Bachelor of Science (BS): Corrections Degree Overview

Oct 30, 2019

Corrections is often a concentration or track in a criminal justice degree program. These bachelor's degree programs typically offer students the chance to get hands-on practice through internships but some programs may offer online courses.

Essential Information

A Bachelor of Science in Corrections program prepares graduates to take positions in juvenile and adult corrections, which include parole, probation, institutions or other areas of correctional treatment that's community based. Students gain skills in a number of areas, including institutional policies, regulations and general security procedures. Other areas of focus include inmate protection, social disturbance management, riot control, hostage negotiation and disarming weapon-bearing prisoners.

SAT or ACT scores are required for entry into this program. Some programs offer online coursework depending on the school. An opportunity to do hands-on training is required through an internship.

Bachelor of Science in Corrections

The program's curriculum combines coursework with internships where students obtain real-time experience working in the field. Some courses may be offered through distance learning. Students take courses in various fields, such as government, psychology and sociology. Other course topics may include:

  • Criminal procedure
  • Administrative techniques in corrections
  • Criminal investigations
  • Juvenile corrections
  • Delinquency and crime prevention
  • Defensive tactics

Popular Career Options

Graduates have the knowledge and experience from courses and internships to qualify for employment in various settings in law enforcement. Possible career titles may include:

  • Correctional treatment specialist
  • Correctional counselor
  • Case manager
  • Probation officer
  • Youth correctional case worker

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics published employment growth expectations for several correctional careers during the 2018-2028 decade, such as probation officers and correctional treatment specialists (3%), as well as correctional officers and jailers (-7%). Little to no growth in employment opportunities was projected for law enforcement workers in general during this time. The bureau also provided the following average annual salaries for corrections profession as of May 2018: $49,300 for correctional officers and jailers, and $58,790 for probation officers and correctional treatment specialists.

Continuing Education Information

Correctional officers may find employment with an associate's degree, but many employers prefer a bachelor's degree or higher, particularly for probation or parole officers and correctional treatment specialists. Individuals interested in advancement may often pursue master's degrees in psychology, criminal justice or social work. Law enforcement and corrections careers also require always being abreast of new laws and legal techniques, so law enforcement workers usually attend training sessions and seminars as often as necessary.

Students who earn a bachelor of science in corrections study subjects such as criminal procedure, defensive tactics, and criminal investigations. Professionals who may have a busy schedule may be able to find programs that offer some courses online.

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