Degree Requirements

The School of Criminology and Criminal Justice is in the College of Public Affairs and Community Services and is administered through the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO). The Bachelor of Science in Criminology and Criminal Justice (BSCCJ) can be completed entirely on either the Lincoln or Omaha campus but the degree is granted by UNO.

Criminology and criminal justice majors initially complete prerequisite courses defined as the pre-criminology and criminal justice (PCCJ) curriculum. The PCCJ curriculum consists of a minimum of 45 semester hours and must include the following courses.

  • ENGL 101, 150, 151, 250, 252, 254, 258 (6 hours)
  • MATH 100A or 101 (3 hours)
  • CRIM 101 (3 hours)
  • CRIM 251 (3 hours)
  • CRIM 203, 211, 221 (6-9 hours)

The remaining 21-24 hours of course work will be selected from other general requirements.

Please Note: A minimum grade of C- is required in criminology and criminal justice courses.

Students seeking admission to the Upper-division Criminology and Criminal Justice Program must apply to the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice. Applications for admission are available in the School office or from the forms tab of this website. Students will apply for upper division status during the semester in which they are completing their final preprogram requirements, but admission is contingent upon completion of required courses and a minimum grade of C- in their criminology and criminal justice courses.

Students wishing to transfer from another institution or department within the University of Nebraska must have a 2.5 cumulative GPA. They must complete the PCCJ Curriculum stipulated above, and apply for admission to the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice before being admitted to the Upper-division Criminology and Criminal Justice Program. Students wishing to transfer are encouraged to contact the School for more details on the transfer policy.

Criminology and Criminal Justice students who entered the program Fall 2011 or after must fulfill the Achievement Centered Education (ACE) requirements.  The 30 hour ACE requirement will include a minimum of 3 hours of approved course work in each of the 10 designated Achievement Centered Education (ACE) student learning outcome areas which can be viewed at http://ace.unl.edu.  Students will be provided a list of courses they can select from to meet each of the 10 ACE Student Learning Outcomes.  Courses required for the BCCJ degree will also fulfill ACE requirements.

English Composition (9 hours). Select 3-6 hours from: ENGL 101, ENGL 150, ENGL 151 (fulfills ACE 1 requirement).  At least 3 credit hours must be in courses 200 level or higher selected from:  ENGL 251, ENGL 252, ENGL 254, ENGL 258, or ENGL 354. Acceptable alternatives must be approved by the student’s adviser.

Social Science (12 hours). Courses will be selected from the departments of economics, gerontology, history, political science, psychology, educational psychology (EDPS 451, EDPS 463), ETHN 100, 200, 201, 202 and 203, sociology, social work, anthropology, nonphysical geography and child, youth and family studies (CYAF 160, CYAF 270, CYAF 271, CYAF 280) (see adviser for upper-level options). No more than 6 hours from any one department may be used to meet this requirement.

Natural Sciences and Mathematics (12 hours). Select one math course from MATH 100A, MATH 101, MATH 103, MATH 104 or MATH 106 and one natural science with lab course from ACE 4. Select additional courses from the following disciplines: astronomy, biological sciences, chemistry, computer science CSCE 101 or higher (CSCE labs do not fulfill the lab requirement), entomology, forensic science (FORS 120, FORS 300, FORS 414, FORS 445, FORS 446, FORS 407), geology, math (above 101), meteorology, nutrition (NUTR 131), and physical geography (GEOG 155).

Humanities and Fine Arts (12 hours). Select one 3-hour course from ACE 5 and one 3-hour course from ACE 7.  An additional course may be selected from art and art history, classics, communication, English literature, foreign languages, journalism, music, philosophy, religion, theatre. Not more than 8 hours may be applied from any one department. Each student must also complete one 3 hour course in oral communication to be selected from COMM 109, COMM 209, COMM 286 (fulfills ACE 2 requirement).

Statistics (3 hours). Each student must complete one 3-hour course in basic statistics selected from CRIM 300 (recommended), EDPS 459, ECON 215, SOCI 206 or STAT 218 (fulfills ACE 3 requirement).  Only one of these basic statistics courses may apply to the degree.
NOTE:   CRIM 300 will not apply toward the 39 hours of required CRCJ courses.

Criminology and Criminal Justice Requirements (39 semester hours)

All candidates for the BSCCJ degree must complete CRIM 101 Survey of Criminal Justice (fulfills ACE 6 requirement), CRIM 251 Research Methods, and select 6-9 hours from CRIM 203 Police and Society, CRIM 211 Criminal Court System, and CRIM 221 Survey of Corrections. After admission to the Upper Division Program students must complete a minimum of 21 hours of upper division CRCJ courses including CRIM 335 Criminology and CRIM 351 Criminal Procedure.

A minimum grade of C- is required in criminology and criminal justice courses used as part of the 39-hour major requirement.

Criminal Justice Internships are coordinated by the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice. Three to 6 hours of CRIM 397 Criminal Justice Internship may apply in the 39 hour major area (fulfills ACE 10 requirement). Participation in the internship requires admission to the upper-division CRCJ program, 75 earned hours and a GPA of 2.5.

Students must register for and complete CRIM 499 (Senior Assessment) in the semester in which they plan to graduate.

NOTE: Credit toward the degree may be earned in only one of the following: CRIM 251 or SOCI 205, CRIM 337 or SOCI 311, CRIM 413 or SOCI 474.

Area of Concentration (18 hours)

Students will select an area of concentration with their advisers. At least 12 hours must be completed in upper division courses (300/400 level).  Students who wish to integrate a minor into their program should work closely with their CRCJ adviser.

Elective Requirements (15 semester hours)

Students may select electives after consultation with their adviser. Elective courses may include non-required criminology and criminal justice courses.

The 120 credit hours required for the Bachelor of Science in Criminology and Criminal Justice must include:

  • Ethical Principles, Civics and Stewardship

Each student must select one 3-hour course from ACE 8 which explains ethical principles, civics, and stewardship and their importance to society.  This course may be applied toward the appropriate group requirement.

  • Global Awareness/Diversity

Each student must select one 3-hour course from ACE 9 which exhibits global awareness or knowledge of human diversity through analysis of an issue. This course may be applied toward the appropriate group requirement.

  • Creative/Scholarly Product

Each student must complete one 3 hor course from ACE 10.  This will typically be completed with a course in the major area.

Other Requirements/Rules

  • The BSCCJ degree requires the completion of 120 semester hours of credit. A minimum of 30 of the last 36 credit hours must be earned by the student in residence in the University of Nebraska system.
  • At least 21 hours of criminology and criminal justice must be taken at the University of Nebraska.
  • A maximum of 30 hours from any one department may be applied toward the BSCCJ degree.
  • A maximum of 6 credit hours for basic military training is applicable to the BSCCJ degree.

Grade Rules

C- and D Grades

A minimum grade of C- is required in criminology and criminal justice courses used as part of the 39-hour major requirement.

Pass/No Pass Limits

A maximum of 24 hours may be taken Pass/No Pass and none of the 39 hours required for the criminology and criminal justice major may be taken Pass/No Pass (excluding CRIM 397 - Internship).

Extended Education, Independent Study Rules, Internship Credit Rules

A maximum of 12 credit hours of departmental independent study or internship courses may be applied toward the BSCCJ degree. Of these 12 hours, no more than 6 hours from one department and no more than 6 hours from another institution.