Criminal Justice

Criminal Justice

Justice Careers Start Here

Examine issues relating to crime, law, and justice. You’ll learn to analyze situations and events in a logical way, organize the parts of a problem effectively, appreciate diversity, work with a wide cross-section of the community, and believe in your abilities and judgment – all while recognizing your personal limitations and developmental needs.

Go straight into the workforce to begin your career in this exciting field after graduation, or if you're interested in transferring to a four-year college or university to continue your studies, take a look at our Liberal Arts degree in Criminal Justice.

How to ApplyProgram Details

Kirkwood offers more than $3 million in scholarships for students each year, and there are many specifically for students enrolled in the Criminal Justice program.

Graduates of the Criminal Justice program will be able to:

  • Develop a working vocabulary of criminal justice terminology.
  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of the methods used in criminal justice research, including sources and data.
  • Identify career opportunities in the field of criminal justice.
  • Describe the components of the American criminal justice system, their functions, and their organization.
  • Relate the structure and function of the American criminal justice system to contemporary society (e.g. Democratic values).
  • Construct and evaluate strategies to address ethical/moral challenges faced by criminal justice practitioners.

It is highly recommended that students earn an Associate of Arts degree and transfer to a four-year institution.

Students typically transfer to Mt. Mercy University, the University of Northern Iowa, Central Missouri State, Upper Iowa University, St. Ambrose University, Simpson College, Iowa State University and Iowa Wesleyan, and pursue bachelors degrees in Criminal Justice, Criminology or Crime Analysis.

Explore future career opportunities:

Career Coach

Program Costs

Criminal Justice 

Program Entry Semester: Fall 2021

Year One

Credits: 15 18 33
Tuition: $2,790 $3,348 $6,138
Fees: $50 $50 $100
Books: $522.25 $439 $961.25


Year Two

Credits: 15 15 30
Tuition: $2,790 $2,790 $5,580
Fees: $50 $50 $100
Books: $439.25 $547 $986.25




Costs provided are estimated and based on in-state tuition rates. Book cost estimates are for new books. Individual expenses may vary. These costs also do not factor in potential financial aid benefits. For a complete view of your specific cost expectation, visit our Cost Estimator Tool.
Included fees: Technology Fee
Current Tuition Rates per Credit Hour: $ 186 In-State; $ 249 Out-of-State; $ 372 International
Updated: 1/18/2021

What career could this lead to?

Graduates with a Criminal Justice degree can obtain jobs in a variety of different career opportunities.
Explore Careers

Meet Our Faculty


Andrea Wilson
Title: Faculty
Phone: 319-398-5534
Office: 1033 Cedar Hall

Adjunct Faculty

Mike Penrod
George O'Donnell

Mission Statement

The Criminal Justice discipline of Kirkwood Community College is committed to providing students with a quality liberal arts education. Students will gain an appreciation of their role as criminal justice professionals and as contributing members of society.

As a public institution, Kirkwood Community College is committed to public service and to meeting the needs of our educational service area, as well as to the needs of the State of Iowa.

The Associate of Arts core curriculum provides the foundation for competencies necessary to succeed in the criminal justice profession and in society.

Kirkwood Student Owen Pfremmer

“I’ve really had a chance to become a better writer though my college writing class. It’s my favorite class I’ve had at Kirkwood. My classes at Kirkwood have helped take my writing to the next level.”

Owen Pfremmer,
Cedar Rapids, Iowa


Social Sciences Department
2092 Cedar Hall