Criminal Justice

Legally Speaking

Discover ways to use your talents for law, law enforcement, juvenile support, corrections, court reporting or many other ways that are a part of the United States legal system. A criminal justice degree from DWU, at either the bachelor’s or associate level, will give you the tools and confidence you need to enter a law-related occupation or further your education. Well educated, experienced graduates will find rewarding careers doing the vital work of our justice system. Become a part of the solution at DWU. 

What can you do with a
criminal justice degree?

With your skills in criminal justice, you could find success in these careers: 

Conservation officer 
Juvenile counselor
Air marshal  
Court reporter 
Police Officer 

What's the Difference at DWU?

  • Graduate in just two or four years, depending on your degree choice.
  • Expose yourself to a variety of justice-related disciplines including law, law enforcement, juvenile services, courts, criminology, research and more.
  • Find your area of interest with classes like forensic investigation, financial and white collar crimes; terrorism and Homeland Security; wildlife law enforcement; legal studies and more.
  • Learn from experienced instructors with criminal justice backgrounds.
  • Dive into a justice-related internship for real-world experience.

Criminal Justice Courses

Take a closer look at the classes you will take within the criminal justice program.

CRJ 433 Seminar in Criminal Justice

3 Hours
This course is an advanced seminar and capstone experience for students majoring in criminal justice. Students will focus on emerging issues of significant concern for agencies, organizations and individuals within the criminal justice profession.

CRJ 395 Constitutional Criminal Justice

3 Hours
Students will study the effects of the U.S. Constitution and state laws on law enforcement processes. Topics include the history and contemporary applications of the law to the search and seizure of evidence, electronic surveillance, interrogation practices and identification procedures.

CRJ 381 Criminal Justice Ethics

3 Hours
This course examines ethical issues that are imperative to the success of students who are pursuing careers in criminal justice professions. Specifically, this course will critically analyze ethical issues related to cases and current events from across the criminal justice system.

CRJ 373 Probation and Parole Procedures

3 Hours
Students will study the structure, organization and operation of probation and parole systems with emphasis on applicable guidelines, the role of the probation/parole officer as an agent of behavioral change, and the social and physical environmental contexts of the probation/parole process.

CRJ 210 Introduction to Criminal Justice

3 Hours
This course introduces the history and philosophy of criminal justice systems, including law enforcement, courts and corrections. It offers a comprehensive study of the theory and systems of criminal justice in modern societies, and examines the interrelationships of law enforcement agencies, court systems, correctional and penal systems, and the administration of justice.

CRJ 258 Criminology

3 Hours
This course includes an analysis of the major sociological theories of crime causation, sociological aspects of types of offenders, and the methodologies of measuring and analyzing criminal behavior and environments conducive to criminal behavior.

CRJ 261 Criminal Law

3 Hours
Students will study the scope and sources of criminal law. This course gives special attention to the basic elements of crime, defenses and criminal responsibility.

An associate’s degree in human services from Mitchell Technical College may be applied toward a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, allowing for completion of this bachelor’s degree in just two years.

Get to Know Your Professors

Our low student-to-teacher ratio offers valuable one-on-one interaction with professors.

Joel Reinesch, M.A.

Associate Professor of Criminal Justice | Faculty Athletic Representative

The Experience


Nothing can replace learning the justice system firsthand. By taking part in an internship, you’ll expand your hiring potential and earn valuable working experience. Take advantage of our many connections in the field of criminal justice.

Here are just some of the organizations where our students have interned with in the past.

  • South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation 
  • South Dakota State’s Attorney’s Offices 
  • South Dakota Department of Corrections 
  • South Dakota Judicial System, Court Services Department 
  • Sheriff and Police Departments 
  • Juvenile treatment facilities 
  • Drug and alcohol treatment centers 
  • The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) 

Do You Like a Challenge?

Join your professors in their research. When you become a research assistant, you'll gain an in-depth perspective on the world of criminal justice. Let this experience ignite your desire to learn more. 

Related Majors & Minors

Forensic Science and Investigation

Interested in crime investigation and forensic science?


    Is a career in law in your future?

      Wildlife Management

      Embrace an outdoor lifestyle and promote environmental stewardship with a degree in Wildlife Management.


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