Criminal Justice Career Training in SC: Program Descriptions

Jul 25, 2019

South Carolina has about thirty colleges that offer criminal justice programs. Learn about the degree programs, tuition info and program options for 10 of these schools to make an informed education decision.

Essential Information

Students have the option of applying to criminal justice programs at the certificate, associate's degree and bachelor's degree levels in South Carolina. While 2-year colleges grant 25-30 credit certificates and 61-70 credit associate's degrees in the field, 4-year year institutions provide students with opportunities to earn bachelor's degrees by completing 120 credits.

Some schools may allow students to transfer associate's degree credits to a bachelor's degree program. Others feature internship experiences. The following ten colleges and universities offer related programs, and an accompanying table provides tuition information.

Florence - Darlington Technical College

Florence - Darlington Technical College is located in Florence and offers an associate degree in criminal justice technology that can be completed with 69 credits. The program takes five semesters to complete, and courses include police administration, criminal investigation, criminal evidence, correctional systems and police community relations. Students are also required to complete two internships.

Greenville Technical College

Based in Greenville, students at Greenville Technical College can pursue a 61-credit associate degree in criminal justice. The program teaches students about correctional systems, criminology, criminalistics, criminal investigation, evidence, police relations and criminal law. The school has articulation agreements with several 4-year institutions in the state for students who want to transfer their credits into a bachelor's degree program.

Horry - Georgetown Technical College

Horry - Georgetown Technical College sits in Conway and offers two criminal justice associate degree programs. The criminal justice associate degree is 70 credits and includes courses in correctional systems, criminal evidence, judicial process, criminal investigation and crisis intervention. Students have the option of transferring credits to a 4-year school. A 69-credit crime scene investigation associate degree is also available that features criminal justice courses and a 135-hour internship.

Midlands Technical College

Midland Technical College is based in West Columbia and offers a certificate and associate degree in criminal justice. Students enrolled in the criminal justice certificate are required to complete 21 credits and courses in criminology, police administration, correctional systems, criminal evidence and judicial process. Credits can be transferred to the associate degree program. The criminal justice technology associate degree is 66 credits and features general education requirements, core coursework and electives.

Piedmont Technical College

Located in Greenwood, Piedmont Technical College has a criminal justice associate degree that can be completed during the day or evening. Students are required to complete 64 credits, and courses cover topics in criminology, criminal evidence, correctional systems, police community relations and judicial process. The program includes an internship, while the evening program requires that students complete additional electives.

Tri-County Technical College

Tri-County Technical College sits in Pendleton, and students at the school can pursue a certificate and an associate degree in criminal justice. The law enforcement and corrections services certificate is 27 credits and includes courses in juvenile delinquency, police community relations, correctional systems, criminology and criminal investigations. The criminal justice technology associate degree is 66 credits and can be completed in five semesters. Courses cover topics in criminal law, criminology, correctional systems and criminal evidence.

Trident Technical College

Based in Charleston, Trident Technical College features several criminal justice programs that prepare students for careers in the field. Students can pursue 30-credit certificate programs in crime scene investigation, emergency protection and management, corrections and law enforcement. The associate degree in criminal justice is 66 credits, and in addition to providing career training, also offers students the chance to transfer credits into a 4-year bachelor's degree program.

University of South Carolina - Columbia

The University of South Carolina - Columbia has a 120-credit bachelor's degree in criminology and criminal justice. Students are required to complete coursework in the criminal justice system, criminal procedures, sociology of crime, policing, corrections, the courts, criminal law and juvenile justice. The program ensures students have an understanding of criminological theories, governmental authority and components of the criminal justice system.

University of South Carolina - Upstate

Located in Spartanburg, the University of South Carolina - Upstate offers a bachelor's degree in criminal justice. The program requires that students complete 120 credits and courses in policing, criminal courts, corrections, criminal justice research methods and criminological theory.

York Technical College

York Technical College is based in Rock Hill, and students at the school can pursue a law enforcement certificate and criminal justice associate degree. The law enforcement certificate is 25 credits and teaches students about police patrol, criminal law, crisis intervention, criminal justice ethics and police community relations. The criminal justice technology associate degree is 69 credits and requires that students complete general education courses, core coursework, electives and an internship.

School Comparison: At a Glance

School Name School Type and Setting Criminal Justice Programs Offered Tuition Fees (2018-2019)*
Florence - Darlington Technical College 2-year, public; small suburb Associate in Applied Science in Criminal Justice Technology $4,462 in-district,
$4,726 in-state,
$6,598 out-of-state
Greenville Technical College 2-year, public; small city Associate in Applied Science in Criminal Justice $4,566 in-district,
$4,974 in-state,
$9,078 out-of-state
Horry - Georgetown Technical College 2-year, public; small city Associate in Applied Science in Criminal Justice Technology,
Associate in Applied Science in Crime Scene Investigation
$4,252 in-district,
$5,212 in-state,
$8,380 out-of-state
Midlands Technical College 2-year, public; large suburb Criminal Justice Certificate,
Associate in Applied Science in Criminal Justice Technology
$4,530 in-district,
$5,610 in-state,
$13,074 out-of-state
Piedmont Technical College 2-year, public; distant town Associate in Applied Science in Criminal Justice $4,421 in-district,
$5,165 in-state,
$6,413 out-of-state
Tri-County Technical College 2-year, public; large suburb Law Enforcement and Corrections Services Certificate,
Associate in Applied Science in Criminal Justice Technology
$4,326 in-district,
$5,670 in-state,
$9,750 out-of-state
Trident Technical College 2-year, public; small city Crime Scene Investigations Certificate,
Emergency Protection and Management Certificate,
Criminal Justice: Corrections Certificate,
Criminal Justice: Law Enforcement Certificate,
Associate in Applied Science in Criminal Justice
$4,551 in-district,
$5,033 in-state,
$8,484 out-of-state
University of South Carolina - Columbia 4-year, public; midsize city Bachelor of Arts in Criminology and Criminal Justice $12,616 in-district,
$12,618 in-state,
$33,298 out-of-state
University of South Carolina - Upstate 4-year, public; midsize suburb Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice $11,852 in-state,
$23,520 out-of-state
York Technical College 2-year, public; small city Law Enforcement Certificate,
Associate in Applied Science in Criminal Justice Technology
$4,817 in-district,
$5,177 in-state,
$9,977 out-of-state

Source: *NCES College Navigator.

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