Criminal Investigations Degrees in Dallas, TX: Program Summaries

At least 13 schools in the Dallas, TX, area offer bachelor's degree programs in criminal investigations, with several community colleges offering 2-year programs. This article profiles three schools within 35 miles of Dallas. Read an overview of their programs, requirements and admission info and find out which school is right for you.

Comparison of Criminal Investigations Degree Programs in Dallas

Several schools in the Dallas, TX, area offer degree programs that focus on criminal investigations through studies in criminology, criminal justice or a related field. This article focuses on three schools, all within a 50-minute drive of downtown Dallas that offer degree programs with courses on criminal investigations. A table allows prospective students to easily compare facts about the schools, and there is some brief information at the end of the article about a few other schools in the Dallas area.

  • About 13 miles from downtown, The University of Texas at Dallas offers bachelor's, master's and doctoral degree programs in criminology, including a fast-track program for students who wish to earn a master's degree at an accelerated pace.
  • The University of North Texas in Denton, approximately 35 miles from Dallas, is another public institution offering bachelor's and master's degree programs in criminal justice.
  • Texas Christian University (TCU) is a selective admissions private university with bachelor's and master's degree programs in criminal justice. It is about 33 miles from Dallas. TCU also offers opportunities to study abroad.

Comparison of Schools

Students who are looking for a criminal investigations program must consider many factors. The following table makes it easy to compare school options.

The University of Texas at Dallas University of North Texas Texas Christian University
School Type 4-year, public 4-year, public 4-year, private not-for-profit
Total Enrollment (2017) 27,642* 38,276* 10,489*
Campus Setting Midsize city Midsize city Large city
Undergraduate Tuition (2017-2018) $11,528 in-state; $29,656 out-of-state* $10,544 in-state; $20,504 out-of-state* $44,760*
% of Students Receiving Financial Aid (2017) 74%* 79%* 80%*
Undergraduate Admission Rate (2017) 76%* 72%* 41%*
Undergraduate Retention Rate (2017) 88% (full-time); 74% (part-time)* 78% (full-time); 53% (part-time)* 91% (full-time); 100% (part-time)*
Graduation Rate (students who began in 2011) 69%* 54%* 83%*

Source: *NCES College Navigator

The University of Texas at Dallas

The Dallas-area campus of the large University of Texas system is located in the suburb of Richardson. The School of Economic, Political and Policy Studies is home to the Center for Crime and Justice Studies, which offers degree programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Faculty members include academic journal editors for the Journal of Quantitative Criminology, Police Quarterly and the Journal of Drug Issues.

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Criminology

In this criminology bachelor's program, students learn about justice theories, research methods, police and society, court processes, and youth crime. Students who wish to pursue an advanced degree in criminology may participate in the fast-track program, with the opportunity to concurrently complete master's degree coursework.

Master of Science (M.S.) in Criminology

In this M.S. program offered by The University of Texas at Dallas, students will need to complete 36 credit hours of coursework. Relevant research facilities include computer laboratories with access to Lexis Nexis, WestLaw and geographic information systems (GIS). Graduate coursework covers crime and measurement, research design, justice policy, and criminality.

Doctor of Philosophy in Criminology

This doctoral program allows students to perform in-depth research related to criminology and criminal behavior. Graduates are prepared for work as criminal justice researchers or university professors.

University of North Texas

North of Dallas in the city of Denton, the University of North Texas houses the College of Public Affairs and Community Service. Students may complete undergraduate and graduate programs in criminal justice.

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Criminal Justice

Completion of the criminal justice bachelor's program at the University of North Texas can prepare students for law enforcement careers, including those of police officers, sheriff's deputies, probation or parole officers, loss prevention officers or victim's advocates. Program coursework includes topics such as criminological theory, police systems and criminal law procedure. Students can also participate in the school's criminal justice internship program. This program is offered on-campus and in a fully-online format.

Master of Science in Criminal Justice

The M.S. in Criminal Justice program at the University of North Texas offers both a non-thesis and a thesis option for its on-campus program. The online program is also a non-thesis option. Students have the opportunity to conduct research under faculty supervision or earn credit through an internship for the on-campus program. Graduate criminal justice courses cover topics such as prison violence, homeland security and police tactics.

Texas Christian University

The AddRan College of Liberal Arts at TCU offers an undergraduate program in criminal justice. Students in this program may have the opportunity to study abroad in leadership programs in Scandinavia or Japan.

Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice

The criminal justice bachelor's program at TCU features coursework on corrections, white-collar crime, organized crime, society and law and juvenile delinquency. Students may also participate in the Criminal Justice Society and complete an internship under the supervision of a practitioner/mentor at a local law enforcement agency.

Master of Science in Criminal Justice & Criminology

The M.S. in Criminal Justice & Criminology is an all-online program that is geared toward professionals and continuing students. It offers both a thesis and non-thesis track. Students will take courses that cover justice systems, statistics, courts, and white-collar crime.

Other School Options

Several area community colleges offer programs related to criminal investigations. In the Dallas area, additional institutions offer bachelor's degree programs in criminal justice or criminology. At Dallas Baptist University, students can earn a B.A. or B.S. in Criminal Justice. Texas Wesleyan University also offers a B.S. in Criminal Justice. For students interested in a public institution, Texas Woman's University offers a B.S. in Criminal Justice.


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