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Law Enforcement Major BS

Grounded in the liberal arts and sciences, the law enforcement degree programs help individuals develop the knowledge and perspectives for law enforcement careers. A baccalaureate degree is the minimum educational requirement for some state and most federal law enforcement positions, as well as many other interesting positions within the criminal justice system.

To earn a baccalaureate of science (BS) in law enforcement, students must complete the minimum bachelor's degree requirements (120 credits), including general education, liberal studies and law enforcement coursework. There are three tracks in the Law Enforcement major:

Minnesota peace officers may complete major requirements on campus or in the online Law Enforcement Major Completion Program.

Acceptance to the Program

To be eligible for acceptance to the Law Enforcement major, students must submit a School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Undergraduate Program Declaration Form when the following is completed:

  • 30 credits
  • GELS/MNTC writing requirements
  • Cumulative Metropolitan State GPA of 2.25
  • SLC Pre-major Advising Workshop (PAW)

All law enforcement pre-majors should work closely with an advisor from the School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice (SLC).

Credit and Residency Requirements

All Metropolitan State University students must complete at least 30 credits in residency at Metropolitan State. All law enforcement students must complete 24 major credits at Metropolitan State University which can be applied toward the 30 credit university residency requirement.

Track 1: Minnesota Peace Officer Licensure Track (59 semester credits)

This major track helps individuals develop the knowledge, perspectives and skills for successful law enforcement careers in Minnesota city, county and state law enforcement agencies. Students who successfully complete either the BS or the Law Enforcement Licensing Certificate program are eligible to take the Minnesota Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Board licensing examination, required for entry into the law enforcement profession in Minnesota.

Minnesota Peace Officer Licensure Requirements

Students interested in becoming a licensed peace officer in Minnesota should be aware of the following minimum selection standards established by the Minnesota POST Board. An applicant must:

  • be a citizen of the United States;
  • possess a valid Minnesota driver's license;
  • complete a comprehensive written application;
  • never have been convicted of a felony, assault, theft or other convictions as identified by the POST Board Minimum Selection Standards for Licensure;
  • submit to a thorough background investigation;
  • be fingerprinted for a background check;
  • undergo an evaluation by a licensed psychologist;
  • pass job-related physical strength and agility exams;
  • successfully complete an oral exam demonstrating communication skills;
  • the applicant must not be required to register as a predatory offender; and
  • be license-eligible by completing an associate or bachelor's degree and passing the POST licensing exam.

Detailed, current information regarding the POST minimum selection standards is available on the POST Board website and through the SLC Advising Center.

Note: Emergency Medical Responder is required for the POST exam and must be approved by the Minnesota Emergency Medical Services Regulatory Board (EMSRB).

Required Core Courses (56 credits)

Law Enforcement Skills Practicum

Admission into Skills is by application only. The application process is available fall semester prior to the student's final summer term. Prior to applying, students must work closely with their advisor to prepare for the Skills component of the degree program. Skills practicum is only offered in the summer.

^ Must be completed at a Minnesota POST certified college or university prior to Skills Practicum.
+ CJS 320, CJS 360, CJS 375 and CJS 483 are prerequisites for CJS 490.
= CJS 490 should be completed during the student's last semester.

Track 2: Non-Licensure Track (49 semester credits)

This major track is designed for students who want to complete a law enforcement major, but do not intend to become a licensed Minnesota peace officer.

Required Core Courses (40 credits)

Directed Electives (9 credits)

  • 3 LAWE/CJS Electives (ALL 9 directed elective credits must be upper-division; 3 courses minimum)

Note: Track 2 majors may not double major or minor in criminal justice.

* CJS 101 and CJS 200 are prerequisites for some core CJS and LAWE courses as noted in the course description..
+ CJS 320, CJS 360, CJS 375 and CJS 483 are prerequisites for CJS 490.
= CJS 490 should be completed the student's last semester.

Track 3: Law Enforcement Major for Minnesota Licensed Peace Officers

This track allows licensed peace officers to pursue the law enforcement major (BS). Explore major requirements as an on-campus student.

Minnesota peace officers have an opportunity to earn a bachelor's degree through an online cohort program called the Law Enforcement Major Completion Program. Eligible students apply to the cohort which offers two major courses per semester over four semesters. More program information.

Track 3 Law Enforcement major degree requirements include major directed electives. Metropolitan State supports alternative learning strategies including prior learning. Following admission and major declaration, students may request a review of their continuing education records for prior learning consideration. Explore prior learning.