You could be enforcing the law and protecting citizen rights.
If your motivation is helping people and doing something different every day, a career in Criminal Justice might be just what you are looking for. The Criminal Justice program will prepare you for entry into the field of police work and related occupations.
What are my career choices?
A graduate of the Associate of Applied Science (AAS) in Criminal Justice program can expect to work in federal, state, county and municipal jobs. With experience, you could move into administrative or supervisory positions in corrections, security and/or law enforcement.
What classes do I have to take?
You will take a core of criminal justice courses, technical electives related to criminal justice, and general education courses.
What are my degree, diploma, or certificate options?
Degrees and Transfers
- Associate in Applied Science (AAS) Degree in Criminal Justice - Criminal Justice Track (PDF)
- AAS Degree in Criminal Justice - Corrections Track (PDF)
- AAS Degree in Criminal Justice - Law Enforcement Track (PDF)
- AAS Degree in Criminal Justice - Security and Loss Prevention Track (PDF)
If you want to get a bachelor's degree, Campbellsville University, Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) and Midway University have completer degrees in Criminal Justice. EKU's will sync with ECTC's AAS degree, while Campbellsville and Midway require some specific classes.
- AAS in Criminal Justice transfer to Campbellsville University
- AAS in Criminal Justice transfer to Midway University
Be aware that if you want a Justice Administration bachelor's degree at the University of Louisville or Criminology bachelor's degree at Western Kentucky University, you need to earn an Associate in Arts degree instead of an AAS, as the CRJ classes will not transfer there. See the ECTC Transfer page for more information and AA transfer plans specific to particular transfer schools.
- Computer Forensics Certificate (PDF)
- Corrections Certificate (PDF)
- Criminal Justice Core Certificate (PDF)
- Law Enforcement Certificate (PDF)
- Security and Loss Prevention Certificate (PDF)
Field Licensure Requirements
Depending upon your choice of specialization, you may need to obtain additional certifications to work in the criminal justice field. For example, if you choose the law enforcement track you will have to attend an academy to become certified. However, no additional certifications are necessary to graduate from the program.
Other Important Information
Most potential employers will require that graduates have a criminal background check and security clearance. A felony conviction or a bad driving record could keep you from gaining employment. Also, keep in mind that some agencies will usually have physical fitness requirements.
Where do I start?
Apply for admission to ECTC to receive information from the Admissions Office about submitting your placement test scores (ACT or other exams) and to schedule a meeting with an advisor to register for your classes.
Length of Program
You can earn an Associate in Applied Science or an Associate in Arts degree in two years if you maintain full-time status.
This information should not be considered a substitute for the KCTCS Catalog (PDF, 408 pages). You should always choose classes in cooperation with your faculty advisor to ensure that you meet all degree requirements.