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Criminology and Criminal Justice, M.A.

College of Arts and Sciences

The Master of Arts in Criminology and Criminal Justice provides advanced instruction in criminal justice system operation, criminology, research methods and statistics.

The program supplies professionals with advanced instruction using evidence-based practices in the criminal justice system. In addition to career advancement for working professionals, this master’s program also provides rigorous social science training for continued doctoral study.

Program Highlights

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    Hands-on Experience

    Practice skills in real-world law enforcement and law-related settings in the greater Columbia region.

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    Individualized Studies

    Build a targeted program of study that's tailored to your personal area of interest.

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    Professional Research

    Work with research faculty members to design more effective interventions and criminal justice system practices.

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    Expansive Network

    Build connections with other USC-educated professionals and practitioners working in criminal justice.

What You’ll Study

Gain advanced, evidence-based instruction in criminal justice system operation, criminology, research methods and statistics. Use your education to continue your studies, or enter teaching, research or policy-making roles in the criminal justice system.

Building Skills

Gain the professional and personal intelligence it takes to have a successful career.

  • Leadership

    Inspiring and guiding others to achieve common goals and reach their full potential

    Data Analysis

    Examining and interpreting information to uncover insights and inform decision making

    Attention to Detail

    Being meticulous and thorough in all aspects of a task or project

  • Collaboration

    Working with others to achieve a common goal or objective


    Introducing new ideas, methods or products to improve performance or achieve a specific goal


    Creating professional written content for inclusion in scholarly journal articles, books and reports

Using your degree

Make your college experience the foundation for a successful future.

Learn how alumni use degrees with outcome data from Gamecock GradStats, a service of the University of South Carolina Career Center.

Potential Careers

  • Local, State or Federal Law Enforcement Officer
  • Corrections, Probation or Parole Officer
  • Researcher
  • Victim Assistance and Advocacy

Job Titles of Alumni

  • Special Agent
  • Police Officer
  • BSA/AML Senior Investigator
  • Instructor
  • Fraud Investigator
  • Sheriff

Average Alumni Salary

Five to 10 years after graduation without additional education $84,703

Workplace Settings

  • Law Enforcement
  • Corrections
  • Research
  • Academia
  • Law

Employers of Alumni

  • Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)
  • Defense Criminal Investigative Service
  • Columbia Police Department
  • South Carolina Department of Corrections
  • NC Department of Justice

The Criminal Justice and Criminology program has benefited me in so many ways. I have had the opportunity to accept a position in law enforcement, while also attending school part time. It has allowed me to continuously learn and apply my knowledge in a practical way.

Kaitlin Kirkley
Portrait of Kaitlin Kirkley

Is USC Right For You?

There are many reasons we could be your ideal university. There's the award-winning academics, the globally modeled student life, and abundance of study abroad and experiential learning options. Take a closer look at what USC could mean for you.

Degree content is provided for informational purposes only. The Academic Bulletin is the source of record for all degree information.