How to Select the Right Criminal Justice School near Douglas Arizona
So you have made the decision to pursue a criminal justice degree near Douglas Arizona. But once you have decided on the kind of program you would like to pursue, just how do you tackle choosing a college that will offer the proper training to help you achieve your career goals? Naturally the college you pick must provide the criminal justice major and degree that you are interested in. And you will undoubtedly start by looking for colleges that are near your home and comparing the cost for each college. But there are additional issues that you need to investigate before making your ultimate choice. For instance, the accreditation and reputation of the college are critical factors as well. And if you have an interest in attending classes sitting at your computer instead of sitting in a classroom, then locating a reputable online training program will also be a part of your due diligence process. We will address these and other criteria that you might wish to include in your vetting process when deciding on the best criminal justice college for you. But to begin with, let’s talk a little bit about the criminal justice majors and degrees offered as well as the advantages of attending online schools.
Criminal Justice Degrees near Douglas AZ
Similar to most other professions, criminal justice degrees are becoming more frequently needed for various positions in the field. And as the level of education and degree obtained advances, so increases the job opportunities to choose from in Douglas AZ. There are four degree levels available, beginning with the Associate Degree in criminal justice. Normally a 2 year degree, it provides an introduction to such areas as law enforcement, corrections and the judicial court system. A growing number of police departments are seeking applicants with at least an Associate Degree. The 4 year Bachelor’s Degree normally covers the same topics as the Associate Degree, just more extensively. The more expansive education creates more opportunities for such occupations as FBI agents, intelligence analysts or probation officers. Progressing to a Master’s Degree can take an additional 2 years of classes in addition to earning the Bachelor’s Degree. The Master’s Degree makes it possible for students to become experts in a particular aspect of criminal justice. Along with the options provided with the lesser degrees, graduates may also become instructors, social caseworkers or court officers. And finally, for those with an interest in teaching at the college level or research, the PhD or Doctoral Degree is available as well. Generally requiring anywhere from four to seven years to complete, it is a far more rigorous version of the Master’s program. Naturally the time requirements for earning any one of the four degrees will be dependent on the credit load carried by the student.
Criminal Justice Major Programs
There are numerous specializations to choose from when deciding which major to elect for your criminal justice degree. Perhaps CSI has always fascinated you after viewing countless episodes of the assorted crime scene investigation TV shows. Or quite possibly you have always dreamed of being a law enforcement officer, or even an FBI agent. No matter what your career objective, you need to select a degree and a major in criminal justice that will ready and qualify you for that position. Selecting a school and program that specializes in that specialty would obviously be the best decision toward that end. Possibly you have not yet made up your mind on a career focus or a specialty yet. In that case, it would be a good idea to explore all of the degree alternatives offered from the numerous universities and colleges. Following is a partial list of majors for criminal justice degrees offered in the Douglas AZ area:
- Law enforcement
- Homeland security
- Forensic science
- Social Work
- Crime scene investigation
- Pre-law Studies
- Police science
Before enrolling in the school you have decided on, investigate the degree program you have an interest in as well as the college. Even if a criminal justice school is accredited and has a good reputation in general does not mean that all of its specialty programs are equally highly respected. That’s why it is very important to choose a major first before picking a school to enroll in.
Criminal Justice Online Colleges
Many students may not have access to a criminal justice degree college in their vicinity, or they may just want the convenience of earning a degree online. Regardless of the reason, they will find that there are accredited options available online. There a large number of schools located within the USA that provide online degree programs similar to those offered on-campus. And for many Douglas AZ students, especially those who continue working part or full-time while attending college, the convenience and accessibility of online colleges may make them the only option. And as an additional benefit, online schools are frequently more affordable than on-campus alternatives. Tuition may be lower and expenses for such things as study materials and commuting may be eliminated or reduced as well. Just make sure, as with any school you are considering, 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 motivated, and can study in this type of unsupervised environment, then obtaining your degree online may be the ideal option for you.
What to Ask Criminal Justice Schools
At this point you have undoubtedly decided on a criminal justice major and degree program, as well as if you want to earn your degree online or by attending classes on campus. With those decisions made, it’s time to start looking for Douglas AZ area colleges and fine tuning your options. Because there are so many schools to pick from, literally hundreds within the United States alone, it’s essential to have a checklist of qualifying questions to ask when assessing schools. Naturally cost is a significant consideration and you will need to select a school that is within your academic budget. And we have already discussed several others as well, such as location, accreditation and reputation. To help you focus on those concerns and more, below is a list of questions you may want to ask the colleges you are considering before making your final selection.
Is the Criminal Justice College Accredited? Numerous criminal justice colleges have obtained one or more accreditations from regional or national organizations. Among the most respected is the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS). Schools and programs that have been accredited by the ACJS have gone through a rigorous screening of their course of instruction and teachers. It’s essential to make sure that the degree program and college you enroll in are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization for a number of reasons. In addition to helping guarantee that you get an excellent education, it will also assist in securing student loans or financial aid, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Douglas AZ employers are looking for graduates of colleges that are accredited with good reputations.
What is the Program’s Reputation? As mentioned previously, in conjunction with accreditation the reputation of the school you enroll in is important also. It’s especially critical if you are going into the profession with no relevant previous work history. Without any prior experience, Douglas AZ employers will be weighing the quality of your education as a primary factor when reviewing your resume. There are a number of school rating organizations where you can get school reviews and rankings, including U.S. News and World Report. They consider the quality of the course of instruction, the reputation of the instructors and other factors contributing to the educational programs. Keep in mind that a school with an overall less than outstanding reputation may still be well regarded for a particular degree program that you might be interested in.
What are the Job Placement Rates? Find out what the graduation percentages are for the Douglas AZ colleges you are reviewing. A low percentage may be a sign that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out, or that the instructors were not up to the task of teaching the curriculum. It’s also essential that the schools have job placement programs with high placement rates. A job assistance program will help you obtain that first crucial job after graduation that denotes the start of your career in criminal justice. A high placement rate will not only help affirm that the college has a good reputation within the field, but that it additionally has a large network of employers to assist students obtain jobs upon graduation.
Where are the Schools Located? As we mentioned at the beginning of this article, one of the first things you will most likely consider when looking for criminal justice degree programs is the location of the schools. Unless you have determined that you will move or possibly live on campus, the college you select will have to be within commuting distance of your Douglas AZ 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 decide to attend a school outside of your state of residence, you may be charged a higher tuition than resident students, particularly for state colleges and universities. Community and junior colleges also tend to charge students higher fees if their residence is outside of the school district or state.
How Big are the Classes? Unless you prefer to disappear in the crowd, going to smaller classes offers the possibility for more interaction with the teachers. Larger classes afford little chance of getting personalized instruction if needed. One way to assess the interaction between students and faulty is to monitor a few classes before making your final decision. Speak with some of the students and find out what their experiences have been. Also, talk to the instructors and inquire what their teaching approaches are. You might also want to inquire as to what their backgrounds have been in the Arizona criminal justice profession.
Are Class Times Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it’s crucial to make sure that the final program you select offers classes at times that are compatible with your active schedule. This is particularly true if you opt to continue working while going to school. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Douglas AZ, make certain they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. And ask what the make-up procedure is should you need to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Enrolling in a Criminal Justice School near Douglas AZ?
If you are considering attending a criminal justice college near Douglas AZ, following is some interesting and useful background information about the Douglas area where your school campus will be located.
Cochise County, Arizona
In 1528 Spanish Explorers: Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca, Estevanico, and Fray Marcos de Niza survived a shipwreck off Texas coast. Captured by Native Americans they spent 8 years finding way back to Mexico City, via the San Pedro Valley. Their journals, maps, and stories lead to the Cibola, seven cities of gold myth. The Expedition of Francisco Vásquez de Coronado in 1539 using it as his route north through what they called the Guachuca Mountains of Pima (Tohono O'odham) lands and later part of the mission routes north, but was actually occupied by the Sobaipuri descendants of the Hohokam. They found a large Pueblo (described as a small city) between Benson and Whetstone, and several smaller satellite villages and smaller pueblos including ones on Fort Huachuca, Huachuca City and North Eastern Fry. About 1657 Father Kino visited the Sobaipuris just before the Apache forced most from the valley, as they were struggling to survive due to increasing Chiricahua Apache attacks as they moved into the area of Texas Canyon in the Dragoon Mountains. In 1776 The Presidio Santa Cruz de Terrante was founded on the West bank of the San Pedro River, to protect the natives as well as the Spanish settlers who supplied the mission stations, but it was chronically short on provisions from raids, and lack of personnel to adequately patrol the eastern route due to wars with France and England, so the main route north shifted west to the Santa Cruz valley, farther from the Chiricahua Apache's ranges who almost exclusively controlled the area by 1821.
Cochise County was created on February 1, 1881, out of the eastern portion of Pima County. It took its name from the legendary Chiricahua Apache war chief Cochise. The county seat was Tombstone until 1929 when it moved to Bisbee. Notable men who once held the position of County Sheriff were Johnny Behan, who served as the first sheriff of the new county, and who was one of the main characters during the events leading to and following the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral. Later, in 1886, Texas John Slaughter became sheriff. Lawman Jeff Milton and lawman/outlaw Burt Alvord both served as deputies under Slaughter.
A syndicated television series which aired from 1956 to 1958, Sheriff of Cochise starring John Bromfield, was filmed in Bisbee. The Jimmy Stewart movie Broken Arrow and subsequent television show of the same name starring John Lupton, which also aired from 1956 to 1958, took place (but was not filmed) in Cochise County.
Find the Best Criminal Justice Degree Program near Douglas AZ
Making certain that you pick the ideal criminal justice college near Douglas AZ is vital to your receiving the proper training to be successful in this growing and exciting field. Employers care 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 best criminal justice college based on your career objectives. As we have covered in this article, it’s essential that the college and degree program you choose both are accredited and have excellent reputations. In addition, make certain that the college has a job placement program with a strong track record for placing its graduates. You originally came to this site due to an interest in Colleges That Have Criminal Justice Programs. However, by using our checklist of questions, you will be able to evaluate and compare the criminal justice colleges you are looking at in order to narrow down your options and make the best selection. And when you have made the best decision, you will get the appropriate training so that you can begin your successful career in criminal justice.
Check Out More Law Abiding Locations in Arizona