The dual BA/MCJ program is designed to allow students to work concurrently toward the BA in criminal justice and the master in criminal justice (MCJ). Graduate credit hours earned while enrolled in the BA/MCJ program can be counted toward both the bachelor of arts and master of criminal justice. This program offers high-achieving students the opportunity to complete their undergraduate and graduate degrees in criminal justice in five years.
Admissions Requirements and Process
Interested students should contact their BA academic advisor as early as possible to ensure proper planning for the five year degree.
Both current CU Denver students and new transfer students are eligible to apply after meeting the following:
- Currently enrolled in the School of Public Affairs as a criminal justice major
- Completed the University of Colorado Denver’s undergraduate core curriculum
- Completed 60 semester credit hours
- Completed the following 12 semester credit hours in criminal justice: CRJU 1000 Criminal Justice: An Overview, CRJU 2041 Crime Theory and Causes, CRJU 3100 Criminal Justice Research Methods, and CRJU 3150 Statistics for Criminal Justice (transfer criminal justice courses must have been approved and accepted toward the major).
- Minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA
- Minimum 3.5 cumulative GPA in criminal justice courses
- Completed or scheduled official GRE or LSAT exam
Students must apply no later than the semester in which they first earn 20 credits toward the BACJ degree, most likely the second semester of their junior year. For full consideration, students must submit all application materials by Oct. 15 for admission to the following spring semester and by March 15 for admission to the fall semester. The following steps should help in the application process:
- Plan ahead when scheduling courses through the junior year. All four of the required criminal justice courses listed above and all of the student’s core education requirements must be completed by the end of the student’s junior year.
- At the beginning of the semester in which the student is applying to the program, the student should approach a criminal justice faculty member about writing a letter of recommendation. The student should also begin working on a personal statement of purpose. The following guidelines should help with writing the statement.
- Length: 1 to 2 pages
- The statement should describe:
- Applicant’s reasons for undertaking graduate study in criminal justice
- Applicant’s future career plans
- Planned area of concentration within criminal justice
- By Oct 15 of the fall semester or March 15 of the spring semester the student must submit the following items to the undergraduate coordinator:
- Personal statement of purpose
- One letter of recommendation from a faculty member
- School of Public Affairs’ BA/MCJ application form
- Official GRE or LSAT scores
Admission to the BA/MCJ program is competitive. Applicants will be evaluated on the following:
- Grade point average (overall and in criminal justice course work)
- Grade trend (improving, consistent, or declining)
- Total number of credit hours completed
- Likelihood of success and persistence based from the Statement of Intent and Reference Letter
- Official GRE or LSAT scores
Students who are not admitted to the BA/MCJ program are eligible to reapply after completing an additional 12 semester credit hours. Students can apply and be considered for admission to the dual BACJ/MCJ program a maximum of two times.
BA/MCJ Program Matriculation
Students must successfully complete (B, or better) a minimum of 3 semester credit hours of graduate criminal justice course work each semester following admission to the BA/MCJ program. A maximum of 18 graduate semester credits can be completed as a BA/MCJ student, for dual credit.
Students must maintain a minimum 3.0 cumulative grade point average for all course work and a 3.0 grade point average for courses in criminal justice.
The School of Public Affairs reserves the right to rescind a BA/MCJ student’s admittance to the dual program if at any point the students’ grade point average falls below the requirements lists above.
Tuition and Fees
Students will be assessed tuition and fees at the undergraduate rate until the bachelor of arts in criminal justice degree is conferred.
Students will assess tuition and fees at the graduate level upon formal acceptance to the master of criminal justice program.
General BA/MCJ Degree Program Requirements
- 144 total semester credit hours successfully completed
- 37-38 semester credit hours in the general education core curriculum
- 46-48 semester credit hours in general electives
- 21 semester hours of undergraduate criminal justice course work
- 18 upper-level (3000 or higher) semester credit hours in criminal justice
- 45 total semester hours of upper-division course work (3000 and above)
- Minimum 3.0 CU cumulative grade point average in undergraduate criminal justice courses
- Full acceptance to the Graduate School and the master in criminal justice program
- Minimum 36 semester hours of graduate-level course work (5000 and above)
- Minimum of 30 hours of resident credit; 21 out of the last 30 hours in resident course work
- Minimum of a B (3.0) in each required core MCJ course
- Minimum of 3.0 CU cumulative grade point average in all graduate level courses
- Successful completion of master of criminal justice capstone or thesis
- Fulfillment of all college and major requirements
Students are eligible to receive the BA in criminal justice degree once they have successfully completed 120 semester hours and all CU Denver undergraduate degree requirements. The MCJ will be conferred once the student has completed all requirements of the master of criminal justice degree.