Criminal Justice A.A.S. Degree

Why Choose Criminal Justice A.A.S. at CLC?

• Online Classes are now available for Criminal Justice introduction courses.

• Articulation agreement with St. Cloud State University and Rasmussen College.

• Allows students to start in either Fall or Spring semester, with certificate courses offered year-round.

• Only school in the state using the Law Enforcement Criminal Justice Information Systems simulated database (what police officers use) in squad cars today.

• The only program in the state to offer certification for the nationwide Toward Zero Deaths program.

• One of the few schools in the state to offer certification for Occupant Protection Use and Equipment, Drugs that Impair, Medical Landing Zone, and Light Detection and Ranging.

• Partnerships with Camp Ripley for course training and combined arms combat training, and with Mills shooting range for firearms training.

• With all instructors currently active in law enforcement, a 5-year average shows CLC students have a 92% pass rate with the MN POST BOARD exam.

About the Program

Finish your Criminal Justice A.A.S Degree in just two years with these challenging, hands-on courses. Students will get a first-hand look into the current industry technologies, methods and law enforcement practices.

A fleet of new state-of-the-art squad cars gives students a driver’s seat view into law enforcement.

Because of a close partnership between area law enforcement and the college, students have a wide selection of choices for internships.

With this A.A.S degree, you can achieve any law enforcement career post you want. Become a police officer, deputy, state patrol or conservation officer.

Program Information

Program Course Requirements

CRJU 1101  Criminal Justice (3 cr)
CRJU 1104  Juvenile Justice (3 cr)
CRJU 2101** Criminal Law (3 cr)
CRJU 2102* Criminal Procedures (4 cr)
CRJU 2108  Criminal Investigations (3 cr)
CRJU 2114** Traffic Law (3 cr)
CRJU 2124  General Evidence and Identification Preparation (4 cr)
CRJU 2140  Law Enforcement & Behavioral Science (3 cr)
Total 26 credits

Law Enforcement Pathway
Students must choose a minimum of 30 credits from the following list:
CRJU 1106  Corrections & Probation (3 cr)
CRJU 1109  Report Writing (3 cr)
CRJU 1112  Police and the Community (3 cr)
CRJU 2106**  Fitness for Law Enforcement (2 cr)
CRJU 2116* Science of Fingerprints (4 cr)
CRJU 2118  Criminal Justice Photography (4 cr)
CRJU 2135  Internship (4-8 cr)
CRJU 2160  Use of Force (2 cr)
CRJU 2162  Firearms (3 cr)
CRJU 2164  Patrol Practicals (5 cr)
CRJU 2166  Tactical Communications/Relations (2 cr)
CRJU 2311  Basic Firearms (1 cr)
CRJU 2315  Post Prep (1 cr)

Criminal Justice Pathway
Students must choose a minimum of 30 credits from the following list:
CRJU 1106  Corrections & Probation (3 cr)
CRJU 1108  Community Corrections (3 cr)
CRJU 1109  Report Writing (3 cr)
CRJU 1112  Police and the Community (3 cr)
CRJU 1125  Personal Protection Awareness (2 cr)
CRJU 2106** Fitness for Law Enforcement (2 cr)
CRJU 2112  Ballistic and Firearms Identification (4 cr)
CRJU 2116* Science of Fingerprints (4 cr)
CRJU 2118 Criminal Justice Photography (4 cr)
CRJU 2135 Internship (4-8 cr)
CRJU 2311 Basic Firearms (1 cr)
CRJU 2315 Post Prep (1 cr)
CRJU 1125 Personal Protection Awareness (2 cr)

TOTAL REQUIRED – 56 credits

AMSL 2420  Deaf Culture (3 cr) OR SPAN 2420  Many Faces of Mexico (3 cr)
COMM 2420  Intercultural Communications (3 cr)
ENGL 1410  Composition I (4 cr)
SOCL 2405  Criminology (3 cr)
SOCL 2481  Race, Ethnicity & Oppression (3 cr)
Total General Education – 16 credits

*These courses required for Minnesota P.O.S.T. licensing must be completed within 3 years of starting the degree.
**These courses must be completed prior to or within the first semester of SKILLS.

Career Description: A criminal justice degree is part of the Professional Peace Officer Education Program requirement for Minnesota Peace Officer licensing standards. All course work is certified by the Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training and meets the Board’s learning objectives. The degree applies for those interested in other areas of the justice system.

Program Information: Mandated training and education leading to state licensure as a peace officer.

Program Outcomes:
Graduates will be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of structure, process and relationships between law enforcement, the courts and correctional systems;
  • Apply tactical skills, weapon safety, defense and arrest tactics, vehicle operation, crisis management and force options;
  • Process crime scenes from preliminary stage through disposition;
  • Function in a multicultural society as a mature, adaptable citizen, while meeting the needs and challenges of clients and communities;
  • Interpret and apply theory, law, policy and practice as it relates to juvenile delinquency and deviant behavior;
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the roles of the legislative, judicial and executive branches and how they relate to criminal law;
  • Apply knowledge of criminal law, constitutional law and Minnesota traffic code;
  • Demonstrate strong and effective written and oral communication skills;
  • Understand the importance of ethics and ethical behavior in law enforcement.

Special Program Requirements:

Students must have a valid Emergency Medical Responder certification (or higher) card at the time of the Post Board Exam.

Students must meet the following conditions in order to graduate:

  1. At a minimum, students must achieve a “C” or higher in courses listed in the program.
  2. Cummulative Grade Point Average Requirement: 2.0 GPA or higher.
  3. Residency Requirement: For programs exceeding 60 credits, students must complete 25% of their credits at Central Lakes College.

Admissions: Program Admissions Requirements: • Background Check: Students must complete and pass a background check prior to being officially admitted into the program. This background check must be completed prior to the first day of classes. • MMPI: Students must also complete the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI) with a psychologist approved by the Program Coordinator prior to admission into the program. Please see the Criminal Justice Coordinator for further information on these requirements.

Transfer Opportunities: Central Lakes College has an Articulation Agreement with ST. Cloud State University for transfer of Criminal Justice courses. Other colleges and universities conduct a student-by-student evaluation regarding transfer of courses and degree.

Career Opportunities: 95% of our graduates are employed in the field within nine months of passing the licensing examination.

Career Titles: Police Officer, Deputy Sheriff, Corrections Officer, Parole Officer, Probation Officer.



Dave Davis

Criminal Justice Instructor
Phone: 218-855-8116
Brainerd W200

Gae Davis

Criminal Justice Coordinator
Phone: 218-855-8264
Brainerd W200
curtis pribnow

Curtis Pribnow

Criminal Justice Instructor
Phone: 218-855-8090
Brainerd W200

Student Testimonials


After a seven-year break, I came back to CLC for this program. All of the instructors help students achieve their educational goals and they care about each student’s success. Being vice president of the Sigma Delta Law Enforcement Club on campus, I get to travel to conferences across the country and network with other clubs and law enforcement officers/advisors.


After taking a two year break from school, I decided to come back to CLC to pursue a career in law enforcement. The teachers here have been amazing and the classes really prepare you for whatever career in criminal justice or law enforcement you are choosing. There are also many different internship opportunities available with local law enforcement. The skills academy gets you prepared for the field and the instructors do a great job. I would definitely recommend CLC to anyone that is looking to pursue a career in law enforcement or criminal justice.

Employment Statistics

For more information regarding employment statistics, career salary information and estimated job growth, follow the resource links below:

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