How to Choose the Right Criminal Justice College near Lanett Alabama
So you have decided to attain a criminal justice degree near Lanett Alabama. But after you have decided on the type of degree you would like to pursue, just how do you go about picking a school that will provide the proper training to help you achieve your career objectives? Of course the school you pick must offer the criminal justice degree and major that you are interested in. And you will probably start by looking for colleges that are close to your residence and comparing the tuition for each college. But there are other factors that you should examine before making your final selection. For example, the accreditation and reputation of the school are important factors also. And if you are interested in attending classes sitting at your computer instead of sitting in a classroom, then locating a quality online degree program will also be a part of your due diligence process. We will deal with these and other qualifications that you may wish to utilize in your vetting process when deciding on the right criminal justice college for you. But to begin with, let’s take a look at the criminal justice majors and degrees offered along with the advantages of attending school online.
Available Criminal Justice Degrees near Lanett AL
As with many other professions, degrees in criminal justice are becoming more commonly needed for a number of careers in the field. And as the level of education and degree obtained increases, so increases the job opportunities available in Lanett AL. There are four degree levels available, beginning with the Associate Degree in criminal justice. Normally a two year degree, it provides an introduction to such specialties as law enforcement, corrections and the judiciary system. An increasing number of police departments are looking for candidates with at least an Associate Degree. The 4 year Bachelor’s Degree typically includes the same topics as the Associate Degree, just more in depth. The more comprehensive education creates more options for such professions as FBI agents, intelligence analysts or probation officers. Advancing to a Master’s Degree can require an additional two years of classes after earning the Bachelor’s Degree. The Master’s Degree allows students to become experts in a specific facet of criminal justice. Along with the options afforded with the lesser degrees, graduates can also become instructors, court officers or social caseworkers. Finally, for those interested in teaching at the college level or research, the PhD or Doctoral Degree is offered also. Generally requiring anywhere from 4 to 7 years to finish, it is a far more intense version of the Master’s program. Of course the time requirements for obtaining any one of the 4 degrees will be dependent on the credit load carried by the student.
Criminal Justice Majors Offered
There are a number of specialties to select from when deciding which major to elect for your criminal justice degree. Maybe CSI has always fascinated you after enjoying numerous episodes of the various crime scene investigation TV shows. Or maybe you have always wanted to be a law enforcement officer, or even an FBI agent. Whatever your career objective, you must pick a major and a degree in criminal justice that will ready and qualify you for that position. Selecting a school and program that specializes in that area would naturally be the best decision toward that end. Maybe you have not yet decided on a specialty or a career focus yet. In that case, it would be advisable to research all of the degree options available from the various colleges and universities. Below is a partial list of criminal justice degree majors offered in the Lanett AL area:
- Law enforcement
- Homeland security
- Forensic science
- Social Work
- Crime scene investigation
- Pre-law Studies
- Police science
Before enrolling in the college you have chosen, research the degree program you have an interest in as well as the school. Just because a criminal justice school is accredited and has a good reputation as a whole does not mean that all of its specialty programs are similarly highly regarded. That’s why it is very important to decide on a major first before choosing a school to enroll in.
Attending Criminal Justice Online Schools
Some prospective students may not have access to a criminal justice degree school in their region, or they might just want the independence of earning a degree online. Regardless of the reason, they will find that there are accredited online options available. There many schools located within the USA that offer degree programs online similar to those offered on campus. And for many Lanett AL students, especially those who continue to work part or full-time while attending college, the convenience and accessibility of online schools may make them the sole option. And as an added advantage, online schools are frequently more affordable than traditional options. Tuition can be lower and expenditures for such things as study materials and commuting may be reduced or eliminated as well. Just make sure, just like for any school you are reviewing, that the program you enroll in is accredited by an approved agency, such as the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (more on accreditation later). But if you are motivated, and can learn in this kind of unsupervised environment, then earning your degree online may be the ideal alternative for you.
Questions to Ask Criminal Justice Degree Programs
By now you have no doubt come to a decision on a criminal justice degree program and a major, as well as if you want to obtain your degree online or by attending classes on campus. Having made those decisions, it’s time to start looking for Lanett AL area schools and narrowing down your options. Since there are a large number of schools to choose from, literally hundreds within the USA alone, it’s imperative to have a list of qualifying questions to ask when analyzing colleges. Certainly cost is a significant consideration and you will need to pick a college that is within your academic budget. And we have already discussed a few others as well, including location, accreditation and reputation. To help you address those concerns and more, following is a list of questions you may wish to ask the schools you are examining before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Criminal Justice College Accredited? Numerous criminal justice schools have received one or more accreditations from regional or national organizations. Among the most respected is the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS). Colleges and programs that have been accredited by the ACJS have undergone a rigorous screening of their course of instruction and teachers. It’s important to confirm that the program and school you enroll in are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization for several reasons. Along with helping assure that you receive a top notch education, it will also aid in securing financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently not obtainable for non-accredited schools. Also, many Lanett AL employers are looking for graduates of colleges that are accredited with good reputations.
What is the Program’s Reputation? As stated previously, along with accreditation the reputation of the school you attend is significant also. It’s especially crucial if you are going into the profession with no relevant prior work history. With no prior experience, Lanett AL employers will be weighing the quality of your education as a primary factor when reviewing your resume. There are several school rating organizations where you can obtain school reviews and rankings, such as U.S. News and World Report. They look at the quality of the core curriculum, the reputation of the instructors and other factors contributing to the academic programs. Bear in mind that a school with an overall less than outstanding reputation might still be well regarded for a specific degree program that you might be interested in.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Find out what the graduation rates are for the Lanett AL schools you are looking at. A low rate may be an indication that students were dissatisfied with the program and quit, or that the instructors were not up to the task of teaching the curriculum. It’s also essential that the colleges have job placement programs with higher placement rates. A job assistance program will help you get that first crucial job after graduation that marks the starting point of your career in criminal justice. A higher placement rate will not only help validate that the school has an excellent reputation within the field, but that it also has a sizable network of employers to help students secure jobs upon graduation.
Where are the Colleges Located? As we touched on at the opening of this article, one of the initial things you will most likely consider when searching for criminal justice colleges is the location of the schools. Unless you have determined that you will move or perhaps live on campus, the college you select will need to be within commuting distance of your Lanett AL residence. Naturally attending classes online will remove the need for travel and make location a non-issue. One thing to keep in mind is that if you choose to attend a school outside of your resident state, you could be required to pay a higher tuition than resident students, particularly for state universities and colleges. Community and junior colleges also usually charge students higher fees if their residence is outside of the state or school district.
How Large are the Classes? Unless you like to get lost in the crowd, attending small classes provides the possibility for more interaction with the teachers. Larger classes provide little chance of receiving individualized instruction if needed. One method to evaluate the interaction between faculty and students is to audit a couple of classes before making your final determination. Talk to several of the students and find out what their experiences have been. Also, speak with the instructors and inquire what their teaching approaches are. You may also want to inquire as to what their experiences have been in the Alabama criminal justice field.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s critical to verify that the ultimate program you choose provides classes at times that are compatible with your busy schedule. This is especially true if you choose to continue working while attending college. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Lanett AL, check that they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option as well. And ask what the make-up procedure is in case you have to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Enrolling in a Criminal Justice School near Lanett AL?
If you are considering attending a criminal justice college near Lanett AL, following is some interesting and useful background information about the Lanett area where your school campus will be located.
Lanett is a city in Chambers County, Alabama, United States. At the 2010 census the population was 6,468, down from 7,897 in 2000. Lanett, originally called Bluffton, is located in eastern Alabama, on the Chattahoochee River, southwest of Atlanta. The city's name is derived from Lafayette Lanier and Theodore Bennett, founders of the West Point Manufacturing Company.
Lanett is located on the eastern edge of Chambers County at 32°51'48.326" North, 85°11'58.862" West (32.863424, -85.199684). Its eastern boundary is the Alabama–Georgia state line, with the town of West Point, Georgia, bordering Lanett to the east. Interstate 85 forms the southeast boundary of Lanett, with the city of Valley, Alabama, on the other side of the highway. The unincorporated community of Huguley is along Lanett's southwest border.
The Chattahoochee River forms the state line and eastern boundary of Lanett from I-85 north to the downtown area, at which point the state line turns north-northwest and becomes a land boundary between Lanett and West Point, Georgia.
Find the Best Criminal Justice School near Lanett AL
Making certain that you enroll in the right criminal justice school near Lanett AL is crucial to your receiving the proper training to be successful in this growing and exciting profession. Employers value which college you earned your criminal justice degree from, so it’s to your benefit to care also. Attaining the ultimate potential success in your criminal justice career starts with picking the optimal criminal justice school predicated upon your career objectives. As we have covered in this article, it’s important that the school and degree program you pick both are accredited and have excellent reputations. Also, make sure that the college has a job assistance program with a high success rate for placing its graduates. You originally came to this site due to an interest in Top Online Colleges For Criminal Justice. However, by using our checklist of questions, you will be able to evaluate and compare the criminal justice schools you are looking at in order to narrow down your choices and make the best selection. And when you have made the correct decision, you will receive the proper education so that you can begin your successful career in criminal justice.
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