Criminal Justice

Criminal Justice Online Graduate Certificate

About Criminal Justice

Prepare to start - or advance in - law enforcement or criminal justice fields.

Advance your knowledge to fully engage in the legal and justice system in American communities. The graduate certificate in criminal justice at California University of Pennsylvania offers a cost-effective way to build career skills.    

The graduate certificate program at Cal U provides a core foundation for understanding the intersection of legal and policy issues related to criminal justice. The certificate can be earned as a standalone credential or as part of the master's degree program in legal studies. 

Build skills to expand your career potential.   

  • Choose our fully online graduate certificate program for access to recognized faculty experts in Pennsylvania and across the country who have practical experience and knowledge in their teaching topics.
  • Earn your graduate certificate in just 12 months to begin a new career or prepare for advancement in your current employment.


Core Topics
Your study of criminal justice will include courses that focus on financial investigations, criminal justice organization and management, justice studies, sexual assault investigations, and the law and police process. 

Solid Foundation
To learn criminal justice fundamentals, students study command-level problems and trends in criminal justice organizations and their management, including functional concepts of the administrative process as well as the principles of organizing, controlling, planning and leadership relating to criminal justice agencies. 

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As a fully online program, Cal U's graduate certificate in criminal justice is specially designed for working professionals.  
Cal U Global Online offers affordable, top-quality education with more than 75 degree and non-degree programs.
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Certificate Benefits

The criminal justice graduate certificate ensures interdisciplinary study of the functions and processes of the American justice system. In the Seminar in Justice Studies course, criminal justice certificate students can choose research topics relevant to their current employment. For instance, police officers enrolled in the certificate program focused on specific police policies and presented solutions in their white papers.

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Graduate Outcomes

Earning a graduate certificate in criminal justice at Cal U is a cost-efficient way for professionals in law enforcement, the court systems and related areas to enhance their resumes and broaden career opportunities.


Criminal Justice Certificate Courses and Related Programs

This graduate certificate program prepares practitioners to contribute effectively to the advancement of the legal and justice systems.



Course Credits
LAW 605  Law and Police Process 3
PCJ 747  Financial Investigations 3
PCJ 748  Criminal Justice Organization and Management 3
PCJ 749  Seminar in Justice Studies 3
PCJ 750  Sexual Assault Investigations 3
Total 15
Admission Requirements

Regular Admission Requirements

  • Regionally Accredited Bachelor's degree with a GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • Official transcripts from a regionally accredited undergraduate institution

Conditional Admission Requirements

  • Conditional Admission may be granted with the following modifications of the Regular Admissions Requirements:
    • Regionally accredited bachelor's degree with a GPA of 2.9 and below will be reviewed for a decision once the following documentation has been received:
      • Resume with contact information for three professional references with an overview of professional work experience
      • 500-word essay supporting the application
        • If admitted, students will be required to earn a 3.0 in their first term to remain in the program

Provisional Admission:
Applicants who have provided unofficial documentation of test scores, prerequisite courses, transcripts or lack of letter(s) of recommendation may be admitted provisionally.

This policy also applies to undergraduate students who apply for graduate admission pending bachelor degree completion. Upon receipt of all official documents, a student will be changed from Provisional Admission to either Regular Admission or Conditional Admission. Provisional Admission students may take classes for one term but will not be eligible for Federal Financial Aid.

How to Apply:

  • Complete the Graduate School Application
  • Submit the nonrefundable $35 Application Fee
  • Submit required documentation by mail or email:
    • Mail:

School of Graduate Studies and Research
California University of Pennsylvania
Box 91
250 University Ave. 
California, PA 15419

For additional information:
Phone: 1.866.595.6348

Related Programs
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Career network

Cal U students study with many types of practitioners. Graduate certificate students are from law enforcement, the police, corrections, investigations, human services and more. Faculty and students in your certificate program become valuable career contacts and colleagues.    

Police car

Professional resource

The Institute for Law and Public Policy at Cal U offers degree and certificate programs, as well as professional development and training opportunities for a wide range of professionals in southwestern Pennsylvania region.

Cal U students walking to class.

Degree option

The master's degree in legal studies with a concentration in criminal justice ensures interdisciplinary study of the functions and processes of the American justice system. Because this graduate degree program blends courses in the fields of humanities, business and political science with the legal and policy issues related to criminal justice, Cal U graduates are ready to start or advance in the legal and justice system in policing, law, corrections, investigations and human services.

Criminal Justice Graduate Certificate Program Faculty

Larry Bassi

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Jeffrey Davidson

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Kevin Govern, J.D., LL.M.

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David Heller
Adjunct Professor

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Brian Kohlhepp, M.A.
Assistant Professor

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William Morgan, J.D.
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David Smith, M.S., M.A., J.D.

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Dr. Christina A. Toras, J.D., M.A.
Professor, Legal Studies Program Coordinator, Director of the Institute for Law and Public Policy

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Michael Vennum, J.D.

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Dr. Karl Williams, M.D., M.P.H.

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