The Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice (BSCJ) program is the study of crime and the administration of criminal justice systems and their effect on society. The curriculum is designed to provide practical knowledge of criminal justice systems and operations with an emphasis on the criminal courts, investigative principles, ethical principles, criminal law, victims of crime, and community relations. It provides the opportunity to continue studies in various areas which include: organized crime, white collar crime, drug and alcohol abuse, social and forensic psychology, and terrorism and terrorism response. This directed self‑study program will provide the requisite knowledge base to understand the causes of crime, the means to prevent crime, and to be an effective leader in the field of criminal justice.

Quick Facts:

  • Credits required: 120
  • Cost per credit: $425
  • Program length: 4 years (full-time status)
  • Max transfer credits: 90 credits

First Responders can save 15% on tuition.  Required documentation and restrictions apply.  See details.

Time to degree completion can be shortened by accelerating completion of courses and through credits accepted in transfer.

What you’ll learn

Apply effective written communication skills to various interactions with law enforcement personnel, victims, witnesses, and suspects utilizing the language conventions specific to criminal justice.

Demonstrate competence in utilizing oral communication skills appropriately given the purpose and the context of the communication.

Demonstrate critical thinking in the understanding of key concepts in criminal justice, applying these concepts appropriately, evaluating and justifying positions, and creating coherent arguments.

Analyze the major historical and contemporary issues facing the criminal justice system as they relate to society and respect for diversity.

Practice and apply inter‑personal skills in the educational environment so that learning criminal justice and law enforcement is related to both personal and professional goals.

Demonstrate the ability to use analytical skills in conjunction with information systems, data analysis and computer skills to understand situations in criminal justice.

Possess the knowledge, understanding, and ability to employ state‑of‑the‑art technologies common to the criminal justice profession to conduct research and present findings explaining how this data informs policies and programs.

Career Outcomes

Peace Officer

Probation Officer

Correctional Officer

Detective / Investigator

Forensic Science Technician

Fish & Game Warden

Security Officer

Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Degree Requirements

Degree Requirements Credits
General Education Courses 36
Required Core Courses 33
Elective Courses 51

Courses + Credits

The courses that comprise CalSouthern’s Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice (BSCJ) are what distinguish this innovative degree program. The program includes fundamental subjects that are the foundation to any comprehensive criminal justice program, such as criminology and criminal law, legal procedure, and principles of investigation. However, you’ll also find cutting-edge, technology-driven criminal justice courses such as digital crime, homeland security, and terrorism. In addition—and making CalSouthern’s program so unique and well-rounded—you can select courses exploring the ethics of criminal justice, social psychology, forensic psychology, and cultural diversity in criminal justice, among many others.

Required Core Courses

Lower Division Courses

  • UNIV 1000 University Success Online — 3-credits
  • LGL 3101 Introduction to Criminal Justice — 3-credits
  • LGL 3110 Criminal Procedure and the Court System — 3-credits
  • LGL 3121 Corrections: A Comprehensive View — 3-credits
  • LGL 3210 Ethics in Criminal Justice — 3-credits
  • LGL 3221 Criminal Investigation Procedures — 3-credits

Upper-Division Courses

  • LGL 3415 Criminal Law — 3-credits
  • LGL 3420 Applied Criminology — 3-credits
  • LGL 3525 Administrative Office Procedures in Criminal Justice — 3-credits
  • LGL 3531 Law Enforcement and the Community — 3-credits
  • CAP 3401 BSCJ Capstone — 3-credits

Elective and Concentration Courses

Lower Division Courses

  • LGL 3105 Family Violence — 3-credits
  • LGL 3118 Organized Crime — 3-credits
  • LGL 3128 Cultural Diversity in Criminal Justice — 3-credits
  • LGL 3130 Cyber-Crime and Cyber-Terrorism — 3-credits
  • LGL 3215 White Collar Crime — 3-credits
  • LGL 3225 Social Psychology — 3-credits
  • LGL 3228 Homeland Security — 3-credits

Upper Division Courses

  • LGL 3410 Research Methods in Criminology — 3-credits
  • LGL 3412 Drugs and Substance Abuse — 3-credits
  • LGL 3510 Introduction to Forensic Psychology — 3-credits
  • LGL 3511 Juvenile Justice – Current — 3-credits
  • LGL 3518 Introduction to Terrorism — 3-credits
  • LGL 3521 Victims and the Criminal Justice System — 3-credits
  • LGL 3535  Terrorism Response: Infrastructure and Risk Analysis — 3-credits

Download the University Catalog for full course descriptions, prerequisite information, and program details.

I had a wonderful experience and loved the flexibility of the program. I could go at my own pace, was able to work ahead when I needed to, and to take extra time when I needed to. The faculty mentors were fantastic and very helpful and inspiring. I feel like I got an excellent education for an affordable price and I appreciate everything that it brought to my life.

– Jinxi Caddel

Ready to get back to your dreams? We can help!

Contact us to learn more about our online BSCJ degree program.

Call us at: 1.800.477.2254 | Email:

Accreditation & Approvals


California Southern University is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC), which is one of six regional accrediting bodies recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). Regional accreditation is the most highly respected and recognized form of accreditation in the United States, and it provides students with a number of important benefits and opportunities.

Please visit the Accreditation & Licensure page to learn more.

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