Portland-State-University 2021-2022 Bulletin

Criminology and Criminal Justice

550 Urban Center



  • B.A., B.S. (Fully Online Available)
  • Minor (Fully Online Available)
  • Postbaccalaureate Certificate (Fully Online Available)
  • M.S.

The Department of Criminology & Criminal Justice emphasizes the generation and practical application of empirical evidence to crime and justice issues. We seek to promote effectiveness, efficiency, and equity in crime prevention and control efforts by (1) providing students with quality educational experiences that prepare them for lifelong professional success, (2) conducting and disseminating research on theoretical and policy-relevant topics, and (3) collaborating with justice-related organizations to assess, evaluate, and improve policy and practice. Our Department values empirical inquiry, access to higher education, diversity, social justice, and community engagement.

Undergraduate Program

The Department of Criminology & Criminal Justice offers both a campus-based and fully online pathway toward its bachelor degree. The undergraduate program seeks to educate students about the causes, consequences, prevention, and control of criminal and law-violating activity at multiple levels of analysis. Our undergraduate curriculum focuses on (1) criminology and criminal justice theories and empirical research addressing the role of individuals, families, communities, and society in the production and prevention of crime, (2) the justice system’s function in controlling crime, and (3) a critical analysis of the effectiveness, efficiency, and equity of related policies and practices. Educational experiences facilitated inside and outside of class help promote students’ long term professional success by developing their capacity for critical reasoning, problem-solving, and effective communication.

Criminology & Criminal Justice is an interdisciplinary major, a fact demonstrated by the diverse backgrounds of our full-time and part-time faculty. Students graduating from our program have a wide range of choices when they look for employment or post-graduate education. Recent graduates have found jobs in law enforcement (e.g., police officer, immigration, crime analyst), courts (e.g., victim advocate, administration), corrections (e.g., parole officer, facility management), human services (e.g., offender counseling, child welfare), and crime prevention (e.g., neighborhood crime prevention specialist, private security). Other alumni from our program have gone on to pursue advanced degrees in such areas as law, criminal justice, psychology, social work, public administration, and urban planning.

Graduate Program

Criminology & Criminal Justice (CCJ) Courses