Associate Degrees in Criminal Justice in Florida

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Updated January 19, 2023

Looking for a Associate Degree in Criminal Justice in Florida? You should consider these top-tier programs and jobs in the Criminal Justice field.

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Associate Degrees in Criminal Justice in Florida

Earning an Associate Degree in Criminal Justice in Florida

It is important to note that the best degrees in Florida for criminal justice provide a broad foundation of knowledge and insight into the practical world. With an associate degree, graduates can pursue diverse career paths. Associate degrees lead to advanced roles.

Moreover, an individual with an associate degree earns approximately $963 per week. This translates to approximately $3,852 a month and $50,076 annually. Graduates of associate programs are more likely to be employed than those who hold a high school diploma.

Criminal Justice Associate Programs for You

Working and Living in Florida in the Criminal Justice Profession

Criminal justice degrees are becoming increasingly popular as people become more interested in working in the field of law enforcement and associated fields. There are a number of topics covered in a typical criminal justice degree program, and graduates can use their knowledge and skills to pursue a variety of jobs. Criminal justice degree programs commonly cover the laws that govern the criminal justice system. Students learn about the different types of crimes and the ways that they can be punished. They also learn about the different rights that suspects and defendants have under the law. A criminal justice degree also provides students with the opportunity to learn about the different types of jobs that are available in the field of criminal justice. Graduates can work as police officers, detectives, probation officers, and in many other types of positions.

Florida's median salary is $37,920 per year or $18.23 per hour. All 8,605,610 employees in Florida are included in this statistic. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data shows that the lowest 10% of earners make $22,720 per year, while the highest 10% make $96,380 a year. As a result, the following shows the earnings for detectives and criminal investigators in Florida.

Key

Detectives and Criminal Investigators in Florida
Detectives and Criminal Investigators Nationally
All Occupations in Florida
All Occupations Nationally

Salaries for Detectives and Criminal Investigators in Florida and Nationwide

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The chart has 1 Y axis displaying annual salaries in USD.
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics
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MERIC ranks Florida as number 15 out of 51 states (including Washington, D.C.) on its cost of living index. The cost of living index measures the average cost of living in the U.S. against specific states. As a whole, the U.S. average is set at 100, and every location in the U.S. has either a cost above or lower than the U.S. average. In comparison with the national average, Florida's cost of living index is 103, which is 3% higher. See how the cost of living in Florida compares to the rest of the country.

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Source: Missouri Research and Information Center
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During the next decade, the number of detectives and criminal investigators is projected to change by 2.5%. The BLS projects that employment for this occupation will change from 112,500 in 2020 to 115,300 in 2030. These positions typically require a high school diploma or the equivalent of an entry-level education. These are some of the typical job titles that can be found in the industry:

  • Detectives and criminal investigators
  • Criminal Investigator
  • Deputy United States Marshal
  • FBI Investigator
  • Homicide Detective
  • Narcotics Detective
  • Narcotics Investigator
  • Police Detective

Associate Degrees in Criminal Justice in Florida

#1 Associate Degrees in Criminal Justice in Florida

Miami Dade College

  • Miami, FL
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Miami Dade College, located in Florida, boasts seven online associate degree programs, including its highly ranked associate of science in criminal justice technology. Students can build their knowledge of the field through coursework and experiential learning opportunities. Criminal justice students can apply their course credits towards future educational opportunities, such as a bachelor's degree.

Students receive guidance throughout the duration of their studies and can access career services and academic advising. The college supports its online learning community through online-specific resources, such as virtual library services and academic tutoring. It is easier for students attending the school on campus to access campus facilities and professors' offices.

Online students can expect to receive an average of $6,129 in financial aid awards. The institution reports that 84% of all enrollees receive financial aid, and 6% receive student loans.

Miami Dade College at a Glance:

Type of School: Public, four-year

Location: Miami, Florida

Student-Faculty Ratio: 19-to-1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $1,987

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,947

Average Tuition
In-state
$1,987
Out-of-state
$7,947
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
46,523
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
80% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#2 Associate Degrees in Criminal Justice in Florida

Valencia College

  • Orlando, FL
  • 4 years
  • Campus

Valencia College supports an online criminal justice associate degree program from its main campus in Orlando, Florida. Enrollees benefit from a robust course curriculum, preparing them for the demands of the field. Upon completion, students can apply their credits towards a bachelor's degree or other educational endeavors.

While enrolled, students can access career services, academic advising, and other success-centered resources. Distance learners can connect with virtual library services and academic tutoring. Those who attend the school on campus can more easily access campus facilities and professors' offices.

The average financial aid award, the college reports, is $6,269. Approximately 75% of all incoming students receive financial aid, with 14% receiving student loans.

Valencia College at a Glance:

Type of School: Public, four-year

Location: Orlando, Florida

Student-Faculty Ratio: 23-to-1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $1,984

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,933

Average Tuition
In-state
$1,984
Out-of-state
$7,933
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
45,949
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
96% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#3 Associate Degrees in Criminal Justice in Florida

Florida Gateway College

  • Lake City, FL
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Florida Gateway College, located in Lake City, boasts four online associate degree programs, including its highly ranked associate of science in criminal justice. Students in the program gain industry-relevant knowledge and skills, preparing them for the demands of a criminal justice career. Students can transfer their course credits to a four-year college, in pursuit of a bachelor's degree or other educational endeavors.

The college connects students with resources such as academic advising and career services. Further resources available to online students including virtual library services and academic tutoring. Students who attend the school on campus have easier access to campus amenities and professors' offices.

The college reports that the average student's financial aid award package is $6,078. Of its enrollees, the college reports that 80% receive financial aid, and 14% receive loans.

Florida Gateway College at a Glance:

Type of School: Public, four-year

Location: Lake City, Florida

Student-Faculty Ratio: 18-to-1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $2,369

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $9,473

Average Tuition
In-state
$2,369
Out-of-state
$9,473
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
3,018
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
73% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#4 Associate Degrees in Criminal Justice in Florida

Palm Beach State College

  • Lake Worth, FL
  • 4 years
  • Campus

The criminal justice program at Palm Beach State College equips students with the knowledge and skills needed to succeed in a criminal justice-specific career. Enrollees looking to advance in their studies can apply their associate degree credits towards further undergraduate education.

The college connects students with career services, academic advising, and other success-geared resources. Other resources available for distance learners include academic tutoring and virtual library services. Students who attend the school on campus have easier access to campus amenities and professors' offices.

Learners can access scholarships, fellowships, and other funding opportunities, with the average award package being $6,512. The institution reports that 74% of all enrollees receive financial aid, and 8% receive student loans.

Palm Beach State College at a Glance:

Type of School: Public, four-year

Location: Lake Worth, Florida

Student-Faculty Ratio: 29-to-1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $2,424

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $8,712

Average Tuition
In-state
$2,424
Out-of-state
$8,712
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
26,666
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
96% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#5 Associate Degrees in Criminal Justice in Florida

Lake-Sumter State College

  • Leesburg, FL
  • 4 years
  • Campus

Students at Lake-Sumter State College can build their knowledge of the criminal justice field through coursework and experiential learning opportunities. Graduates seeking to advance their education can apply their credits towards a bachelor's degree.

Criminal justice degree-seekers can access comprehensive college resources, including career counseling, academic advising, and financial aid assistance. Distance learners can connect with virtual library services, academic tutoring, and other resources. It is easier for students attending the school on campus to access campus facilities and professors' offices.

The college connects students with numerous financial aid opportunities, reporting that enrollees receive an average of $5,122 in financial aid. The institution reports that 86% of all enrollees receive financial aid, and 42% receive student loans.

Lake-Sumter State College at a Glance:

Type of School: Public, four-year

Location: Leesburg, Florida

Student-Faculty Ratio: 26-to-1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,232

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $13,336

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,292
Out-of-state
$13,276
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
4,760
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
89% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Financing an Associate Degree in Criminal Justice

Financial aid can assist you in paying for your college degree. Aid takes the form of scholarships, grants, fellowships, and work-study programs. There are some students who qualify to receive federal and private student loans to pay for college. There are a number of colleges that offer scholarships and financial aid to their students.

Checklist for Maximizing Your Financial Aid:

Average Cost of Attending College in Florida

Each college in Florida charges a different tuition fee. There are some similarities that exist among both public and private institutions. You can determine whether or not attending a public institution is right for you by reviewing the information provided below.

Public 4-Year School Tuition Rates: Florida vs. National Average

Key

Florida
National Average

Chart

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The chart has 1 X axis displaying salary types.
The chart has 1 Y axis displaying annual salaries in USD.
Source: National Center for Education Statistics
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Would it be possible to attend a private college or university? You can expect higher costs at private schools. You will find information regarding attending private colleges in Florida below.

Private 4-Year School Tuition Rates: Florida vs. National Average

Key

Florida
National Average

Chart

Bar chart with 5 bars.
The chart has 1 X axis displaying salary types.
The chart has 1 Y axis displaying annual salaries in USD.
Source: National Center for Education Statistics
End of interactive chart.

Federal Student Loan Information

Would it be wise for you to take out student loans to fund your education? There are several things you should keep in mind before taking out a loan.

You can determine how much students typically borrow by reviewing the data below.

Undergraduate Federal Loans
Demographic Percent who borrowed Amount borrowed
Total 66.6% $27,400
Female 69.6% $28,100
Male 62.5% $26,500
White, not Hispanic or Latino 66.1% $26,700
Black, not Hispanic or Latino 85.7% $34,800
Hispanic or Latino/a, of any race 67.7% $25,700
Asian, not Hispanic or Latino 43% $22,700
Other or Two or more races, not Hispanic or Latino 70.4% $28,300
Source: NCES

Online vs. On-Campus

Pros and Cons: Online Degrees

Pros

  • Cheaper tuition
  • Flexible, asynchronous classwork
  • No on-campus fees for parking, tech, etc.

Cons

  • Less structure
  • Minimal peer-to-peer interaction
  • Less facetime with professor
  • No access to on-campus amenities

Pros and Cons: On-Campus Degrees

Pros

  • Gym, library, etc. access
  • Smaller class options
  • Face time with peers and professors

Cons

  • More expensive
  • Transportation or housing costs
  • Rigid scheduling
The primary differences between an online degree and a degree completed on campus are cost and class size. Numerous advantages can be gained from online degree programs, including flexibility, affordability, and convenience. For distance students, the fee structure is typically lower. Attending classes in person also has a number of advantages.

Top Criminal Justice Degree Options Available by State
State Degree Level
California Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Florida Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Georgia Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Illinois Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
New York Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
North Carolina Associate, Bachelors, Masters
Pennsylvania Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Texas Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Virginia Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Washington Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate

Private vs. Public

There are a number of differences that exist between public and private institutions. Public colleges tend to be more affordable than private colleges. You can use research grants and scholarships to help cover the cost of attending a public college if you wish to do so. Private schools often offer merit scholarships to students with high academic performance.

Private colleges tend to have smaller classes, allowing students to connect with professors one-on-one. Here are some benefits and disadvantages of attending a private institution as opposed to a public one.

Pros and Cons

Private

  • Unique program offerings
  • Cultural or religious options
  • Local prestige
  • Higher costs
  • Less regulatory oversight

Public

  • Government-issued tuition costs
  • Government funding, benefits, and regulation
  • Oftentimes large classrooms

Frequently Asked Questions

How much do detectives and criminal investigators make in Florida?

In-state detectives and criminal investigators make a mean annual salary of $81,850.

Are criminal justice majors in high demand?

The total number of detectives and criminal investigators is projected to increase by 2.5% from 2020 to 2030.

Can I get an online associate degree in criminal justice?

An online associate degree in criminal justice is possible to earn. Almost all schools today offer some form of online education.

How long does it take to earn an associate degree?

Students who wish to complete their associate degree in two years typically do so. The completion time will vary for part-time and full-time students.

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