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M.A. in Justice Studies

Beginning Fall 2017, the M.A. in Justice Studies is a program designed for students interested in earning an advanced degree to support their employment in justice and social services fields, including social and human services agencies, law enforcement, non-profit organizations, and non-governmental agencies focused on justice issues, as well as to prepare for further advanced study in criminology, sociology, or related fields. It will provide students with a strong foundation in the writing, research, and analytical skills required for such careers and give students the opportunity to develop advanced expertise in their area of focus. All students will complete a research-based thesis or an applied research or evaluation project as part of the curriculum. Most courses will be hybrid, involving a combination of in-class and online instruction, and will be offered in the evening.

Learning Outcomes
Students completing the M.A. in Justice Studies will be able to:

  • Make a difference in the development and evaluation of policies and services in the criminal justice field and related agencies.
  • Articulate knowledge of the major issues facing the justice system locally, nationally, and globally, as well as new research findings in the field.
  • Demonstrate an advanced understanding of classical and contemporary theory in sociology and criminology and associated policy implications.
  • Conduct original research and apply research findings to problems with social service agencies within or related to the justice system.
  • Communicate professionally and knowledgably in oral and written formats on a variety of academic and justice-related topics.
  • Demonstrate advanced writing and research skills by completing a final project or thesis.

Admission Requirements

  1. A completed application form accompanied by a $50 nonrefundable application fee.
  2. A B.A. or B.S. degree, if not applying for the combined B.A./M.A. program
  3. Official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate records.
  4. Prior course work in research methods and quantitative analysis, PLUS at least four undergraduate courses in sociology, a major in a related field, or substantial work experience in a justice-related field.
  5. A minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.00 on a 4.00 scale in undergraduate course work.
  6. An official report of scores on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test.
  7. Statement of professional goals including how the program will prepare the candidate for these goals.
  8. Three letters of recommendation that address potential to succeed in a graduate program. Must include at least one letter from a professor in a social science course.
  9. A plan of study approved by the advisor and appropriate dean.
  10. An interview may be required.

Course Requirements
SOC 501 Writing for the Justice Services Professional
SOC 504 Advanced Quantitative Analysis
SOC 509 Advanced Criminological Theory

Choose ONE from:
SOC 532 Advanced Qualitative Methods
SOC 533 Evaluation Research
Or another research methods course in a related discipline selected with department chair’s consent.

Choose A or B:

A. Thesis Plan
SOC 592 Master’s Thesis (two semesters)
8 elective credits selected with approval of advisor.
Total credits for Thesis Plan = 30

B. Project Plan
SOC 593 Final Project
12 elective credits selected with approval of advisor.
Total credits for Project Plan = 31

Graduate Program Policies
Students must adhere to and are responsible for following all the general policies of Graduate Programs at RIC. A copy may be obtained from the following link:
http://www.ric.edu/graduatestudies/Pages/Graduate-Studies-Policies-and-Procedures-Manual.aspx

For more information contact:

Department of Sociology, (401) 456-8026

Mikaila Mariel Lemonik Arthur, Ph.D.
Associate Professor and Chair of Sociology
Gaige 350
marthur@ric.edu

Jill Harrison, Ph.D.
Associate Professor and Director of Justice Studies
Gaige 355​
jharrison@ric.edu​​​​

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B.A./M.A. Admissions Option

Students matriculated in the Rhode Island College undergraduate justice studies major may apply for a combined B.A./M.A. option. Such students will apply after completing 75 credits, including at least 20 credits in courses counted towards the Justice Studies major, and must have a minimum G.P.A. of 3.5. Application requirements include all of those listed above; however, the GRE may be waived for B.A./M.A. applicants. B.A./M.A. students are permitted to count 9 graduate credits towards their undergraduate requirements.

Admission Requirements

  1. A completed application form accompanied by a $50 nonrefundable application fee.
  2. A bachelors degree, if not applying for the combined B.A./M.A. program.
  3. Official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate records.
  4. Prior course work in research methods and quantitative analysis, PLUS at least four undergraduate courses in sociology, a major in a related field, or substantial work experience in a justice-related field.
  5. A minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.00 on a 4.00 scale in undergraduate course work.
  6. Statement of professional goals including how the program will prepare the candidate for these goals.
  7. Three letters of recommendation that address potential to succeed in a graduate program. Must include at least one letter from a professor in a social science course.
  8. A plan of study approved by the advisor and appropriate dean.
  9. An interview may be required.​

Page last updated: October 18, 2017