Why Should I Get a Criminal Justice Certificate in Alabama?
Whether you want to keep your community safer by policing it, keep prisoners secure in correctional facilities, fight fires, or support front-line responders, a criminal justice certificate could give you a solid educational foundation for your new career.
Criminal justice laws and statutes are changing all over the country to stay aligned with current research and evidence in this field. As a result, the need for licensed professionals is growing in many areas.
According to Alabama Labor Market Information, protective service occupations have an anticipated annual growth rate of 0.56% between 2014 and 2024 (2016).
Criminal justice efforts have led to considerable progress in Alabama, with overall crime decreasing 1% between 2014 and 2015 (Alabama Law Enforcement Agency, 2016). As these efforts continue, agencies may rely on professionals with specialized training to prevent, solve, and deal with the effects of crime.
Ready to find out how you can earn a certificate in criminal justice? Use the list of Alabama criminal justice schools below to get in touch with local schools!
What Kind of Criminal Justice Certificates are Available in Alabama?
There are two main certificate levels in Alabama. Once you've determined which type of certificate is ideal for your educational level and work experience, you can choose an area of study to focus on. Certificate programs tend to be targeted to specific job titles and areas of expertise, so you should have a clear idea of which job titles and work environments interest you.
The first type of certificate is an occupational or technical certificate. These are intended for students who do not yet have an Associate's degree or Bachelor's degree. They include the coursework and experience needed for entry-level work in specialized criminal justice roles.
Most schools intend these certificate programs to be short-term, lasting between one and two years. This makes it easy for you to get into the workforce and find out what your long-term career goals are before committing to an Associate's degree or Bachelor's degree.
The second option is a post-Master's certificate. This option is ideal for Master's degree graduates who do not want to further their education with a PhD. A post-Master's certificate typically requires one to two years of study beyond the graduate level. It builds on your knowledge and critical thinking skills to prepare you for highly specialized job titles.
Legal Administrative Certificate Requirements
- 43 to 46 credits
- Legal & Social Environments of Business
- Contemporary issues in business, including the legal implications of business ownership, legislation, criminal law, and civil law
- Legal Transcription
- An overview of legal terms used in legal correspondence, forms, and court documents; helps students learn how to transcribe error-free documents
- Records and Information Management
- Tips and techniques for managing records and information in a legal office setting; includes the proper disposal of confidential forms and documents
Fire Science Certificate Requirements
- 12 credits
- Legal Aspects of Fire Protection
- Legal actions and legislation that affect those who work in fire protection; Alabama statutes, regulations, and cases
- Fire Prevention and Code Enforcement
- Inspection, code enforcement, model building, fire prevention codes, and political/legal aspects of the fire inspection process
- Principles of Fire and Emergency Services
- Loss analysis, laws and regulations regarding fire services, fire chemistry and physics, fire protection systems, and fire strategies and tactics
- Fire Investigation and Analysis
- Exploring the dynamics of flame spread, ignition, fire growth; investigation of explosions and fires; the management of fire investigations
Law Enforcement Certificate Requirements
- 33 hours
- Introduction to Law Enforcement
- A look at how law enforcement works in the criminal justice industry as a whole and its overall goals
- Introduction to Corrections
- The goals of the correctional system in Alabama, an overview of jobs in corrections, and how correctional facilities aim to minimize and prevent crime
- Introductions to Criminology
- Studying the causes of crime; this course looks at socioeconomic factors and other specifications that correlate with crime
- Police Organization and Administration
- The structure of police departments, how a chain of command is set up, and how managers or administrators ensure that departments run smoothly
Judicial Reporting Certificate Requirements
- 35 credits
- Computer-Aided Transcription
- Transcribing with word processing programs and transcription applications
- Realtime Writing
- Handwriting in real time by using shorthand and abbreviations
- Legal Principles and Terminology
- An overview of the key terms and ideas used in legal settings; these come up often in the courtroom, and being familiar with them can make it much easier to transcribe court proceedings
- Legal and Business Ethics
- Acting ethically, legally, and appropriately while serving in a judicial setting
Graduate Computer Forensics Certificate Requirements
- 21 credits
- Law, Evidence, and Procedure
- How evidence is used in the criminal justice process and how laws affect the use of evidence
- Computer Crime and Forensics
- An overview of different types of computer-based crimes and how forensic data is used to trace perpetrators and catch them
- Elements of Forensic Science
- A broad look at forensic science as a field and how it is used in criminal justice
- Digital Documents, Security, and Intellectual Property
- Security issues, safety of digital documents, and how computer crime may compromise the security of documents and files
Graduate Occupational Safety Certificate Requirements
- 12 credits
- Safety and Accident Prevention
- Theories and principles of occupational safety and health; practical applications of safety theories
- Fire Protection Technology
- Design, specification, approval, testing, maintenance, and installation of fire protection systems
- Integrated Safety Management Systems
- Environmental safety and health systems; management standards in occupational health
- Safety Engineering
- Practical input about design ergonomics, desired safety features, and human factors
What Can I Do With a Criminal Justice Certificate in Alabama?
Your career goals may heavily influence your choice of school, since certificate programs generally concentrate exclusively on one or two job titles. After earning your criminal justice certification, you may pursue work in your field.
Some certification programs require an internship, which may help you line up a job offer before you graduate. If possible, take advantage of internship and practicum opportunities while completing your education.
If you graduate from a law enforcement certification program, you may look into becoming a police officer. Currently, police officers in Alabama earn an average salary of $42,400 per year (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016). Between 2014 and 2024, job openings may swell 6% (O*Net, 2016).
Legal assistants are indispensable in Alabama law firms and public defenders' offices. A 6% boost in job openings may occur between 2014 and 2024 (O*Net, 2016). The average income for a legal assistant is $44,430 (BLS, 2016).
Firefighters charge in when others run out, often working 24-hour shifts to keep their communities safe. The mean income for an Alabama firefighter is $39,780 per year (BLS, 2016). The state of Alabama may see a 6% boost in demand by 2024 (O*Net, 2016).
Court reporters use their lightning-fast fingers to provide accurate transcripts of court proceedings, claiming an average annual salary of $38,340 (BLS, 2016). Job openings may jump 2% between 2014 and 2024 (O*Net, 2016).
Those who specialize in forensic science at the graduate certificate level may benefit from an average income of $55,650 per year for Alabama forensic scientists (BLS, 2016). O*Net anticipates a huge 25% increase in job openings through 2024 (2016).
No matter how much technology advances, people are the driving force behind the field of criminal justice, using their intuition and experience to drop crime rates and protect communities.
Let's find the right certificate program for you today. Explore options below to discover the perfect criminal justice degree in Alabama for your needs.
Online programs may not be available in all areas
Certificate - Criminal Justice, Certificate - Homeland Security
Certificate - Fire Science (online), Certificate - Graduate Occupational Safety (online), Certificate - Occupational Safety & Health (online)
Certificate - Criminal Justice, Certificate - Paralegal
Diploma - Paralegal, Short-term Certificate - Realtime Reporting - Litigation Assistant
Certificate - APCO International, Certificate - Emergency Management
Certificate - Law Enforcement (online)
Certificate - CART/Captioning (online), Certificate - Judicial Reporting (online), Certificate - Scoping/Proofreading, Certificate - Scoping/Proofreading (online)
Certificate - Legal Secretary
Graduate Certificate - Computer Forensics