10 Jobs You Can Get With a Master’s in Criminal Justice

A master’s degree can prepare you for a specialized and executive criminal justice career as an intelligence analyst or an emergency management director.

Many professionals in the criminal justice field decide to earn a master’s degree. While most criminal justice careers only require an associate or bachelor’s, earning a master’s often leads to higher salaries. A master’s in criminal justice can also allow workers to pursue advanced positions that come with greater professional satisfaction and responsibility. For example, a master’s degree can prepare you for a specialized and executive criminal justice career as an intelligence analyst or an emergency management director. It can also lead to advancement into other industries, such as disaster management and education.

Police Chief

A police chief is the highest ranking member of a police department. These workers manage the department’s daily functions and long-term goals. Daily duties may include assigning hours, training new officers, and creating and enacting new departmental policies. The position typically entails less field work than typical police and detective positions.

Average Salary$75,000

Intelligence Analyst

Intelligence analysts collect, analyze, and evaluate information from various sources to detect and prevent security threats. This position requires strong computer literacy, research, and written communication skills, enabling professionals to make sense of and report on large collections of data. Most intelligence analysts work in government positions.

Average Salary$68,000

Security Director

Security directors work at the executive level to develop and implement security policies, protecting an organization’s assets and employees. They must also ensure that their organization’s security policies meet local, state, and federal laws. To help foster company safety and awareness, these workers may also design training programs for new hires and veteran employees.

Average Salary$80,000

Director of Loss Prevention

A director of loss prevention oversees the daily functions of a retail store’s loss prevention department. Their daily duties consist of auditing merchandise to ensure nothing has been stolen, investigating shoplifting and internal theft cases, and training and directing other loss prevention personnel.

Average Salary$84,000

Probation Officer

Probation officers evaluate criminal offenders to coordinate their rehabilitation and support programs. These officers function as go-betweens for criminal offenders and the criminal justice system, often meeting with sentencing judges, courts, and law enforcement to help determine how to best prevent recidivism.

Average Salary$42,000

Postsecondary Teacher

Postsecondary teachers teach at colleges and universities, covering a variety of academic and technical topics. They may also conduct research and publish their work in scholarly journals and books. Most postsecondary teachers hold doctorates, although some individuals with only a master’s degree can find work at community colleges.

Average Salary$78,470


Criminologists study and analyze criminal behavior in society. Working in academic settings, government agencies, and law enforcement, they typically carry out research on topics like emergent trends in crime or strategies for crime prevention. Their findings can help inform public policy and law at the state and federal levels.

Average Salary$42,000

U.S. Marshal

U.S. marshals act as the enforcement arm of the U.S. Federal Court. They work to apprehend wanted fugitives, oversee witness protection for federal cases, and transport prisoners between correctional institutions. Since these officers work with some of the most dangerous criminals in the justice system, they need extensive job experience for consideration.

Average Salary$55,000


Sociologists research and analyze human social behavior, typically in academic settings and government positions. These scientists examine humanity through the lens of social institutions, culture, race, and gender to understand the root causes of societal issues, such as violence, poverty, and war. Most employers require a master’s degree for this position.

Average Salary$82,050

Explore a Master’s in Criminal Justice

The above list represents a limited scope of the careers you can obtain with a master’s in criminal justice. Follow this link to learn about other jobs you can get with a master’s in criminal justice, as well as information on how to choose a master’s program.

Review Our Graduate Application Guide

If you’re sure you want to pursue a master’s degree, you need to prepare your application. This entails gathering academic transcripts, cover letters, and GRE results for submission. Read our graduate application guide for further information on the admissions process and requirements related to GRE scores and work experience.