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Degree Overview: Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) Degree in Civil Justice (Law Enforcement)

Majors Overview December 15, 2013

Read information about Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree programs in civil justice (law enforcement) and its education requirements, coursework, career choices, and continuing education choices.

A.A.S. Programs in Civil Justice (Law Enforcement)

Students enrolled in an Associate of Applied Science (ASCJ) degree program in criminal justice with an emphasis in law enforcement are trained to seek entry-level jobs in the criminal justice field. They are provided various courses in the tactics and theory of law enforcement.

Students can expect to become adept at the basic areas of the discipline, including the court systems and administration, parole systems, corrections, law enforcement and investigation, law enforcement, corrections and parole systems. Those who already have jobs in the criminal justice system can enroll in these programs and enhance their skills to ensure advancements in their careers.

Education Requirements

Similar to many associate degree programs, admission criteria in an Associate of Applied Science (ASCJ) degree program, in criminal justice, with an emphasis in law enforcement require applicants to hold a GED certificate or high school diploma. While they are not mandatory course requirements, candidates are required to demonstrate physical fitness and submit to a criminal background check, as these are mandatory requirements graduates would need to satisfy when they work in law enforcement.


Coursework in civil justice degree programs is devised to equip students with the competencies and background needed by them to seek employment in criminal justice fields such as law enforcement. Coursework may include topic areas such as:

•Criminal investigations
•Psychology and human relations
•Police procedure, evidence and courtroom testimony
•US constitutional law
•Social psychology
•Criminal law
•Conflict resolution skill
•Juvenile law
•Gender, race and class

Career Choices

Those who successfully complete an ASCJ degree program can seek entry-level occupation as law enforcement officers in various jurisdictions. They can avail job opportunities at the federal, state, county and city levels of government – the work settings can range from the FBI to the sheriff’s office. Other positions they can choose from include:

•Private security officers
•Correctional officers

Continuing Education Choices

After they receive classroom training for police work, these professionals are trained in the police academy and go on to receive additional on-the-job training. In order to seek work in some law enforcement organizations, interested candidates would need to continue their education in a bachelor’s degree program. The requirements can vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction; hence, consultation with the departments they would like to join would prove useful to students.

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