Criminal Justice (B.S./B.A.)


Criminal justice is a multidisciplinary approach to the scientific study of the causes, consequences and prevention of crime and its social control, with a particular interest in promoting social justice. As a criminal justice student, you will develop an understanding of the interconnections between crime, justice, human behavior, social environments and governmental policy. Our students graduate from Clemson prepared for graduate study, law school or careers in a range of criminal justice, social service and human service professions. 


  • The new major in criminal justice, introduced in fall 2016, is ideal for students wishing to enter careers in law enforcement, criminal justice and policy studies.
  • Our faculty members are from a variety of disciplines, including criminology/criminal justice, sociology, anthropology and social work.
  • We offer both a Bachelor of Science and a Bachelor of Arts in criminal justice.


Both a Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts in criminal justice are offered, and you’ll choose between pursuing either a general justice studies emphasis or a legal emphasis. Students will be exposed to the core criminal justice curriculum, which focuses on police, court and corrections. Classes focus on the leading theories and empirical evidence on criminological theories, justice actor decision making and the organizational dynamics in the criminal justice system. In addition to a traditional criminal justice curriculum, you’ll take courses in topics such as race and ethnicity, sex and gender, social class and poverty, and social policy, which will equip you to address the ongoing ethical and social issues facing criminal justice organizations today. Whether you’re interested in policing, practicing law or entering public service, you’ll develop general critical thinking and problem-solving skills that can be applied to any profession

General Justice Studies Emphasis — With our general justice studies emphasis, you’ll be able to pursue a science-oriented education while still selecting from a wide variety of course options.

Legal Emphasis — Our legal emphasis prepares students for careers and future study in the field of law.




Outside of the classroom, we encourage our students to get involved in various campus clubs and activities, including the Criminal Justice Club.


 Students can participate in Creative Inquiry projects and work in teams led by a faculty mentor or pursue independent research projects with a faculty adviser.
 Past field placements include federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, such as the FBI, U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office.


Your college decision isn't really about the next four years. We get it. It's about what doors are opened by your degree and whether those opportunities are what you had envisioned for yourself. Here's a snapshot of what life after graduation looks like for some of our most recent students.


  • Special Agent

    U.S. Department of Homeland Security

  • Special Agent

    U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation

  • Special Agent

    U.S. Marshals Service

  • Chief Information Officer

    Greenville County Sheriff’s Department

  • Officer

    South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division


  • J.D.

    Georgetown University

  • J.D.

    Wake Forest University

  • J.D.

    University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

  • J.D.

    University of Virginia

  • M.S. Security Studies

    Georgetown University


    • Homeland Security
      • Air Marshal
      • CIA Analyst
      • CIA Officer
      • Emergency Management Director
      • Secret Service Agent
    • Law Enforcement
      • DEA Agent
      • FBI Agent
      • Police Officer
      • Sheriff
      • State Trooper
      • Victim Advocate
    • Legal
      • Lawyer
      • Paralegal
    • Corrections
      • Correctional Treatment Specialist
      • Parole Officer
      • Probation Officer
    • Forensics
      • Computer Forensics Investigator
      • Forensic Accountant
      • Forensic Anthropologist
      • Forensic Psychologist
    • Private Sector
      • Information Security Analyst

Used with permission from the University of Tennessee.


Have more questions or want more information? Fill out the form below, which goes directly to the following department contact. If you’d also like to receive general University information from Clemson’s admissions office, please follow the link to the right and sign up to join our mailing list.

Kristin Goodenow

Director of Academic Advising