• Apply for Admission
  • Explore Programs and Courses
  • Pathway to Student Services
  • Resources and Library Services
  • Alumni, Friends, and Community

Undergraduate Prospective Students

Newly Admitted Students

Degree Requirements

Transfer Credits

Academic Progress and Degree Completion

Registration

Other Questions and Resources

Undergraduate Prospective Students

Q. How do I get started?

A. Your first step is to contact the Admissions Office to discuss the application process and apply for University admission by the deadline. Your letter of admission will explain your next steps once you are admitted.

Q. What is the difference between the Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice majors?

A. Law Enforcement is for those interested in becoming licensed peace officers in the State of Minnesota. It is also a good choice for currently licensed peace officers who wish to complete a Bachelor's degree.

Criminal Justice is for those interested in a broad range of careers in the criminal justice system including juvenile justice, parole, probation, law enforcement, courts and corrections.

Q. How will my transfer courses apply toward my degree at Metropolitan State University?

A. You will receive information about how to access your transfer evaluation once you are admitted. This evaluation will indicate the number of credits accepted in transfer and how your courses apply toward and fulfill degree requirements, specifically to the University’s General Education and Liberal Studies requirements. In general, if you have completed a general education goal area at another MnSCU institution, you have fulfilled the goal at Metropolitan State University.

Upon registering for a Group Advising and Registration (GAR), SLC advisors evaluate the applicability of your transfer courses to fulfill major requirements and deliver this information at the GAR, during an individual advising appointment, and at the required Pre-Major Advising Workshop (PAW) which all Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement majors must attend.

Articulation agreements define how LE and CJS courses taken at MnSCU articulated schools apply toward major requirements at Metropolitan State University. Note: Courses must be passed with a grade of C- or better in order to apply toward Metropolitan State University’s major or minor requirements.

Q. Can I complete my entire degree program online?

A. Although the Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement majors offer courses in an online format, it is not guaranteed that you can complete your entire degree online due to the high demand and limited availability of online courses.

If you are a licensed peace officer or already have a Bachelor’s degree, online law enforcement program options are available and further details may be found at the School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Academic Programs website.

Q. Where will my classes be held?

A. Most Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement classes are held at the Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Education Center (LECJEC) on Metropolitan State University’s Brooklyn Park campus, co-located with Hennepin Technical College. The address for LECJEC is 9110 Brooklyn Boulevard, Brooklyn Park, MN 55445. Any courses that you take outside of your major may be located at various Metropolitan State University locations. Class locations are visible in eServices when you register.

SLC cohort programs also offer additional options and locations for degree completion.

Q. Can I tour the Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Education Center building at the Brooklyn Park campus of Metropolitan State University?

A. Due to increased security in this building we do not offer tours.

Top of page

Newly Admitted Students

Q. I was just admitted. What is my next step?

A. Your letter of admission will explain your next steps. The first step is to sign-up for the required  online New Student Orientation. Visit our SLC Advising homepage to view steps for newly admitted students.

Q. Why do I need placement assessments in reading, writing and math?

A. All incoming students are required to be assessed for current skill level in reading, writing and math to help determine preparedness for college-level course work. After University admission, you will be notified which, if any, tests you may be required to take. Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice are writing-intensive majors, so completion of General Education writing requirements is a pre-requisite for acceptance into your major.

We recommend that you complete any required assessments as soon as possible and consult your placement results before you register. If you have questions about your results, please contact your academic advisor. Visit the Placement Assessments for more information on exemption criteria, the testing schedule and registration instructions.

Q. What is the difference between the Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice majors?

A. Law enforcement is for those interested in becoming licensed peace officers in the State of Minnesota. It may also be a good choice for currently licensed peace officers who wish to complete a Bachelor’s degree.

Criminal Justice is for those interested in a broad range of careers in the criminal justice system including juvenile justice, probation, parole, law enforcement, courts and corrections. CJS 101 Introduction to Criminal Justice and CJS 110 Careers in Criminal Justice provide students with a good overview of the system and may help students make decisions about their educational and career goals. As students take criminal justice and law enforcement courses, they will also have the opportunity to interact with instructors and other students to gain additional insight into these areas.

Q. How do I declare a Law Enforcement (LE) or Criminal Justice (CJS) major?

A. You indicated your area of interest on your University application for admission, but this is not considered a declaration of major. The following criteria must be met in order to be accepted into a LE or CJS majors:

  • University admission
  • Attend a SLC Pre-Major Advising Workshop (PAW)
  • Completion of Minnesota Transfer Curriculum Writing requirements
  • 30 college credits earned
  • Metropolitan State University GPA of 2.25

Upon completion of New Student Orientation and before the end of your first semester, you should register for and attend the required PAW. PAW attendance is the first step to declare a major in LE or CJS. At the PAW, you will submit an Undergraduate Program Declaration form. This form will be reviewed by your advisor following your successful completion of each semester until you have met the criteria for acceptance into your major. Once you have declared your major, your degree requirements will be secured from future catalog changes.

Q. Where will my classes be held?

A. Most Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement classes are held at the Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Education Center (LECJEC) on Metropolitan State’s Brooklyn Park campus, co-located with Hennepin Technical College. The address for LECJEC is 9110 Brooklyn Boulevard, Brooklyn Park, MN 55445. Any courses that you take outside of your major may be located at various Metropolitan State University locations. Class locations are visible in eServices where you register.

SLC cohort programs also offer additional options and locations for degree completion.

Q. Can I complete my entire degree program online?

A. The CJS and LE Track 1 degree programs offer courses online, however it is not guaranteed that you can complete your entire degree online due to the high demand and limited availability of online courses. If you are a licensed peace officer or already have a Bachelor’s degree, please see the “What is a ‘cohort” FAQ.

Degree Requirements

Q. What will I need to complete a Bachelor’s degree in Law Enforcement (LE) or Criminal Justice (CJS)?

A. Your degree will be comprised of a minimum of 120 credits and include courses that satisfy General Education and Liberal Studies (GELS) requirements and major requirements. Additional elective courses may be required in order to fulfill graduation credit requirements. A summary of graduation credit requirements includes:

  • 40 credits of General Education (GE)
  • 8 credits of Liberal Studies (LS)
  • 40 credits of upper division (courses numbered 300 or higher)
  • 30 credits completed at Metropolitan State (University residency requirement)
  • 24 credits in LE or CJS major completed at Metropolitan State (major residency requirement)
  • 120 total credits

Q. What is General Education and Liberal Studies (GELS)?

A. GELS is a graduation requirement that comprises 40 credits of General Education (GE) and 8 credits of Liberal Studies (LS). GE is categorized into ten distinct goal areas and includes courses such as Writing, Math and sciences, to name a few. Liberal Studies is 8 credits of upper division courses chosen from the GELS list.

The GELS list indicates course options to fulfill the ten goal areas of GE and 8 credits of upper division LS and is available on the Class Schedule of the University website.

Q. Will I have to complete general education (GE) requirements?

A. That will depend on courses you have previously completed elsewhere. If you have earned an Associate of Arts (AA) degree, completed the Minnesota Transfer Curriculum (MnTC) or have completed a Bachelor’s degree, then you have completed the ten goal areas of the GE requirements.

If you have earned an Associate of Science (AS) degree, Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree or simply completed some coursework at another institution, then you will likely have GE coursework to complete.

Q. What are upper division courses?

A. Upper division courses are courses numbered 300 or higher. Upper division tends to be more advanced courses that are more appropriately taken in the latter part of your degree program.

Note: Community and technical colleges do not offer upper division courses.

Q. Can General Education Liberal Studies (GELS) courses overlap other courses?

A. Yes, if you choose wisely, one course may fulfill several requirements.

  • A single GELS course may be used to satisfy a maximum of two goal areas if the course appears on the GELS list under different goal areas.
  • A 300-level or higher course used to meet the Liberal Studies requirement may overlap with one or two goal areas.
  • A GELS course may be used to satisfy a requirement in certain majors.

Note: Students need 48 unduplicated credits to complete GELS. When a course is used to meet two requirements, the credits are only counted once.

Top of page

Transfer Credits

Q. How will my transfer courses apply toward my degree at Metropolitan State University?

A. You will receive information about how to access your transfer evaluation once you are admitted. This evaluation will indicate the number of credits accepted in transfer and how your courses apply toward and fulfill degree requirements, specifically to the University’s General Education and Liberal Studies requirements. In general, if you have completed a general education goal area at another MnSCU institution, you have fulfilled the goal at Metropolitan State University.

Upon registering for Group Advising and Registration (GAR), SLC advisors evaluate the applicability of your transfer courses to fulfill major requirements and deliver this information at the on-campus GAR, during an individual appointment, and at the required Pre-Major Advising Workshop (PAW) which all Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement majors must attend.

Articulation agreements define how LE and CJS courses taken at MnSCU articulated schools apply toward major requirements at Metropolitan State University. Note: Courses must be passed with a grade of C- or better in order to apply toward Metropolitan State University’s major or minor requirements.

Q. What is a DARS report?

A. DARS stands for Degree Audit Reporting System and is an electronic degree planning tool used to help you monitor your progress toward degree completion. Your DARS automatically updates as you register for and complete courses and tracks information such as course details, GPA, credits earned, requirements satisfied and requirements still needed to graduate. You may access your Interactive DARS report in eServices under the “Grades and Transcripts” link.

Q. One of my transfer courses did not satisfy a General Education Liberal Studies (GELS) goal area on my DARS. How do I appeal this?

A. If you believe a transfer course should satisfy one of your GELS goal areas, you may appeal for re-evaluation by submitting a Transfer Credit Appeal available on the Registrar’s website.

Q. I selected courses using an articulation agreement. One of my lower division community college courses fulfills an upper division major requirement at Metropolitan State University. Why don’t I receive upper division credit?

A. Courses in articulation agreements address similarity in course content. While a course may be deemed to fulfill another course in an articulation agreement, the courses are not considered the same or equivalent, but rather are considered to possess a large percentage of commonality to justify not requiring you to take an additional similarly-related course. Essentially, you are “waived” from the need to take Metropolitan State University’s related course, even though the courses are not the same, because the Metropolitan State University course may further explore the content, require additional or advanced coursework or academic rigor.

You earn lower or upper division credit based on where and how you complete courses. If you complete a course at the community college that has been articulated to fulfill an upper division Metropolitan State University course requirement, you have fulfilled that Metropolitan State University course requirement with a lower division transfer course and are awarded lower division credit.

Q. Will standardized examination credits, such as CLEP (College - level Examination Program) transfer into Metropolitan State University?

A. Metropolitan State University transfer decisions regarding standardized examinations can be found through USelect.

Top of page

Academic Progress and Degree Completion

Q. How do I track my progress toward my degree?

A. You should use your DARS report, Metropolitan State University transcript and Law Enforcement or Criminal Justice degree worksheet to understand your degree requirements, track your progress and select courses at registration time. You are also encouraged to meet with your academic advisor to determine how you are progressing toward degree completion.

Q. How do I access my academic records, including my unofficial transcript, DARS and grades?

A. Your academic records are available in eServices by clicking on the “Grades and Transcripts” link.

Q. How do I access my Law Enforcement or Criminal Justice degree worksheet?

A. Your academic advisor will email your degree worksheet upon completion of a Group Advising and Registration (GAR) and Pre-Major Advising Workshop (PAW). Be sure to save your worksheet to your computer so that you have it whenever you need it and can update it at the end of each semester.

Q. How long will it take me to graduate?

A. That will depend on your situation. In general, if you have completed an Associate of Arts (AA), an Associate of Science (AS) or Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree, you will have earned approximately 60 of the 120 credits needed for graduation, and be about half-way done based on credits. Be aware that graduation requirements include course requirements and credit requirements. You will need to consider:

  • Will you be a full-time student or part-time student?
  • Will you attend classes fall, spring and summer terms?

 Example: You have 18 courses remaining, plan to take 2 courses per term and register Spring, Summer and Fall:

  • 18 courses divided by 2 courses per term = 9 terms to graduate
  • 9 terms divided over 3 terms per year (Spring, Summer and Fall) = 3 years to graduate

Q. How many credits should I take each semester?

A. This answer will vary for each student and depends on your anticipated graduation timeline and additional responsibilities such as work and family. In general, you may take courses at your own pace. You should plan for 6-9 hours of studying per week for a 3-credit course. Be aware that certain external guidelines may affect your course load, such as financial aid eligibility.

Q. What is considered part-time or full-time enrollment at Metropolitan State University?

A. 6 credits is considered part-time; 12 credits is considered full-time. You are eligible to register for up to 16 credits each semester. If you wish to register for more than 16 credits, you will need an advisor’s approval. If you are receiving financial aid, you may be required to carry a determined credit load per semester in order to be eligible for financial aid. International students on a student visa must be registered as a full-time student for fall and spring semesters. Note: The definition of part- or full-time can vary based on different criteria, for example, insurance.

Q. I have earned a lot of college credits and just want to graduate. With which major can I graduate the quickest?

A. Unfortunately, no such major exists. This will depend on the courses you have completed, as well as your short- and long-term goals. As a starting point, review your transcripts to determine if you have completed courses in a specific discipline(s), and explore whether Metropolitan State University offers that as a major option. If you have earned a lot of college credits and/or a traditional major does not exist to accommodate your interests/needs, you may also wish to consider an Individualized major in the College of Individualized Studies.

Q. What is required for me to maintain good Academic Standing?

A. To be in Good Academic Standing, your cumulative Metropolitan State University GPA must be 2.0 or higher, and your cumulative Metropolitan State University completion rate, including credits transferred, must be 67% or higher. These standards may change without notice if required by changes in Financial Aid Academic Progress policy.

If you fall below either of these criteria, you will be placed on Academic Warning. If you do not meet the standards for Good Academic Standing at the end of your next term of registration, you will be suspended for academic reasons. See the Academic Standing website or contact your academic advisor for further explanation of these criteria.

Q. What happens if I need to take time off?

A. Once admitted and enrolled, your admission is good and you remain an active student for three years. If you need to take time off or do not register for a period of time under three years, you will be eligible to return and register for courses. If you do not register for 3 or more years, you must contact the Admissions Office to apply for readmission. If readmitted, you would return under the degree requirements of the current catalog.

Top of page

Registration

Q. I want to register, but have not attended a Pre-Major Advising Workshop (PAW). What should I register for?

A. New students should first complete the required online New Student Orientation (NSO). Group Advising and Registration (GAR) sessions are conducted on-campus by the School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice (SLC) academic advising staff. The GAR provides general SLC information and directly assists you in registering for the upcoming semester.  You are encouraged to connect with your academic advisor with any registration concerns. In general, you are advised to proceed as follows prior to registering for major courses:

  • Understand your degree requirements by reading Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Fact Sheets, the SLC Advising website and relevant sections in the Undergraduate Catalog;
  • Reference your DARS and academic advisor to better understand your degree requirements;
  • Do not register for a course with the same or similar title without first discussing this with an SLC advisor;
  • Start with CJS 101 Introduction to Criminal Justice, if you have not yet completed it;
  • If you have completed CJS 101 and one college-level writing course, register for CJS 200 Literature in Criminal Justice.

Q: I am trying to register for an ONLINE course but it won’t let me. Why?

A: Some online course sections are defined as “cohort”. Only cohort students may register for cohort sections. Refer to the course note, available by clicking on the course title in eServices, for exceptions. Read the next FAQ for the definition of “cohort”.

Q: What is a “cohort” course or “cohort” code?

A: The School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice has several cohort program options. There are two Law Enforcement (LE) only cohort programs: 1) online for licensed police officers and 2) a certificate program for students who already possess a baccalaureate degree. In addition, the SLC offers the Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Cohort Programs through Century College and Inver Hills Community College.

These programs require a special admissions process and once admitted, students enroll in courses together as a cohort. Only cohort students may register for cohort courses, unless otherwise indicated on the class schedule. For more information about the SLC cohort programs, visit the SLC Cohort Programs website.

Q. How do I get into a full/closed class?

A. All students eligible to register for Criminal Justice (CJS) or Law Enforcement (LE) courses should first use the wait list tool to attempt entry into full courses. If openings occur, you will be e-mailed in order of the wait list. Eligible students may also utilize the School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice (SLC) petition process for dire need to get into a full or closed LE or CJS course.

To attempt entry into non-SLC full courses, you may use the university wait list tool, if available for that particular department. If the wait list tool is not available, contact that department for additional information and your registration options.

LE and CJS faculty do not have the authority to allow students into their closed courses.

For further details about the SLC petition process and university wait list function, visit the SLC Wait list and Petition FAQs.

Top of page

Other Questions and Resources

Q. What are my responsibilities as a student?

A. You are responsible for earning your academic degree. Academic advising services and tools are provided and intended to assist you in understanding degree requirements. All academic planning and course decisions and completion of degree requirements is ultimately your responsibility.

Some suggested tips to support your understanding include:

  • Ask questions if you don’t understand what you have read or have been told
  • Be proactive is seeking assistance for information, answers to questions and making program/registration decisions
  • Track your own progress toward degree completion
  • Consult with your advisor to make certain you are choosing the appropriate courses for your major or if you have questions or concerns
  • Communicate with your instructors if concerns arise
  • Understand and comply with drop, withdrawal, registration, and graduation dates and deadlines
  • Attend classes, complete assignments and tests, handle your own time management and study skills.

Q. What can I expect from my academic advisor?

A. Academic advising services and tools are provided and intended to assist you in understanding degree requirements. In general, your academic/faculty advisor should:

  • Help you understand your degree requirements and provide you with tools to track your own degree progress
  • Assist you with program decisions and registration
  • Assist you in choosing a major, explain the process to declare your major and discuss career/vocational options related to your major
  • Answer your questions or refer you to appropriate resources/services to assist you
  • Be a liaison between you and your professors or administration if you have questions or concerns
  • Respond in a timely manner.

Q. How do I find out who my advisor is?

A. The name of your academic advisor should be listed at the bottom, left corner of your portal login page and on the first page of your DARS report. Students are encouraged to work with their advisor regularly.

Q. Is tutoring available?

A. Yes, through the Center for Academic Excellence. The School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice also offers writing tutoring services at the Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Education Center on the Brooklyn Park campus.

Q. What is Gateway and what services do they provide?

A. Gateway Student Services is located on the first floor of Founders Hall and is your “one-stop shop” for information related to financial aid, new student orientation, registration troubleshooting, student account information, Records information, ordering transcripts, bus passes and parking cards. Gateway does not provide academic advising.

Q: What services are available at the Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Education Center (LECJEC)?

A: Academic advising, writing tutoring and a computer lab are available at LECJEC. Inter-library loan privileges are available at the library of neighboring Hennepin Technical College. Some services and availability may be limited, so we suggest that you schedule an appointment or call ahead.

Q. Is there a library at the Brooklyn Park campus?

A. No, however a fully staffed computer lab will allow you to request materials through an inter-library loan process.

Q. What is Ask Us?

A. Ask Us is a knowledge bank that allows students to quickly access answers to frequently asked questions by typing in a question.

Q. How do I find contact information for a university faculty or staff person?

A. An online university directory is available at the top, left of the Metropolitan State University website. You can search for faculty or staff by name or department. Faculty should list their contact information on their syllabi. Your advisor’s contact information is listed at the lower, left hand corner of your portal log-in page.

Top of page

FAQs adapted from Metropolitan State’s College of Management website



Brooklyn Park - Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Education Center Minneapolis Campus Midway Center Saint Paul Campus Saint Paul Campus