What is Comparative Criminal Justice?

  • A subfield of criminal justice
  • Area focused on the study/comparison of justice systems around the world
  • A subfield that uses descriptive, historical and political approaches to the study of crime
  • Study of criminal transformations over time

Depending on your interest and future career aspirations you could examine the law and legal systems across nations, focus on the study of law enforcement from the global perspective or the study of corrections and punishment.

Comparative Criminal Justice Programs

In order to specialize in this area of criminal justice a degree in criminal justice is your best approach. Criminal justice programs focus on a wide array of topics, as well as disciplines such as social science, psychology and sociology. Aside from the general course requirements covered by most degree programs, you would specialize in comparative criminal justice by taking courses focused specifically on this area of criminal justice. You would study global issues as they relate to crime, the legal systems as well as social order.

Most likely, if you chose this type of degree you will learn about the development of the criminal justice system around the world, the evolution of criminal justice systems in other nations and cultures. Additionally, be prepared to spend time learning and understanding the basic administration and function of police, corrections and courts, as well as the impact of customary law across the globe.

What can I do with this degree?

Given the global and international focus of this type of degree, you will be able to find employment in a number of state and federal agencies. This type of degree program prepares you to analyze transnational crime, understand and internalize foreign justice systems, terrorism and homeland security issues.

All of these skills are critical in a number of different jobs and allow you to become competitive for a career in multiple settings. You will find that upon graduation, you will qualify for advanced positions in security organizations, law enforcement agencies as well as teaching and training positions.