Finding out the cost of an associates degree in criminal justice is a bit like finding a needle in a haystack if you’re searching online. A lot of marketing experts, it seems, have told colleges and universities that it’s not a good idea to show prices for fear of scaring away prospective students. Many of the best known schools that promote themselves online require you to submit a request form or call them to get real information on tuition for either online or classroom based degree programs.
Criminal justice is an area where there’s a particularly wide range of costs for a degree. That’s because the associate’s degree in this specialty is offered everywhere from tiny community colleges in rural areas to major state and private schools.
Respected Name Online
Indiana Wesleyan University, for example, is an old and respected school that has made a major move into online teaching. It offers a distance learning associates degree in criminal justice at a total cost of about $16,000 (more if you live outside the U.S.). Liberty University, a much newer school with a baptist affiliate, offers the same type degree for $15,700.
But you can spend much more on tuition or much less. Central Pennsylvania College, a regionally known school with just over 1,100 students, offers a campus-based AA in criminal justice on an accelerated 18-month schedule for a total of $19,940. That cost includes all room, board and additional expenses. Keep in mind that many small regional colleges have alot of expertise at helping you get Pell grants and other government help with financing. Many report that over 80% of their students are currently getting financial aid to help pay for their degree programs.
The cost goes up if you with to live at a school, particularly if it’s private. Well-known (for-profit) American Intercontinental University’s Associate of Science in criminal justice costs $30,000. Attending AIU online, however, can save you a bundle. It’s business administration in criminal justice associate’s degree costs about $22,000 via distance learning.
Deciding what specialty you want to work in, whether you intend to use your associates degree credits toward a bachelor’s degree later on and what kind of enforcement agency you want to work for will all determine how much you’ll want to invest. The least expensive option in most cases is to go to a community college in your locality. Associates degrees for local students at such schools often cost well under $10,000. If you want to work in a large police department or even federal agency where there’s lots of competition for every job, a higher-priced, better known school may be more in your interest.