The Doctoral Program in Criminal Justice is a post-master's program of study and research. The program is composed of a substantive core focused on criminal justice theory and institutions, a research methods core that prepares social scientists in the scientific method and social-science statistics, and a selection of substantive criminal justice concentrations (policing, corrections, and juvenile justice).
The program focuses on criminal justice and takes advantage of the city of Orlando and surrounding cities and counties to examine criminal justice issues from multiple angles and levels.
The program is intended to serve many purposes. Chief among them are:
- Prepare disciplinary stewards capable of advancing scholarship in criminal justice;
- Prepare a qualified workforce to assume criminal justice instructional responsibilities in postsecondary institutions;
- Prepare analysts competent to staff federal, state, and local criminal justice agencies; and
- Improve safety and justice in communities through research partnerships with neighborhood, city, county and state agencies and associations.
Students completing the program will be well prepared to pursue academic positions in universities, research positions in criminal justice agencies, and consultancies in program evaluation and needs assessment.
The Doctoral Program in Criminal Justice is a 57-credit-hour, post-master's program of study and research. Substantive emphasis is placed on core coursework in criminal justice theory and institutions, and on in-depth concentrations in policing, corrections or juvenile justice. Students complete a minimum of 42 credit hours of doctoral coursework and 15 credit hours of dissertation research.
Total Credit Hours Required: 57 Credit Hours Minimum beyond the Master's Degree
Applicants are expected to have a master's degree in criminal justice or a closely related discipline. Applicants' transcripts will be reviewed for successful completion of a sufficient number of fundamental criminal justice classes. Applicants may be required to complete master's-level courses in certain topics before being admitted to the program or permitted to take classes.
Students must have completed master's-level courses in advanced research methods and advanced quantitative methods and be familiar with SPSS, SAS, STATA, or R prior to enrolling in the Methodological Core courses. Students who do not meet this requirement may be required to complete remedial coursework prior to enrolling in CCJ 7708 - Advanced Quantitative Methods for Criminal Justice Research and CCJ 7727 - Advanced Research Methods in Criminal Justice. It is recommended students have completed master's level courses in the concentration area they choose prior to taking courses in that area (policing, corrections, or juvenile justice).
36 Total Credits
- A grade of B (3.0) or better is required for all courses listed in the Substantive Core and Methodological Core.
15 Total Credits
- Complete the following:
- CCJ7019 - Seminar in the Nature of Crime (3)
- CCJ7457 - Seminar in Criminal Justice Theory (3)
- CCJ7096 - Seminar in Criminal Justice Systems (3)
- CCJ7785 - Teaching Criminal Justice (3)
- CCJ7775 - Criminal Justice Research in the Community (3)
12 Total Credits
- Complete all of the following
- Complete the following:
- CCJ7727 - Advanced Research Methods in Criminal Justice (3)
- CCJ7708 - Advanced Quantitative Methods for Criminal Justice Research (3)
- Select two courses from the list below or another methodological course with adviser approval: Students selecting CCJ 7725 must complete CCJ 6073
- Complete at least 2 of the following:
- CCJ7725 - The Geography of Crime: Theory and Methods (3)
- CCJ6073 - Data Management Systems for Crime Analysis (3)
- CCJ6079 - Crime Mapping and Analysis in Criminal Justice (3)
- CCJ7747 - Hierarchical Linear Modeling in Criminal Justice Research (3)
- CCJ7752 - Structural Equation Modeling in Criminal Justice Research (3)
- CCJ6902 - Qualitative Criminal Justice Research Methods (3)
9 Total Credits
- Complete 1 of the following
- Students select an area of concentration and complete the assigned 9 credit hours of coursework. It is recommended entering doctoral students have completed a master's-level precursor in their chosen area (e.g., master's-level survey course in policing if the area chosen is Policing Theory and Research). A grade of B (3.0) or better is required for all courses listed in the selected concentration area. Areas of concentration are:Policing Theory and Research
- Complete the following: Correctional Theory and Research
- CJE6320 - Seminar in Police Administration (3)
- CJE6456 - Seminar in Policing Urban Communities (3)
- CJE6706 - Seminar in Police Socialization and Culture (3)
- Complete the following: Juvenile Justice Theory and Research
- CJC6135 - Seminar in Institutional Corrections (3)
- CJC6165 - Seminar in Community Corrections (3)
- CJC6486 - Seminar in Correctional Effectiveness (3)
- Complete the following:
- CJJ6124 - Seminar in Prosecuting Juvenile Offenders (3)
- CJJ6126 - Seminar in Juvenile Corrections (3)
- CJJ6546 - Seminar in Policing and Prevention in the Juvenile Justice System (3)
6 Total Credits
- Earn at least 6 credits from the following types of courses: Students select two additional courses (3 credit hours each) in consultation with program adviser and mentor.
0 Total Credits
- Students must successfully complete a series of cumulative examinations to ensure expertise in the substantive, methodological and concentration areas. Students will take an exam on the core criminal justice coursework, a research methods and statistics proficiency exam, and an exam in the student's concentration area. Students may enroll in doctoral research (CCJ 7919) during the period of study preceding the examinations if all coursework is complete. Students will be given two attempts at each exam. If unsuccessful on the second attempt the student will be dismissed from the program.
15 Total Credits
- Earn at least 15 credits from the following types of courses: CCJ 7980 Upon successful completion of all examinations, students will enter candidacy and complete a dissertation. The dissertation topic should be grounded in the student's selected concentration area. Dissertation committees will contain a minimum of four faculty members, at least three of which (including the chair) will be from the Department of Criminal Justice. The fourth member must be from outside the Department of Criminal Justice and may be from outside the university. All dissertation committee members must be approved graduate faculty or graduate faculty scholars.
Grand Total Credits: 57
Graduate students may receive financial assistance through fellowships, assistantships, tuition support, or loans. For more information, see the College of Graduate Studies Funding website, which describes the types of financial assistance available at UCF and provides general guidance in planning your graduate finances. The Financial Information section of the Graduate Catalog is another key resource.
Fellowships are awarded based on academic merit to highly qualified students. They are paid to students through the Office of Student Financial Assistance, based on instructions provided by the College of Graduate Studies. Fellowships are given to support a student's graduate study and do not have a work obligation. For more information, see UCF Graduate Fellowships, which includes descriptions of university fellowships and what you should do to be considered for a fellowship.