College of Graduate Studies at Middle Tennessee State University

Master of Criminal Justice


Program Director: Dr. Lance Selva
Jones Hall 303
Graduate Analyst: Anita Hermes

A degree in Criminal Justice can open the door to a variety of career opportunities at the federal, state or local levels in areas such as law enforcement, homeland security, court and social work, police administration, correctional management, drug rehabilitation, probation, parole, and juvenile justice. A criminal justice degree can also provide a solid foundation for careers in private and industrial security or private investigation. 

The Master of Criminal Justice degree is offered jointly by Middle Tennessee State University and Tennessee State University.  Students may complete all of their MCJ coursework at MTSU, and receive their degree from MTSU.  Students have the option of completing portions of their MCJ coursework at either school.

Students in the Master of Criminal Justice program must complete a total of 33 or 36 semester hours, depending upon whether they choose to complete a research-based thesis or a non-thesis learning option.  Students pursuing the thesis track must successfully defend the completed thesis; those pursuing the non-thesis option must successfully complete an internship and pass a written comprehensive examination.

Course Offerings – Criminal Justice

Core Requirements (18 hours)

CJA 6000             Criminal Justice Administration (3 hours)

CJA 6010             Seminar in Law Enforcement (3 hours)

CJA 6020             Judicial Seminar (3 hours)

CJA 6030             Contemporary Corrections (3 hours)

CJA 6900             Research in the Criminal Justice Process (3 hours)

CJA 6640             Thesis Research (1-6 hours) OR

CJA 6250             Criminal Justice Internship (3 hours)

 Electives (15-18 hours)

Selected in consultation with advisor:

Thesis-Track                       15 hours

Non-Thesis Track              18 hours

Total hours required for degree:

Thesis Track                        33  hours

Non-Thesis Track              36 hours

The Department of Criminal Justice Administration offers a Master of Criminal Justice (M.C.J.) degree in cooperation with Tennessee State University. A minor in Criminal Justice at the graduate level is also offered at MTSU. To be considered for Fall admission, an applicant’s materials must be received by June 15; for Spring admission, November 1; and for Summer admission, April 15.

Admission Requirements:

To be admitted to the Master of Criminal Justice program,
a student must submit the following to the College of Graduate Studies:

Online application and appropriate application fee

Official transcript of all colleges, universities (including business and technical schools). If the transcripts are issued from an international (non-US) institution, a course-by course analysis is required. Original non-US transcripts should be submitted directly to the evaluation service. (Click here for more information on non-US transcripts.)

Official Test Scores of the Miller Analogies Test (MAT) OR Graduate Record Examination (GRE)

If you have already completed part of your Master of Criminal Justice, please call Janet Kelly at the College of Graduate Studies (615-494-7667)to determine your remaining coursework requirements.


Submit Application Materials to:

College of Graduate Studies
MTSU Box 42
Murfreesboro, TN 37132

Test Codes for Middle Tennessee State University:
INFS - 6ZR-KJ-37
MBA (Full-time) - 6ZR-KJ-25
MBA (Part-time) - 6ZR-KJ-52
GRE 1466
MAT 1751
Praxis 1466
TOEFL 1466