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PhD in Criminal Justice Programs in West Virginia


What Can I Do With My PhD in Criminal Justice in West Virginia?

While building your career in criminal justice, you may have become familiar with the culture of crime and justice in West Virginia. If you compare today's laws to those on the books five or ten years ago, you'll find that policies and legislative goals are completely different. However, the work isn't done yet. West Virginia still has quite a ways to go to improve safety in the state and help offenders successfully rehabilitate.

There are many ways to contribute to the future of criminal justice, including legislation, administration, and research. Find out how criminal justice schools West Virginia programs can help you achieve your goals.

West Virginia legislators made many invested efforts to help drug addicts during National Drug Court Month (West Virginia Record, 2016). The state has effectively used drug courts to reduce drug crime and drug abuse, save money on imprisonment costs, provide a comfortable and supervised treatment to addicts, and meet the growing need for substance abuse treatment.

With a PhD criminal justice, you may look for employment in different settings. An important agency in West Virginia is the West Virginia Division of Justice and Community Service. This agency focuses on crime research, performance data for criminal justice agencies, grants for relevant projects, and professional training.

While comparing schools, think about how you would like to use your degree. You may go into the academic field as a criminal justice professor, a position that reports an average salary of $49,990 per year in West Virginia (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016). The average salary for a West Virginia judge is $78,220 per year (BLS, 2016).

What Will It Take to Earn My Criminal Justice Graduate Degree in West Virginia?

There are two main types of PhD programs in West Virginia. The first is intended for working criminal justice professionals. These programs assume a certain level of knowledge and competence in this field, so they may be a bit shorter than average.

They typically allow you to skip core classes. The other option is designed for those who have a Bachelor's degree or Master's degree but no experience in criminal justice. The curricula for these programs often include core classes, making the time commitment slightly longer.

As a criminal justice student, you may spend between three and six years completing your PhD. Some of the classes you may enroll in include:

  • Seminar in Criminal Justice
  • Advanced Theory in Criminal Justice
  • Advanced Criminal Law and Procedure
  • Research Methods in Criminal Justice
  • Applied Statistics in Criminal Justice
  • Multicultural Issues in Criminal Justice
  • Analysis of Criminal Justice Research

You are expected to grow in many ways throughout your program. Analyzing each school's program outcomes shows you exactly what you are expected to accomplish by the time you graduate, allowing you to work toward specific goals each semester.

Some of the goals you may tackle are listed below:

  • Building conceptual and practical research skills to effectively analyze the criminal justice system
  • Work with criminal justice professionals at all levels of employment and in all justice settings
  • Expand your knowledge of human behavior, justice administration, advanced theory, and policy analysis
  • Discover how social science relates to criminal justice and research

Theory courses are clearly an essential part of your education, given how much of your degree they entail. However, your dissertation is just as important. Depending on the school you choose, your dissertation may account for 12 to 21 credits of your curriculum. Writing a dissertation is a chance to apply your new research skills and build strong professional connections.

Higher education can pay off in a wide variety of ways. Find out how you can make the most of your education and request information from criminal justice PhD programs.

Online programs may not be available in all areas

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Online programs may not be available in all areas

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In addition to the campus based programs, there are numerous online programs available for many of the common Criminal Justice degree types (Associate, Bachelors, Masters, PhD) and specialties. Please feel free to use the links on the left-hand side of this page to explore some of the online degree programs available. Thanks for visiting!