Dec 04, 2022
Graduate Curriculum Committee
Marcel F. Beausoleil, PhD
Lilian Bobea, PhD
Deon Brock, PhD
Randall Grometstein, PhD
Phil McCormick, PhD
David P. Weiss, PhD
Richard P. Wiebe, PhD
The role of the police officer is intellectually demanding, requiring officers to possess knowledge and skills in both substantive and procedural law, police procedures, problem solving, crisis management, written and oral communication, technology, and professionalism. This course of study, following the Bachelor’s of Science in Criminal Justice with the Police Certification concentration, will lead to, upon completion, both a Master’s of Science in Criminal Justice and a Certificate of Completion from the Massachusetts Municipal Police Training Committee, thereby allowing the student to apply for any Massachusetts municipal police department, or that of any other state with a reciprocal agreement. In this concentration, students will complete a total of 36 credits: eight 3-credit courses that concentrate in criminal justice studies and a 12-credit Practicum, which will have both a skills component and an academic component.
Note: This program is only open to those students who have successfully completed the Police Certification concentration in the Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice at Fitchburg State University.
Students who successfully complete the 4+1 Criminal Justice Police Certification concentration will:
- Meet all of the requirements of the Municipal Police Training Academy
- Apply knowledge of the operations of the criminal justice system to real-life case scenarios and current events
- Recognize and analyze ethical issues and dilemmas in the practice of criminal justice
- Demonstrate the ability to research and analyze crime data and its impact on criminal justice policy
- Identify the links between theoretical foundations of crime and delinquency and the development of criminal justice policy
- Recognize diversity in society and how criminal justice professionals respond to the increasing diversity in society
- Develop critical thinking skills and the ability to apply them to problem solving
- Develop oral and written communications skills as well as the ability to use technology for communication purposes
Students will be eligible to seek employment with any municipal police department in Massachusetts, and with any state that has reciprocity with Massachusetts.
Admissions Standards and Criteria
In addition to submitting required standard documentation for application to a graduate program as described in the Admissions section of this catalog, candidates must have successfully completed the undergraduate Fitchburg State University BS in Criminal Justice Police Certification concentration. The bachelor degree requires a minimum 2.50 GPA, with no grade lower than a 2.0 in any of the courses required for MPTC certification. The graduate candidates must continue to adhere to the requirements of the Police Training Academy.
Professional Studies Concentration
The Professional Studies concentration in the MS in Criminal Justice is a special option just for those students who are enrolled in the 4+1 BS/MS program, but who wish to opt out of the Recruit Officer Course, CJ 8200. Students pursuing this option will take CJ 9840 Capstone Project in place of CJ 8200.
The concentration will allow students to complete no more than 12 credits of special project work related to their area of study. Students will work directly with a faculty advisor to develop a project plan, conduct the project and present the results of their project work in an academic paper and also present the results of their research to their faculty advisor and other members of the academic department. Project plans will be related to the professional field of Criminal Justice and will require students to demonstrate their understanding of the field by conducting an action oriented project and then reflect on their project work and articulate how they used their knowledge and theories from the field to complete the project work and indicate what they learned through the process.
Students may not apply directly to the Professional Studies concentration; it is only an option for current students who either do not need the Recruit Officer Course content (they have already completed an approved Police Academy), or they want to opt out of the MPTC concentration and still complete the Master’s degree.