2006 - 2007 Site Archive



Graduate Bulletin

Criminal Justice, M.A.


Admission Requirements and Deadlines
Application Deadline:

Fall: January 15

Applications are evaluated from the end of October until the deadline.

APPLY ONLINE to this graduate program.

Letters of Reference:

Number Required: 2

From Whom: Letters of recommendation should be obtained from college/university faculty members familiar with the demands of a graduate program.

Coursework Required for Admission Consideration:

No specific coursework is required for admission.

Bachelor's Degree in Discipline/Related Discipline:

A baccalaureate degree in Sociology, Political Science, Geography, Counseling, Social Work, Economics, or History is required.

Statement of Goals:

The Statement of Goals should be approximately 500-1,000 words and should include the following elements: your specific interest in Temple's program; your research goals; your future career goals; and your academic and research achievements.

Standardized Test Scores:

The GRE is required. The average scores for accepted M.A. students are in the 60-70% range on the verbal and quantitative sections. The average minimum GRE score is 1,000 combined verbal and quantitative.

Minimum TOEFL score needed to be accepted: 550 paper-based, 213 computer-based, or 79 internet-based.


A resume is required.

Writing Sample:

The writing sample should demonstrate your ability to research and write a scholarly paper. The paper should not be too lengthy (up to 10 pages is preferable) and should be fully referenced according to a professional, scholarly style manual. Although it need not be related directly to Criminal Justice, it should reflect your ability to prepare a social science paper.

Transfer Credit:

Students with graduate course credits from other accredited institutions should petition the Graduate Chair to determine the acceptance and transferability of coursework. Grades must be of "B" quality or better. The maximum number of credits a student may transfer is 6.

Program Requirements
General Program Requirements:

Number of Didactic Credits Required Beyond the Baccalaureate: 36

Required Courses:

CJ 401/8101: Decision Making in Criminal Justice

CJ 402/8102: Research Methods in Criminal Justice

CJ 404/8104: Law and Social Order

CJ 405/8105: Fundamental Statistical Issues in Analysis of Criminal Justice Data

CJ 406/8106: Theories of Crime and Deviance

Under the non-thesis option, students must earn credits in the following areas: 9 to 21 credits in Criminal Justice electives and up to 12 credits in electives outside the department. Under the thesis option (itself worth 6 credits), students must earn credits in the following areas: 6 to 9 credits in Criminal Justice electives and up to 9 credits in electives outside the department.

Internship: No internship is required.

Language Examination: No language examination is required.

Culminating Events:


The program culminates in a thesis for those who choose the thesis option.

Program Contact Information:


Department Information:

Dept. of Criminal Justice

Gladfelter Hall, 5th Floor
1115 W. Berks Street
Philadelphia, PA 19122


Department Contacts:


Dr. Jerry H. Ratcliffe

Program Coordinator:

Stephanie Hardy


Graduate Chairperson:

Dr. Jerry H. Ratcliffe


Dr. John S. Goldkamp


About the Program

The M.A. program in Criminal Justice is designed to serve as a first stage of training for students wishing to eventually pursue more advanced graduate work.  It also prepares students who will terminate their studies at the master's level. For the latter group, including many engaged in part-time study, the M.A. program is designed to serve students who, upon graduation, will begin or rejoin professional careers in management, administration, or specialist positions in governmental and private criminal and juvenile justice and related agencies. The M.A. degree requires the completion of 30 hours of coursework and a thesis—or completion of 36 hours of coursework. The curriculum is structured around a set of core requirements that provides substantive grounding in decision-making and operational aspects of the criminal justice system, and a theoretical, legal, policy, and methodological foundation for understanding crime and society.

Time Limit for Degree Completion: 3 years

Campus Location:


Full-Time/Part-Time Status:

The department accepts both full-time and part-time students for master's-level study.  Those engaged in part-time study take 8 credit hours or less per semester.  Students should be aware that classes are scheduled both during the day and evening as scheduling demands, and students are expected to be available for classes when they are scheduled.

Department Information:

Dept. of Criminal Justice

Gladfelter Hall, 5th Floor
1115 W. Berks Street
Philadelphia, PA 19122


Interdisciplinary Study:

The program encourages interdisciplinary coursework, research, and interactions among faculty and students with interests in a wide range of fields. Many of the students entering the Criminal Justice M.A. program have backgrounds in subjects such as Counseling, Economics, Geography, History, Political Science, Psychology, Social Work, Sociology, and Urban Studies.


Not applicable.

Study Abroad:

Not applicable.


Criminal Justice programs are not formally ranked, although the Journal of Criminal Justice Education has produced occasional articles on program productivity. Temple University's Criminal Justice Program is classed among a number of schools that are acknowledged to have extremely strong faculty, but have not yet produced a large number of doctoral degrees.


Not applicable.

Areas of Specialization:

Faculty members specialize and offer substantial coursework in a wide array of areas. Some of the broader topics covered are criminological theory, corrections and community corrections, issues in policing, court processes, white collar crime, organized crime, crime and the physical/social environment, juvenile justice, criminal law, criminal justice policy-making and strategic management, discretion in criminal justice, restorative justice, socialization and deviant behavior, research methods (qualitative/quantitative), and statistical analysis.

Job Placement:

The M.A. program is primarily dedicated to producing well-trained criminologists, researchers, and criminal justice practitioners. The job market for an individual with a master's degree in the field is extremely good. Some graduate students advance their career while completing coursework, while others are hired at the completion of their degree. Graduates of the M.A. program have obtained positions in the criminal justice system, including state and federal police agencies, criminal or juvenile courts, and corrections (institutional and community-based agencies). Careers are also possible in government, planning, public administration, research, teaching, or community activism.


Not applicable.

Non-Degree Student Policy:

Non-matriculated students are eligible to take some of the graduate Criminal Justice courses offered. If accepted to the program, up to 9 credits for that coursework may be applied toward the degree program.

Financing Opportunities

The principal duties of a Teaching Assistant include assisting faculty members in classroom (field, observatory) instruction, conducting tutorials and discussion sections, and grading quizzes.

Research Assistants are expected to devote 20 hours per week on average to research obligations. RA's are assigned to a faculty member or principal investigator who is investigating a specific research project. The appropriate subjects are determined by consultation between the student and the student's research and academic advisors.

Both Teaching and Research Assistantships carry a stipend and full tuition remission (up to 9 credits). Applications should include: (a) a statement of previous teaching and/or research experience, areas of interest, and future goals; (b) unofficial transcripts; and (c) a curriculum vitae. The department makes offers of assistantships in late spring of each year. Applications should be directed to the department address noted above.

Updated 4.11.07