WCU online criminal justice program ranked no. 1 ‘best buy’

Western Carolina University’s online bachelor’s degree program in criminal justice once again has received a No. 1 national ranking in affordability by the distance education information clearinghouse GetEducated.com

WCU’s program is listed first among a group of 19 “Best Buys.” The rankings are based on a fall 2009 survey of regionally accredited universities that offer bachelor’s degree programs in criminal justice through distance education.

North Carolina residents who enroll in WCU’s program pay about $10,204. The online program that received the No. 2 ranking costs more than twice that much, and the cost of other ranked programs ranged up to $42,000.

“It’s gratifying that outside agencies continue to give us high marks for the value and quality of our academic programs,” said WCU Provost Kyle Carter.

To be accepted into WCU’s online criminal justice program, applicants must have received an associate of arts, associate of science or associate of applied science degree from a community college, or they must have completed the 44 general core courses at a community college. WCU’s program requires a minimum of 120 semester hours, including 48 hours of criminal justice, 42 hours of liberal studies and 30 hours of general electives.

The WCU program is highly competitive. The program is full this current spring semester, and a limited number of applicants can be accepted to begin the program in the fall.

WCU’s online criminal justice program previously was ranked a No. 1 “Best Buy” by GetEducated.com in 2007. The university’s online master’s degree program in project management received that designation in 2008.

For more information about WCU’s online bachelor’s degree program in criminal justice, go to http://www.wcu.edu/5704.asp on the Web or contact Larry Myers, program director, at 828-227-2485 or ljmyers@wcu.edu.