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Best Online Degrees in: Law Enforcement Administration

Editor’s Picks: Online Schools for Law Enforcement Administration

Value
The award for best value for an online law enforcement administration bachelor’s degree goes to Colorado State University. The school had an annual return on investment of 7.9% for students not receiving financial aid. The figure increased to 9.3% for students who received some form of financial aid throughout their education. The school added to its value by offering the same high-quality face-to-face programs found on their traditional campus to all online students.

Flexibility
Ashford University wins our award for flexibility by making it part of its mission to ensure that online education is accessible for the various needs of non-traditional students. The school provides students with an online curriculum that can be tailored around a student’s current schedule outside of school, such as family or work obligations. Ashford also earned an A+ ranking from the student ratings website CollegeProwler.com.

Career Support
Kaplan University wins our award for best support for an online bachelor’s degree in law enforcement administration. The school earned an A- rating from CollegeProwler.com, and offers a career services program that includes resume writing workshops, and interviewing and networking webinars that helps students find career options. Students and graduates can also network through the school’s vast alumni network.

Financial Support
The award for best financial support for a school offering an online bachelor’s degree in law enforcement administration goes to Ashford University. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the school awarded 93% of its incoming freshman with some sort of financial aid during the 2010-2011 school year. Additionally, 67% of the school student body received grant or scholarship aid during the same year.

Technology Support
Ashford University wins the award for best technology support for providing its students with an unprecedented level of support for online learners. The school is ranked No. 9 specifically in technology support by the student ratings website CollegeProwler.com. They earned a rating of 9.52 out of a possible 10.

Disability Support
Ashford University wins the award for best disability support by providing students with its Access and Wellness office. The office exists to create equal opportunities through accessible educational programs, disability-related advocacy, and faculty and staff education. Students with learning or physical disabilities can contact the office for disability-related advocacy and advising, textbooks in electronic format, tutoring services, and more.

Library and Research Support
Colorado State University’s Global Campus wins the award for best library and research support for its unique virtual library system that seeks to provide students with state-of-the-art information services to its students. The virtual library provides students with access to an online journal article database, government information, general reference material, and several e-book databases. In addition, students can also direct questions to the school’s online librarian via email at any time.

Learning Support
Colorado State University’s Global Campus wins the award for best learning support by offering students a student support and resources to help students stay connected to the school at all times. CSU Global Campus can conduct small group work through live video, voice, or text chat rooms to work collaboratively through the school’s Live Classroom feature. The school also provides 24/7 online tutoring services to all its students.

Faculty Credentials
The award for best faculty credentials goes to Eastern Kentucky University Online. The school’s College of Justice and Safety has been educating students for more than 40 years, and allows online students the access to the same faculty and curriculum as traditional students. According to the school’s website, EKU is listed by Forbes Magazine in its top 10% of America’s colleges and universities for the third year in a row.

Faculty Accessibility
The award for best faculty accessibility goes to Ashford University for providing its online students with a number of ways for students to contact and communicate with faculty. The school scored high marks in most accessible professors on the student ratings website CollegeProwler.com. Ashford students gave the school a rating of 9.62 out of a possible 10 points in the most accessible professors category.

Alumni Engagement
Kaplan University Online wins the award for best alumni engagement by helping its graduates stay connected to the school and other students after graduation. After graduation, all students gain access to the school’s Career Network website, where alumni can access career tools like personal branding, resume coaching, and an online job posting board specifically for Kaplan graduates. The school also offers a number of discounts and benefits to graduates from companies like Dell, Apple, HP, Verizon, and more.

Prior Learning Options
The award for best prior learning options goes to Eastern Kentucky University Online Online for providing exceptional help and support to students seeking to transfer to the school. The school awards transfer credit for courses completed at a regionally accredited college and university, and has no limit on the number of credits that can be transferred. The school is also ranked No. 2 in the nation by Military Times Edge magazine in their “Best For Vets” rankings, according to the school’s website.

Explore a Bachelor’s Degree in Law Enforcement Administration

If you’re interested in law enforcement and working to prevent crime, but you would rather be in charge than on patrol, you may want to consider pursuing an online bachelor’s degree in law enforcement administration. Many students are able to complete a law enforcement administration bachelor’s degree program online in around four years. However, the amount of time it takes you to earn your degree depends on many things, such as your ability to successfully pass each class, the specific requirements of the program you’re enrolled in, how many credits you have previously earned and are able to transfer and use toward your degree, and whether you are a full-time or part-time student.

Class Curriculum

While earning your bachelor’s degree in law enforcement administration, you will learn about the structure of a law enforcement agency, how to establish and effectively manage a police force of qualified personnel, and how to keep your jurisdiction safe. Each institution will have varying curriculum, but the following are a few of the more common courses found in an online bachelor’s degree program in law enforcement administration:

  • Leadership in Law Enforcement. In this class you will learn how to effectively lead, manage, and supervise law enforcement personnel. You will study techniques, theories, and traits surrounding leadership, as well as how crime and unmotivated personnel can impact leadership.
  • Law Enforcement Personnel Management. In this class you will learn how to maintain a force of capable and qualified law enforcement officers. You will also cover local, state, and federal training and certification requirements.
  • Ethics in Law Enforcement. In this class you will learn how to maintain ethical behavior. You will study theories, literature, and methods used to establish a code of ethics.

As a law enforcement administration major, you can expect to have assignments requiring you to research such topics as criminal law, due process, and the relationship between politics and law enforcement, and then demonstrate your competence through exams and written reports. Many programs will incorporate scenarios which require you to assess a situation and determine the proper way to handle it.

Building a Career

Once you complete an online law enforcement administration program and earn your bachelor’s degree, you should have the skills and knowledge needed to effectively direct and manage a law enforcement agency. Coupled with relevant law enforcement experience, this degree may qualify you for a supervisor position with a variety of organizations in law enforcement, including local police departments, state police departments, correctional and rehabilitation facilities, and sheriff’s offices. Keep in mind that earning your degree does not guarantee employment, though it can increase your chances.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), on average, police supervisors earn an annual income of $81,250. However, your income is affected by several factors. One of which is your location. For example, the BLS shows that police supervisors in Nassau, N.Y., earn an average annual income of $124,120, whereas those in St. Louis, Mo., earn an average of $72,190 a year. Another factor is your industry. The BLS shows that police supervisors employed by a state government agency earn an average annual income of $82,290, while those employed by a university earn an average of $68,360 a year. The amount of experience you have will also be a factor when determining your income.

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