weather disasters and terrorist attacks.

Another type of criminal justice degree job is a supervisor for a private security firm. In this position, the security team member must arrange for the protection of assets such as valuables, people, and even vital infrastructures like power plants.

More In-Demand Jobs: 25 Highest Paying Jobs with Master’s Degree

What About Criminology?

Entry-level criminology jobs are available after earning a degree. An online master’s degree in criminology prepares students to study the potential causes of crime. Criminology blends together key topics of both criminal justice and sociology. Criminologists study the effect that crime has on society as a whole.

Jobs for masters in criminal justice students can include criminologist positions too. Public research universities most often employ criminologists to lead studies and find ways to deter crime. Criminologists can also be used as consultants to law enforcement agencies. Police departments hire criminologists on a contract basis to assist with difficult cases. Private businesses may also hire criminologists to take a look at current security practices to see if they find any vulnerabilities. Any type of senior criminology position calls for a master’s degree. A bachelor’s degree in criminology is typically reserved for jobs such as police officers, detectives, probation officers, and corrections officers.

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