Criminal Justice

Program Purpose:  The Criminal Justice Program is designed to qualify students for entry into the field of law, law enforcement, private security or corrections directly from Ventura College, as well as for those who desire two years of criminal justice study for transfer to the State University system or law school. California certificated instructors, with criminal justice and/or legal experience, teach all Criminal Justice courses offered at Ventura College. Full college credit is granted for each course successfully completed, and a Certificate of Achievement or Associate in Science Degree is awarded upon completion of the respective program chosen.

Public concern with rising crime rates and the increasing role of law enforcement in public service work has contributed to the growth of criminal justice agencies throughout the nation. There is a broad range of employment opportunities for men and women in all components of the Criminal Justice System. The criminal justice system is a diversified occupational area with available employment opportunities on the federal, state and county levels: Federal Bureau of Investigation, Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Border Patrol, California Highway Patrol, municipal police departments, county sheriff's departments, federal and state departments of correction, probation, parole and private security.

Program Description:  This Criminal Justice Program offers an education to students in the varied aspects of law enforcement, court procedures and corrections. A foundation of knowledge is provided for those interested in becoming competitive candidates for these rewarding and challenging positions.


  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the American Criminal Justice system, its obligations to the community and the scope of responsibilities of the various local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies beginning with arrest through corrections.
  2. Articulate the major criminological theories regarding criminal behavior, the social implications of crime and how these concepts relate to crime, criminal behavior and victimology.
  3. Analyze concepts of law and utilize legal investigative proficiencies applied to preparing and presenting case work. Demonstrate the ability to translate this information to written, verbal and electronic formats.
  4. Collaborate to describe the importance of standards relating to ethics, communication and cooperation within a variety of cultures and situations in the Criminal Justice System.