The University of California, Irvine, the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Florida feature some of the most highly regarded criminology programs. Criminology teaches students to understand not just the criminal justice system but the psychological and sociological issues that lead to crime.
The University of California, Irvine’s Department of Criminology, Law and Society offers an interdisciplinary approach to its curriculum, combining criminology with socio-legal studies focusing on the relationship between law and society. The college boasts the only criminology department in the University of California system, and the faculty includes multiple former presidents of the American Criminology Society.
The University of Pennsylvania is a prestigious Ivy League college known for its rigorous academics. The college’s criminology major offers students both a sociological and biological perspective on the roots of criminal behavior. The program emphasizes a methodological approach, giving students a variety of frameworks from which to address criminology, including psychology, statistics and neuroscience. The University of Pennsylvania offers a liberal arts-influenced curriculum that relates criminology to the other social sciences.
The University of Florida’s criminology major also emphasizes a comprehensive liberal arts education, with science and humanities classes required in addition to law and sociology. The criminology program is the largest interdisciplinary degree program at the University of Florida. Many graduates from the university’s criminology program go on to careers in human services.