Best Online Master’s in Criminal Justice in California

An online master’s in criminal justice degree provides you with the knowledge base and educational requirements to advance your career in criminal justice. Busy professionals can earn the education they need through online master’s degree programs without disrupting their careers.

Finding a master’s in criminal justice in California helps Californians find the most affordable programs at colleges and universities they and their employers know and trust.

An online master’s in criminal justice prepares students to advance careers in criminal justice, such as detectives and criminal investigators. Students engage with courses in advanced topics, such as ethics and law, applied data analysis, theory and practice in criminal justice, program evaluation, research, and cultural diversity in criminal justice. Students often must complete a professional experience component, as well as a final project or thesis.

Sometimes these programs include concentration options, in areas such as forensic science, cybercrime, forensic psychology, or homeland security. These programs typically take two years to complete and require 30-45 credits.

Ationally, detectives and criminal investigators earn a national median annual salary of over $83,000, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In California, detectives and criminal investigators earn a median annual salary of over $104,000. The job growth rate in California is 4.8% on par with the national average for all occupations.

Detectives and criminal investigators usually start their careers as police officers, and need licensure through the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training.

Detectives and Criminal Investigators Career Prospects in California
Job Growth by 20261.7%
Job Growth by 20214.8%
Average Wage (Mean):
$111,000
Entry Annual Wage:
$91,902
Median Annual Wage:
$104,428
Experienced Annual Wage:
$136,741
Sources: the State of California Employment Development Department’s 2019 First Quarter Employment Projections and the State of California Employment Development Department’s 2020 First Quarter Employment and Wage Information

Find your online master’s in criminal justice in CA

Study confidently at a quality institution in California where you know you will receive training relevant to California laws and regulations, and with attention to current affairs in California.

Finding an online degree at a regionally accredited college or university will help ensure not only the acceptance of your degree by hiring professionals, but it will enable you to pursue an advanced degree should you someday want to take your education to the next level.

Here’s our list of online master’s degrees in criminal justice offered by regionally accredited colleges and universities in California. Sort to find the best, most affordable, and best value online colleges for criminal justice degrees.

California Online Master’s in Criminal Justice Frequently Asked Questions+

Why Should I Get a Master’s in Criminal Justice in California?

Earning a master’s in criminal justice in California allows Californian students to learn from local institutions and benefit from in-state tuition discounts.

How Long are California Master’s in Criminal Justice Programs?

California master’s in criminal justice programs are typically two years long.

What is the Median California Salary for Detectives and Criminal Investigators?

The median salary in California for detectives and criminal investigators is $104,000 per year.

What are the Job-growth Prospects for Master’s in Criminal Justice Graduates?

The job-growth rate for California detectives and criminal investigators is 4.8%.

What Kind of California Licensing do Master’s in Criminal Justice Graduates Need?

Detectives and criminal investigators need licensure through the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training.

Sort Schools By:
    1. University of California-Irvine

      Irvine, CA

      Program Score

      99

      CA Relative Cost

      Key FactsAnswers
      Total Enrollment36,908 (1% fully online)
      Public or PrivatePublic
      USDE Special Government StatusAsian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institution, Hispanic-Serving Institution
      Number of Online Programs63
      AccreditationRegional: WASC Senior College and University Commission
      Average In-State Undergraduate Tuition$13,727 per year
      Net Cost by Income
      Source: National Center for Educational Statistics

      CAOnlineColleges.com Awards

      Diverse Student BodyDisability Friendly SchoolFirst-Generation Student Friendly SchoolAsian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving InstitutionHispanic-Serving Institution

      DegreeCredits NeededCompletion Time1
      MA - Criminology523-4 years
      See UCI’s full list of online degrees!
    2. University of Southern California

      Los Angeles, CA

      Program Score

      90

      CA Relative Cost

      Key FactsAnswers
      Total Enrollment48,321 (14% fully online)
      Public or PrivatePrivate
      Number of Online Programs119
      AccreditationRegional: WASC Senior College and University Commission
      Average In-State Undergraduate Tuition$58,195 per year
      Net Cost by Income
      Source: National Center for Educational Statistics

      CAOnlineColleges.com Awards

      Experienced Online School
      Diverse Student BodyFirst-Generation Student Friendly School

      DegreeCredits NeededCompletion Time1
      MS - Criminal Justice241-2 years
      See USC’s full list of online degrees!
    3. California State University-Fresno

      Fresno, CA

      Program Score

      83

      CA Relative Cost

      Key FactsAnswers
      Total Enrollment24,298 (1% fully online)
      Public or PrivatePublic
      USDE Special Government StatusAsian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institution, Hispanic-Serving Institution
      Number of Online Programs19
      AccreditationRegional: WASC Senior College and University Commission
      Average In-State Undergraduate Tuition$6,589 per year
      Net Cost by Income
      Source: National Center for Educational Statistics

      CAOnlineColleges.com Awards

      #2 Best California Online College#1 Most Affordable California Online College#1 Best Value California Online CollegeDiverse Student BodyFirst-Generation Student Friendly SchoolAsian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving InstitutionHispanic-Serving Institution

      DegreeCredits NeededCompletion Time1
      MS - Criminology302-3 years
      See CSUF’s full list of online degrees!
    4. California State University-San Bernardino

      San Bernardino, CA

      Program Score

      80

      CA Relative Cost

      Key FactsAnswers
      Total Enrollment20,638 (4% fully online)
      Public or PrivatePublic
      USDE Special Government StatusHispanic-Serving Institution
      Number of Online Programs12
      AccreditationRegional: WASC Senior College and University Commission
      Average In-State Undergraduate Tuition$6,886 per year
      Net Cost by Income
      Source: National Center for Educational Statistics

      CAOnlineColleges.com Awards

      Diverse Student BodyFirst-Generation Student Friendly SchoolHispanic-Serving Institution

      DegreeCredits NeededCompletion Time1
      MA - Criminal Justice453-4 years
      See CSUSB’s full list of online degrees!
    5. National University

      La Jolla, CA

      Program Score

      46*

      CA Relative Cost

      Key FactsAnswers
      Total Enrollment16,670 (36% fully online)
      Public or PrivatePrivate
      Number of Online Programs89
      AccreditationRegional: WASC Senior College and University Commission
      Average In-State Undergraduate Tuition$13,320 per year
      Net Cost by Income
      Source: National Center for Educational Statistics

      CAOnlineColleges.com Awards

      #9 Most Affordable California Online CollegeA Best Value California Online College Adult Student Friendly School
      Experienced Online School
      Diverse Student Body

      DegreeCredits NeededCompletion Time1
      MA - Criminal Justice453-4 years
      See NU’s full list of online degrees!

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