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Criminal Justice-Law Enforcement

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Academic Programs

Associate in Applied Science (081)

This program prepares students for careers in law enforcement agencies such as municipal police departments, county sheriffs' departments, state police and private security concerns. The program includes general education courses and provides an emphasis on criminal justice courses and supportive social science courses.

Nature of Work and Employment

Law enforcement majors pursue careers as municipal police officers, sheriffs' deputies, state troopers and private security guards. The job market in law enforcement is closely tied to legislation to fund it. If funding of tax supported law enforcement does not meet society's demand for law enforcement, growth will occur in the market for trained personnel in private security.

Special Considerations

Law enforcement students should cultivate their communications skills. Much of effective law enforcement is based on the communication skills of arresting officers. Students should also be aware of the strength and agility standards required of applicants by law enforcement agencies in Illinois. The College offers a wide range of physical education courses and a super circuit fitness center for those who are concerned about meeting these requirements. Younger students should seriously consider studying for a bachelor's degree as the job market for law enforcement majors is competitive. Previous criminal record and felony convictions can negatively impact the opportunity to gain employment in the field.

Program Contacts at Sauk Valley Community College
Counseling Office, 815/835-6354.


Major Field Requirements - Sem/Hrs: 30

  • CJS Elective-CJS 250 Recommended 3 Semester hour(s)

  • CJS 130 - Criminal Investigation 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 200 - Ethics in Criminal Justice 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 230 - Police Community Relations 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 231 - Criminal Evidence and Procedure 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 232 - Police and Patrol Operations 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CIS 109 - Introduction to Microcomputers - Windows 3 Semester hour(s)
  • GOV 163 - American Politics and Government 3 Semester hour(s)
  • PSY 103 - Introduction to Psychology 3 Semester hour(s)
  • SPE 131 - Introduction to Oral Communication 3 Semester hour(s)

Criminal Justice Core Courses - Sem/Hrs: 15

  • CJS 101 - Introduction to Criminal Justice 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 120 - Introduction to Corrections 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 135 - Criminal Law 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 208 - Juvenile Delinquency 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 238 - Criminology 3 Semester hour(s)

General Education Requirements - Sem/Hrs: 18

  • Communications (ENG 101, 111 or 103 required) 6 Semester hour(s)
  • Humanities/Fine Arts 3 Semester hour(s)
  • Social/Behavioral Science (SOC 111 required) 3 Semester hour(s)
  • Physical/Life Science 3 Semester hour(s)
  • Mathematics (MAT 106 or higher required) 3 Semester hour(s)


Electives (see your major field advisor): 2-3 semester hours



SVCC Requirement - Sem/Hrs: 1


  • FYE 101 - First Year Experience 1 Semester hour(s)

Total Hours Required for A.A.S. Degree: 64


Suggested Program


First Semester - Sem/Hrs: 16

  • Mathematics (MAT 106 or higher) 3 Semester hour(s)

  • CJS 101 - Introduction to Criminal Justice 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 120 - Introduction to Corrections 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 130 - Criminal Investigation 3 Semester hour(s)
  • ENG 101 - Composition I 3 Semester hour(s)
  • FYE 101 - First Year Experience 1 Semester hour(s)

Second Semester - Sem/Hrs: 15


  • CIS 109 - Introduction to Microcomputers - Windows 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 232 - Police and Patrol Operations 3 Semester hour(s)
  • ENG 111 - Business and Technical Communication 3 Semester hour(s)
  • or

  • ENG 103 - Composition II 3 Semester hour(s)
  • GOV 163 - American Politics and Government 3 Semester hour(s)
  • SOC 111 - Introduction to Sociology 3 Semester hour(s)

Third Semester - Sem/Hrs: 15

  • Humanities/Fine Arts 3 Semester hour(s)

  • CJS 200 - Ethics in Criminal Justice 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 208 - Juvenile Delinquency 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 230 - Police Community Relations 3 Semester hour(s)
  • SPE 131 - Introduction to Oral Communication 3 Semester hour(s)

Fourth Semester - Sem/Hrs: 18

  • Physical/Life Science 3 Semester hour(s)

  • CJS 135 - Criminal Law 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 231 - Criminal Evidence and Procedure 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 238 - Criminology 3 Semester hour(s)
  • CJS 250 - Criminal Justice Practicum 1 to 3 Semester hour(s)
  • (recommended)

  • PSY 103 - Introduction to Psychology 3 Semester hour(s)
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