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Which Well-Known Colleges Offer Criminal Psychology Degrees?

A number of schools offer graduate programs in forensic psychology, and some schools may also offer undergraduate and dual degree programs in forensic psychology. Read on to learn more about three schools and the programs they offer that can train you for careers studying the behaviors and motivations of criminals.

What Should I Look For In a School With Criminal Psychology Programs?

When selecting a school, you'll want to be sure that the programs provide a strong overview of the criminal justice system both generally and specific to the area of forensic psychology. Key to your decision should be the university's commitment to research in a variety of areas within criminal justice, particularly those that deal with analyzing behaviors and patterns of criminal activity.

An experienced and well-regarded faculty should also be a prominent factor in your decision. Choosing a program that has received national attention for overall academic achievement is also wise, because these schools most likely provide good programs in related areas, such as general psychology, sociology and history, through which you can take elective courses to enhance your overall education.

What Are Three of the Most Well-Known Colleges Offering Criminal Psychology Degrees?

Chicago School of Professional Psychology in Illinois

The Chicago School of Professional Psychology is the first school in the U.S. specifically geared toward psychology. The Chicago School serves over 4,000 students both online and campuses across the country, including the primary Chicago location. You'll have a variety of graduate degree programs in psychology to choose from, each emphasizing tangible applications in real-world scenarios where you could eventually work. The programs devoted specifically to the study of criminal psychology include:

  • Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology
  • Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Forensic Psychology

John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York, NY

The City University of New York's John Jay College of Criminal Justice was ranked 139th on the U.S. News & World Report list for northern universities in 2019 and 15th for graduate criminology programs in 2018. The college offers research projects and degree programs in criminal justice and forensic psychology led by accomplished faculty. Founded in 1965, the college houses several distinguished research centers, such as the Academy of Critical Incident Analysis and the Institute for Criminal Justice Ethics. The school offers degree programs related to criminal justice and criminal psychology at both the baccalaureate and graduate levels, including:

  • Bachelor of Arts in Forensic Psychology
  • Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology
  • Dual Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology and Juris Doctor (in partnership with New York Law School)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology: Clinical Forensic Psychology

University of Denver in Colorado

U.S. News & World Report ranked the University of Denver 96th nationally in 2019. Through the Department of Psychology, you can receive in-depth training in forensic psychology. The university can provide you with access to a variety of resources, including labs and research centers, like the Emotion and Coping Lab and the Traumatic Stress Studies Lab. Your studies can ultimately culminate in the following degrees:

  • Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology
  • Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology

Top Ten Criminology Schools

College/UniversityInstitution TypeLocationEstimated Graduate In-State Tuition*
University of Maryland4-year, PublicCollege Park, MD$14,500
SUNY University at Albany 4-year, PublicAlbany, NY$13,000
University of Cincinnati4-year, PublicCincinnati, OH$14,000
University of Missouri - St. Louis4-year, PublicSt. Louis, MO$11,000
Pennsylvania State University4-year, PublicUniversity Park, PA$22,500
University of California - Irvine4-year, PublicIrvine, CA$13,000
Florida State University4-year, PublicTallahassee, FL$12,000
Michigan State University4-year, PublicEast Lansing, MI$18,000
Rutgers University - Newark4-year, PublicNewark, NJ$19,000
CUNY John Jay College4-year, PublicNew York, NY$11,000

*Source: NCES, U.S. Department of Education