Correctional Officer Schools and Colleges in the U.S.
Training for correctional officers is commonly offered as a standalone certificate program or part of a broader degree program in criminal justice. Students evaluating correctional officer schools should consider the types of credentials offered, program length, career goals and available specializations.
How to Select a Correctional Officer School
When considering correctional officer schools and colleges, one of the first factors a student should consider is the type of program a school offers. Credentials for correctional officers are available at the certificate and associate's, bachelor's and master's degree levels. Certificate and associate's degree programs can generally be completed in two years or less, while bachelor's degree programs typically last four years, followed by an additional 1-2 years for a master's degree.
In choosing a degree program, students also should take into account their career goals. Those seeking entry-level employment in corrections might find that a certificate or associate's degree program meets their needs, while students looking for corrections officer management or administration positions may opt for a more advanced degree.
Aspiring corrections officers also might select a school or college based on the specializations it offers. Bachelor's and master's degree programs in criminal justice - the common major for prospective corrections officers - often allow students to choose from areas of concentration, such as juvenile corrections or corrections management.
Largest Schools by Total Student Enrollment
|College/University||Student Population||Institution Type|
|Miami Dade College||57,222||4-year, primarily associate's, Public|
|College of Southern Nevada||40,310||4-year, primarily associate's, Public|
|University of Washington-Seattle Campus||39,675||4-year, Public|
|University of Iowa||29,152||4-year, Public|
|Texas State University-San Marcos||29,105||4-year, Public|
|University of Pittsburgh-Pittsburgh Campus||27,562||4-year, Public|
|St. Petersburg College||26,659||4-year, primarily associate's, Public|
|Florida Community College at Jacksonville||25,903||4-year, primarily associate's, Public|
|Northeastern University||25,837||4-year, Private not-for-profit|
|University of New Mexico-Main Campus||25,754||4-year, Public|
|University of Akron-Main Campus||24,119||4-year, Public|
|University of Toledo||22,336||4-year, Public|
|Weber State University||21,388||4-year, Public|
|University of Texas at Brownsville||17,189||4-year, Public|
|Sam Houston State University||16,662||4-year, Public|
|University of Alaska-Anchorage||16,649||4-year, Public|
|University of Alabama at Birmingham||16,149||4-year, Public|
|Saint Louis University-Main Campus||16,086||4-year, Private not-for-profit|
|Eastern Kentucky University||16,031||4-year, Public|
|Indian River State College||15,366||4-year, primarily associate's, Public|
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