Follow Christ, Lead the Way

The Bachelor of Arts degree with a Criminal Justice major prepares individuals who want to work in the justice field. This major seeks to equip the student for a fulfilling career with a foundational understanding of human behavior within criminal, transformative, and restorative justice systems. Students will be prepared to serve society as ethical, caring, serviceminded individuals. A major in Criminal Justice opens the door to many jobs in law enforcement, corrections, court-related positions, and security.


Upon graduating from the program, students should be able to:
  • Integrate Christian principles in critical thinking and decision-making.
  • Apply current and historical justice principles and practices to real-life situations.
  • Function within chosen area(s) of justice system with the insight of the functions and interdependencies of various areas.
  • Analyze procedural rules and statutes through the criminal process.
  • Examine alternatives to the conventional penal approaches through the lenses of transformative and restorative justice.
This degree program is available in the following format:

100% Online courses in a 5-week as-you-go flexible format for busy adults featuring forum discussions and weekly assignment deadlines. Serves both undergraduate and graduate students.

Explore the full enrichment of the traditional collegiate experience and make new friends on our lively campus in Circleville Ohio. Serves 17-24 year-old undergraduate students.

MAJOR42 Hours

*30 credit hours at the 3000-level or above

  • Fundamental justice system concepts, and roles within justice systems including law enforcement officers, court officers, corrections officers, victims, and defendants, in the context of a Christian worldview. Opportunities to plan strategic steps for the student’s program and career.
  • The development and organizational designs of America’s law enforcement organizations, the role, behavior, and life of the officer, including the contexts of law enforcement culture and society, concepts of power and relational skills, and the relationship of Christian worldview to the life of a law enforcement officer.
    Prerequisite: CJU1010
  • History, theories, policies, and practices of the juvenile justice system, including juvenile diversion programs, delinquency, child maltreatment, and gang behavior.
    Prerequisite: CJU1010
  • The historical, philosophical, and operational framework of the corrections system, including the goals of punishment, alternatives to the conventional penal approach and biblical perspectives on the government’s role in punishment and power.
    Prerequisite: CJU1010
  • The functions, operations, and decision-making processes of the judicial process in the United States, including an analysis of the role of courts and the function and responsibilities of the key personnel within them.
    Prerequisite: CJU1010
  • Issues surrounding terrorism and the preventative and responsive nature of the Department of Homeland Security, including threats from domestic and international terrorism and the role of government, organizations, and citizens.
    Prerequisite: CJU1010
  • The role of the victim and the relationship between victims and offenders in criminology, including historic and current treatment of victims, problems and dilemmas faced by victims, and theodicy as a basis for personal understanding and communication with victims.
    Prerequisite: CJU1010
  • Principles and practices of law and how it impacts criminal justice, with emphasis on the dynamic interaction among the individual, criminal justice, and society in the context of Christian ethics and proper conduct.
    Prerequisite: CJU1010
  • A survey of the field of psychology, including historical and theoretical foundations, with special emphasis on contemporary scientific research and empirical applications within a Christian perspective and a biopsychosocial approach.
  • An introduction to basic psychological research techniques and methodology including collecting, organizing, and analyzing psychological data for quantitative research, and an introduction to statistical reasoning with a focus on fundamental concepts and statistical methods for psychological research. Recommended
    prerequisite: college level math course
  • This course examines social, behavioral, and biological theories of criminal behavior. The stages of criminal behavior will be explored. The complex, interactive factors that produce criminal behavior will be analyzed. Specific attention will be devoted to the various psychological disorders often involved in criminal behavior.
    Prerequisite: PSY1020
  • An introduction to the concepts and techniques of research methodology as employed in the behavioral sciences including experimental research, observational, and survey research. Students will be encouraged to demonstrate an understanding of the role of research for helping professionals; examine truth-seeking from a scientific, and from a Biblical perspective; critique current research findings in professional journals and identify appropriate research methodology for a given problem or topic.
    Prerequisites: PSY1020, PSY3060
  • The scientific study of society, institutions, and group interaction, with focus on the sociological imagination and core theories. Topics include the sociological perspective, the individual in society, stratification and social inequality, social intuitions, human ecology, and social change, with special attention to issues of diversity.

*May be applied toward Social & Behavioral Sciences requirements in the GenEd core.

Please choose one of the following:
  • Experiential learning through not less than 90 clock hours in the criminal justice field. Interns gain experience, apply knowledge from program courses, and obtain feedback from the organization providing the internship. Students are responsible to arrange the internship.
    Prerequisite: CJU1010
  • A synthesis experience in the criminal justice system emphasizing the principles and applications of justice systems in context with human dignity and the healing of the community. Students will integrate learning from all course work and incorporate biblical principles to solve complex problems and engage in dilemmas that prepare them for their career.
    Prerequisite: CJU4000, CJU4100, CJU3510

Graduation Requirements:

In addition to the courses listed on this page, graduates must meet the requirements listed here, including:

  • A General Education Core
    • Associate degrees – 36 credit hours
    • Bachelor’s degrees – 45 credit hours
  • Minimum credit hours
    • Associate degrees – 60 credit hours
    • Bachelor’s degrees – 120 credit hours
  • Notes:

    1. Some majors require more credit hours than the listed minimums.
    2. Students choose elective courses to complete credit hour requirements.
    3. Electives may apply toward a minor, certificate, associate degree, or second major.
    4. Sometimes a course required in a student’s major can also fulfill a requirement in the GenEd core. (See notes on the individual major pages.)

Find complete information in the OCU Academic Catalog.

Contact the University Registrar's Office if you have graduation questions: 1 (740) 477-7780 or