Program Description

The Criminal Justice program is multifaceted and serves the educational needs of both pre-service and law enforcement professionals as well as individuals interested in learning about the field. The program leads to an Associate’s Degree in Addictions Studies, and transfer to Baccalaureate degree programs and or a Certificate of Achievement. Additionally, the first two of three modules of the Modular Police Academy are offered to qualified students. These courses meet the State of California, Commission on Peace Officers Standards and Training (POST) requirements.


Merced College offers the following degrees/certificates in Criminal Justice:

Administration of Justice (AS-T)
Criminal Justice (AA)
Criminal Justice (CT)

Career Opportunities

The demand for qualified men and women in the criminal justice field is present today more than ever before. Today’s practitioners need to be able to deal with traditional law enforcement functions, and the complex social issues of our diverse society. Professional opportunities in law enforcement and related fields may be found on the federal, state, and local level as well as in the private sector and industry. Each agency or private entity provides unique career opportunities for the trained recruit. Many related career fields such as criminologist, fingerprint analyst, communications specialists, crime analyst, researcher, and educator are available.

Criminal Justice Faculty