Master of Arts in Criminal Justice and Behavioral Health

The Master of Arts in Criminal Justice and Behavioral Health is 36 credits and fully online. The thirty-six credits are delivered over two academic years with two, 3-credit courses required each semester, (Fall, Spring, Summer).

Students will develop a sophisticated understanding of the Criminal Justice system at the local, state, and federal level, and acquire the knowledge and skills to effectively participate, lead and advocate. The curriculum moves from the point of arrest through incarceration to re-entry. Key topics include law enforcement practices, diversion, defense and prosecution, behavioral health and substance abuse issues in the criminal justice system, pretrial services, the trial process, sentencing and sanctions, corrections and parole.

Why Criminal Justice at William James College?

What makes our MA in Criminal Justice at William James College unique is that students will develop an extensive understanding of the intersection between behavioral health (mental health and substance abuse disorders) and the legal system. Criminal Justice courses include Criminal Justice, Criminology, Policing and the Community, and Forensic Mental Health Management.

Unlike our other graduate programs at William James College, we do not require a practicum or internship as part of the program. We expect that many participants in the program will already be working in the field. However this is not a requirement.  We do require completion of a written Capstone project as part of the requirements for graduation.

Our Criminal Justice faculty come from a wide range of professional backgrounds, including lawyers and forensic mental health professionals.

We are accepting applications now to begin our MA in Criminal Justice in January 2019.


Year  One

Fall Semester 
Foundations of Criminal Justice (credits: 3)
Working with Adults in the Criminal Justice System (credits: 3)

Spring Semester
Juvenile Justice  (credits: 3)
Criminology (credits: 3)

Summer One Semester
Leadership and Systems Change (credits: 3)
Program Evaluation (credits: 3)

Year Two

Fall Semester
Forensic Mental Health Management (credits: 3)
Policing and the Community (credits: 3)

Spring Semester
Court Policy and Administration (credits: 3)
Capstone Seminar (credits: 3)

Summer One Semester
Diversion Approaches (credits: 3)
Re-entry and Parole (credits: 3)

Total Credits: 36

Forensic Alumni

Hope Fueled by Systemic Change

Now Operating Juvenile Court Clinics

Juvenile Court Clinic Group Photo