Selecting the Right Criminal Justice College near Newville Alabama
So you have decided to earn a criminal justice degree near Newville Alabama. But after you have chosen the type of degree you would like to work toward, just how do you tackle selecting a school that will offer the right training to help you achieve your career goals? Of course the school you select must offer the criminal justice major and degree that you are interested in. And you will undoubtedly begin by looking for schools that are near your home and comparing the cost for each school. But there are other considerations that you need to investigate before making your ultimate decision. For example, the reputation and accreditation of the college are important factors as well. And if you are interested in attending classes sitting at your computer rather than sitting in a classroom, then locating a reputable online training program will similarly be a part of your search process. We will address these and other qualifications that you may wish to include in your vetting process when deciding on the best criminal justice college for you. But to begin with, let’s take a look at the criminal justice majors and degrees available as well as the benefits of attending school online.
Criminal Justice Degrees Offered near Newville AL
Just like with many other professions, degrees in criminal justice are becoming more commonly needed for many careers in the field. And as the level of education and degree earned increases, so increases the employment opportunities to choose from in Newville AL. There are four degree levels available, starting with the Associate Degree in criminal justice. Usually a two year degree, it provides an overview of such areas as law enforcement, corrections and the judicial system. More and more police departments are looking for candidates with at least an Associate Degree. The 4 year Bachelor’s Degree usually includes the same subjects as the Associate Degree, just more extensively. The more comprehensive education creates more options for such professions as FBI agents, probation officers or intelligence analysits. Progressing to a Master’s Degree can require an additional two years of classes in addition to earning the Bachelor’s Degree. The Master’s Degree allows students to become experts in a specific aspect of criminal justice. In addition to the options offered with the lower degrees, graduates may also become instructors, court officers or social caseworkers. And last, for individuals with an interest in research or teaching at the college level, the Doctoral Degree or PhD is offered as well. Typically requiring anywhere from four to seven years to complete, it is a far more intense version of the Master’s program. Needless to say the time requirements for attaining any one of the 4 degrees will depend on the course load carried by the student.
Criminal Justice Majors
There are a number of specializations to pick from when deciding which major to elect for your criminal justice degree. Perhaps CSI has always interested you after watching numerous episodes of the different crime scene investigation TV programs. Or perhaps you have always wanted to be a police officer, or even an FBI agent. No matter what your career goal, you need to pick a degree and a major in criminal justice that will ready and qualify you for that job. Selecting a program and a school that focuses on that area would clearly be the ideal decision toward that end. Maybe you have not yet decided on a career focus or a specialty yet. In that scenario, it would be a good idea to research all of the degree options available from the numerous universities and colleges. Following is a partial list of criminal justice degree majors offered in the Newville AL area:
- Law enforcement
- Homeland security
- Forensic science
- Social Work
- Crime scene investigation
- Pre-law Studies
- Police science
Prior to enrolling in the program you have chosen, research the degree program you have an interest in as well as the school. Even if a criminal justice school is accredited and has an outstanding reputation in general does not mean that all of its specialty programs are similarly highly regarded. That’s why it is extremely important to decide on a major first before picking a school to enroll in.
Attending Criminal Justice Online Classes
A number of prospective students might not have access to a criminal justice degree program in their area, or they might just prefer the flexibility of earning a degree online. Regardless of the reason, they will discover that there are accredited online options available. There many schools domiciled within the USA that offer degree programs online much like those offered on-campus. And for many Newville AL students, especially those who continue working part or full-time while earning their degree, the accessibility and convenience of online programs in many cases make them the only option. And as an added advantage, online schools are often lower in cost than traditional options. Tuition may be cheaper and costs for such things as study materials and commuting may be eliminated or reduced as well. Just make sure, just like for any college you are looking at, that the program you select is accredited by an acknowledged agency, for example the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (more on accreditation later). But if you are motivated, and can learn in this type of unsupervised environment, then obtaining your degree online might be the ideal alternative for you.
Questions to Ask Criminal Justice Programs
By now you have no doubt come to a decision on a criminal justice major and degree program, as well as if you intend to earn your degree online or by attending classes on-campus. Having made those decisions, it’s time to start looking for Newville AL area colleges and fine tuning your options. Since there are a large number of colleges to select from, in fact hundreds within the United States alone, it’s imperative to have a checklist of qualifying questions to ask when evaluating schools. Obviously cost is a significant factor and you will need to choose a school that fits within your scholastic budget. And we have already addressed several others as well, including accreditation, reputation and location. To help you focus on those concerns and more, below is a list of questions you might wish to ask the schools you are thinking about before making your final selection.
Is the Criminal Justice Degree Program Accredited? A large number of criminal justice colleges have earned one or more accreditations from regional or national organizations. One of the most highly regarded is the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS). Schools and programs that have been accredited by the ACJS have undergone a rigorous assessment of their teachers and course of instruction. It’s important to verify that the degree program and college you select are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization for a number of reasons. Along with helping ensure that you get a quality education, it will also help in qualifying for student loans or financial aid, which are frequently not obtainable for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of Newville AL employers are looking for graduates of colleges that are accredited with good reputations.
What is the Reputation of the Program? As mentioned previously, together with accreditation the reputation of the college you choose is significant also. It’s especially critical if you are entering the field with no relevant prior work history. With no prior experience, Newville AL employers will be weighing the quality of your education as a key factor when reviewing your resume. There are a number of college rating organizations where you can get college reviews and rankings, including U.S. News and World Report. They examine the quality of the core curriculum, the reputation of the instructors and other aspects contributing to the educational programs. Keep in mind that a school with an overall less than excellent reputation may still be well regarded for a specific degree program that you may have an interest in.
What are the Job Placement Rates? Find out what the graduation percentages are for the Newville AL schools you are looking at. A lower percentage might be an indication that students were unhappy with the program and dropped out, or that the instructors were not up to the task of teaching the course of study. It’s also imperative that the schools have job placement programs with high placement rates. A job assistance program will help you obtain that first pivotal job after graduation that denotes the starting point of your career in criminal justice. A high placement rate will not only help confirm that the college has a good reputation within the field, but that it also has a considerable network of contacts to assist students in obtaining jobs after graduation.
Where are the Campuses Located? As we touched on at the beginning of this article, among the first things you will probably look at when searching for criminal justice degree programs is the location of the schools. Unless you have decided that you will relocate or possibly live on campus, the school you choose will need to be within commuting distance of your Newville AL residence. Of course attending classes online will eliminate the need for travel and make location a moot issue. One thing to bear in mind is that if you opt to attend a school not in your resident state, you may be required to pay a higher tuition than resident students, especially for state universities and colleges. Community colleges also tend to charge students higher fees if they reside outside of the school district or state.
How Big are the Classrooms? Unless you like to get lost in the crowd, attending small classes offers the possibility for more interaction with the teachers. Bigger classes provide little chance of getting one-on-one instruction if needed. One way to evaluate the interaction between students and faulty is to audit a couple of classes prior to making your ultimate determination. Speak with some of the students and find out what they have experienced. Also, speak with the instructors and inquire what their teaching styles are. You might also want to ask what their experiences have been in the Alabama criminal justice field.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it’s crucial to confirm that the ultimate program you choose offers classes at times that are compatible with your hectic lifestyle. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while attending college. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Newville AL, make sure they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option as well. And find out what the make-up policy is in case you have to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Enrolling in a Criminal Justice School near Newville AL?
If you are considering attending a criminal justice college near Newville AL, following is some interesting and useful background information about the Newville area where your school campus will be located.
James Madison Wells founded a village called "Wells" c. 1882. When the Abbeville Southern Railroad laid tracks through the town in 1893, its name was changed to "Wells Station". The post office was built in 1894. Wells Station incorporated as "Newville" in 1903.
The town of Newville became prosperous with merchants, banks, lodges, doctors, churches, Newville High School, Rosenwald High School, societies, a newspaper, a depot, sawmills, cotton gins, mule stables and all the elements required by a developing town. Newville's slow decline commenced after the Great Depression due to farm mechanization and loss of commerce.
James M. and Catherine Wells donated one-half acre of land in 1887 for the site of the church and cemetery. The oldest known grave is that of William Y. Kirkland who died April 10, 1891. The church paid W.M. Harris fifty dollars in 1901 for two and one-half acres of land for the cemetery. In 1947, burial spaces were sold for 25 center per square foot. Nancy Price gave the church one acre of land for the cemetery in 1958. There are over 700 marked and unmarked graves. The Newville Cemetery was listed on the Alabama Historic Cemetery Register in 2005.
Pick the Best Criminal Justice Degree Program near Newville AL
Making certain that you enroll in the ideal criminal justice school near Newville AL is vital to your receiving the appropriate training to be successful in this exciting and growing profession. Employers care which school you earned your criminal justice degree from, so it’s in your best interest to care as well. Attaining the ultimate possible success in your criminal justice career begins with choosing the best criminal justice college predicated upon your career objectives. As we have discussed in this article, it’s essential that the school and degree program you select both are accredited and have excellent reputations. Also, verify 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 Schools With Criminal Justice Programs. However, by utilizing our checklist of questions, you will have the ability to evaluate and compare the criminal justice colleges you are considering so that you can narrow down your choices and make the best choice. And when you have made the correct decision, you will receive the appropriate education so that you can start your successful career in criminal justice.
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