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Criminal Justice Certification in Virginia

Why Should I Get a Criminal Justice Certificate in Virginia?

With traits of a Southern state and a coastal state, Virginia has many complex criminal justice needs that require input from a variety of experts. By committing to a criminal justice certificate and finding out how you can contribute to this field, you can do your part to keep Virginia safe and free of crime.

Crime rates vary from year to year, but they tend to follow the same trends over the years. In Virginia, opioid addiction was recently declared a public health emergency (WSLS, 2016). This issue requires public health input, but it also requires assistance from the criminal justice industry as legislators look to set up drug courts and look for solutions other than incarceration.

Ready to explore the criminal justice industry?

Take the first step right now by contacting criminal justice programs in Virginia.

What Kind of Criminal Justice Certificates are Available in Virginia?

Certificates differ from degrees in several key ways. First, they do not rely on a base of general education courses. Rather than taking courses in topics like math, physical sciences, and history, you begin your education with courses required for your area of study. Second, many certificate programs are short-term, lasting one year or less.

Corrections Technical Certificate Requirements (24 credits)

  • Introduction to Corrections
    • This course prepares you for work in the corrections industry, covering basic statistics, responsibilities, and long-term goals.
  • Corrections and the Community
    • Learn about the role of a correctional facility in a community, including its perception and how it protects residents from offenders.
  • Ethics and the Criminal Justice Professional
    • Create a solid foundation of ethics in this class, which shows you how to act fairly and rationally as a correctional officer.
  • Defensive Tactics
    • In the event of an escape or attack, the techniques taught in this class can help you defend yourself, other prisoners, and other officers.

Legal Secretary Technical Certificate Requirements (32 credits)

  • Law Office Management
    • Explore the common responsibilities of legal secretaries and paralegals, which often include the running of the entire office on a day-to-day basis.
  • Communication Skills for Legal Professionals
    • Learn skills that can help you communicate efficiently with clients, lawyers, and other legal support personnel.
  • Legal Writing
    • Learn about the traits and standards of legal writing.
  • Legal Research
    • In this class, students find out how to conduct research that uses accurate sources and journals.

Forensic Science Technical Certificate Requirements (24 credits)

  • Forensic Pathology
    • In this handwritten on class, learn about how evidence is processed, stored, and analyzed.
  • Forensic Photography
    • This course show students how to photograph evidence, including crime scenes and bodies, to ensure that photographs can be used in legal settings.
  • Forensic Evidence
    • This class covers a wide range of forensic evidence, showing you how each type of evidence is used in understanding and trying a case.
  • Principles of Criminal Investigation
    • In this class, you get an overview of the criminal investigation process and how forensic evidence streamlines the process.

What Can I Do With a Criminal Justice Certificate in Virginia?

With your criminal justice diploma or certificate in hand, you can put your education to the test by applying for entry-level jobs. The job outlook is solid in Virginia, which is one of the main benefits of working in this state.

Through the year 2024, O*Net expects a 9% increase in corrections officer job openings, a 12% boost in paralegal job openings, and a 35% increase in forensic science technician job openings (2016).

Currently, Virginia corrections officers earn an average of $38,030 per year (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016). The average income for a paralegal is $51,360 per year (BLS, 2016). Forensic science technicians report an average annual salary of $67,770 (BLS, 2016).

Now that you know how a criminal justice certificate may jump start your career, it’s time to get started.

Contact criminal justice certificate programs to request more information.

Online programs may not be available in all areas