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Locate Seattle Criminal Justice Schools

The bustling metropolis of Seattle is built on a foundation of criminal justice that keeps the city and its residents safe. If you’ve ever wondered how you can better your community while bettering yourself, a career in criminal justice may be the ticket you’re looking for.

With six locations plus police headquarters in the middle of the city, the Seattle Police Department is regularly on the lookout for skilled, educated criminal justice graduates. They have special units in race and social justice, aggressive driving, child assault, and more.


Since Seattle employers regularly hire people in criminal justice positions, the area has a variety of schools with programs in this field. Find out what schools are located near you with our easy-to-use school list, below. Contact any schools you may be interested in attending; the information packets you get can help you make the best decision for you.

You can choose a school anywhere in Seattle, since the Metro Transit in Seattle can take you anywhere in the city. With bus, rail, and train service, you can almost always get anywhere you need to go. Whether you need to get to school, an internship, or work, the Metro Transit can get you there.

Criminal Justice Schools in Other Major Washington Cities

Criminal Justice Education in Seattle

Getting your criminal justice degree in Seattle can be easy with the number of great schools in the area. Depending on which school you attend, you may be able to pursue an associate degree or bachelor’s degree.

An associate degree is the shorter option of the two degree programs. You may be able to graduate in four semesters if you attend school full-time. This degree includes a small assortment of general education courses, in addition to lower-level criminal justice courses.

In a bachelor’s degree program, you can plan on completing 120 credits over the course of eight semesters. In addition to the general education courses and lower-level courses required of an Associate’s degree student, you may have to take higher-level criminal justice courses in subjects like criminology, Internet crime, and criminal law.

One opportunity that may be available to you in both degree programs is an internship. Most schools allow you to complete an internship in your last year of school. For an entire semester, you put in three to six hours of work per week at a criminal justice employer in your community.

Tuition costs vary widely in the Seattle area, so it’s important to thoroughly assess your tuition and financial aid options. Tuition at Seattle University, one of the largest schools in the area, is $45,765 per year.

Seattle is home to many local criminal justice organizations. Many are for people who work or who intend to work in a specific profession. Consider joining one to begin building connections in the community. Seattle-based organizations include the Washington State Paralegal Association, the Washington Association of Legal Investigators, the Seattle Police Athletic Association, and the Seattle Police Relief Association.

After earning your criminal justice degree, you can really dig into your career options and decide which career path you would like to follow. Your options may vary depending on what type of degree you have and what experience you have.

Joining the Seattle Police Department as a police officer can be a great start to your career, particularly with the career advancement options you have. The starting salary is $5,818 per month according to Seattle.gov, which can get bumped up to $6,787 once you are sworn in. The Seattle Police Foundation is a local foundation that you can join after becoming a police officer.

If you’ve earned an associate degree, you can look into some of the following career options, listed with their median salaries as noted on Bureau of Labor Statistics:

  • Security Guard: $42,110 per year
  • Private Investigator & Detective: $69,950

After earning a bachelor’s degree, you have an even greater selection of career paths you can pursue. These are some of the most popular fields; you can also look into specialized job titles.

  • Supervisor of Correctional Detectives: $136,880 per year
  • Sheriff’s Officer: $101,470 per year

2022 US Bureau of Labor Statistics salary and employment figures for Seattle, Tacoma, and Bellevue, WA positions contained here reflect national data, not school-specific information. Conditions in your area may vary. Data accessed November 2023.