Combined BA/MA in Criminal Justice/Criminology

The Department of Sociology offers a combined degree option for undergraduate majors who would like to continue their education in the field. The program enables students to earn both a Bachelor's degree in Criminal Justice and Master's degree in Criminology within five to five and a half years by counting some coursework toward both degrees.

Students who are admitted to the program are able to take graduate courses during their senior year, and 9 credits will count toward both the BA and MA degrees. This allows for a considerable cost and time savings, and also helps our department retain and further our engagement with our best students.

Click here for a downloadable outline of the Combined BA/MA Criminal Justice/Criminology program. Students interested in applying for the combined degree program in Criminal Justice/Criminology should see Professor Antwan Jones, Director of the Graduate Program in Sociology, for more details ([email protected]; Phillips Hall 409-G).

Students interested in matriculating into the 5-year BA/MA program:

  • must have an overall GPA of 3.40 or better at the time of application;
  • must have a GPA of 3.50 or better in the major at the time of application;
  • must apply to the graduate portion of the program no later than April 1st of the junior year after completing at least 75 undergraduate credits;
  • must complete both an application form for the dual-degree program and the formal application for graduate admission;
    • The application includes the applicant's statement-of-interest in the program, a writing sample, three letters of recommendation, and full transcripts of all undergraduate coursework.
    • Three letters of recommendation from faculty members are required. At least two of these letters must come from faculty in the Sociology Department at GW. Letters from Teaching Assistants are not acceptable.
    • Applicants are not required to submit GRE scores.
    • Students need not pay the application fee for the MA.
    • Students should submit all application materials to the Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of Sociology, not to CCAS.
  • must earn a "B" or better in all graduate courses;
  • must complete a thesis as required of all MA students in Sociology;
  • will be informed of acceptance into the program in late spring of their junior year.


In addition to the general curriculum requirements of the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, Criminal Justice majors must satisfy the following requirements (39 credits total):

  • Prerequisite Courses SOC 1003 and either SOC 1001 or SOC 1002
  • Required Courses in Criminal Justice:
    • Sociology 2101—Social Research Methods
    • or Sociology 2102—Techniques of Data Analysis
    • Sociology 2135—Youth and Delinquency
    • Sociology 2136—Criminology
    • Sociology 2145—Criminal Law
    • Sociology 4192—Advanced Seminar in Criminal Justice (6 credits)
  • Five Electives out of the following classes:
    • Sociology 2167—Sociology of Law
    • Sociology 2177—Sociology of the Sex Industry
    • Sociology 2178—Deviance and Control
    • Sociology 2184—Violence and the Family
    • Sociology 2189—Special Topics in Criminal Justice: varies
    • Sociology 2189—Special Topics: American Criminal Justice System
    • Psychology 2011—Abnormal Psychology
    • Psychology 3154—Psychology of Crime and Violence
    • Forensic Sciences 2104—Introduction to Forensic Science (Requires two lab sciences)
    • Anthropology 3513—Human Rights and Ethics
    • History 2175—U.S. Constitutional History
    • Political Science 2213—Judicial Politics 
    • Political Science 2215—U.S. Constitutional Law 
    • Political Science 2217 or PPPA 2217—Executive Branch Politics
    • Economics 2167—Economics of Crime

The MA degree requirements include: 3 Research Methods courses, 2 Criminology courses, 1 Theory course, 1 Criminal Law course, 5 Elective courses, and either a Comprehensive Examination or a Thesis.

  • Three Methods courses: SOC 6230, SOC 6231, and either SOC 6232 or SOC 6240/MGT 6383.
  • Two Criminology courses: SOC 6258 and SOC 6259.
  • One Theory course: SOC 6238 or SOC 6239.
  • One Criminal Law course: SOC 6257 or FORS 6224.
  • Five additional electives, including at least two in Forensic Sciences and one in Criminology.
  • A Comprehensive Examination or a Thesis is required:
    • Comprehensive Examination: Written examination covering required coursework.
    • Master’s Thesis: Substitute SOC 6998 & 6999 (Thesis Research) for two elective courses. At least two Forensics and one Criminology elective must still be taken.

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