Criminal Justice Colleges in Sacramento, CA with Degree Overviews

The Sacramento area has multiple universities and colleges that offer criminal justice programs. Learn about the degree programs, admission info and requirements for three of these schools, all within 20 miles of Sacramento.

Sacramento, CA, Criminal Justice School Options

Individuals interested in a criminal justice education have several options in Sacramento, CA. This article looks at three public and private schools less than 25 minutes from the capital city that offer various degree programs in criminal justice. Also included is a chart that offers a side-by-side comparison of various aspects of the schools, such as enrollment and costs. At the end of the article is a little information about criminal justice studies at a few other nearby schools.

  • California State University - Sacramento, about three miles from the city center, offers both a master's and bachelor's degree in criminal justice. It has one of the largest criminal justice programs in the country.
  • Sacramento City College, just under five miles from downtown, offers two associate's degree programs in administration of justice.
  • Woodland Community College offers associate's programs in law enforcement and corrections. It is about 12 miles from the city center.

Comparison of Schools

Students need to consider many factors when choosing a school. The following table lists pertinent information for each of these three schools, making it easy to compare them.

California State University - Sacramento Sacramento City College Woodland Community College
School Type 4-year, public 2-year, public 2-year, public
Total Enrollment (2017) 31,255* 21,323* 3,332*
Campus Setting Large city Large city Small suburb
Tuition and Fees (2017-2018) $7,204 in-state; $19,084 out-of-state* $1,104 in-state; $8,208 out-of-state* $1,124 in-state; $6,284 out-of-state*
% of Students Receiving Financial Aid (2016-2017) 84%* 76%* 84%*
Acceptance Rate (2017) 68%* N/A - Open admissions N/A - Open admissions
Retention Rate (2016-2017) 83% for full-time students; 66% for part-time students* 65% for full-time students; 25% for part-time students* 67% for full-time students; 44% for part-time students*
Graduation Rate 48% (3% transfer-out rate) for students who began in Fall 2011* 24% (9% transfer-out rate) for students who began in Fall 2014* 21% (6% transfer-out rate) for students who began in Fall 2014*

Source: *NCES College Navigator

California State University - Sacramento

California State University-Sacramento (CSUS) offers a bachelor's and master's degree program in criminal justice. There are no specific requirements to become a pre-major in criminal justice, but both incoming and transfer students must be admitted to the university before they can apply to the undergraduate major.

Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice

CSUS offers a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice. Students need an overall GPA of 2.6 or higher, and must complete 12 units of certain criminal justice introductory courses with a grade of 'C' or higher before they are eligible for admission to this major. Required criminal justice courses include the American court system, arrest, search and seizure laws, public safety administration, police and society, and fundamentals of corrections. Students must select an area of interest within the program, which can include criminal justice administration, investigation, corrections, offenses and offenders or law. A grade of 'C' or higher is needed in all upper-division courses.

Master of Science in Criminal Justice

CSUS offers a Master of Science in Criminal Justice that provides students with a deeper understanding of law enforcement, the legal system, criminal justice and offender rehabilitation. Undergraduate students who are planning to pursue an advanced degree may want to prepare for such research-intensive work by taking courses in behavioral science methodology, research paper composition, independent library research and statistical analysis. Graduate program coursework includes criminal justice research methods, historical studies of the American criminal justice system, justice organization management and administration of juvenile justice programs. Work on the master's degree program must be completed within a 7-year period.

Sacramento City College

Sacramento City College offers two associate's degree programs closely related to criminal justice. These programs prepare students for entry-level employment as well as for transfer to 4-year degree programs at other colleges or universities.

Associate in Science in Administration of Justice

Sacramento City College offers two associate's degree programs in administration of justice, the Associate in Science and the Associate in Science for Transfer. Courses include criminal procedures and investigation, community relations, investigative report writing, criminal law and juvenile delinquency. The general education requirements for the transfer degree contains more science, technology and math courses as compared to the general A.S. requirements.

Woodland Community College

Through its Administration of Justice department, Woodland Community College offers degrees and mentoring to prepare its students for criminal justice-related careers.

Associate of Science in Law Enforcement

The college's Associate of Science in Law Enforcement degree program provides students with training in courses such as criminal investigations, criminal justice process and criminal law. Electives in juvenile law procedures, narcotics and corrections are also offered. The program includes mentoring, which allows students to develop career track plans.

Associate of Science in Corrections

Students in this program focus on such topics as delinquent behavior, correctional counseling and correctional treatment programs. They also explore criminal law and get an introduction to law enforcement and the criminal justice process.

Other School Options

Relevant associate degree programs in administration of justice are also available at Folsom Lake College 19 miles away and Sierra College 20 miles away.


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