Bachelor's Degrees in Criminal Justice in Texas

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Updated January 19, 2023

Looking for a Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice in Texas? You should consider these top-tier undergraduate programs and jobs in the Criminal Justice field.

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Bachelor's Degrees in Criminal Justice in Texas

Earning a Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice in Texas

The best degrees in Texas for criminal justice are those that result in lucrative salaries and support your family. Bachelor's degrees are great ways to prepare for work in diverse fields. With a bachelor's degree, graduates possess the skills required to move forward.

Bachelor's degree-holders typically earn $1,334 per week. This translates to about $5,336 a month and $69,368 annually.

Criminal Justice Bachelor's Programs for You

Working and Living in Texas in the Criminal Justice Profession

A degree in criminal justice prepares students for careers as law enforcement officers, criminologists, and crime scene investigators. Students learn about the causes of crime and how to apply crime prevention measures. They also investigate crimes and work with police departments to help solve both local and national crimes. A criminal justice major gives students an understanding of numerous topics, including corrections, environmental criminology, and juvenile delinquency.

Texas boasts a median annual salary of $39,030, or $18.77 an hour. The state reports that this data applies to the 12,226,170 employees working there currently. Based on the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the lowest earners in the state bring in $22,110 per year, while the highest earners make $99,880. The following illustrates the earnings for detectives and criminal investigators in Texas.

Key

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

Salaries for Detectives and Criminal Investigators in Texas and Nationwide

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Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics
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Texas ranks number 12 out of 51 states (including Washington, D.C.) on the cost of living index, according to MERIC. Typically, cost of living indexes measure the average cost of living in specific states compared to the national average. The U.S. average is 100, and all locations are either above (more expensive) or below (less expensive). On a 100-point scale, Texas has a cost of living index of 90.9, which is -9.1% lower than the national average. The following is a comparison of the cost of groceries, housing, utilities, and other items in Texas in comparison to the national average.

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Source: Missouri Research and Information Center
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Jobs for detectives and criminal investigators are projected to grow by 2.5% over the next decade. Based on BLS projections, the total employment in the occupation will change from 112,500 in 2020 to 115,300 by 2030. Typically, a bachelor's degree is required for these positions. There are many common job titles, including:

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

Bachelor's Degrees in Criminal Justice in Texas

#1 Bachelor’s Degrees in Criminal Justice in Texas

Huston-Tillotson University

  • Austin, TX
  • 4 years
  • Campus

A leader in hybrid education, Huston-Tillotson University supports in-person and online study across 19 bachelor's programs. Of these online programs, the bachelor of arts in criminal justice stands out as a wise option for students seeking flexible, industry-relevant study. After graduating, degree-holders can pursue careers or postgraduate study relevant to the field.

Undergraduates benefit from institutional support throughout their studies in numerous areas. The financial aid office can assist students in connecting with funding opportunities and determine eligibility.

Huston-Tillotson University at a Glance:

Type of School: Private not-for-profit, 4-year or above

Admission Rate: 56%

Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 16-to-1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $12,569

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $12,569

Average Alumni Earnings After Six Years: $29,900

Average Tuition
In-state
$12,569
Out-of-state
$12,569
Retention Rate
54%
Admission Rate
56%
Students Enrolled
1,058
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
100% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#2 Bachelor’s Degrees in Criminal Justice in Texas

Hardin-Simmons University

  • Abilene, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Hardin-Simmons University boasts a robust hybrid learning environment, supporting both in-person and online education modalities across 76 bachelor's programs. The bachelor's in criminal justice is one of many robust programs, equipping students with industry-relevant knowledge. 

Career services and academic advising are just two of the numerous institutional resources centering around student success. Learners can meet with the financial aid office to explore funding opportunities and determine eligibility.

Hardin-Simmons University at a Glance:

Type of School: Private not-for-profit, 4-year or above

Admission Rate: 91%

Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 15-to-1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $29,526

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $29,526

Average Alumni Earnings After Six Years: $40,200

Average Tuition
In-state
$29,526
Out-of-state
$29,526
Retention Rate
65%
Admission Rate
91%
Students Enrolled
2,128
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
66% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#3 Bachelor’s Degrees in Criminal Justice in Texas

Howard Payne University

  • Brownwood, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Howard Payne University, a leader in hybrid education, offers 66 bachelor's programs. The online bachelor of arts in criminal justice connects students with industry-relevant knowledge and skillsets needed to succeed in the field. The program prepares graduates for their postgraduate path, whether that be a criminal justice-specific career or graduate studies.

Learners benefit from many resources throughout their studies, including career services and academic advising. Depending on eligibility, students can benefit from financial aid funding.

Howard Payne University at a Glance:

Type of School: Private not-for-profit, 4-year or above

Admission Rate: 49%

Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 10-to-1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $25,998

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $25,998

Average Alumni Earnings After Six Years: $34,000

Average Tuition
In-state
$25,998
Out-of-state
$25,998
Retention Rate
50%
Admission Rate
49%
Students Enrolled
1,060
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
53% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#4 Bachelor’s Degrees in Criminal Justice in Texas

University of North Texas at Dallas

  • Dallas, TX
  • 4 years
  • Campus

Students looking for flexible study in dual modalities can choose from one of University of North Texas at Dallas' 22 bachelor's programs. Students seeking flexible study relevant to the criminal justice field can benefit from the school's bachelor's in criminal justice. After graduating, students can pursue careers or postgraduate study relevant to the field.

Learners benefit from numerous resources throughout their studies, including career services and academic advising. Scholarships, fellowships, and federal financial aid can help defray the costs of an undergraduate degree. Typically, eligible students receive $10,141 in financial aid.

University of North Texas at Dallas at a Glance:

Type of School: Public, 4-year or above

Admission Rate: 93%

Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 17-to-1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $6,678

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $20,109

Average Alumni Earnings After Six Years: $39,300

Average Tuition
In-state
$6,678
Out-of-state
$20,109
Retention Rate
71%
Admission Rate
93%
Students Enrolled
4,164
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
58% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#5 Bachelor’s Degrees in Criminal Justice in Texas

Texas A&M University-Central Texas

  • Killeen, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Texas A&M University-Central Texas operates a main campus in Killeen, offering a total of 31 bachelor's programs in both face-to-face and online formats. For students seeking to advance in the criminal justice field through flexible study, the bachelor of science in criminal justice is a wise choice. After the program, graduates can apply their knowledge to a career or graduate studies.

Learners benefit from institutional support throughout their studies. Students can meet with the financial aid office to explore funding opportunities and determine eligibility. Of the college's total undergraduate cohort, 100% receive some form of aid.

Texas A&M University-Central Texas at a Glance:

Type of School: Public, 4-year or above

Admission Rate: 92%

Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 16-to-1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $6,425

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $16,241

Average Alumni Earnings After Six Years: Data not available

Average Tuition
In-state
$6,425
Out-of-state
$16,241
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
92%
Students Enrolled
2,339
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
94% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Financing a Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice

Financial aid can assist you in paying for your college education. The awards can be in the form of scholarships, grants, fellowships, or work-study opportunities. Some degree-seekers qualify for federal and private student loans to pay for their degree. You should research the colleges you are interested in and find out what kind of financial aid they offer to their students if you wish to receive a scholarship.

Checklist for Maximizing Your Financial Aid:

Average Cost of Attending College in Texas

Each college in Texas charges a different tuition rate. There are some commonalities that exist among institutions of all sizes, however. Find out whether attending a public institution is the right choice for you by reviewing the information listed below:

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

Key

Texas
National Average

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The chart has 1 Y axis displaying annual salaries in USD.
Source: National Center for Education Statistics
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How does a private college compare to a public college in terms of costs? Generally, private schools charge higher tuition fees. Review the following graph to learn more about the private colleges in Texas:

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

Key

Texas
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 you consider taking out student loans to pay for your education? Prior to taking out a loan, you should consider some important points.

Take a look at the following data to learn what students typically borrow.

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
Degree-seekers can choose from online and on-campus degrees. Online programs offer numerous advantages, including flexibility, affordability, and convenience. The cost of an on-campus degree is typically higher because of student fees. There are many benefits to attending classes in person.

Top Criminal Justice Degree Options Available by State
State Degree Level
California Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Florida Associate, 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, Masters, Doctorate
Virginia Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Washington Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate

Private vs. Public

The differences between public and private colleges are numerous. Importantly, you can expect a cost difference between public and private schools. A public college may be able to provide grants and scholarships to help cover the cost of tuition. Private institutions charge tuition, but there are usually merit scholarships available for those with high GPAs or SAT scores.

A private college will often feature smaller class sizes, giving students more direct contact with faculty. Listed below are some pros and cons of attending a private college 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

What is the average salary for detectives and criminal investigators in Texas?

Detectives and criminal investigators make a mean annual salary of $82,700 in Texas.

What is demand like for graduates with criminal justice degrees?

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

Can you earn a bachelor's in criminal justice online?

It is possible to earn a bachelor's degree in criminal justice online. At least some online courses are available as part of most schools' programs in the current environment.

In order to complete a bachelor's degree, how long does it take?

Full-time students typically take four years to complete a bachelor's degree. The completion time of part-time students will differ, as will the duration of their studies.

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