Criminal Justice (BS) Major Resources

The Criminal Justice Bachelor of Science (Institutional Theory and Practice) provides a comprehensive understanding of the components of the American criminal justice system. It is a dynamic major that responds to issues of diversity as well as innovations and changes in the technological arenas, which inform criminal justice professionals. The Bachelor of Science degree in criminal justice focuses on the institutions of criminal justice, particularly the police, courts, and corrections.

Here you will find:

  • Key information about your major
  • How and when to meet with your major advisor
  • Planning tools that will help you track your progress in the major
  • Ways to explore career opportunities related to the CJBS major

Take a few moments to look at the information below. It will help you plan effectively and avoid surprises during your studies at John Jay. Please visit the Department of Law, Police Science, and Criminal Justice's website for information, resources, and opportunities!

CJBS Requirements

You are responsible for the major requirements that were in effect when you declared the major. To confirm the requirements you should be following, go to the Undergraduate Bulletin for that academic year. For example, if you declared the CJBS major in Fall 2020 or Spring 2021, you would click on the 2020-2021 Undergraduate Bulletin. If you declared the major and then left the College for more than one full semester, you’re responsible for the major requirements in effect when you return, if they have changed. Not sure when you declared the major? Find out here.


Below, find the Undergraduate Bulletin that was in effect when you declared the major.

Both of the following courses are CJBS foundational courses that also count toward your General Education requirements:

Major Advising

As a first-semester freshman, you will attend mandatory group advisement sessions conducted by the Academic Advisement Center. Any academic advisor from the AAC can help you get off to a good start by making sure you know about first courses in the CJBS major.

As a lower sophomore (30-44 credits completed) you can make individual advisement appointments with any advisor in the Academic Advisement Center using Navigate. All AAC advisors have the knowledge to advise you on needed CJBS courses for upcoming semesters.


As an upper sophomore (45-59 credits completed), you will sign up using Navigate to attend a group advisement session conducted by CJBS advisors. Students will receive correspondence in regard to these sessions, which are offered in both the fall and spring semesters. If you have urgent follow-up questions or complex major-related issues, please contact CJBS major advisor Wanda Owens or Giselle Toby at or in the Academic Advisement Center L.73NB.

As a transfer student, you can make one-on-one appointments with any advisor in the Academic Advisement Center using Navigate. Advisors can see what CJBS major requirements you’ve completed and which ones you still need, while also confirming whether you need to fulfill additional general requirements.


In the unlikely case that you need further advising for complex major-related questions or issues, the advisor will refer you to Wanda Owens or Giselle Toby (reachable at

As a junior (60-89 completed credits), you can make one-on-one appointments with any advisor in the Academic Advisement Center using Navigate. All AAC advisors will be able to tell you what CJBS major requirements you’ve completed and which ones you still need, while also confirming whether you need further general education requirements.

As a senior (90 or more credits completed), you can make one-on-one appointments with CJBS advisor Wanda Owens using Navigate. If you have urgent questions or major-related issues, please email Wanda Owens or Giselle Toby at for assistance.

Major holds are placed on all upper sophomores (45-59 credits), and each student must attend a mandatory CJBS group advisement session to have the hold removed. This session will encourage wise planning and allow students to ask any questions they may have about the major. How do you know if you have a major hold? Go to CUNYfirst and complete the following steps:

  1. Check the Holds box of your CUNYfirst Student Center. If "Advisement Required" appears, click on “details.”
  1. Click on “Advisement Required.”
  1. See which type of advisement you need. If you must see a major advisor, then make a major advising appointment following the steps preferred by this department.

Plan Ahead: Graduate on Time

A number of courses build on each other in the CJBS major, so it’s important to plan accordingly, particularly with math.  Allow at least four semesters to finish the sequence below. Note that each of the following courses is offered in the Fall/Spring semesters, as well as both summer sessions and the winter session:


Transfer students who do not transfer in MAT 105 or 108 or higher credit but bring in any college math course that meets John Jay's Math and Quantitative Reasoning Requirement (this course will often appear as MAT 1 transfer credit on the John Jay transcript) have the appropriate foundation for CJBS 250 and should be able to register for that course. Students who have a general transfer math course that meets the Math and Quantitative Reasoning Requirement (MQR) but has a designation other than MAT 1 (such as MAT 2) should do the following:

Email Ms. Wanda Owens (wowens@jjay.cuny.eduto inquire about receiving permission to register for CJBS 250. In the subject line write "CJBS 250 course permission". The email should include your name, your EMPL ID, the (open) section of CJBS 250 that you would like to register for, and which term the course is offered (for example, Summer 2019 or Fall 2019). If your request is approved, you'll receive an email telling you to go ahead and register for the course.

While the DegreeWorks degree audit is a helpful tool, it can mislead students in several areas of the major. Please keep the following points in mind:

  • Part 3 of the major requires three courses, one from each of the categories (Police, Law, and Corrections). Two of these three courses must be at the 300 or 400 level. If you forget this rule and take a 200 level course in all of these areas, you will need to go back and take a 300 or 400 level course in two of the categories. Remember this rule so you don’t take unnecessary courses, and keep in mind that the degree audit can be misleading when it comes to Part 3 of the CJBS major requirements.
  • A single course can only meet one CJBS requirement. On the CJBS Major Choice Sheet, you may sometimes notice that one course is on both the Part 2 Diversity list and the Part 3 Corrections list. If you take such a course, you can choose which area you want it to meet, but it cannot meet both. The degree audit will sometimes indicate that it can meet two requirements, but this is incorrect.


  • DegreeWorks degree audit - Use this online planning tool to track your overall progress toward graduation. You will see which of your general education and major requirements are completed, in progress, or still needed.  Refer to the Degree Works FAQs to better understand how to use this helpful tool. Note: The degree audit can be misleading in certain areas of the major. Be sure to confirm the accuracy of your degree audit with a general academic advisor.
  • Continuing students who declared the CJBS major before Fall 2021 should use this CJBS worksheet to monitor their progress in the major. They can use this Choice Sheet to see their Part 2 and Part 3 course options.
  • New Freshmen and new Transfer students starting at John Jay in Summer 2021 or later should use this CJBS worksheet to monitor their progress in the major. They can use this Choice Sheet to see their Part 2 and Part 3 course options.
  • Sample Four Year Plan - See an example of how you could complete all your degree requirements (major, general education, electives) and graduate in four years! Remember that this sample plan shows just one possible way to combine your requirements. Transfer students in particular should work with advisors to determine a plan that works best for them.

To graduate with a CJBS degree you must have at least an overall 2.0 GPA and at least a 2.0 in the major as well. 120 credits are required for graduation, so careful planning is imperative as major and general education requirements often do not fulfill the 120 credit requirement. Elective credits will most likely be needed to reach 120 credits and students can choose several options that include pursuing a minor, a certificate, internships, or study abroad.

An internship is not required for the CJBS major, but it may be possible to earn credit (the course number is CJBS 377) for an internship experience that will count towards Part 3 of the major, if its focus is on Police, Law, or Corrections. Discuss your options with John Jay’s Center for Career & Professional Development, which houses the Academic Internship Program, a hybrid of on-site internship experience and class time with a faculty member. To learn more, see the Internship Program FAQs or visit an advisor in the Center for Career & Professional Development. To request an appointment, log on to  John Jay Careers Online. 15-minute drop-in sessions are also available 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Mon-Fri in L72.00 New Building. Stop by in person earlier the same day to schedule a drop-in session.


Note: CUNY Service Corps students can take the Internship course for their service. CUNY Service Corps provides a year-long experience at a particular internship site—and it pays! Keep an eye on your JJC email in February for application information concerning the following academic year.

A General Academic Advisor will confirm what general academic requirements you still need, make suggestions about smart course planning that will help you graduate without delays, discuss your interest in adding a minor or second major, inform you about opportunities such as study abroad, discuss general questions and concerns, and make helpful referrals. Visit the Academic Advisement Center's webpage for more information.

CJBS and Careers

Listen to Dr. Christopher Herrmann talk about the CJBS major's focus on the entire criminal legal system and the critical social justice issues of our time, how the major offers great internship and study abroad opportunities, and how it prepares you for a wide range of careers, whatever your professional goals may be.



Networking is often the most successful way to find an internship or job. Make use of your friends, family, professors, co-workers, classmates, and anyone else you know to see if they have a connection to someone in the field you would like to work in. Many of your current classmates may have already participated in the Academic Internship Program and may still be in contact with their previous supervisors who they can pass along your resume to. Ask around!


Job fairs

Job fairs are another excellent opportunity to make connections with employers. If you are preparing a semester ahead to find your internship, you will have plenty of time to attend the John Jay College Career and Internship Fair offered each semester. The fair is a great opportunity to make connections, collect business cards, and network for future opportunities.


Career Events

You should also make use of the many career events offered through the Center for Career and Professional Development. Employers often participate in panels, workshops, information sessions and tabling at John Jay College. Log into John Jay Careers Online and see the “Events” tab into for the upcoming schedule of events.


Online Resources

John Jay Careers Online should be your primary resource for online internship searching. Employers who are specifically interested in hiring John Jay College interns will post their internship positions on John Jay Careers Online. In order to take full advantage of this resource you will need to upload a resume into the system; without it you cannot see the full postings or apply to the positions listed.

There are many other online resources for internship searching. The following websites are particularly useful for John Jay students looking for internships:

The Center for Career and Professional Development is a great resource for all questions related to job searches, internships, and career preparation. CCPD staff are available to meet individually with students and alumni in L72.00 New Building. To request a 45-minute counseling appointment, log on to John Jay Careers Online. 15-minute drop-in sessions are available all day Mon-Fri. Stop by in person earlier the same day to schedule a drop-in session.

Students should use their time during college to start researching their intended graduate program. The Graduate Admissions Office offers information sessions for students interested in John Jay’s graduate programs. Students can also visit the admissions websites for graduate programs at other institutions.

Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program

The Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program encourages low income and first generation students (as well as students from underrepresented populations) to pursue graduate study, providing academically enriching experiences and mentoring to prepare students for graduate school admission and eventual doctoral study. Contact Rachel Rosado, Program Assistant ( / 212-237-8765) or Dr. Ernest Lee, Associate Director ( / 212-237-8760).

Pre-Law Institute and Center for Post-Graduate Opportunities

Students interested in going to law school can receive tailored advising and learn about development opportunities from the Pre-Law Institute and Center for Post-Graduate Opportunities. This center also provides advising for non-law related fellowships and graduate school applications. John Jay students and alumni who would like to make an appointment with a pre-law advisor may do so either by stopping by the Pre-Law Institute and Center for Post-Graduate Opportunities in 8.66 NB, signing up on our advisement page or emailing

The Ronald H. Brown Law School Prep Program

The Ronald H. Brown Law School Prep Program (in collaboration with St. John's University School of Law) prepares students for the challenges of law school, the LSAT, and the law school application process. The Sophomore Program includes law school courses taught by actual law school faculty, internships with judges and lawyers working in a variety of practice settings. The Junior Program engages students in a comprehensively designed LSAT prep course. Both programs help give the Ronald H. Brown Prep Program students an edge in the admissions process. Contact Gabriela Ramirez-Vargas at or  212-237-8710.