Corrections Degrees

Advantages to Earning An Online Corrections Degree

A corrections degree provides individuals with the skills needed for a career within corrections. Corrections degree programs provide students with the knowledge necessary to understand correctional treatments, maintain security, adhere to institutional polices and regulations, manage social disturbances, deal with sometimes dangerous confrontations and hostage situations, and control crowds or riots. A degree in corrections also provides individuals with training in law enforcement, the legal system, criminology, and criminal procedures to work as a qualified professional in the field.

Many colleges and universities offer on campus and online corrections degree programs geared toward innovative information in the discipline of corrections. Some colleges and universities provide online instruction for individuals managing family and work responsibilities as they advance their education. Most online corrections degree programs give students virtually the same experience as their traditional, brick and mortar counterparts. Online courses generally consist of groups of 25 students or less with 24 hour access to class materials, instruction, and information. Online courses offer students the added benefit of a personalized and flexible learning schedule as well as access to other students and instructors through one on one Internet chats. Online degree programs provide students interested in expanding their educational background in the discipline of corrections the ability to advance personal, professional, and career aspirations from virtually any location.

What Students Learn Within An Online Corrections Degree Program

Students enrolled within an online corrections degree program learn all aspects of criminal justice, law enforcement, criminal procedures, criminal law, offender treatment, criminology, security procedures, and institutional policies and regulations. Courses at a bachelor level include: introduction to the criminal justice system, introduction to corrections, criminal origins and correctional alternatives, legal issues in corrections, critical issues in corrections, client relations in corrections, applied criminal justice ethics, and supervisory practices in criminal justice. Most degree programs include a practical experience within a correctional facility where students apply information learned through coursework in real life settings. Students who complete a bachelor degree program are generally qualified for employment within a correctional facility.

Some students advance to graduate degree programs in criminal justice with a concentration in corrections to qualify as experts within the field. Courses include: legal issues in criminal justice, criminological theory, research methodology, organizational behavior, data analysis, academic and professional communications in public safety, critical legal issues in criminal justice, criminology theory, applied research in criminal justice, community corrections and re-entry programs, and comparison of correctional systems. Graduates with masters degrees often work as supervisors within a correctional facility upon gaining relevant work experience.

Prospective Jobs For Graduates With A Corrections Degree

Graduates with a degree in corrections are qualified to work within local, state, or federal corrections agencies in a career field growing at an average rate in comparison to other occupations. Corrections offers may work overseeing offenders in courtrooms as bailiffs, marshals, or court officers. Corrections officers also work within prisons, jails, and detention centers maintaining security and accountability while preventing escapes, assaults, and other disturbances. Job opportunities for professionals with corrections degrees are expected to be good and perhaps increase significantly in relation to inmate populations, turnovers, and retirements. Job opportunities are predicted to be most favorable for graduates with a bachelor degree who also gain hands on experiences. Economic downturns may adversely affect job prospects, as well as factors like geographic location, educational background, and related work experiences.

Salary For Graduates With A Corrections Degree

Earnings for graduates with a corrections degree vary and are based upon the organization of employment, educational background, area of specialty, and related work experience. Graduates with a corrections degree typically earn salaries ranging from $25,000 to $64,000 annually per the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics. Graduates who find employment within Federal correctional facilities generally earn $53,459 annually. Corrections officers employed within the public sector who are unionized often have higher wages, medical and retirement benefits, and clothing or uniform allowances.

Career Outlook And Advancement Opportunities For Graduates With Corrections Degrees

Officers who gain educational and work experiences relevant to the field of corrections are expected to have plenty of stable job opportunities. Employment growth is expected to be average in comparison to other occupations with an increase in the demand for qualified professionals as population growth and rates of incarceration rise. The U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics predicts growth for individuals with careers in corrections through 2018. Jobs in the public sector for corrections officers and the development of new facilities depends largely upon state and local government budgets Many corrections officers begin employment and advance to management, supervisory, administrative, sergeant, or even warden positions upon gaining pertinent educational training and experience.

Correctional sergeants manage and maintain security while directing other officers to assigned shifts or designated areas. Other corrections officers work within specialty areas like correctional industries, correctional health, or correctional counseling. Some officers transfer to related jobs like parole officers, correctional treatment specialists, or probation officers. Some corrections officers may find an increase in employment opportunities within the private sector for companies within provisional correctional facilities. Most corrections officers are eligible to retire at age 50 upon serving 20 years or at any age upon serving 25 years.

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