How to Choose the Right Criminal Justice College near Haleyville Alabama
So you have made the decision to pursue a criminal justice degree near Haleyville Alabama. But once you have chosen the kind of degree you want to pursue, just how do you tackle choosing a college that will offer the right training to help you achieve your career goals? Naturally the institution you pick must offer the criminal justice degree and major that you have an interest in. And you will undoubtedly start by searching for schools that are close to your home and comparing the cost for each school. But there are additional points that you need to evaluate before making your final selection. For instance, the reputation and accreditation of the college are critical factors also. And if you are interested in attending classes sitting at your computer instead of sitting in a classroom, then locating a reputable online degree program will similarly be a part of your search process. We will deal with these and other qualifications that you might wish to utilize in your vetting process when picking the right criminal justice college for you. But first, let’s talk a little bit about the criminal justice degrees and majors offered as well as the advantages of attending online schools.
Available Criminal Justice Degrees near Haleyville AL
As with most other professions, degrees in criminal justice are becoming more commonly required for a number of careers in the field. And as the level of education and degree earned advances, so increases the employment opportunities to choose from in Haleyville AL. There are four degree levels available, beginning with the Associate Degree in criminal justice. Generally a two year degree, it offers an overview of such areas as corrections, law enforcement and the judiciary system. A growing number of police departments are looking for candidates with at least an Associate Degree. The four year Bachelor’s Degree typically includes the same topics as the Associate Degree, just more extensively. The more expansive education makes available more opportunities for such positions 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 attaining the Bachelor’s Degree. The Master’s Degree allows students to become experts in a specific facet of criminal justice. Along with the opportunities afforded with the lesser degrees, graduates may also become instructors, court officers or social caseworkers. And finally, for individuals interested in teaching at the college level or research, the PhD or Doctoral Degree is offered as well. Typically taking anywhere from 4 to 7 years to complete, it is a far more rigorous version of the Master’s program. Of course the time requirements for obtaining any of the four degrees will depend on the course load carried by the student.
Criminal Justice Major Programs
There are numerous specialties to pick from when deciding which major to elect for your criminal justice degree. Maybe CSI has always interested you after watching countless episodes of the various 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 pick a major and a degree in criminal justice that will prepare and qualify you for that job. Choosing a program and a school that specializes in that specialty would clearly be the ideal decision toward that end. Possibly you have not yet decided on a career focus or a specialty yet. In that case, it would be best to research all of the degree options offered from the various colleges and universities. Following is a partial list of majors for criminal justice degrees offered in the Haleyville AL area:
- Law enforcement
- Homeland security
- Forensic science
- Social Work
- Crime scene investigation
- Pre-law Studies
- Police science
Before enrolling in the school you have selected, investigate the degree program you are interested in along with the college. Just because a criminal justice college is accredited and has an outstanding reputation as a whole does not mean 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 school to enroll in.
Attending Criminal Justice Online Degree Programs
Some prospective students might not have access to a criminal justice degree program in their region, or they might just want the convenience of earning a degree online. Regardless of the reason, they will discover that there are accredited options available online. There a large number of schools domiciled within the USA that offer online degree programs similar to those offered on campus. And for many Haleyville AL students, especially those who continue to work full or part-time while attending college, the accessibility and convenience of online schools may make them the only option. And as an added benefit, online schools are often more affordable than on-campus options. Tuition may be cheaper and expenses for such things as study materials and commuting may be reduced or eliminated as well. Just verify, 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 dedicated, and can study in this kind of independent setting, then obtaining your degree online might be the ideal option for you.
Topics to Ask Criminal Justice Colleges
At this point you have undoubtedly come to a decision on a criminal justice major and degree program, including if you want to obtain your degree online or by going to classes on-campus. With those decisions made, it’s time to start looking for Haleyville AL area schools and fine tuning your options. Because there are a large number of colleges to pick from, in fact hundreds within the USA alone, it’s imperative to have a checklist of qualifying questions to utilize when analyzing colleges. Obviously cost is a significant factor and you will need to choose a program that fits within your academic budget. And we have already mentioned several others as well, such as reputation, location and accreditation. To help you address those concerns and more, following is a list of questions you might wish to ask the schools you are examining before making your final decision.
Is the Criminal Justice College Accredited? Many criminal justice schools have received one or more accreditations from regional or national organizations. One of the most respected is the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS). Colleges and programs that have been accredited by the ACJS have gone through a rigorous screening of their course of instruction and teachers. It’s imperative to make sure that the degree program and school you select are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency for several reasons. Along with helping assure that you receive a top notch education, it will also aid in qualifying for student loans or financial aid, which are often not available for non-accredited colleges. Additionally, many Haleyville AL employers are looking for graduates of schools that are accredited with good reputations.
What is the Reputation of the College? As stated previously, along with accreditation the reputation of the school you enroll in is significant as well. It’s especially critical if you are going into the profession with no relevant previous work history. With no prior experience, Haleyville AL employers will be considering the quality of your education as a key factor when going over your resume. There are several college rating organizations where you can find college reviews and rankings, including U.S. News and World Report. They evaluate the quality of the core curriculum, the reputation of the teachers and other factors contributing to the academic programs. Remember that a school with an overall less than excellent reputation could still be highly respected for a specific degree program that you might have an interest in.
What are the Job Placement Rates? Find out what the graduation percentages are for the Haleyville AL schools you are reviewing. A low percentage might be an indication that students were disappointed with the program and quit, or that the instructors were not capable of teaching the curriculum. It’s also essential that the colleges have job placement programs with high placement rates. A job placement program will help you obtain 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 substantiate that the college has a good reputation within the industry, but that it additionally has a substantial network of employers to assist students in obtaining jobs upon graduation.
How Far Away are the Campuses Located? As we mentioned at the opening of this article, among the initial things you will probably consider when looking for criminal justice degree programs is the location of the schools. Unless you have determined that you will relocate or perhaps live on campus, the school you select will have to be within commuting distance of your Haleyville AL residence. Certainly attending online classes will eliminate the necessity for travel and make location a moot issue. Something 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, particularly for state colleges and universities. Junior and community colleges also tend to charge students higher fees if they reside outside of the school district or state.
How Big are the Classes? Unless you prefer to get lost in the crowd, attending smaller classes provides the possibility for more interaction with the teachers. Bigger classes allow for little chance of receiving personalized instruction if needed. One way to assess the interaction between students and faulty is to audit a couple of classes prior to making your final 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 backgrounds have been in the Alabama criminal justice field.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s crucial to verify that the ultimate program you pick offers classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is particularly true if you choose to still work while attending school. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Haleyville 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 procedure is should you need to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Enrolling in a Criminal Justice School near Haleyville AL?
If you are considering attending a criminal justice college near Haleyville AL, following is some interesting and useful background information about the Haleyville area where your school campus will be located.
Haleyville is a city in Winston and Marion counties in the U.S. state of Alabama. It incorporated on February 28, 1889. Most of the city is located in Winston County, with a small portion of the western limits entering Marion County. Haleyville was originally named Davis Cross Roads, having been established at the crossroads of Byler Road and the Illinois Central Railroad. At the 2010 census the population was 4,173, down slightly from 4,182 in 2000.
As of the census of 2000, there were 4,182 people, 1,815 households, and 1,148 families residing in the city. The population density was 563.9 people per square mile (217.6/km²). There were 2,061 housing units at an average density of 277.9 per square mile (107.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 94.81% White, 1.48% Black or African American, 0.17% Native American, 0.12% Asian, 2.68% from other races, and 0.74% from two or more races. 3.11% of the population were Latino of any race.
There were 1,815 households out of which 26.6% had children under the age of 52 living with them, 49.3% were married couples living together, 11.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.7% were non-families. 34.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 17.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.25 and the average family size was 2.87.
Pick the Right Criminal Justice College near Haleyville AL
Making certain that you enroll in the ideal criminal justice college near Haleyville AL is crucial to your receiving the appropriate training to be successful in this growing and exciting field. Employers respect which college your criminal justice degree came from, so it’s in your best interest to care as well. Achieving the greatest possible success in your criminal justice career starts with choosing the right criminal justice school predicated upon your career goals. As we have covered in this article, it’s essential that the school and degree program you pick both are accredited and have excellent reputations. Additionally, make certain that the college has a job assistance program with a strong track record for placing its students. You originally came to this site due to an interest in Criminal Justice Field Of Study. However, by utilizing our checklist of questions, you will have the ability to assess and compare the criminal justice colleges you are considering so that you can narrow down your options and make the right selection. And when you have made the correct decision, you will get the appropriate training so that you can launch your successful career in criminal justice.
Check Out More Law Abiding Locations in Alabama