Undergraduate Programs

BS in Criminal Justice and Criminology

The Bachelor of Science (BS) in Criminal Justice and Criminology introduces students to all aspects of the nation's complex criminal justice system, while giving them a strong background in the liberal arts.

Students majoring in criminal justice and criminology are required to complete a total of 12 criminal justice and criminology courses, totaling 36 credit hours in addition to the required courses identified by Loyola University Chicago for students to receive either a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or Bachelor of Science (BS) degree from the university.

Students are required to take 12 criminal justice and criminology courses, including 8 specific courses and 4 additional major electives. Students also must take a statistics course; they may take CJC 206 (Statistics) or a comparable course in sociology, psychology, or statistics. The eight mandatory courses include:

  • CJC 101 Introduction to Criminal Justice (Prerequisite for all other criminal justice courses)
  • CJC 201 Theories of Criminal Behavior
  • CJC 202 Criminal Courts
  • CJC 203 Policing
  • CJC 204 Corrections
  • CJC 205 Research Methods
  • CJC 322 Criminal Law OR CJC 323 Criminal Procedure
  • CJC 399 Capstone Course OR CJC 390 Capstone Experience Internship (Required senior‑level course)

For more information, please contact Undergraduate Admission.

BS in Forensic Science (Interdisciplinary)

Forensic science combines natural science and criminal justice, and requires that its practitioners possess substantial technical expertise and knowledge, critical analytic and thinking abilities, superior communications skills and an ethical awareness of the role of the scientist in the legal process.

Forensic scientists interact with law enforcement to collect, examine and evaluate criminal evidence applying knowledge and technology from anthropology, biology and chemistry. This evidence may include hair, blood, and other bodily fluids; tool and tire marks; residue from gunshots; and textile fibers from clothing and other materials.

Forensic scientists work in morgues, laboratories, court settings, and police departments. They are employed by local, state, and federal government agencies; public and private universities; medical examiner offices; forensic and medical laboratories; hospitals; law firms; and police departments. They can also be self-employed as consultants to courts, law enforcement agencies, university-based research laboratories, law firms, and medical examiner offices. To learn more, please contact Undergraduate Admission.

Minor in Criminal Justice and Criminology

Students majoring in other disciplines do have the opportunity to minor in criminal justice and criminology. Students wishing to do so must make an appointment with the chairperson of the department and select the appropriate courses in close consultation with the chairperson.

Any student minoring in criminal justice and criminology must complete CJC 101 and five other courses totaling 18 credit hours.

Among the five courses beyond CJC 101, students are required to take at least two of the following classes:

Minor in the Psychology of Crime & Justice (Interdisciplinary)

Interest in the interface between psychology and criminal justice is an official field of study and has informed many different careers. This minor derives from the field of Psychology and Law, which is Division 41 of the American Psychological Association (click here for the division's website and information on career and graduate school options: http://www.apadivisions.org). The field of psychology and law examines how the interface of psychology and criminal justice research can improve the legal systems and responses to justice-involved persons. Professionals in this field provide specialized expertise across the many social systems that clients with mental illness utilize, including the criminal justice, mental health, substance abuse, and social service systems. The minor also provides critical information for students who desire investigation careers, including risk assessment, expert testimony, and intelligence gathering, and forensic science. It also is ideal for those interested in advocacy for disadvantaged groups. 

The interdisciplinary minor in psychology of crime and justice gives students an advantage when applying for jobs in areas such as prisons, juvenile facilities, social service agencies, victim services, police departments, child care agencies, probation, parole, family court, addiction services, hospitals, and community mental health centers. Some students get jobs as forensic researchers doing studies and evaluations of at-risk populations and may seek employment in federal law enforcement agencies. Students also can pursue graduate training in forensic clinical and social psychology, criminology, and forensic social work.

The Departments of Psychology and Criminal Justice & Criminology have designed a sequence of study that provides students with the academic and experiential backgrounds they will need to purse a career or advanced professional study. 

All students must complete six courses for the minor.

All students must complete two required 300-level:

  • PSYC 372 Psychology and Law
  • Choose either CJC 345 Social Justice & Crime OR CJC 346 Mental Illness & Crime

Psychology majors must complete CJC 101 (The Criminal Justice System). Criminal justice and criminology majors must complete PSYC 101 (General Psychology). Students who are neither PSYC nor CJC majors must complete both CJC 101 and PSYC 101. The Psychology of Crime and Justice Minor is not open to students who are double majors in Psychology and CJC.  

Students select the remaining courses from the following list of electives. Psychology majors must take two criminal justice and criminology courses and one psychology course from the list. Criminal justice and criminology majors must take two psychology courses and one criminal justice and criminology course from the list. These courses must be taken in addition to the courses required for the major in psychology or the major in criminal justice and criminology. All other majors must take one CJC course and one PSYC course from the following list of electives:

Psychology and criminal justice and criminology courses taken for the respective majors cannot also be used to fulfill requirements for the minor in psychology or the minor in criminal justice and criminology.

We strongly recommend that psychology and criminal justice and criminology majors completing the minor do an internship, field work or research project focused on the psychology of crime and justice by participating in one of the capstone experiences which include a practicum experience:

  • CJC 390 Field Practicum
  • PSYC 390 Internship in Psychology (prerequisites: PSYC 304 and PSYC 306)

Or, a supervised research project:

  • PSYC 397 Independent Research (prerequisites: PSYC 306; senior psychology major; department and instructor permission)
  • CJC 396 Independent Study

Or, an honors thesis:

  • PSYCH 370 Honors Research (requires admission to PSYC Honors program & PSYC 369 as a prerequisite)

These courses will count toward the psychology or criminal justice and criminology major, but not the minor in the psychology of crime and justice.

For more information, contact Dr. Loretta Stalans, Director of the Minor in Psychology of Crime and Justice, at lstalan@luc.edu.

Combined BS/MA in Criminal Justice and Criminology

Students eager to accelerate their education and expand their career opportunities can choose to apply for the combined five-year BS/MA program, leading to an MA degree in Criminal Justice and Criminology. The BS/MA program enables criminal justice and criminology majors to begin fulfilling core requirements for a master's degree while completing the bachelor's degree.

Students admitted to the program may apply nine credit hours taken in their senior year toward the MA degree. Courses for the MA degree complement the undergraduate schedule, preparing BS/MA students for the greater challenges of a graduate program in their senior year and for broader career opportunities in the future.

After graduating with a BS degree, students complete remaining course requirements for the MA degree during a fifth year at Loyola. An internship or thesis may then be completed during the summer or following semester.

For more information on the combined BS/MA in Criminal Justice and Criminology, contact Dr. David Olson, Graduate Program Director, at dolson1@luc.edu.