WOU: Criminal Justice Degree Program Frequently Asked Questions

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Criminal Justice Degree Programs

Criminal Justice online degree programs

Frequently Asked Questions - FAQ

This collection of frequently asked questions (FAQ) provides brief answers to many common questions about the Criminal Justice program. Please check here for answers before contacting us for more information.

Getting Started - Admissions

Online Format

Advising and Student Practicum

When do you accept applications?

All Criminal Justice programs accept students year-round. We recommend that you submit your complete application at least two weeks prior to the registration date for your desired start term.

How much is tuition?

Tuition costs vary, depending on whether students are on-campus or online. On-campus tuition costs can be found here. The majority of Criminal Justice classes are 4 credits. Note: Tuition and fee rates are determined by the State Board of Higher Education and are subject to change.

Is tuition assistance available?

Students working toward a degree can apply for financial aid and scholarships at WOU. For more information, please see Financial Aid or call 1-877-877-1593.

Is Western Oregon University an accredited university?

Yes! Please click on this link for more information, located on the right side of the page.

Can I complete a degree without coming to campus?

Most all of the courses required for completion of CJ major and three online minors are offered online; however, some students will need to take additional coursework in order to complete their program.

Please note:

  • Not all WOU required LACCs are available online.
  • Western Oregon University is unable to accept new distance students residing in the states of Arkansas, Maryland, or Minnesota at this time. Visit our State Authorization page to learn more.

I want to take both online and face-to-face classes. Is that possible?

Yes! To allow for maximum flexibility, all of the CJ programs can be completed on-campus, online or in a combined fashion.

How do WOU's online courses work?

WOU uses Moodle as our course management system. Each course is somewhat different in format, depending on the instructor's chosen course design and setup. For more information about our online courses, visit our Online Programs page.

I am not an expert on computers. Will these classes be too difficult for me?

We do expect students to be able to use basic word processing programs (i.e. Microsoft Word), as well as access Internet websites. WOU offers technical assistance in case you have any problems with your course. The majority of students find online classes easy to navigate and conducive to learning.

Do I need special software to take an online course?

For most classes, you will only need an internet connection, a compatible browser, and a word processing program (i.e. Microsoft Word). Fortunately, most browsers are compatible. A few courses may require other programs and the instructor will give you that information at the beginning of class.

Is it possible to meet with an advisor and/or instructor for face-to-face help?

Yes! Our CJ instructors are primarily on-campus faculty who have regular office hours. In addition, the Criminal Justice Department offers advising for off-campus students via phone, email and face-to-face. If you live near WOU and would like to meet an instructor or advisor for help, contact him or her by email or phone and see when they are available to meet.

What is the practicum requirement for the BA/BS degree?

All CJ majors are required to complete a practicum placement worth 12 credits. This practicum is 400 hours of professional experience in a field agency. You can do this practicum with an agency of your choice. If you choose to complete your practicum with your employer, you cannot receive payment for the 400 hours of practicum experience. For more information, see the Practicum Requirements Document. Students must also submit an Application for Practicum Placement at least three terms prior to beginning their practicum.

What if my current employment schedule prevents me from completing the 400-hour unpaid practicum experience?

In certain situations, students can take additional coursework to substitute for the practicum requirement. This arrangement must be pre-approved by your CJ faculty advisor.

Additional Questions?

Carla Menear, Criminal Justice Support


(503) 838-8733

Dr. Steve Gibbons, Criminal Justice Department Head


Dr. Terry Gingerich, Master of Arts in Criminal Justice Program Coordinator


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Criminal Justice Program 503-838-8733 | or e-mail: criminaljustice@wou.edu

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