The minimum requirement to become a corrections officer is a high school diploma or GED. However, prospective corrections officers should seriously consider pursuing a postsecondary education. Many corrections officers are employed by the federal government. Federal employers require that all corrections officers have a bachelor's degrees from an accredited higher education institution, relevant work experience or a combination of the two. In contrast, state and local employers typically do not require that correctional officers to have a college degree, if they have previous work experience.
Prospective correctional officers taking the college route should consider earning a degree in criminal justice or sociology. Criminal justice students can expect to take courses in criminal justice, criminal law, law enforcement, crime and delinquency and public management. Students pursuing a sociology track will take courses in sociology, sociology of deviance and popular culture and race and ethnicity.
Featured Corrections Programs
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