Apr 20, 2024  
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog

Criminal Justice & Criminology, MA

Location(s): Online

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The Behavioral Crime Analysis concentration of the Master of Arts in Criminal Justice and Criminology presents advanced criminological theories and examines the behavioral manifestations of violent offenders. By combining the best of criminal justice and applied criminology study, the program enables students to build a strong foundation of theoretical and research knowledge and skills. This provides students with the sophisticated techniques needed to apply this analytical framework to real-world situations. Students also learn to apply this theoretical framework to real-world situations involving criminal investigative analysis, equivocal death analysis and geographical crime analysis.

The Forensic Linguistics concentration of the Master of Arts in Criminal Justice and Criminology builds knowledge, skills and abilities in the field of forensic linguistics. Professionals in this field work as practitioners or consultants, bringing their expertise to criminal and civil investigations, corporate and national security matters, legal proceedings, and analysis of evidence such as emergency phone calls, suicide notes, ransom demands and fraudulent documents. The Criminal Justice Studies Concentration provides graduate students with an in-depth understanding of the various core components of our criminal justice system, (Law Enforcement, Courts, and Corrections), coupled with numerous contemporary topics, which will seek to provide the student with an informed perspective of the major issues and concerns currently facing our nation’s criminal justice practitioners.

Student Learning Outcomes

Behavioral Crime Analysis Concentration Outcomes

  • Graduating Students will be able to apply contemporary criminological theories to the practical aspects of resolving crime through criminal investigative analysis, equivocal death analysis, and geographic crime analysis. 
  • Graduating students will be able to describe the various techniques used to disambiguate equivocal deaths.
  • Graduating students will recognize, examine, and summarize current research articles in the field of criminology and use them in writing a full research proposal on a crime-related issue, which is relevant to the substantive components of the program.
  • Graduating students will be able to apply principles of criminal profiling in evaluating written or oral threat communications.
  • Graduating students will identify and analyze criminological and criminal-justice related ethical issues with an emphasis on problematic areas relative to criminal investigative analysis, equivocal death analysis, and geographical crime analysis.
  • Graduating students will be able to outline contemporary processes of geographical crime analysis.
  • Graduating students will be able describe the best practices for undertaking behaviorally oriented interviews of victims and suspects.

Forensic Lingusitics Concentration Outcomes

  • Apply the basic concepts related to language learning, structure, acquisition, and usage, especially as related to the criminal justice environment.
  • Undertake content analysis, variation analysis, discourse analysis, and behavioral analysis of communications by both known and unknown authors.
  • Conduct an original sociolinguistic study of limited yet focused scope from the perspective of variation analysis, discourse analysis, and/or pragmatics.
  • Utilize sound scientific methodology and applications of forensic linguistics to be able to analyze anonymous communications and develop tenable opinions as to their provenance.
  • Recognize patterns of language usage and idiolect and identify their evidentiary value in terms of comparative analysis.
  • Solve basic phonology problems in which information about underlying sound systems is uncovered through analyzing a set of language data, including languages both known and unknown to the student.
  • Write a well-designed and informative analytical-oriented report based on the findings resulting from a forensic linguistic assessment; have it potentially admissible in a U.S. criminal or civil court.
  • Demonstrate understanding of the application of the scientific understanding of morphology and syntax to Forensic Linguistics through conducting morphological-syntactic analyses.

Criminal Justice Studies Concentration Outcomes

  • Students will learn about and understand various legal issues that criminal justice practitioners face and analyze those issues by identifying relevant facts and legal doctrine and then developing strategies to resolve them.
  • Students will be able to demonstrate skills and knowledge of how to work collaboratively to influence and lead others.
  • Students will demonstrate an informed understanding of the various current issues facing our nation’s correctional system.
  • Students will have foundational understanding of the epidemic of white-collar crime in America.
  • Students will be able to construct a detailed security policy at the national and international levels, for government operations.
  • Students will be able to develop policies and procedures designed to reduce risk in the physical environment.

Curriculum Requirements


Total Core Credits Required: 6

Required Advanced

Concentration Credits Required: 18

Forensic Linguistics Concentration

Students in the online forensic linguistics program build a strong foundation of theoretical knowledge and research skills as they learn to examine and assess threatening communications, fraudulent documents and other writings associated with serious criminal, civil and national security matters. Then they apply that theoretical framework to real-world situations requiring forensic linguistic training and skills. Students also develop skills in critical areas of forensic linguistics, including language structure, author profiling and threat assessment, sociolinguistics, and legal and ethical issues.

Concentration Credits Required: 24

Criminal Justice Studies Concentration

Concentration Credits Required: 24

Experiential Requirements:

Select Six Credits of the Following:

Total Number of Credits to Complete the Program: 30, 36, or 39

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