Law, Criminal Justice, and Society (BA)

Are you considering law school or graduate study in the social sciences after Pitt? Are you interested in pursuing a career in one of the many criminal justice professions or advocacy organizations? The Law, Criminal Justice, and Society (LCJS) major examines the workings of the criminal justice system in the broader context of society and the legal system. A core curriculum fosters comprehension and critical analysis of the legal system, criminological theory, criminal justice institutions, criminal law, and social inequality. Students also will complete six credits of professional skills and a capstone course on ethics in criminal justice. The LCJS major equips students with the knowledge and skills they need to pursue advanced degrees in law and social science, and to succeed as professionals and advocates in the justice-oriented professions and organizations that serve American society’s diverse and dynamic communities. This major is offered jointly between the Dietrich School and the College of General Studies.

Students completing this major will:

  • examine the major institutions of the criminal justice system, and situate the workings of these institutions in a broader legal, social, and historical context;
  • develop knowledge and legal reasoning skills in criminal law;
  • examine the law’s conflicting role in securing social order and security, on the one hand, and in creating and reinforcing social inequality on the other; and,
  • develop basic professional knowledge and demonstrate ethical reasoning in preparation for being positive and successful contributors to law and justice-oriented career fields as professionals and/or public policy advocates.
 

Flexible Format

Many CGS programs offer a blend of face-to-face and flexible online class formats, all designed to meet our students' needs and schedule constraints. CGS online offerings are marked with (Web) or (Hybrid) on program website.

Major Requirements

A minimum total of 120 credits is required for the Bachelor of Arts degree. Of this total, the LCJS major consists of 36 credits of core and specialization courses. See our General Education program page for the remaining degree requirements. The 36 LCJS major credits are distributed as follows.

  • Foundations (6 credits)
  • Core Areas (15 credits)
  • Electives (6 credits)
  • Professional Skills (6 credits)
  • Capstone (3 credits)

Foundations (6 credits)

Both of the following courses are required

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Note: replaces ADMJ 0100, effective Spring 2022
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Note: replaces LEGLST 0200, effective Spring 2022

Core (15 credits)

Select courses according to the guidelines stated. Course selections must comprise a total of at least 15 credits.

Theories of Crime

Choose one of the following courses.

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Note: replaces ADMJ 0600, effective Spring 2022
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1265, effective Spring 2022
Format: Web

Criminal Law

Choose two of the following courses.

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Note: replaces ADMJ 1400 and LEGLST 1140, effective Spring 2022
Format: F2F and Web
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1410 and LEGLST 1141, effective Spring 2022
Format: F2F and Web

Power, Inequality, and Social Change

Choose two of the following courses.

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Note: replaces LEGLST 1210 and PS 1213, effective Spring 2022 (Hybrid)
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1220 Law and Deviance, effective Spring 2022 (F2F and Web)
Note: or SOC 0471 Deviance and Social Control
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Note: replaces LEGLST 1340, effective Spring 2022
Note: or PS 1201 Constitution and Civil Liberties
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Note: replaces LEGLST 1355, effective Spring 2022
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Note: replaces LEGLST 1155, effective Spring 2022
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Criminal Justice Institutions

Choose one of the following courses.

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Note: replaces ADMJ 1225, effective Spring 2022
Format: F2F and Web
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Note: replaces ADMJ 0500, effective Spring 2022
Format: F2F and Web
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1200, effective Spring 2022
Format: F2F and Web
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Note:  replaces ADMJ 1300, effective Spring 2022
Format: F2F and Web
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1100, effective Spring 2022
Format: F2F and Web
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Electives (6 credits)

Choose two courses from list A or one course from each list A and B. Please keep in mind that course selections must comprise a total of at least six credits.

List A

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Note: replaces ADMJ 1115, effective Spring 2022
Format: F2F and Web
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1118, effective Spring 2022
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Note: replaces LEGLST 1230, effective Spring 2022
Format: F2F and Web
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1234, effective Spring 2022
Format: F2F and Web
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1238, effective Spring 2022
Format: F2F and Web
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1235, effective Spring 2022
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1236, effective Spring 2022
Format: Web
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1230, effective Spring 2022
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1242, effective Spring 2022
Format: F2F and Web
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1350, effective Spring 2022
  • LCJS 1561 - JUVENILE DELINQUENCY or:
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1425, effective Spring 2022
Note: cross-listed with PUBSRV 1425
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1245, effective Spring 2022
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Note: replaces ADMJ 1205, effective Spring 2022
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Note: replaces LEGLST 0080, effective Spring 2022
Format: F2F and Web
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Note: replaces LEGLST 1327, effective Spring 2022
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Note: replaces LEGLST 0020, effective Spring 2022
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Note: replaces LEGLST 1315, effective Spring 2022
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Note: replaces LEGLST 1152, effective Spring 2022 (cross-listed with PUBSRV 1300)
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Note: replaces LEGLST 1325, effective Spring 2022
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Note:  replaces ADMJ 1450, effective Spring 2022
Format: F2F and Web
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Note:  replaces ADMJ 1901 and LEGLST 1901, effective Spring 2022
  • Pitt Prison Education Project (PPEP) Course Codes and Topics Vary  
Credits: 3 to 6
  • LCJS Any LCJS course included in this major and not used to fulfill any other major requirement
Credits: 3 to 6

List B

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Format: Web
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Format: Hybrid, available as of Fall 2021
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  • NON-LCJS Any non-LCJS subject code that is included in this major and not used to fulfill any other major requirement.
Credits: 3

Professional Skills (6 credits)

Select at least one course from each category. Course selections must comprise a total of at least 6 credits.

Research / Practical Skills Course

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Note: replaces ADMJ 1900, effective Spring 2022 | Format: Hybrid
Note: can be taken for up to six credits, and credits four through six can be applied to the Elective - List A requirement.
  • LCJS - 1610 DATA ANALYSIS IN CRIMINAL JUSTICE
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Note: replaces LEGLST 1410, effective Spring 2022 | Format: Web
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Note: may be restricted to Psychology majors.
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Professional or Public-Oriented Writing Course

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Format: F2F and Web

Capstone (3 credits)

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Format: Hybrid, available as of Spring 2022

Writing Course

Students must complete at least one W-course in the major. LCJS 1700 Ethics in Criminal Justice will fulfill this requirement.

Grade Requirements

A minimum GPA of 2.0 in courses for the LCJS major is required for graduation.

Satisfactory/No Credit Option

Students may apply up to six credits of coursework taken on an S/NC basis to the LCJS major; however, the two foundations courses and the capstone must be taken for a letter grade. Student may apply up to nine credits if at least three of those credits are earned as part of a Study Abroad course that applies toward the major.