Criminal Justice

Designed for students interested in pursuing a career in law enforcement, law community based social services, and other criminal justice related fields and those who wish to earn a two-year degree and begin pursing occupational opportunities in the field of their choice.

Prospective criminal justice practitioners should be aware that stringent entry level requirements exist. Applicants are encouraged to consult with an advisor prior to entry into the program. Please consult with the program chair regarding changes to graduation requirements.


Associate in Applied Science-T Degree
Criminal Justice

Program Updated: The requirements for this program have been updated for 2017 – 2018.
Please review the changes and consult with your adviser or program manager if you have questions.

Brief Description

The AAS-T combines technical courses required for job preparation and college-level general education courses. These degrees are designed for the dual purpose of immediate employment and preparation for the junior year in a Washington state bachelor of applied science (BAS) degree program. The AAS-T degree generally will not be accepted in transfer-in preparation for bachelor of arts or bachelor of science degrees although the general education component of the degree will be accepted in transfer.

The Associate in Applied Science-T in Criminal Justice provides students with knowledge of the criminal justice system (law enforcement, court system, and corrections) and stages of the criminal justice process. The curriculum includes coursework in criminal justice and criminology, law enforcement and criminal justice ethics, criminal and constitutional law, and written, verbal, and non-verbal communications. The degree prepares students either for immediate employment or for transfer to a bachelor’s degree program. Career pathways include the Washington State Patrol, municipal and county law enforcement agencies, federal agencies, law practice, corrections, private investigations, security, and social service agencies.

Learning Outcomes

Degree recipients should possess the skills and abilities described below:

  • Apply basic investigative techniques for developing solutions to crime problems
  • Use critical thinking skills to understand and analyze verbal, non-verbal and cultural communications in the field of criminal justice
  • Define, explain and contrast the basic sociological, economical and physiological theories relating to the causation of crime
  • Demonstrate how the theories relating to the causation of crime, law building and law enforcement reflect the historical context of times and culture in which they were developed
  • Explain and analyze different social, legal and political responses to criminal behavior
  • Define and explain the different philosophies of policing and determine which philosophy a police department is utilizing by analyzing process, programs and organizational structure
  • Define and explain the ethics and ethical paradoxes that face criminal justice professionals
  • Define and explain the basic precepts of criminal law as it applies in the state of Washington
  • Define and explain the major reform movements which have substantially impacted the policing profession in America

Completion Worksheet

Download the completion worksheet for this degree [PDF]

Program Requirements

Core Coursework

Course # Course Name Credit Hrs.
CJ& 101 Introduction to Criminal Justice 5
CJ 106 American Corrections System 5
CJ 109 Introduction to Juvenile Justice System 5
CJ& 110 Criminal Law 5
CJ& 112 Introduction to Criminology 5
CJ 202 Principles of Criminal Investigation 5
CJ 248 Ethics in Criminal Justice 5


Course # Course Name Credit Hrs.
ENGL& 101 English Composition I 5
CMST 280 Intercultural Communication 5
CMST 285 Nonverbal Communication 5
Choose 5 credits from the following: 5
ENGL 201 The Research Paper (5 Cr)
ENGL& 235 Technical Writing (5 Cr)
ENGL 271 Expository Writing (5 Cr)
Choose 5 credits from the following: 5
CMST& 101 Introduction to Communication (5 Cr)
CMST& 210 Interpersonal Communication (5 Cr)


Course # Course Name Credit Hrs.
Choose 5 credits from the following: 5
MATH& 107 Math in Society (5 Cr)
MATH 138 College Algebra for Business & Social Science (5 Cr)
MATH& 141 Precalculus I (5 Cr)
Any college level Math higher than MATH& 141 (5 Cr)

Natural Science, Social Science, Humanities

Course # Course Name Credit Hrs.
Humanities & Social Science (see below for specific courses) 10
Natural Sciences (see below for specific courses) 10-11
Anthropology (ANTH and ANTH&) 100, 205(Cross Listed), 206, 215(Cross Listed), 236
Astronomy (ASTR and ASTR&) 100(Cross Listed), 101(Cross Listed)
Biology (BIOL and BIOL&) 100, 150, 160
Botany (BOTAN) 110, 113
Chemistry (CHEM and CHEM&) 100(Cross Listed), 110(Cross Listed)
Environmental Science (ENVS) 207
Geography (GEOG) 106(Cross Listed), 205
Oceanography (OCEA&) 101
Physics (PHYS&) 100
Political Science (POLS&) 101, 202
Psychology (PSYC and PSYC&) 100, 202, 220, 240(Cross Listed)
Sociology (SOC and SOC&) 101, 201, 270

Criminal Justice AAS-T Electives

Course # Course Name Credit Hrs.
Choose 5 credits from the following: 5
CJ 102 Policing Operations (5 Cr)
CJ 200 Criminal Evidence & Procedures—Police Officer (5 Cr)
CJ 204 Constitutional Law (5 Cr)
CJ 206 Community-Oriented Policing (5 Cr)
CJ 242 Law & the Police in a Multicultural Society (5 Cr)

BC General Education & Cultural Diversity Requirement

This degree has a set of BC General Education requirements including Cultural Diversity. Please choose one course to meet the Cultural Diversity Requirement. For approved courses, visit Cultural Diversity courses website. Below is a complete listing of all the course that meet the colleges Cultural Diversity requirements for the Associate Transfer Degrees. Classes will be applied towards either Humanities, Social Science, Natural Sciences or electives.
The following transferable courses meet the Cultural Diversity requirement:
Anthropology: 100, 104, 106, 108, 117, 180, 200, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 214, 219, 220, 222, 224, 235, 260, 265; Art: 103
Cultural & Ethnic Studies: 100, 101, 106, 109, 120, 121, 130, 140, 152, 180, 200, 201, 203, 205, 210, 241, 257; Communication Studies: 134, 250, 280
French: 131, 132, 133, 231, 232, 233; Geography: 123, 200, 277; History: 185, 246; Music: 117; Philosophy: 102, 145, 265; Psychology: 250
Sociology: 101, 120, 121, 122, 149, 201, 205, 210, 215, 222, 230, 248, 253, 254, 257, 260, 262, 264, 267, 268, 275
The following restrictive electives also meet the Cultural Diversity requirement:
Business: 120, 241; Criminal Justice: 242; Education: 150, 240, 286; Human Development: 140; Marketing Management: 200; Nursing: 290

Professional or technical program offerings and course requirements listed in this website may be altered by the college to reflect the needs of industry, student interests and availability of resources.

This website is designed as a tool to assist in making degree selection decisions, but may not be up-to-date in all instances. Please review worksheets with an advisor to ensure that you receive the most up-to-date information.

Gainful Employment information for many programs is available on the Public Disclosure website.

Last Updated August 19, 2015