Online Graduate Program


Giving Back to the Future

How you can contribute to the future success of Criminal Justice Students

Giving Back to the Future


Student Testimonials

Student Engagement is a priority!


“The online graduate program promotes student engagement in all courses, this allows us to interact with the instructors and classmates. This interaction creates an accessible environment that is responsive to the student needs which brings about success. Student programs incorporate the diverse online student resources to further  assist the online program student.”

Roberto Gutierrez, Class of 2019, Masters of Criminal Justice




“The best part of CJ online program is the flexibility provided together with the faculty’s commitment to the students. Students are provided with the flexibility to work around their own personal and/or work schedule and consequently are able to enhance time-management skills to complete their coursework at their own pace. Having this flexibility also leads for students to become self-motivated, self-discipline, and responsible. All this, along with the faculty’s commitment to the students by providing feedback, support, and advice develop an encouraging environment. The CJ Department Faculty is fantastic.”

Claudia Gamboa, Class of 2018, Criminal Justice Major

The Department of Criminal Justice at New Mexico State University provides an online program for earning the Master of Criminal Justice degree (MCJ).


nmsu online scholarshio

AMAZING OPPORTUNITY FOR NEW NMSU graduate students in Spring 2022!!!

 NMSU Online is offering 50 $2,000 scholarships to new online graduate students starting in Spring 2022!

To apply for your scholarship, email OR visit the website:

The online program option falls under NMSU Online. NMSU Online serves students intending to earn their degree 100% online. For more information please visit NMSU Online or contact or 888.729.6678.


The online program is intended to serve students who are unable to relocate to Las Cruces or are in professions that prevent students from completing the traditional campus-based MCJ program. The online program follows the same curriculum, and uses the same faculty, as the campus-based MCJ program. The courses offered each semester are delivered over the Internet and use the Canvas platform to deliver course content and assignments. The content and assignments of each course varies in accordance with individual courses and professors. Assignments typically include some combination of the following: a variety of assigned readings, critical commentary on assigned readings, exams, quizzes, research papers, various learning exercises, discussion forums, and real time chat sessions.



New Mexico State University-Main Campus Recognized for Online Learning Excellence (ACO), a leader in higher education information, resources and rankings has recognized New Mexico State University-Main Campus for their excellence in online learning for having one of the best online criminal justice programs in the nation.

“We wanted to honor the colleges and universities setting the bar for online learning,” said Dan Schuessler, CEO and Founder of “These schools are going above and beyond the industry standard to help make online education programs an excellent option and more affordable.”

There are over one million jobs in the United States that revolve around keeping peace and order in society. Those who pursue a career in criminal justice help shape our country.
“It is necessary to celebrate the most cost effective and successful online criminal justice programs in the nation.” said Dan Schuessler, CEO and Founder of Affordable Colleges Online. “Without them, people who cannot operate under traditional college programs would be stripped of their ability to help protect and spread peace across our nation.”


Department of Criminal Justice ONLY reviews the applicants ONCE PER YEAR, IN SPRING FOR FALL ADMISSION. Applicants admitted into the online program typically only enroll in online courses. Applicants admitted as campus-based students may only enroll in campus-based Criminal Justice courses unless the course is offered as part of the NMSU Weekend College. Students enrolled in the campus-based program may enroll in online courses during the two five-week summer sessions.


The enrollment process for the MCJ is the same for both the campus-based and online options and is a three-step process:

1. You need to be admitted to the Graduate School at NMSU. You can apply to the Graduate School online. Once the Graduate School receives your application, transcripts from prior universities and/or colleges, and your application fee, they will make an admission decision and notify you directly of that decision. It is very important that you submit this application form to the Graduate School 30 days prior to the MCJ program admission deadlines listed above. Failure to comply with this stipulation may cause your application file in the Department of Criminal of Justice to be incomplete by the deadline and could result in an unfavorable admission decision.

2. Send three letters of recommendation directly to the Director of the MCJ program from professors, employers, etc. who can comment on your strengths and potential for success in the MCJ. These letters may be mailed directly by the individual writing the letter, or collected by you in sealed and signed envelopes and included in one package along with your written essay. Recommendation forms that can be used in conjunction with letters of recommendation are not required but are preferred. These Recommendation forms can be downloaded by clicking the above link.

3. Send the personal statement and sample of writing described on the home page directly to the Director of the MCJ program.

The address for the three letters of recommendation and the essay is:

Dr. Carlos Posadas, Graduate Program Director, Master of Criminal Justice Program
Department of Criminal Justice, MSC 3487
New Mexico State University
PO Box 30001
Las Cruces, NM 88003-8001

Or send via email –

If you are an international student, you must make application through the Office of International Student and Scholar Services.


Enrolling in Online Courses

Once the admission process is complete and you have been formally admitted into the program, you will be able to enroll/register for specific courses offered in a given semester. You may register online and following the instructions provided at that location. If you encounter difficulties in completing the course registration process you should contact the following places for assistance in order: the NMSU Graduate School or (575) 646-2736, the NMSU Online or 888.729.6678.


Frequently Asked Questions for the Online MCJ Student

What is an Online course?
Online courses are comparable to courses taught in a traditional campus-based classroom. The method is adjusted to fit the parameters of the Canvas delivery platform. The content and assignments of each course varies in accordance with individual courses and professors. Assignments typically include some combination of the following: a variety of assigned readings, critical commentary on assigned readings, exams, quizzes, research papers, various learning exercises, discussion forums, and real time chat sessions.


Am I eligible for a Graduate Assistantship?

No, Graduate Assistantships in the Department of Criminal Justice are awarded to campus-based MCJ students only.


What type of computer and connection is needed for the online MCJ program?

If you can read this page, you probably have the necessary hardware and connection. Course material is offered through Canvas. Student support and a tutorial for Canvas is available here.


May I earn CJ 593 Internship credit?

You may register for CJ 593 Internship credit in consultation with the Director of the MCJ program. You will need to find an appropriate internship placement and complete the MCJ Internship Contract prior to receiving permission to register for CJ 593. Remember that the number of CJ 593 credit hours that apply to your MCJ degree requirements is limited.  You will also find more useful information about CJ 593 in the Internship FAQ document.


May I pursue the Thesis options?

No. The Thesis option is typically only available for campus-based students.