Criminal Justice AS

Changes to this program effective Fall 2017. 

The Criminal Justice Studies Program is a theory and knowledge-based curriculum that offers comprehensive preparation for a wide range of careers in the criminal justice system. Many of our students either go on to, or come to us from, Act 120 municipal police training or Act 2 deputy sheriffs' training. Many graduates pursue careers in local law enforcement, the federal services, corrections, adult and juvenile probation and parole, court administration, and the private security sector. Some graduates go on to attain four-year degrees in criminal justice or allied fields of study. Some pursue pre-law, law school, and eventual careers in the prosecutorial or criminal defense bars.

A 12-credit Certificate of Completion in Homeland Security is available in conjunction with the A.S. degree in Criminal Justice. Interested students should contact the Program Director.

The curriculum introduces students to the rewards of public service and to the personal satisfaction and honor that a career in public service can offer.

The curriculum also offers in-service professionals already in the field, an opportunity for further educational and professional growth.

The program meets the competencies and requirements specified by the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Transfer Agreement Oversight Committee (TAOC) for seamless transfer to schools in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE).

Career Pathway

Program Outcomes

A graduate should be able to:

  • demonstrate an appreciation of and sensitivity toward the ethnic, racial and gender diversity of American society, and an understanding of how these values can be reflected and projected by the criminal justice system.
  • demonstrate a thorough understanding of the functions and roles of all major aspects of the United States criminal justice system in society.
  • demonstrate an appreciation of the cardinal concept of "due process of law" which constitutes the basic standards of fairness and decency that are necessary for the maintenance of free society and an understanding of the constitutional underpinnings, theory and structure of our body of criminal law, procedure, and the rules of evidence.
  • demonstrate a firm grasp of the constitutional constraints under which police and prosecutors must operate in a free society, and the reasoning behind these limitations.
  • identify and analyze the ethical issues that arise in each component of the criminal justice system.


First Semester

ENG 101 English Composition I 3
SPC 120 Public Speaking
HIS 205 History of US from 1877 3
CJS 100 Introduction to Criminal Justice 3
CJS 105
(15 Credit Hours)
Criminal Law 3

Second Semester

ENG 115 Writing for Technical Communication 3
SOC 101 Introduction to Sociology 3
MAT 106 Mathematics Applications 3
CJS 107 Criminal Procedure and Rules of Evidence 3
CJS 205 Ethics and the American Criminal Justice System 3
ESW 245
(18 Credit Hours)
Safety and First Aid 2-3

Third Semester

Elective Core Goal 7: Aesthetic Sensibility, and TAOC Category 6** 3
CJS 220 Criminology 3
Elective Core Goal 8: Physical and Life Sciences*** 4
HIS 203 History of the U.S. to 1877 3
CIS 110
(16 Credit Hours)
Introduction to Information Systems 3

Fourth Semester

Elective CJS Elective 3
CJS 235 Introduction to Juvenile Justice System 3
CJS 240 The Correctional Process 3
Elective Elective 3
POL 124
(15 Credit Hours)
American National Government 3


*MAT 103 or 106

**TAOC Area 6 and Core Goal 7 -- ART 101,102, 103, 111, 121, ENG 221, 222, or MUS 110

***Meets TAOC

****MAT 100, 103 or 106

CJS 100 and CJS 105 must be taken prior to all other CJS courses.

Graduates of accredited Pennsylvania Municipal Police Academies are eligible for articulation of up to 15 credit hours toward the required courses for the AS degree in Criminal Justice. For further information contact the Program Director.

Students electing the Certificate of Completion in Homeland Security will complete CJS 250 – Terrorism and Counterterrorism, CJS 251 – Introduction to Homeland Security, CJS 252 – Intelligence Analysis and Security Management, and CJS 253 – Transportation and Border Security. Any one of these courses may be applied in satisfaction of the CJS elective requirement in Semester 4.