8 Best Criminal Justice Schools in Idaho

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Criminal justice is a broad field that allows you to make a difference in the lives of the people you encounter, and your local community.

If you are dreaming of a criminal justice career, you’ll need to start by earning a degree.

Let’s take a look at the top criminal justice schools in Idaho.

1 Idaho State University

About School

Idaho State University was founded in 1901.

It was originally known as The Academy of Ohio.

Today, the school offers more than 250 programs.

It’s a Carnegie research university and a teaching college.

The school currently has nearly 7,000 students.

Program Name/Courses Offered

Idaho State University offers two options for those who are interested in criminal justice.

You can earn your Associate of Arts degree in Criminology, or a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology with a Criminology concentration.

The associate’s program can also serve as the first two years of the bachelor’s program.

The Associate of Arts in Criminology takes 4 semesters, or 2 years, to complete.

You’ll earn 36 general education credits, in addition to 28 credits in criminology.

Courses in the program include English Composition, Intro to Sociology, Intro to Criminal Justice, Juvenile Justice, and a Criminal Justice Internship.

The Bachelor of Arts with a concentration in Criminology prepares students to work in the criminal justice field in social work settings.

This can include providing therapy for those in the justice system, juvenile justice, or working as advocates.

You’ll need 15 credits in criminology, as well as the required sociology and general education credits to earn this degree.

It requires 120 credits, and typically takes 4 years, or 8 semesters, to complete.

Contact Information

2 Northwest Nazarene University

About School

Northwest Nazarene University is a small private Christian university.

They have an enrollment of 1,172.

They offer 80 different degree programs and aim to provide a holistic Christ-centered education that prepares students to make a difference in the world after graduation.

Program Name/Courses Offered

Northwest Nazarene University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice.

After graduation, students can begin a career in law enforcement, paralegal or legal assistant, private investigator, probation officer, private investigator, intelligence officer, and more.

Students will learn the theories and methods of criminology and criminal justice.

In addition to academics, you will be required to complete a practicum or internship before you graduate.

This degree takes 4 years to complete and requires 120 credit hours.

Contact Information

  • Address: 623 S University Blvd, Nampa, ID 83686
  • Phone: (208) 467-8011
  • Website: Visit School Website

3 Boise State University

About School

Boise State University is a public research university located in Boise, Idaho.

The college was created in 1932 by the Episcopal Church.

In 1934, it became an independent junior college.

In 1965, Boise State began offering bachelor’s and master’s degrees.

The school went from private to public in 1969.

There are currently 26,272 students enrolled in more than 200 programs.

You can engage in more than 260 student clubs and organizations.

Program Name/Courses Offered

Boise State offers several criminal justice programs.

Students can choose to earn a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice.

This degree takes 4 years to complete and requires 120 credit hours.

You can also choose to complete the criminal justice program online, or a mix of online and in-person.

You’ll have the convenience of being able to attend classes from anywhere.

Students will learn about the criminal justice system, its impact on society, and the underlying causes of crime.

Boise State is committed to anti-racism and works to eliminate racism and oppression within the school and society.

You can go on to earn a Master of Arts in Criminal Justice.

This is broken down into Foundation, Seminar, and Elective series. Students are required to pass a comprehensive exam or provide a thesis on criminal justice before graduation.

Contact Information

  • Address: 1910 W University Dr, Boise, ID 83725
  • Phone: (208) 426-1000
  • Website: Visit School Website

4 Lewis Clark State University

About School

Lewis Clark State University was founded 130 years ago, in 1893.

The school offers more than 130 degree programs.

It’s a small school, with an annual enrollment of about 3,600.

130 years ago in 1893 and has an approximate annual enrollment of 3,600.

The college offers more than 130 degrees.

Program Name/Courses Offered

Lewis and Clark offers a few criminal justice options.

If you want to begin your career quickly, you can earn an Associate of Applied Science degree in Criminal Justice.

This program takes 2 years to complete and requires 60 credit hours.

You can also choose to earn a certificate of proficiency in Criminal Justice, which allows you to bypass general education courses.

You can also earn an associate or bachelor’s degree in Justice Studies.

This program focuses on the social and behavioral aspects of crime and the justice system.

This program prepares you to start a career as a corrections officer, bailiff, detective, police officer, human resource specialist, and forensic science technician.

Contact Information

5 College of Idaho

About School

The College of Idaho is a private liberal arts college located in Caldwell, Idaho.

It was founded in 1891, making it the state’s oldest private liberal arts college.

It’s a small school, with an enrollment of about 1,000 students.

Notable alumni include eight Rhodes Scholars, a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian, three governors, and several major league baseball and NFL players.

Program Name/Courses Offered

The College of Idaho offers a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice.

It’s within the Department of Anthropology and Sociology, so you can expect to focus on the human and behavioral aspects of criminal justice.

You’ll learn about the criminal justice system, and how it’s related to different disciplines.

You’ll have the opportunity to think critically about criminal justice, the prison system, and law enforcement.

You’ll also consider different career options within the criminal justice system.

Contact Information

  • Address: 2112 Cleveland Blvd, Caldwell, ID 83605
  • Phone: (208) 459-5011
  • Website: Visit School Website

6 North Idaho College

About School

North Idaho College focuses on offering a practical, high-quality, and affordable education.

They offer a range of options, including traditional, evening, and online classes to meet the needs of their students.

This 2-year university offers associate degrees, career and technical degrees and certificates, and adult education.

It’s a relatively small school with an enrollment of 3,000.

Class sizes are very small, with 14 students per teacher.

Program Name/Courses Offered

North Idaho College offers an Associate of Arts degree in Criminal Justice.

Once you’ve completed the program, you can begin your career or transfer to a four-year institution to earn your bachelor’s degree.

You can complete the program in 4 semesters, or two years, of full-time study.

If you choose to go part-time, you can expect to finish your degree in 6 semesters, or 3 years.

You’ll need a total of 60-62 credits to graduate.

Once you’ve completed the program, you’ll be able to explain the different organizations in the criminal justice system and their responsibilities.

You’ll also understand the theories of criminal behavior in groups and individuals.

You will be skilled in finding and utilizing technological and legal resources to complete your tasks.

Contact Information

7 University of Idaho

About School

The University of Idaho was named the Best Value Public University in the West by U.S. News and World Report for 2024.

The school offers more than 300 degree programs, with many being offered on campus and online.

It’s ranked as the most beautiful campus in Idaho.

It’s one of the top 20 universities when it comes to making an impact, and in the top 9% for social mobility nationwide.

Program Name/Courses Offered

This program was designed for students who want to work in criminal justice and those who want to understand why people commit crimes.

If you have a strong desire to help your local community, this program may be a good fit for you.

This program will prepare you for a career in probation, corrections, criminal investigation, or forensics.

In addition to academic work and criminal justice theory, the University of Idaho provides plenty of hands-on learning and experience.

You can intern with a variety of organizations, including law enforcement, parole and probation, victim services, and corrections.

You can also participate in research policies with faculty, including human rights, firearms policies, and social crime in the media.

Contact Information

8 College of Western Idaho

About School

The College of Western Idaho, or CWI, is the largest community college in the state, serving 30,000 students each year.

The school focuses on teaching students employable skills so they can begin a career after graduation.

Program Name/Courses Offered

The College of Western Idaho offers an Associate of Arts in Criminal Justice.

You’ll need to complete 60 credit hours, which typically takes 4 semesters or 2 years.

The program will teach you about the criminal justice system, the causes of crime, and historical trends in criminal justice.

You’ll learn how to use research methods including data analysis and interpretation of crime data.

You will learn how to use critical thinking and scientific methods to draw conclusions.

You’ll understand the psychological and sociological principles and apply them to personal, societal, and legal issues.

You will also interact with guest speakers and network with community agencies.

This can be helpful after graduation.

Service learning and internships are also important parts of the program.

This gives you the skills you need to begin your new career.

Contact Information

  • Address: 5500 E Opportunity Dr, Nampa, ID 83687
  • Phone: (208) 562-3000
  • Website: Visit School Website

Schools Summary Table

Rank School
#1 Idaho State University
#2 Northwest Nazarene University
#3 Boise State University
#4 Lewis Clark State University
#5 College of Idaho
#6 North Idaho College
#7 University of Idaho
#8 College of Western Idaho

Criminal Justice Salary Information

The average pay rate for criminal justice careers in Idaho is $26.22 per hour.

This is lower than the national average of $30 per hour.

Most salaries range between $20.58 and $30.87 per hour in Idaho.

Rarely, salaries for criminal justice positions can rise as high as $38.36 per hour, or as low as $14.79 per hour.

Criminal justice specialists make an average of $46,869 per year, with salaries ranging from $39,887 to $57,195.

Detectives can make as much as $75,000 in Idaho.

Annual Salary Range:
Item Percent

Average Salary in Idaho

City Name Salary
Boise $71,190
Nampa $70,425
Pocatello $66,430
Idaho Falls $69,491
Meridian $71,113
Coeur d'Alene $74,640
Twin Falls $66,353
Lewiston $78,350
Caldwell $70,349
Moscow $74,640

Regional Salary

Region Employed Avg. Annual Salary Avg. Hourly Pay Top 10% Annual Salary Bottom 10% Annual Salary
Boise City, ID220$84,820$40.78$137,610$51,690
Coeur d'Alene, ID30$75,010$36.06$125,820$49,060
Pocatello, ID40$76,180$36.62$129,750$59,730
Twin Falls, ID30$65,210$31.35$75,380$56,020
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Detectives and Criminal Investigators, OCC Code 33-3021, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Criminal Justice Schools by State

Chelsea Wilson

About Chelsea Wilson

Chelsea Wilson is the Community Relations Manager for Washington University School of Law’s distance learning LLM degree program, which provides foreign trained attorneys with the opportunity to earn a Master of Laws degree from a top-tier American university from anywhere in the world.

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