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It’s not just a profession, it’s a calling. Today’s RMU Criminal Justice students are guardians of tomorrow.

Criminal justice is a rapidly evolving field that has a high, and ever-increasing demand, for professional guardians in the criminal justice system. At RMU expert practitioners mentor you from admission to graduation and beyond. Matching your passion with our exciting curriculum and experienced faculty, we prepare you to meet the tremendous and rewarding demands of working in the field of criminal justice.  

  • Comprehensive Curriculum: This program focuses on practical and broad knowledge drawn from sociology, psychology, forensics, and political science. All students in the criminal justice major complete a minor. This positions students to meet the requirements of the most sought-after skilled professions, and make them highly marketable candidates for successful careers in criminal justice.
  • Real-World Experience: Students use hands-on learning and real-world scenarios taught by faculty who work in the field.  This includes the use of our crime scene and use-of-force simulator. The required practicum/internship in the final year crucially enables students to receive actual work experience in the criminal justice system before graduation. 
  • Practitioner Faculty: Students study with professors who are leading law enforcement and legal experts and have strong professional networks. 
  • Strong Career Opportunities: Graduates go on to work at the federal, state or local levels of the criminal justice system. 
  • Early Law School Admission Program: Students in this course of study may be eligible for the Early Law School Admission Program.
  • Accelerated BS to MS Dual Degree Track: This program can be incorporated with the M.S. in Cyber Investigations and Intelligence for an accelerated 4+1 dual degree track.

Police Academy

Robert Morris hosts a Municipal Police Academy for the Pittsburgh region, training students to receive state Act 120 certification to become police officers in cities, boroughs, townships, and municipalities in Pennsylvania. The Police Academy provides RMU criminal justice students an important professional experience plus the opportunity for course credit. Cadets who complete their Act 120 certification at the RMU Police Academy can earn up to 18 credits toward a degree in criminal justice.

Degree Requirements and Courses

This study plan below is for guidance only. Always review your individual check sheet for your degree requirements. 

View Printable Course Sheet

MAJOR  - 45 CREDITS REQUIRED

(minimum grade of “C” must be earned for each course) 

  • CRMJ1010 Intro to Criminal Justice - 3
  • CRMJ2010 Corrections - 3
  • POLS1020 American National Government - 3
  • STAT2110 Statistics - 3
  • CRMJ2020 Policing - 3
  • CRMJ3220 Criminology - 3
  • CRMJ2030 Juvenile Delinquency - 3
  • POLS2020 Criminal Law and Evidence - 3
  • CRMJ3050 Investigations - 3
  • POLS3060 Civil Rights and Liberties - 3
  • CRMJ2040 Police Ethics - 3
  • PSYC3700 Abnormal Psychology - 3
  • SOCI3210 Sociology of Deviant Behavior - 3
  • CRMJ4803 Criminal Justice Practicum - 3
  • PSYC3840 Forensic Psychology - 3

RESTRICTED ELECTIVES  - 12 CREDITS REQUIRED*

  • Restricted Elective - 3
  • Restricted Elective - 3
  • Restricted Elective - 3
  • Restricted Elective - 3

REQUIRED MINOR** AND OPEN ELECTIVES – 24 CREDITS REQUIRED
EARLY LAW ADMIT: LAW SCHOOL CREDITS – 27 CREDITS REQUIRED

  • Minor Course 1 - 3
  • Minor Course 2 - 3
  • Minor Course 3 - 3
  • Minor Course 4 - 3
  • Minor Course 5 - 3
  • Minor Course 6 - 3
  • Open Elective 2 - 3

RMU CORE COURSES  - 39 CREDITS REQUIRED

  • CSEN 1010 or CSEN 2050 Reading & Writing Strategies; OR Intercultural Communications - 3
  • CSEN1020 Argument & Research - 3
  • CSCM1030 Public Speaking & Persuasion - 3
  • CSCM2040 Prof. Comm. In Workplace - 3
  • ECON1010 Survey of Economics - 3
  • ENGL Literature Elective - 3
  • HIST1200 U.S. History II - 3
  • HUMA1010 Humanities: Art and Music - 3
  • INFS1020 Fundamentals of Information Technology - 3
  • PSYC1010 General Psychology - 3
  • SOCI1020 Contemporary American Social Problems - 3
  • MATH1010 College Mathematics, or MATH1020 Pre-Calculus, or MATH1050 Math Reasoning/Applications - 3
  • Natural Science Elective - 3

*Choose any of four (4), for Early Law Admit, any three (3), of the following: *CRMJ3030 White-Collar Crime, *INFS3120 Intro to Computer Forensics, *PSYC3770 Drugs and Behavior, *PSYCH3550 Human Growth and Development, *SOCI3230 Sociology of Race/Ethnicity, *CRMJ3020 Sex Crimes, *CRMJ3040 Criminal Intelligence Analysis, *INFS3170 Cyberlaw, *SOCI2330 Marriage and Families, SOCI3240 Women in Society, *CRMJ4010 Cyber Crime and Criminology, or *CRMJ4020 Intelligence Studies.

**Recommended minors: Accounting (15 credits), Crime Forensics (18), Cyber Forensics (18), Cybersecurity (18), Data Analytics (18), Forensics (15), Journalism (15), Legal Studies (15), Organizational Leadership (15), Photography (15), Political Science (18), Sociology (18)

Program Learning Outcomes

Goal 1: Knowledge Base in Criminal Justice

  • 1.1  Understanding the criminal justice system and its components.
  • 1.2  Develop a working knowledge of the theories of the root causes of crime.
  • 1.3  Describe the application and use of the tools and methods used to study, prevent and control crime
  • 1.4  Identify the organizations and their principles and persons involved in the arrest, prosecution, punishment and re-integration of offenders.
  • 1.5  Demonstrate understanding of various crimes and its victims. 
  • 1.6  Understand the legal system and the political structure which the justice system operates. 

Goal 2: Critical Thinking and Problem Solving

  • 2.1  Advance essential questions concerning the current practices and philosophies of crime and crime control.
  • 2.2  Discuss and view criminal justice issues from a multitude of perspectives.
  • 2.3  Challenge the current understanding of criminal theories and criminal justice constructs using current journal research.
  • 2.4  Offer well-reasoned solutions to criminal justice issues.

Goal 3: Professional Communication

  • 3.1  Demonstrate effective writing skills needed to succeed in a writing-intensive profession.
  • 3.2  Display effective and persuasive presentation skills to include oral presentations with and without the use of technology.
  • 3.3  Engage effectively and respectfully in moderated debates on assigned criminal justice topics.
  • 3.4  Participate frequently in class discussions with faculty, guest speakers, and fellow students.

Goal 4: Professional Ethics

  • 4.1  Understand the ethical implications of choices made by practitioners in the criminal justice field. 
  • 4.2  Discuss potential ethical questions involved in criminal decision-making, crime prevention, punishment and prisoner re-entry. 
Career Preparation

As a graduate of RMU’s Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice program, you will be prepared for jobs such as police officer, federal agent, lawyer, crime analyst, intelligence analyst, criminal investigator, sheriff, homeland security, fish and game warden, probation or parole agent, reentry management specialist, legal advocate, corrections officer, diversionary initiatives liaison, intake coordinator, dispatch officer, arson investigator, court administrator, investigative reporter, military police, and emergency management director. 

Demand for Criminal Justice Professionals

2019 Median pay*

  • $65,170 for police and detectives with 5% projected job growth through 2029
  • $54,290 for probation officers and correctional treatment specialists with 4% projected job growth through 2029
  • $59,150 for forensic science technicians with 14% projected job growth through 2029
  • $122,960 for lawyers with 4% projected job growth through 2029

National estimate for occupational employment and wages with mean annual wage in May 2019**

  • $86,030 for detectives and criminal investigators
  • $59,910 for probation officers and correctional treatment specialists
  • $63,170 for forensic science technicians
  • $145,300 for lawyers

*Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, on the Internet; cited projections may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions and do not guarantee actual job growth:

**Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment Statistics

Admissions and Tuition Information
Professional Opportunities and Student Organizations
  • Practicum
  • Criminal Justice Society
  • Alpha Phi Sigma – The Criminal Justice Honor Society accredited by the Association of College Honor Societies
  • Omicron Sigma Sigma - Order of the Sword and Shield, the Academic and Professional Honor Society for all Homeland Security Disciplines
Meet the Faculty

The School of Informatics, Humanities and Social Sciences faculty is a team of dedicated teacher-scholars, award-winning artists, practitioners, and academics who are committed to your long-term success.

Meet the Faculty

Testimonials
Tyler Lamica

Tyler Lamica

Criminal Justice Bachelors
Cyber Investigations and Intelligence Masters
IT Technician

Dr. Hartle and his team are doing amazing things through the Cyber Intelligence and Investigations Masters program at Robert
Morris University. The MSCII program is a true one-of-a-kind educational experience that provides excellent growth and learning in traditional classroom environments and real-world lab scenarios. Every professor provides a deep toolkit of resources and expertise that is passed down to cyber students. The program provides students with the knowledge and experience required to make a difference in the cyber world, from valuable one-on-one time with teachers to top cyber companies and leader sessions. I am blessed to have been the first class to graduate from Dr. Hartle's program and am excited to see it continue to grow and change the lives of students and the cyber industry. Post-graduation, I have obtained my CompTIA security plus certification and work as an IT technician, where I use my education daily.

Shaun Vines

Shaun Vines

Criminal Justice Bachelors
Law School Student

RMU's criminal justice program, combined with the various extracurricular activities available, has given me the skills and knowledge to pursue a fulfilling career. The program taught me valuable information about criminal justice in America, and its lessons have helped me find a career in which I am passionate. From advisors to professors to student aids, the faculty helped me reach a new level of academia. I have made relationships at RMU that have helped me beyond the duration of my education. Those relationships helped me get more familiar with the legal profession and get accepted into my first choice law school to pursue my J.D. Without the help of my professors, advisors, and the RMU staff, I would not have been able to achieve my goal of pursuing a career in law. I owe so much to the school staff and hope to one day give back to other students.

Tyler Moore

Tyler Moore

Criminal Justice Bachelors
Police Officer
Baltimore County Police Department

I graduated from RMU in 2018. I believe the professors in the Criminal Justice Program thoroughly prepared me for the field. Dr. Hartle structured the program and classes to where students were able to be hands-on and participate in lectures. He also was the advisor for the Criminal Justice Society, where he helped provide the environment for Criminal Justice Students to explore the field in various aspects. I am currently a police officer for the Baltimore County Police Department. I wholeheartedly believe I was competent and prepared due to the lessons I learned at Robert Morris. Dr. Hartle has allowed himself to be a reference and guide through my time as a student and post-grad. If I could do it all again, I would!

Selene M. Cerankosky

Criminal Justice Bachelors
Project Coordinator, Choices Pregnancy Services
Law School Student

The RMU Criminal Justice Program is distinctively thorough in equipping its students for both critical
thought throughout their college careers and effective performance in their future workplaces. This
remains true whether said workplaces are directly in the Criminal Justice field or even related fields such as law, forensics, and cyber security.

One of the most notable attributes of the program for me was the "dream team" collection of professors we provided. Our instructors have decades of experience in policing, government, law, the military, and even white-collar levels of criminal justice. Additionally, the program's emphasis on the rapidly growing presence of technology in both the commission and prosecution of crime makes for curricula that prepare students for the cyber side of criminal justice. This fact has made me a more marketable candidate in the workplace. Currently, I work as a Project Manager for a multilocational organization. I will take the Law School Admissions Test next month, subsequently attending law school starting the Fall of 2022.

Megan GarfinkleTyler Moore

Criminal Justice Bachelors
Allegheny County DA’s Office

Choosing RMU was the greatest decision I ever made. I first visited RMU when I was a senior in high school. I was visiting college campuses, trying to find what would be my home for the next four years. I knew what I wanted out of a college; I wanted to focus on my chosen career path, make lifelong friendships, and, above all else, I wanted to make sure I wasn't going to be just a number in the classroom.

When I arrived at RMU for my tour of theCriminal Justice program, I met Dr. Frank Hartle. I explained to him my goals of wanting to work for the government, both in a criminal justice and psychological capacity, and he assured me the CJ program at RMU was the perfect place for me. I would not just be a number, and I would accomplish everything I wanted to in my four years there. He was entirely correct. The professors teaching at RMU have specialized in many of the career fields the students wish to pursue. They will work one on one with students to make sure they stay on the right path and do not get discouraged, and they also ensure students have the ability to network with people in their desired fields. Dr. Frank Hartle is one of those professors, and he works diligently to help place students in their dream career fields when they graduate.

Because of the incredible people at Robert Morris, I achieved my goals of obtaining two Bachelor's degrees and a Master's degree all in four years. I enjoyed my time at RMU so much I am currently helping in the maters program. In addition, I am volunteering with an amazing non-profit as a dark web researcher and working full-time as a criminal analyst for the local District Attorney. For those who have a passion for law enforcement, criminal procedure, investigations, adolescent deviation, and so much more, the Criminal Justice program at RMU is the best choice you can make.

Contact Us

HartleFrancis X. Hartle, D.Sc.

Director, Criminal Justice Program
Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice

Email: hartle@rmu.edu
Phone: 412-397-6042
Office: Wheatley 317

SeatonDonald D. Seaton, J.D.

Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice
Social Sciences

Email: seaton@rmu.edu
Phone: 412-397-6030 phone
Office: Wheatley Center 331

BrechtKathryn Dennick-Brecht, Ed.D.

Department Head, Social Sciences
Professor of Sociology

Email brecht@rmu.edu
Phone: 412-397-5419
Office: Wheatley Center 312

Sample Courses:

These are some of the classes for students in this academic program:

Criminal Law & Evidence
Sociology of Deviant Behavior
Criminology
Major Credits
57
Criminology, Information Science, Sociology
Core Credits
39
Communication Skills, Economics, Humanities, History, Sciences, etc.
Elective Credits
24

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