Careers in criminal justice serve a vital public safety function. That's why we've created a comprehensive master's degree in Applied Criminology to prepare you for every challenge. At A&M-Commerce, we’re proud to offer a challenging and sought-after program that is ranked one of the best online graduate degrees in the country. Our highly qualified faculty will guide you through each five-week course, helping you thrive along the way. Whether you're just starting your career or are a professional looking to level up, this fully online degree has what you need. The agency leaders, security analysts and policymakers of the future start here.

Where It Is Offered Online
Duration 18 Months
Foreign Language No foreign language credits required
Delivery Fully Online, Only Offered Online (100% Online)
Total Credit Hours 36 Hours
Thesis Requirements No thesis required
woman with three men discussing files around conference table


Focus Your Passion

The Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice offers four tracks towards earning your master's degree. Explore what option works best for your career interests and research goals.

General Criminology

Gain a broader understanding of the discipline with our General Criminology track. You will take courses in criminal causality, criminal law, police management, and correctional settings. We pride ourselves in providing the comprehensive information you need to become a more critical thinker and problem solver.
Total credit hours: 36

Criminal Justice Administration and Management

Are you ready to lead your team to success? The Administration and Management track not only tests your skills but prepares you for the challenges ahead. Learn how to effectively manage your resources, analyze complex policy issues, and make informed decisions.
Total credit hours: 36

Forensic Accounting

Combine accounting knowledge and the criminal justice profession. This track will prepare you for careers in forensic accounting with accounting services, law enforcement agencies, government organizations, or financial institutions. Whether you are new to criminal justice or currently working in the field, this track is designed for you.
Total credit hours: 36

Homeland Security

Learn how to work on a grand scale with our Homeland Security track. You will gain a broad understanding of Homeland Security issues while enhancing your leadership capabilities. This track will arm you with the critical thinking skills you need to address security challenges within the United States.
Total credit hours: 36

What You Will Learn

A master’s degree in applied criminology will offer you the opportunity to:

  • Gain a deeper understanding of law enforcement, crime and the criminal justice system
  • Work in the U.S. or abroad while earning your degree
  • Enjoy the flexibility of accelerated online courses from an industry-leading university
  • Learn how to collect and interpret data to make informed decisions
  • Engage with experienced and professional faculty as they guide you to success

Internship opportunities

Internship experience provides the foundation employers are seeking. Although not required for your degree, internships are an important part of your educational experience. These are just a few of the companies that offer opportunities for applied criminology students.


Become a highly respected and valuable member of any team. Our graduate program prepares you for careers in criminal justice management, homeland security, investigations and much more.

Career Possibilities and Current Median Salaries

Private Detective and Investigator
Police and Detective
Information Security Analyst
Forensic Science Technician
Emergency Management Director

US DOL Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2018

Featured Courses

A applied criminology student sitting down at a desk, taking notes and looking at the screen of a laptop.

Course Delivery

Designed for full-time students and working professionals, our flexible degree is offered 100% online. Each course lasts only five weeks so you can complete the program in as little as 18 months.

Student Organizations

A&M-Commerce proudly hosts the Alpha Phi Sigma Criminal Justice Honor Society and the Sociology and Criminal Justice Society (SACS). Both organizations strive to promote academic excellence, community service, educational leadership and unity. Joining a student organization opens doors to networking, presenting at conferences and more.


Tuition and fees for graduate students taking nine credit hours are $3,669 for Texas residents and $7,341 for non-residents.

Applied Criminology (MS) :: Program Admission Requirements US



Applications are accepted throughout the year.

Note: International students are not accepted at this time.

Your Path to Becoming a Lion

Step 1. Submit Application

Submit your application at

  • Select “Create a new graduate school admissions application.”
  • Select “Texas A&M University-Commerce (Commerce)” as your “Target University.”

  • Select “Applied Criminology, MS” as your “Major.”
  • Pay the $50 application fee.

Wait to receive an application confirmation email before proceeding to the next step.

  • After you submit your application, the Graduate School will send a confirmation email within two business days to the personal email account you used for ApplyTexas.

Step 2. Submit Documents

Submit the following documents after you receive an application confirmation email.

Official Transcripts

Contact your previous institution(s) and request that they send your official transcripts to [email protected].

  • We recommend that you request transcripts for all of your academic work.

All international transcripts must be evaluated and the evaluation submitted to the Graduate School.

We accepts evaluations sent directly from the following Agencies.

  • If a normal evaluation is submitted, official original transcripts with all marksheets will still need to be submitted.
  • If a WES ICAP or equivalent is submitted, we will not need the official transcripts to be submitted separately.
Postal Alternative

If your institution is unable to submit a digital copy, hard copies may be mailed to:

Texas A&M University-Commerce
Attn: Graduate School
PO Box 3011
Commerce, Texas 75429-3011

We will need official/original documents. If those documents are the only copies you have, the Graduate School can mail them back to you upon request. Contact [email protected] for more information.

One Letter of Recommendation

Request one signed letter of recommendation, on letterhead, from a professional who can attest to your goals and ability to succeed in the program. That individual should:

Postal Alternative

If you are unable to submit a digital copy, hard copies may be mailed to:

Texas A&M University-Commerce
Attn: Graduate School
PO Box 3011
Commerce, Texas 75429-3011

Statement of Goals

Submit a personal essay that describes who you are, where you are in life (professionally and educationally), what your future goals are, and how earning a master’s in Applied Criminology will help you to achieve your future goals. 2 pages or less.

Writing Sample

Submit a writing sample on a criminal justice topic of your choice, with in-text citations of academic sources such as peer-reviewed journal articles or book chapters, to support facts and assertations. Include a reference page for the citations, demonstrating your ability to write at a graduate level.

Resume or CV

Submit a resume or curriculum vitae (CV) which includes your academic and professional history and achievements.

Test Scores (if required)

You do not need to submit GRE scores if you have:

  • a completed bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited university with an overall GPA of at least 3.00 or at least a 3.00 GPA on the last 60 hours of the degree
  • a completed master’s degree from a regionally accredited university with a 3.00 GPA overall or higher
  • a completed CJ graduate certificate program with a 3.0 or higher

If you do not meet the GPA exemption criteria, request that your GRE® scores be sent to Texas A&M University-Commerce (6188) when you register for the test. If you have already taken the GRE®, you can order additional score reports.

Look for application updates in myLeo > Apps > Check Application Status

  • Once an admission decision has been made, you will receive an email to your student email account at myLeo > Apps > Leomail.

Step 3. Apply for Financial Assistance

  • Apply for scholarships and graduate assistantships once you are admitted.
  • Apply for financial aid by submitting a FAFSA and sending it to school code 003565.
  • Contact your financial aid advisor with any questions.

Step 4. Register for Classes

Once registration opens and you are eligible to enroll, your graduate enrollment specialist will contact you to complete registration.

  • View your degree plan in DegreeWorks.
  • To register for classes, go to myLeo > Student Resources > Registration Menu.

Contact your graduate enrollment specialist if you have any questions regarding your degree plan and registration.

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Applied Criminology (MS) :: Program Admission Requirements Intl.

The Applied Criminology MS is not available to international students at this time.

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