The advent of online criminal justice degrees has made it easier for an entirely new class of students to earn their bachelor’s degrees. Working law enforcement professionals who did not previously
attend college or receive a degree now have the opportunity to continue their education without leaving their careers.
Some law enforcement positions require officials to have an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in order to hold the job. Others, depending on the region or city, will hire officers out of high school once they have completed the specialized training required by their police force. But to move through the ranks and be promoted, or to get a job in another city, these professionals soon realize they want an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. An online degree for criminal justice is a convenient way to continue working in law enforcement without having to take time off a busy and ever-changing work schedule to attend on-campus classes or study groups.
Although some common myths about online degrees exist, they are an increasingly popular option for working professionals. Specifically, an online degree for criminal justice offers plenty of benefits that the traditional, on-campus version of education does not:
The primary reason for choosing an online program is convenience. An online format means less driving, no worrying about parking, avoiding losing courses that do not fit into a work schedule, and not having to take valuable time away from home life to attend on-campus classes.
Online students can log into their class when they get off of work, whether that time is five in the evening or three in the morning. Additionally, they have access to vast online library resources without having to physically check out library books.
Choosing an online degree for criminal justice is usually more cost effective than attending a traditional, on-campus program. First, incidental fees that students pay– for parking decals or activity and facilities access– are eliminated. Second, the school’s overhead is cut down with an online program, and that decrease in cost can be passed down to the student.
Third, many online programs offer discounts or scholarships for current law enforcement professionals. These factors combine to cut costs for an online degree dramatically, making online learning an affordable option for many professionals.
Most online programs offer their courses over shorter time frames than a traditional, 16-week semester. These six or eight week classes are more work intensive because of the condensed time period, but they also allow continuously enrolled students to be full time while taking just two classes at a time.
This is compared to a traditional student who must take four courses at once to be full time. The benefit to these shortened courses is the speed with which they can be completed while a person’s focus is new and interested. After eight weeks, the student moves on to the next set of courses, maintaining a crisp pace of enrollment and degree completion.
An online criminal justice degree is clearly a great way for law enforcement or professionals in related fields to earn the degree they need. Start researching your options right away!