Home Doctoral Degree in Criminal Justice PhD in Criminal Justice Programs in Pennsylvania

PhD in Criminal Justice Programs in Pennsylvania

With its proximity to Southern and New England states, Pennsylvania has many influences in the criminal justice industry. This can pose challenges to the state’s policymakers and researchers, as they must take into account the residents’ unique needs and experiences. With a PhD criminology or criminal justice, you may become an industry expert who can address these issues.

If you are passionate about criminal justice and you’re ready to take on more responsibility, learn more about your options by contacting criminal justice PhD Pennsylvania programs below.

What Can I Do With My PhD in Criminal Justice in Pennsylvania?

While many states have adopted the Clean Slate Initiative, Pennsylvania is a step ahead of every other state in the country (Think Progress, 2016). Pennsylvania is the very first state to automate the process, giving offenders a chance at a new life and supporting those who do not have the financial or legal resources to fight something on their record.

You may also use your education to influence change in the corrections system. Pennsylvania prisons have started the process of reforming solitary confinement, due to being under investigation by the US Justice Department (ACLU, 2018).

One of the benefits of a PhD is the fact that it may put you in line for more influential positions. Between 2012 and 2022, demand for Pennsylvania judges is expected to remain stable, and the state may see a 9% increase in criminal justice professor jobs (O*Net, 2016). Currently, judges in this state report an average salary of $63,610 per year and criminal justice professors earn an average of $65,190 per year (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016).

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

Before you narrow down your list of the criminal justice schools PA offers, make sure you know exactly what you want for the future of your career. A PhD can be used to further a career in administration and management, legislation and policymaking, or research and teaching. However, if you are interested in management and attend a research-based school, you may be doing yourself a disservice.

Find out what each school’s specialty is and consider meeting with professors to make sure a program is a good fit.

Even if you don’t plan on going into research, keep in mind that a PhD is a research-based degree. As a result, you’ll spend at least some of your time conducting research, analyzing studies, and learning how to apply research to work situations.

Some of the courses you may take as a PhD student include:

  • Advanced Theoretical Criminology
  • Advanced Quantitative Methods
  • Advanced Qualitative Methods
  • Advanced Criminal Justice Policy
  • Applied Research in Criminal Justice
  • Ethical and Philosophical Issues in Criminology
  • Analysis in Criminology

You should experience considerable professional and personal growth throughout your 70 to 80 credits of doctoral training. By the time you graduate, you should be experienced in different aspects of scholarship, teaching methods in criminal justice, the usage of research evidence in this industry, and legislative priorities.

You may be able to start your PhD whether you have a Master’s degree or just a Bachelor’s degree. In total, the post-Bachelor’s commitment is between 70 and 80 credits, which may drop to 40 to 50 credits if you already have a Master’s degree. PhD students typically have access to special funding opportunities.

By working as a teaching or research assistant, you may get discounted or free tuition and a monthly living stipend. As an added bonus, you get experience in some of the real work environments that you may work in with a doctorate degree.

Education is almost always the key to a new career path. Find out what you can accomplish at this level by contacting criminal justice PhD programs in Pennsylvania.