Criminal/Social Justice, B.A.

Criminal Justice Program
Take command of your career.

Experience greater rewards and opportunity with a degree from one of the country’s largest and most highly respected online Criminal/Social Justice programs.

Unique broader focus on both Criminal and Social Justice
One of the country’s largest programs of its kind, Lewis University’s Bachelor of Arts in Criminal/Social Justice provides a lens through which students see the bigger picture of criminal and social justice and what it means to live in a truly just society. We’re able to accomplish this because our courses are taught by well-respected experts with actual field experience. The result is a greater understanding of the real-world issues, policies and procedures that directly impact today’s professionals. Our innovative curriculum includes topics of:

  • Understanding the causal factors of crime
  • Use of excessive force
  • Criminology/corrections
  • Juvenile justice policies
  • Domestic violence/mandatory arrest ethical issues
  • The revitalization of community-oriented policing
  • Balanced focus on social justice for a broader understanding of the modern justice system
  • The importance of partnership and building trust between the community and the legal system
  • Learning to write effectively for procedural efficiency and career advancement
  • Legal and procedural courses taught exclusively by professional attorneys

Join our list of distinguished alumni
More than 40 national police chiefs have earned their degrees at Lewis, including Phil Cline – former Superintendent of the Chicago Police Force – and Charles H. Ramsey – Commissioner of the Philadelphia Police Department. You might be next.

100% online option for your convenience
We understand your need to balance work, family and education. Through this online, accelerated (8-week courses) option, you’ll be able to learn everything you need to know from the comfort of your home or office while still experiencing plenty of interactivity between you, your peers and your instructor. However, a 16-week on-ground option is still available at our Hickory Hills campus if you prefer it.

Why Lewis?

  • Experienced faculty with real-world understanding and connections
  • Evolving curriculum provides you with the ultra-practical and career-focused knowledge and skills necessary to pursue careers in law enforcement and the legal system
  • An ethical framework to help you face the moral challenges that come from a position of power
  • Insight into today’s biggest issues in law enforcement – like domestic violence, drug abuse, terrorism and prison overcrowding
  • In-depth understanding of our legal system and the sociological aspects of crime

Possible career options include:

  • CIA Agent
  • Corrections Officer
  • Court Reporter
  • Criminologist
  • DEA Agent
  • FBI Agent
  • Forensic Evidence Technician
  • Immigration & Customs (ICE) Agent
  • Paralegal
  • Police Dispatcher
  • Police Officer
  • Probation Officer
  • Private Investigator
  • Security Professional
  • Secret Service Agent
  • Deputy Sheriff
  • Deputy US Marshal

Take your career even further with our Fast-Track Master’s in Criminal/Social Justice
Increase your opportunity with a Master’s degree. You can start it as part of your undergraduate curriculum when you enroll in our fast-track program. As long as you meet the admission requirements, you can enroll in up to 3 graduate courses that will count for both your undergraduate and graduate curriculum, allowing you to complete your graduate degree in as little as one year after graduation with your Bachelor’s degree.

An excellent next step for veterans
Your military training will serve you well in the criminal/social justice field. You can start classes while you’re still on active duty. Take advantage of your veterans’ benefits and enroll now.

College Transfer Guides
Harold Washington Community College
Joliet Junior College
Moraine Valley Community College
Triton College

Student Talk


  • Matthew Dutton

    "The professors have been fantastic - fantastic credentials. Their experience makes a big difference when considering which profession you'd like to go in. It's a big field. There are many different opportunities available."


  • Megan Ramel

    "I chose Criminal/Social Justice as my major because I was in the military, and I wanted to do something along those lines and stay within that field."


  • Rocio Alfaro

    "I have not met one professor that hasn't had firsthand experience. They are always open to talk about what they went through. I was able to get an internship - because they have so many connections with law enforcement."

Helpful Resources

Chicago Police Department Employer Deferred Billing
(Only to be used by sworn police officers of the CPD)