Picking the Right Criminal Justice Degree Program near Eagle River Alaska
So you have made the decision to pursue a criminal justice degree near Eagle River Alaska. But after you have selected the kind of program you want to pursue, just how do you undertake selecting a school that will offer the proper training to help you achieve your career objectives? Of course the institution you choose must provide the criminal justice major and degree that you have an interest in. And you will no doubt start by looking for schools that are near your home and comparing the tuition for each college. But there are additional factors that you must evaluate prior to making your final decision. For instance, the reputation and accreditation of the college are significant factors also. 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 also be a part of your due diligence process. We will cover these and other criteria that you might wish to utilize in your vetting process when deciding on the best criminal justice college for you. But first, let’s talk a little bit about the criminal justice majors and degrees offered as well as the benefits of attending online schools.
Available Criminal Justice Degrees near Eagle River AK
Just like with many other professions, criminal justice degrees are becoming more frequently required for many careers in the field. And as the level of education and degree earned advances, so increases the employment opportunities to choose from in Eagle River AK. There are four degree levels offered, starting with the Associate Degree in criminal justice. Generally a two year degree, it offers an introduction to such specialties as corrections, law enforcement and the judiciary system. More and more police departments are looking for candidates with at least an Associate Degree. The four year Bachelor’s Degree usually addresses the same subjects as the Associate Degree, just more in depth. The more expansive education creates additional opportunities for such occupations as FBI agents, probation officers or intelligence analysits. Advancing to a Master’s Degree can require an additional 2 years of classes in addition to earning the Bachelor’s Degree. The Master’s Degree enables students to become specialists in a specific aspect of criminal justice. Along with the options afforded with the lower degrees, graduates can also become instructors, social caseworkers or court officers. And last, for those interested in teaching at the college level or research, the PhD or Doctoral Degree is available as well. Usually requiring anywhere from four to seven years to finish, it is a far more rigorous version of the Master’s program. Needless to say the time requirements for earning any one of the 4 degrees will depend on the credit load carried by the student.
Criminal Justice Majors Offered
There are a number of specializations to pick from when determining which major to elect for your criminal justice degree. Perhaps CSI has always interested you after viewing numerous episodes of the various crime scene investigation TV programs. Or quite possibly you have always wanted to be a law enforcement officer, or even an FBI agent. Whatever your career goal, you must select a degree and a major in criminal justice that will ready and qualify you for that job. Enrolling in a program and a school that specializes in that specialty would certainly be the ideal decision toward that end. Perhaps you have not yet decided on a career focus or a specialty yet. In that case, it would be advisable to research all of the degree alternatives available from the numerous universities and colleges. Below is a partial list of majors for criminal justice degrees offered in the Eagle River AK area:
- Law enforcement
- Homeland security
- Forensic science
- Social Work
- Crime scene investigation
- Pre-law Studies
- Police science
Prior to enrolling in the college you have selected, investigate the degree program you are interested in as well as the college. Just because a criminal justice college is accredited and has a good reputation in general does not indicate that all of its specialty programs are equally highly regarded. That’s why it is extremely important to choose a major first before choosing a college to enroll in.
Attending Criminal Justice Classes Online
A number of prospective students might not have access to a criminal justice degree program in their area, or they may just want the flexibility of earning a degree online. Regardless of the reason, they will find that there are accredited online options available. There many schools domiciled within the United States that offer online degree programs much like those offered on campus. And for many Eagle River AK students, particularly those who continue to work full or part-time while earning their degree, the convenience and accessibility of online colleges in many cases make them the only option. And as an added advantage, online colleges are often more affordable than traditional alternatives. Tuition may be cheaper and expenditures for such things as study materials and commuting may be reduced or eliminated as well. Just verify, just like for any school you are looking at, that the program you choose is accredited by an acknowledged organization, such as the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (more on accreditation later). But if you are dedicated, and can learn in this kind of independent setting, then obtaining your degree online may be the right alternative for you.
Topics to Ask Criminal Justice Colleges
By now you have no doubt decided on a criminal justice degree program and a major, including if you want to obtain your degree online or by attending classes on campus. Having made those decisions, it’s time to begin searching for Eagle River AK area colleges and narrowing down your options. Since there are a large number of schools to pick from, literally hundreds within the USA alone, it’s imperative to have a checklist of qualifying questions to utilize when assessing schools. Clearly cost is a significant consideration and you will need to choose a college that fits within your academic budget. And we have already mentioned a few others also, such as location, accreditation and reputation. To help you address those issues and more, below is a list of questions you might wish to ask the colleges you are looking at before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Criminal Justice Program Accredited? Numerous criminal justice schools have acquired one or more accreditations from regional or national agencies. One of the most highly regarded is the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS). Colleges and programs that have been accredited by the ACJS have undergone an extensive screening of their course of instruction and teachers. It’s essential to confirm that the degree program and school you pick are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization for several reasons. In addition to helping assure that you obtain an excellent education, it will also help in acquiring student loans or financial aid, which are frequently not obtainable for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of Eagle River AK employers are looking for graduates of colleges that are accredited with excellent reputations.
What is the Reputation of the School? As mentioned previously, together with accreditation the reputation of the college you enroll in is important also. It’s especially crucial if you are getting in the field with no relevant previous work history. With no prior experience, Eagle River AK employers will be considering the quality of your education as a key factor when going over your resume. There are several school rating organizations where you can obtain school rankings and reviews, including U.S. News and World Report. They evaluate the quality of the course of instruction, the reputation of the teachers and other variables contributing to the educational programs. Remember that a school with an overall less than excellent reputation could still be highly regarded for a specific degree program that you may be interested in.
What are the Job Placement Rates? Ask what the graduation percentages are for the Eagle River AK colleges you are looking at. A lower rate may be an indication that students were disappointed with the program and dropped out, or that the instructors were not up to the task of teaching the curriculum. It’s also imperative that the colleges have job assistance programs with high placement rates. A job assistance program will help you land that first crucial job after graduation that denotes the starting point of your career in criminal justice. A high placement rate will not only help substantiate that the school has an excellent reputation within the industry, but that it additionally has a large network of employers to help students secure jobs upon graduation.
Where are the Campuses Located? As we mentioned at the opening of this article, among the first things you will most likely consider when searching for criminal justice degree programs is the location of the schools. Unless you have decided that you will move or possibly board on campus, the school you enroll in will need to be within driving distance of your Eagle River AK home. Certainly attending classes online will remove the necessity for travel and make location a moot issue. Something to bear in mind is that if you choose to go to a college outside of your state of residence, you might be charged a higher tuition than resident students, especially for state colleges and universities. Community and junior colleges also tend to charge students higher fees if their residence is outside of the state or school district.
How Large are the Classrooms? Unless you like to disappear in the crowd, attending small classes provides the opportunity for more interaction with the instructors. Big classes provide little chance of receiving personalized instruction if needed. One method to evaluate the interaction between faculty and students is to monitor a few classes before making your ultimate decision. Speak with several of the students and find out what their experiences have been. Also, talk to the instructors and ask them what their teaching approaches are. You might also want to inquire as to what their experiences have been in the Alaska criminal justice field.
Are Classes Conveniently Scheduled? Finally, it’s important to confirm that the ultimate college you choose provides classes at times that are compatible with your hectic schedule. This is particularly true if you opt to still work while going to college. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Eagle River AK, make sure they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option as well. And ask what the make-up protocol is should you need to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Enrolling in a Criminal Justice School near Eagle River AK?
If you are considering attending a criminal justice college near Eagle River AK, following is some interesting and useful background information about the Eagle River area where your school campus will be located.
Eagle River, Anchorage
Eagle River is a community within the Municipality of Anchorage situated on the Eagle River, for which it is named, between Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson and Chugach State Park in the Chugach Mountains. Its ZIP code is 99577. Settled by homesteaders, Eagle River has been annexed to the Municipality of Anchorage since the 1970s--a relationship that is, at times, complicated. On the one hand, Eagle River functions as an Anchorage suburb, with a number of Eagle River residents working in, shopping or participating in community life in the Anchorage bowl. Much of the community is also made up of residents from nearby Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson. On the other hand, the community is itself a significant business hub between Wasilla and Anchorage, offering shopping, restaurants, recreation and employment. Secession efforts have from time to time gained traction by residents who would like Eagle River legally regarded as a separate community. Eagle River also has a close relationship with its neighboring community to the north, Chugiak, with which it shares some history. If Eagle River were not part of the Municipality of Anchorage, it would be classified as one of the five largest cities in Alaska.
The Eagle River (and Chugiak) area was settled by homesteaders and prospered on agricultural activities. The name Eagle River was first reported in 1939 by the U.S. Geological Survey, and the Eagle River post office was established in 1961.
In 1964, the state legislature first divided the state into seven boroughs. Over the next decade, many area residents objected to the Chugiak-Eagle River area being lumped in as part of a Greater Anchorage-Area Borough. The Chugiak-Eagle River Borough was established in 1974, only to be dissolved shortly thereafter when the arrangement was ruled unconstitutional by the Alaska Supreme Court.
Enroll in the Ideal Criminal Justice Degree Program near Eagle River AK
Making certain that you enroll in the right criminal justice program near Eagle River AK is crucial to your obtaining the proper training to be successful in this growing and exciting profession. Employers respect which college your criminal justice degree came from, so it’s in your best interest to care as well. Achieving the greatest potential success in your criminal justice career begins with choosing the ideal criminal justice college based on your career goals. As we have covered in this article, it’s essential that the school and degree program you pick both have excellent reputations and are accredited. Also, confirm that the college has a job placement program with a strong track record for placing its students. You originally came to this site due to an interest in Bachelor Of Science In Criminal Justice Jobs. However, by using our checklist of questions, you will be able to analyze and compare the criminal justice colleges you are reviewing in order to narrow down your choices and make the best choice. And when you have made the right decision, you will receive the proper training so that you can start your successful career in criminal justice.
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