Cyber Crime and Criminal Justice Degrees Meet Growing Demands

(June 6, 2013) Armstrong's Master of Science in Criminal Justice program is now available entirely online, much to the delight of students across the region. This flexible graduate program appeals to working adults, enabling professionals to earn a master's degree while working full-time and advancing their careers.

“It's ideal for working professionals in the criminal justice field and other students who may not be able to easily attend traditional seated courses,” explained Daniel Skidmore-Hess, Armstrong's interim Criminal Justice, Social and Political Science department head. “The faculty are an excellent combination of accomplished scholars and experienced professionals working in such areas as law enforcement and criminal law.”

Students learn about everything from criminological theory to practical public safety issues in this 100 percent online criminal justice master's degree program. Graduates can pursue jobs in law enforcement, corrections, and various social service agencies in which a graduate degree in Criminal Justice is preferred.

In addition, Armstrong's Department of Criminal Justice, Social and Political Science offers a graduate certificate in cyber crime, the only program of its kind in the region. Courses in cyber crime are designed to offer advanced professional development for members of law enforcement agencies, not-for-profit organizations, and private industries throughout the area.

The cyber crime certificate at Armstrong also offers the opportunity to enjoy a hands-on practicum at Armstrong's Cyber Security Research Institute, which offers marketable skills employers are looking for in today's highly competitive job market. The Institute currently works with local, state and federal law enforcement agencies to detect cyber crime on electronic devices and computers, capturing critical evidence for prosecution.

Cyber crime investigation is a fast-growing field with major job opportunities, according to Becky Kohler da Cruz, an associate professor of criminal justice who also serves as the university's Master of Science in Criminal Justice program coordinator.

“Currently, federal agencies primarily and state and local agencies secondarily are actively recruiting individuals trained in cyber forensics,” said da Cruz. “Agencies such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Department of Homeland Security, Secret Services, and the Georgia Department of Investigation do not have enough agents in the field of cyber forensics.”

The certificate appeals to law enforcement officers as well as criminal justice and computer science students. Students who have earned graduate certificates in Armstrong's criminal justice programs are currently employed throughout the area in police departments and public safety agencies.

“Crimes of the 21st century are being committed in larger numbers online,” explained da Cruz. “Students of criminal justice must learn how crimes are committed electronically, how to track those criminals, and how to collect the evidence of such crimes.”

For more information on Armstrong's criminal justice and cyber crime programs, visit