Academic Calendar 2024/25

Criminal Justice

Master of Arts (Criminal Justice) degree

This 30-credit program is designed especially for individuals looking to combine their academic and professional experience in the areas of criminal justice, social justice, or community justice in a way that suits their career plans. This program provides students with the knowledge and skills to develop evidence-based policies and practices for the purpose of contributing to the development of a more effective, efficient, and innovative criminal justice system. The program provides students with applied learning and the ability to further their educational and professional goals, and is an excellent opportunity for networking with other criminal justice professionals.

This program is ideal for students who wish to continue working full time while completing graduate studies. Students complete the program over 20 months and are required to attend courses three days a month (typically the first Thursday, Friday, and Saturday of each month). In the fifth and final semester, students write and present a major paper or thesis. It is normally expected that students will have completed a substantial amount of work on their major paper or thesis prior to starting their fifth semester. Students who do not complete their major paper or thesis in their final semester are required to extend their involvement in the program and be subject to continuance fees.

Entrance requirements

  1. Undergraduate degree (e.g. BA, BA Crim, BSc) from a recognized institution.
  2. Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00, assessed on the basis of all university-level courses attempted.
  3. Minimum of three years full-time employment in criminal justice or a closely related field; however, to be competitive, a minimum of five years full-time criminal justice employment is recommended.
  4. Suitability: Applicants are assessed for suitability and potential for success in the program as identified through their statement of interest, academic and professional experiences, reference letters, writing sample, and interview.

Applicants who do not meet the academic entrance requirements should contact the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice.

Due to the competitive nature of graduate program admissions, meeting the minimum entrance requirements does not guarantee admission (see General Regulations for Graduate Studies). Once accepted, students will be expected to attend an orientation session immediately prior to the first block of classes.

When to apply

Applications are accepted for entrance to the Fall semester only and open October 1 of each year. To be considered for entrance, completed applications must be received by February 1of the year of application. Applications received between February 2 and June 30 will be considered as space permits, while applications received after June 30 will be considered for the following year’s entry.

How to apply

  1. Apply online at There is an application fee.

    For an application to be complete, applicants are required to:

    • Submit a two-page statement of interest that addresses the following:
      • What research topic are you interested in studying while in the program? Why are you interested in this topic?
      • How does your professional practice contribute to your ability to complete an MA in Criminal Justice?
      • How does your previous educational background prepare you to successfully complete an MA in Criminal Justice?
      • Why do you want to undertake an MA in Criminal Justice at the University of the Fraser Valley?
    • Provide three letters of reference — at least one of which must be from an academic, and at least one of which must be from someone who can speak to the applicant's work and professional experiences. Referees must include the Professional/Academic Reference Form with their letter. The letters and forms should be completed, sealed, signed, and returned unopened with the application package or mailed directly to the Office of the Registrar.
    • Submit a résumé that provides a detailed timeline of work experience including a description of the depth and breadth of roles and responsibilities for positions held in criminal justice or other closely related fields.
    • Provide a 5–10 page academic writing sample.
    • Meet the Degree/diploma level English language proficiency requirement. For details on how this requirement may be met, see the English language proficiency requirement section of the calendar.
    • Submit Official transcripts (or interim transcripts) from all post-secondary institutions attended (excluding UFV) showing grade/course achievement as per entrance requirements. To be considered official, transcripts must be sent directly to UFV from the originating institution; see Official Transcript Guidelines for details.
  2. As part of the application process, applicants may be required to participate in an interview with a panel of faculty members from the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice.
  3. Applicants will be advised of an admission decision and, if accepted, will be provided with registration information. A deposit is required prior to registration (see the Fees and Other Costs section) and will be applied toward tuition fees.
  4. In cases where interim transcripts are submitted, an admission decision may be made conditional upon completion of academic requirements. Proof of completion of entrance requirements is due by the end of the first week in August.

General Regulations for Graduate Studies

Fees and additional costs

See the Fees and Other Costs section. There will be additional costs for textbooks or course materials.

Dates and location

Courses are scheduled so that students attend one morning and one afternoon class three days a month. Classes are typically held on the first Thursday, Friday, and Saturday of each month. The program is 20 months in duration.

The program is located at the Abbotsford campus.

Program outline

Semester I (Fall)

Course Title Credits
CRIM 700 Contemporary Issues in Canadian Criminal Justice 3
CRIM 705 The Role of Social Policy in the Criminal Justice System 3

Semester II (Winter)

Course Title Credits
CRIM 716 Qualitative Research Methods 4
CRIM 756 Mental Health and the Criminal Justice System 3

Semester III (Summer)

Course Title Credits
CRIM 715 Quantitative Research Methods 4

Semester IV (Fall)

Course Title Credits
CRIM 757 Spatial and Network Perspectives on Crime 3
CRIM 776 Evidence-Based Crime Reduction and Prevention 3

Semester V (Winter)

Course Title Credits
CRIM 790 MA Major Paper 7
or CRIM 799 MA Thesis  

Program requirements and continuance in program

To maintain status as a Master of Arts (Criminal Justice) program student and to continue in the program, students must maintain a minimum program grade point average of 3.00.

Major paper/thesis requirements

All students must complete a project in CRIM 790 (MA Major Paper) or CRIM 799 (MA Thesis) under the supervision of a senior supervisor and second supervisor. By the end of Semester III, graduate students will be matched with a senior supervisor and second supervisor, who must be approved by the Graduate Program Committee. Students must receive the approval of their senior supervisor and second supervisor prior to presenting their major paper or thesis to an external examiner.

Course repetition

Students can re-take a course if they wish to improve the grade earned in the course. Permission of the Graduate Program Committee is required (please see General Regulations for Graduate Studies).

Auditing courses

Students wishing to audit a course in Criminology/Criminal Justice must request permission from the instructor no later than the end of the fourth week of classes. No changes from regular to audit status will be permitted after this date.

Course withdrawal deadlines

Course withdrawal deadlines follow UFV's Course Withdrawal policy (81). Please see General Regulations for Graduate Studies.

Graduation requirements

To graduate with a Master of Arts (Criminal Justice) degree, students must maintain a minimum program grade point average of 3.00, and must receive final approval on their major paper or thesis from their examining committee.

Candidates who qualify to receive a Master of Arts (Criminal Justice) degree must be approved by the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice and the Senate. Students must apply for graduation in the first month of their final semester. Visit the Graduation webpage for more information. The final deadline for students who wish to attend the June Convocation ceremony is April 1 of each year, with all program requirements completed by April 30.

Note: Students should also be familiar with the General Regulations for Graduate Studies.

Course listings

For complete details on courses see the course descriptions section.

Current Students