With so many crime shows on television, you may find yourself drawn to the subject of criminology. The following Christian colleges are found across the country and offer bachelor's degree programs in criminology or criminal justice. These two fields are closely related, since they both look at crime in society - just from different angles.
Many private Christian schools that offer criminology/criminal justice programs can be attended for under $40,000 a year. The table below looks at the locations of some of these schools, as well as the related denomination for each.
|School Name||Institution Type||Denomination||Location||Undergraduate Tuition (2017-2018)*|
|Gonzaga University||4-year, private not-for-profit||Roman Catholic||Spokane, WA||$41,330|
|Alderson Broaddus University||4-year, private not-for-profit||American Baptist||Philippi, WV||$26,610|
|Lynchburg College||4-year, private not-for-profit||Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)||Lynchburg, VA||$37,690|
|Bethany College||4-year, private not-for-profit||Evangelical Lutheran Church||Lindsborg, KS||$26,922|
|Concordia University - Chicago||4-year, private not-for-profit||Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod||River Forest, IL||$31,588|
Source: *National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)
Overview of Christian Colleges Offering Criminology
These schools not only focus on criminology, but also on the study of criminal justice overall, providing background knowledge for several law enforcement fields. Along with taking academic courses, students can get involved with events and opportunities related to the criminology/criminal justice field, as well as faith-based service.
Gonzaga University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice program to those looking for a career in criminology. Some of the courses you may take include white collar deviance, corrections, crime & gender, and criminal theory. You can also expect to take part in a criminal justice practicum and internship. Around the Gonzaga community, there are four or more masses held daily. But if you want to get involved outside of worship, you can join the first year retreat or any other retreats that empower students in the name of Christ. There are also several platforms you can participate in on campus, such as Students for Life, the pro-life advocacy group, and the international humanitarian group Catholic Relief Services (CRS) Ambassadors.
Alderson Broaddus University
For the 2016 school year, 100% of Alderson Broaddus University undergrads who applied for financial aid received some form, whether as a grant, loan, or scholarship, per the NCES. This school offers a bachelor's degree program in criminal justice, and many of the courses have a criminology focus that looks at criminal behavior and its impact on society rather than the laws. If you have a particular interest in criminology, you may want to take the courses in deviant behavior, police operations, statistics, abnormal psychology, social problems, and investigation techniques. Outside of the classroom, students can get involved in groups, such as the Power of Women or Men of Purpose, where they're brought together to share interests, feel refreshed, and provide outreach around the community.
At Lynchburg College, outreach is an important part of being a student. Each year, roughly 70,000 hours of community service and volunteering are given by students. Students can also center their extracurricular activities around the Bible with the Ethics Bowl, an outdoor leadership program, and chapel. Lynchburg offers a Bachelor of Arts in Criminology program, along with a minor in criminology. A unique opportunity for Lynchburg students is a bi-annual trip to Edinburgh, Scotland, where students study and compare the UK criminal justice system to the US criminal justice system.
Bethany College is a small school of about 720 students. Being a small college allows Bethany to offer unique opportunities, such as the campus shutting down during times of worship so that students may attend and deepen their faith. Students can also join the chapel choir and earn credit toward their degrees by actively participating. Other opportunities for involvement include Lift High the Cross, which is a Homecoming tradition that involves taking shifts to raise a cross, and peer ministries. Students in the criminal justice major will spend time in classes studying forensic science, corrections, sex crimes, terrorism, juvenile justice, and criminal profiling.
Concordia University - Chicago
Institutional grants or scholarships were given to all undergraduate students who applied for financial aid in the 2016 year at Concordia University - Chicago. While not required, there is a daily chapel held when classes and meetings are not held. Students are encouraged to go and make chapel a daily part of their school experience. Along with the daily chapel, there are weekly prayer groups and evening Eucharists. Those majoring in criminal justice will find clubs and organizations around campus to get involved with, in addition to their classwork. For instance, the American Correctional Association does networking and takes field trips around prisons and other criminal justice institutions. Alpha Kappa Delta is the honor society dedicated to students involved in the scientific study of society, something that criminology students can really get behind.