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Criminal Justice

Associate of Applied Science

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Training to protect and serve

Gain a broad background in law enforcement, in the classroom or 100% online

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Are you interested in a career in law enforcement? Do you have a desire to protect and serve your community? Then consider pursuing Tidewater Community College’s Associate of Applied Science in Criminal Justice.

Learn from faculty experts who have had successful careers ranging from attorney to FBI agent to police detective to computer forensics expert to state trooper and more.

Get hands-on training through in-class scenarios where you learn to respond to critical situations. Our small class sizes give you the opportunity to learn even more from experts in law enforcement.

Courses include:

  • criminal law
  • evidence and procedures
  • principles of criminal investigations
  • the juvenile justice system
  • introduction to corrections

Our core courses help you build a foundation in criminal justice, and our three associated degree specializations allow you to develop in-demand skills and knowledge needed by local, state and federal law enforcement agencies:

View program curriculum
What does this program cost?

You can complete a 2-year associate degree for less than the cost of 1 year at a 4-year college or university. 

TCC's Associate of Applied Science in Criminal Justice consists of 4 semester of full-time study. 

If your schedule doesn't permit full-time attendance, you may also take classes part time. 

Estimated Program Cost*:
61 credits x $185.35 per credit = $11,306.35 (not including textbooks and supplies)
*Based on Fall 2018 in-state tuition. Your actual cost may differ.

Where can you go?

TCC graduates work as police officers on the federal, state and local levels; deputy sheriffs; federal and state correctional officers; and probation and parole officers.

You can also transfer into bachelor’s degree programs in criminal justice at Old Dominion University, Virginia Wesleyan College and Strayer University. 

Is this program for you?

Yes, if you: 

  • are interested in law enforcement and the criminal justice system
  • have a passion for serving your community
  • have a clean driving record and can pass a background check
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Veterans, transitioning military, spouses and dependents: TCC’s Center for Military and Veterans Education provides academic guidance and help in maximizing your GI Bill® and other educational benefits.

Learn more about the CMVE

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Tuition assistance such as financial aid, scholarships, work-study, grants and loans can help you save money and reduce college debt.

Learn more about paying for college

You can earn this degree 100% online

Explore online degrees

Get real-world training with an 80-hour internship with local police or the court system

Learn from faculty experts with a variety of law enforcement backgrounds


TCC's program in criminal justice provides a broad educational background, as well as focus areas in law enforcement, criminology and corrections.


Criminal Justice professor encourages students to follow their dreams

Student success

She didn't have a bed, a car or enough to eat. TCC gave her a home and a future.