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Dean Matlock



Criminal Justice
Bachelor of Arts
Are you interested in pursuing a career in criminal justice? NNU’s Bachelor of Arts degree in criminal justice builds a strong foundation in the theories, models and methods of criminology, as well as the fields and practices within criminal justice. With this degree, you’ll be equipped to make a difference in your community and society.
business students working at table with binders and tablets. Learn more about the dynamics within the criminal justice agencies at the state and federal levels of our United States, upper division law enforcement administration, and criminal justice organizations.
  • GAIN COMPETENCY in the theories, models and methods of investigation in criminology
  • WORK CLOSELY with faculty mentors
  • PURSUE A VARIETY OF CAREERS, from lawyer to law enforcement

Champion Justice with a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice

Take the first step toward making a real difference in your community by pursuing a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice at NNU. Our program is designed to provide a comprehensive understanding of the theories, models and methods used in criminology and criminal justice practices. Our approach ensures that you gain hands-on experience through a criminal justice practicum, which complements your coursework and prepares you for a variety of careers in the field.

degree details

Bachelor of Arts

On Campus

The Benefits of a Criminal Justice Degree

  • Develop a practical, in-depth understanding of the field through hands-on experience and research
  • Receive mentorship from experienced faculty in the field
  • Become prepared for entry-level positions in a variety of criminal justice occupations
  • Learn from an accredited University with longstanding experience in the industry
  • Benefit from flexible class scheduling options and affordable credit hours
  • Enjoy small class sizes and individual support from faculty and staff
  • Enjoy a Christian-based education in the context of ethics and moral standards

Our Goals for Criminal Justice Majors

  • Develop practical communication skills and critical thinking abilities tailored to the criminal justice field
  • Learn to work with people from diverse backgrounds for better understanding and positive outcomes
  • Build Christ-like character, excellence, responsiveness and creative engagement into your practice
  • Acquire knowledge of theories, models and methods in criminology and criminal justice
  • Graduate ready to pursue occupations or further study in the field of criminal law

Additional Info About Our Criminal Justice Program

Our Mission

The mission of the criminal justice major is to graduate individuals who are:

  • Prepared to enter occupations or graduate study in the field with strong liberal arts skills (acquire information from multiple sources; communicate clearly and effectively in written and oral formats; understand and work effectively with individuals from various backgrounds; think critically and make informed decisions)
  • Proficient in criminological theories, models, investigative methods and the various disciplines and procedures within criminal justice
  • Who carry into their professional work the University outcomes of Christ-like character, academic excellence, social responsiveness and creative engagement
justice bronze statue in front of blue background. Our bachelor of arts and bachelor of science in criminal justice degrees prepare you for criminal justice careers in the American criminal justice system.

Criminal Justice Career Paths

With a bachelor’s degree from NNU, you could pursue a career as a probation officer, forensic science technician or legal assistant supporting lawyers in their cases. No matter which path you choose, a career in criminal justice offers the chance to make a difference in the world and uphold the values of safety and justice. With your NNU degree, the future is yours to create.

Correctional Officers and Jailers

First-Line Supervisors of Police and Detectives

Legal Occupations

Police and Sheriff's Patrol Officers

Meet Our Criminal Justice Faculty

The professors are awesome. They are all open to conversation to any kind of question I ever had. Every single professor was open to discuss. That’s incredible for me because where I am from people are not like that. I have a really good relationship with all of them here and they are always open to talk with me. They give me a ton of advice.

Nikola Pruvlj

AA Elementary or Secondary Education

Frequently Asked Questions About Majoring in Criminal Justice

You probably have some questions if you’re considering pursuing a criminal justice degree at NNU. Here are a few of the most common questions potential students ask about our program.

What types of career options are available to criminal justice majors from NNU?

Step into the exciting world of criminal justice at Northwest Nazarene University, where you’re not just earning a degree but embarking on a transformative journey toward a fulfilling career. Our Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice equips you with a strong foundation in criminology theories, investigation methods and an understanding of the law—tools that open up a myriad of career opportunities.

You could serve in law enforcement ministering to your community as a police officer or a federal law enforcement agent. You could also work in corrections, helping rehabilitate offenders and ensuring the security of our prisons. Or you may see yourself as a prosecuting attorney’s assistant, standing up for justice in the courtroom.

At NNU, we also prepare you for careers beyond the traditional paths like private security, safeguarding businesses and individuals or homeland security, defending our nation from threats. Our specialized research training also paves the way for graduate studies or law school, positioning you for roles such as an attorney or legal advisor. Internships and field experiences further enrich your learning, providing you with practical insights into the criminal justice system.

A bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from NNU doesn’t just prepare you for a job; it empowers you to make a significant impact in the field of justice.

What can I expect from the practical experience in your criminal justice courses?

Imagine walking through the doors of Northwest Nazarene University, where an immersive journey awaits you in our Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice program. One of the cornerstones of this transformative experience is our criminal justice courses, designed to provide hands-on, practical exposure to the world of criminal justice.

In our program, you’ll find yourself diving deep into the models, theories and methods of investigation in criminology, guided by faculty mentors who are not just teachers but experienced professionals in the field. They’ll be there every step of the way, fostering your competency with warmth and guidance, always open for conversations, and ready to provide advice.

As you immerse yourself in these real-world scenarios, you’ll discover how the concepts you’ve learned in the classroom come to life. You’ll gain invaluable insights into law enforcement and legal practices, helping you prepare for a diverse range of careers in the criminal justice field.
Moreover, this practicum emphasizes the development of strong liberal arts skills. Students must learn to acquire information from a variety of sources, communicate effectively, understand and work with individuals from diverse backgrounds and make critical decisions.

At NNU, we aim to develop students who exhibit Christ-like character, academic excellence, social responsiveness and creative engagement. The criminal justice practicum is integral to this vision, providing a platform for you to apply your knowledge and skills in practical settings.

How does the criminal justice program at NNU differ from other schools?

Unlike other institutions, our program is deeply rooted in Christian-based education, emphasizing ethics and community support. Our mission is to graduate individuals who are technically adept, ethically grounded and socially responsive.

One of the standout features of our program is our commitment to fostering strong liberal arts skills. Our students learn to acquire information from various sources, communicate effectively in written and oral formats, understand and work effectively with individuals from diverse backgrounds and think critically to make informed decisions. This comprehensive skillset sets our graduates apart in their chosen careers or further studies.

At NNU, we ensure that our students are competent in the criminal justice process and theories, models and methods of investigation in criminology. They gain a thorough understanding of the criminal justice system’s fields and practices, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to excel in this dynamic field.

But what truly sets us apart is our emphasis on instilling Christ-like character, academic excellence, social responsiveness and creative engagement in our students. We aim to produce professionals who don’t just possess the necessary technical skills but also embody ethical values and a robust sense of social responsibility.

NNU’s criminal justice program offers more than just an education—it provides a well-rounded, ethically grounded foundation for a fulfilling career in criminal justice. Our BA in Criminal Justice program is a testament to our commitment to producing graduates who positively impact society.