Dual Master of Public Administration - Master of Criminal Justice

School of Public Affairs


Degree: MPA/MCJ

Classroom Type: Online and on campus classes

By completing both a generalist MPA and a specialist MCJ, you will be equipped with skills applicable to public service settings in administration and policy analysis, as well as deep knowledge of work that pertains to criminal justice settings.

Application deadlines

Fall: August 1; Spring: December 1; Summer: May 1

Program Details

Interest Categories: Criminology & Law Public Administration & Policy

Campus: CU Denver

General requirements

Review CU Denver's Graduate Academic Policies.

Program requirements

  • The dual degree program requires 48 credit hours of graduate coursework
  • A maximum of 6 transfer credit hours may be applied to the degree requirements.
  • Students at the University are expected to maintain progress in their degree program, as defined by being in "good academic standing." Good academic standing requires minimally a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 on all University of Colorado course work.

Required courses

Students must complete the 6 required MPA courses below, for a total of 18 credit hours. All course descriptions can be found in the Graduate Academic Catalog.

  • PUAD 5001: Introduction to Public Administration & Public Service (3 credit hours)
  • PUAD 5002: Organizational Management & Behavior (3 credit hours)
  • PUAD 5004: Economics & Public Finance (3 credit hours) -OR- PUAD 5503: Public Budgeting & Finance (3 credit hours)
  • PUAD 5005: The Policy Process & Democracy (3 credit hours)
  • PUAD 5006: Public Service Leadership & Ethics (3 credit hours)
  • PUAD 5008: Evidence-Based Decision-Making (3 credit hours)

In addition, students must complete the 3 required MCJ courses below, for a total of 9 credit hours.

  • CRJU 5001: Criminal Justice Systems, Policies & Practice (3 credit hours)
  • CRJU 5002: Criminological Theory (3 credit hours)
  • CRJU 5005: Law & Society (3 credit hours)

In addition, students must complete the capstone course below, for a total of 3 credit hours.

  • CRJU/PUAD 5361: Capstone Seminar  (3 credit hours)

Also, student must fulfill the requirement below:

  • CRJU/PUAD 5003: Research & Analytic Methods (3 credit hours)

Elective courses

The remaining credits can be fulfilled by taking a combination of elective Public Administration and Criminal Justice courses. The elective courses must be approved by the program directors. All course descriptions can be found in the Graduate Academic Catalog.

Recommended Completion Time:3 Years

Max Transfer Credits:6

Max Credits Per Year:In most cases, students wishing to take more than 18 credit hours per semester (12 in the summer session) must have the overload approved by the dean.

Required Credits for Completion:48 Credits

Admission Requirements

View the admissions requirements for the School of Public Affairs.

If you are applying for admission to the dual MPA/MCJ, please complete a graduate degree application for the Master of Public Administration program first. Then complete the form linked below and indicate that you will be pursuing a Master of Criminal Justice Dual Degree plan: https://application.admissions.ucdenver.edu/register/dualdegree

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