Criminal Justice Liberal Arts Transfer Major

TV shows like CSI, SVU, SWAT, NCIS, and Criminal Minds have captivated audiences worldwide. Their popularity has created a high level of interest for careers in the growing field of criminal justice with a need for individuals possessing skills in computers, science, technology, psychology, and social sciences.

Those who study criminal justice can work in public service in a number of different ways:

  • Like biology? Become a lab technician and help solve crimes using DNA, fingerprints, and evidence analysis.

  • Like computers? Become a forensic computer investigator and help find children who are trafficked, solve financial crimes, and track criminal enterprises.

  • Like psychology? Become an investigator specializing in interview, interrogation, and profiling.

  • Like social work? Become a forensic child interviewer and work with Juvenile Court Services or become a victim’s advocate or a probation officer.

  • Do you have a history of substance abuse and now want to help others kick the habit? You can start your degree here and work toward the treatment sector.

We need ethical people who want to make a difference in our society. We need people like you who are interested in being part of the next generation of criminal justice professionals.

Whether you are just finishing high school or looking for a career change, Hawkeye’s Criminal Justice transfer major will start you on your path to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in criminal justice.

Join us to see how your unique skills can be used to serve in the field of criminal justice.

Planning Your Class Schedule

Students should consult with an advisor in Student Services to select courses, make a transfer plan, and periodically review their progress towards their degree completion.

Students are also encouraged to contact the admissions office at the college to which they plan to transfer during their first year at Hawkeye in order to obtain specific program and transfer requirements.

Not all courses may be required for transfer to your future major.

Award: Associate of Arts (AA)
Credits: 62

Courses and course cost calculations are subject to change.

Course Descriptions: Show All | Hide All

Criminal Justice Transfer Courses
CRJ-100 Introduction to Criminal Justice O E 3 $630.00
CRJ-200 Criminology O E 3 $630.00
CRJ-201 Juvenile Delinquency O E 3 $630.00
MAT-156 Statistics O E 3 $630.00
POL-111 American National Government O E 3 $630.00
SOC-110 Introduction to Sociology O E 3 $630.00
Criminal Justice Elective 3
Criminal Justice Elective 3
Total Credits 24

Criminal Justice Electives
CRJ-120 Introduction to Corrections O E 3 $630.00
CRJ-141 Criminal Investigation 3 $630.00
CRJ-233 Probation, Parole, Community-Based Corrections O 3 $630.00
CRJ-237 Criminal and Constitutional Law 3 $630.00
CRJ-316 Juvenile Justice 3 $630.00
CRJ-317 White Collar Crime O 3 $630.00
CRJ-318 Crime Analysis 3 $630.00
CRJ-320 Criminal Justice Ethics O 3 $630.00

Remaining Liberal Arts Coursework
I. Natural Science and Mathematics — A. Biological Sciences -OR- 4
I. Natural Science and Mathematics — A. Biological Sciences 3
I. Natural Science and Mathematics — B. Physical Sciences -OR- 3
I. Natural Science and Mathematics — B. Physical Sciences 4
II. Humanities 9
III. Social Sciences — C. Topics in Social Sciences 3
IV. Communications 9
V. Social Diversity 3
VI. Elective Courses — A. Required Elective Course 1
VI. Elective Courses — B. Suggested Elective Courses 6
Total Credits 38

Course Cost Calculation

Resident tuition and fees x course credits + course fee if applicable.

Course calculations are based on 2022–2023 tuition and fees and course fees.

The course cost calculation does not include:

Your Criminal History Matters

As a future criminal justice professional, students need to use good judgment in all areas of their personal, professional, and scholastic interactions and activities; and must keep their records clean. Criminal justice organizations require background checks for internships, volunteer placements, and employment; which will include adult and juvenile civil and criminal issues, official and informal contacts with police, and character references. Employment will also hinge on the successful completion of a polygraph, credit check, and psychological evaluation.

Be aware that character counts and your behavior can sabotage your ability to graduate from this program and your ability to work in the field. Consider what your actions and criminal history says about you….i.e. an OWI conviction indicates that you demonstrate poor judgment by drinking to excess and deciding to drive, which may kill or injure you or another person. Remember your personal behaviors (what you didn’t get caught for) will be revealed during the polygraph, and what you do privately (when no one is watching or supervising) speaks volumes as to the true content of one’s character.

If you want to work in criminal justice avoid these issues:

  • Acquiring speeding tickets or safety violation citations.
  • Acquiring a suspended driver’s license or citations for driving with a suspended license.
  • Participating in underage drinking, using fake ID’s, or buying alcohol for underage persons.
  • Use or abuse of prescription drugs, street drugs, club drugs (ecstasy), marijuana, or synthetic drugs.
  • Engaging in theft of property, goods, or services.

You will not be employable in criminal justice if you have:

  • Felony convictions.
  • Domestic abuse convictions.
  • Placement on an abuse registry (Sex offender, child/elder abuse).
  • Drug convictions, or history of drug use or abuse (methamphetamine, cocaine, heroin, etc.) Each agency (city, county, state, or federal) sets their own limits on marijuana use from zero tolerance to a limited amount of use, and factors in how recent the use was.
  • Weapons violations.

Ultimately, criminal justice employers will rationalize your behavior by this criteria: If you know or reasonably believe an action is illegal or will cause harm then the best candidate will take responsibility, demonstrate self-control, and not do it.

Lastly, employers will ask our faculty for references. Students need to know that full time faculty and adjunct faculty members are constantly formally and informally assessing students in terms of academic performance, attendance, honesty, professionalism, social skills, maturity, and appearance so that we can make objective assessments when asked. Your interactions count, and we are here to mentor you.

Admissions Requirements

Contact Information

Faculty Mentors

Michael Leary
Health Education and Services Center 222A
319-296-2329 ext.1069
Email Michael Leary

Jane Wagner
Health Education and Services Center 222B
319-296-2329 ext.1400
Email Jane Wagner

Traci Ciepiela
Health Education and Services Center 222D
319-296-2329 ext.1330
Email Traci Ciepiela

Administrative Assistant

Kate Childers
Black Hawk Hall 258
Email Kate Childers


Liberal and Applied Arts and Human Services

Catharine Freeman
Black Hawk Hall 258
Email Catharine Freeman

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