Doctoral Degrees in Criminal Justice in Pennsylvania

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Published January 19, 2023

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

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Doctoral Degrees in Criminal Justice in Pennsylvania

Earning a Doctoral Degree in Criminal Justice in Pennsylvania

The best degrees in Pennsylvania for criminal justice help students learn how to solve problems, improve their education, and get a job. Doctorate degree-holders can prepare for the workforce and pursue diverse career paths. A doctorate can open doors for employment in all fields.

Doctoral degree-holders earn an average of $7,636 per month and $99,268 annually.

Criminal Justice Doctorate Programs for You

Working and Living in Pennsylvania in the Criminal Justice Profession

A criminal justice degree can be obtained at many different colleges and universities, and the coursework for these degrees can vary somewhat. However, most programs cover some common topics, including criminal law, criminology, corrections, and police science. In addition to these core courses, many criminal justice programs also offer electives that let students specialize in a particular area. Criminal justice degree-holders can pursue many different careers. Some of the most common jobs include positions in law enforcement, corrections, and private security. Many criminal justice graduates also go on to work as paralegals, private investigators, and probation officers. When you are earning a criminal justice degree, you will likely get to interact with professors with real-world experience in the field. This can be a great way to learn about the criminal justice system and to get insights into the different career paths that are available to you.

The median salary in Pennsylvania is $44,900 a year, or $21.59 an hour. This holds true for the state's 5,583,410 total employees. A study conducted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicated that the state's lowest 10% of earners receive an average of $23,120 per year, and the highest 10% make $99,330. The following shows the earnings for detectives and criminal investigators in Pennsylvania compared to other states.

Key

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

Salaries for Detectives and Criminal Investigators in Pennsylvania and Nationwide

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Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics
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Based on the MERIC cost of living index, Pennsylvania ranks number 27 out of 51 states (including Washington, D.C.). According to the cost of living index, the average cost of living in the United States is compared with the cost of living in specific locations in the country. All locations in the United States are either above (more expensive) or below (less expensive) the U.S. average. Pennsylvania's cost of living is 97.9, which is -2.1% lower than the national average. Determine whether Pennsylvania is the right place for you with our cost of living comparison.

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Source: Missouri Research and Information Center
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Jobs for detectives and criminal investigators are projected to grow 2.5% from 2020-2030. The BLS projects that the occupation's total employment will change from 112,500 in 2020 to 115,300 in 2030. It is typically necessary to have a high school diploma or equivalent in order to qualify for these positions. Some common job titles include:

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

Doctoral Degrees in Criminal Justice in Pennsylvania

#1 Doctoral Degrees in Criminal Justice in Pennsylvania

Temple University

  • Philadelphia, PA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

The Ph.D. in criminology at Temple University appeals to learners seeking an online doctorate. The public university helps degree-seekers complete a doctorate in a flexible format. Doctoral students participate in career advising and gain research skills.

Doctoral candidates advance in the program by passing comprehensive exams and writing an original dissertation. With a doctorate in criminal justice, professionals work in academia, research, and leadership roles.

Online doctoral students at the accredited institution pay for their degree with scholarships, fellowships, and loans. Reach out to the program to learn more about the application process and start dates.

Temple University at a Glance:

Online Student Enrollment: 34,137

Online Master's Programs: 11

Online Doctoral Programs: 2

Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 13-to-1

Graduate Tuition Rate: $16,956

Average Tuition
In-state
$16,080
Out-of-state
$28,992
Retention Rate
87%
Admission Rate
71%
Students Enrolled
37,236
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
92% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#2 Doctoral Degrees in Criminal Justice in Pennsylvania

California University of Pennsylvania

  • California, PA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

The online doctorate in criminal justice program at California University of Pennsylvania ranks among the best in its field. At the public university, degree-seekers engage in online classes to earn a doctorate. Doctoral students engage in advanced research and benefit from support services.

After passing comprehensive examinations, doctoral candidates conduct research for their dissertation. Graduates with a doctorate pursue roles in research, academia, and leadership.

Doctoral students qualify for several forms of financial aid at the accredited institution. Reach out to the program to learn more about financial aid opportunities, admissions requirements, and start dates.

California University of Pennsylvania at a Glance:

Online Student Enrollment: 4,979

Online Master's Programs: 17

Online Doctoral Programs: 3

Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 19-to-1

Graduate Tuition Rate: $9,288

Average Tuition
In-state
$7,716
Out-of-state
$11,574
Retention Rate
70%
Admission Rate
94%
Students Enrolled
6,885
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
72% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Financing a Doctorate in Criminal Justice

In order to help pay for college, there are many opportunities to receive financial aid. You can explore scholarships and fellowships. It is also common for students to pay for their college education with federal and private loans. You should research your desired colleges to learn what kind of financial aid they offer.

Checklist for Maximizing Your Financial Aid:

Average Cost of Attending College in Pennsylvania

Depending on which college you attend, the cost of education in Pennsylvania will vary. Public and private institutions, however, share some common characteristics. Learn whether attending a public institution is the right choice for you by reviewing the information below.

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

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Pennsylvania
National Average

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Source: National Center for Education Statistics
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How about attending a private university? Private colleges often cost students more overall. You will find information about attending private colleges in Pennsylvania below.

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

Key

Pennsylvania
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
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Federal Student Loan Information

Are you considering taking out student loans to pay for your education? Prior to taking out a loan, you should take certain factors into consideration.

To learn more about what students typically borrow, please review 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 online and on-campus programs include cost and class size. In addition to providing flexibility, affordability, and convenience, online programs also offer other advantages. On-campus programs typically cost more due to student fees. These fees are not required for distance students. Attending classes, however, has certain advantages.

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
Texas Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Virginia Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate
Washington Associate, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate

Private vs. Public

Private colleges and public colleges differ in many respects. Generally, private schools charge higher tuition than public schools. The government determines the costs for public institutions, which are therefore covered by scholarships and grants from the government. Private institutions charge their students tuition, but there are usually merit scholarships available for those with high GPAs or SAT scores.

Private universities usually feature smaller class sizes. This benefits students who want more individualized attention from professors. In this article, we highlight some of the pros and cons of attending a private institution versus a public institution.

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

In Pennsylvania, what is the salary for detectives and criminal investigators?

In-state detectives and criminal investigators make a mean annual salary of $92,760.

In today's environment, are graduates with criminal justice degrees in demand?

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

Can I earn a doctorate in criminal justice online?

There are many options for earning an online doctoral degree in criminal justice. Most schools today offer some form of online education.

For those who wish to complete a doctorate, how long does it take?

A full-time student typically takes 4-6 years to complete their doctoral degree. Some students complete the program faster than others.

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