Your degree doesn’t dictate your future salary, but it is a strong indicator.

After graduation, criminal justice graduates typically earn high salaries compared to the national average. Top earners make $75,099, while the bottom 20% make closer to $35,381. The median grad salary is $51,547.

Criminal Justice graduate salaries over time

The typical early career salary for someone with a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice is $30,895, and within five years of graduation, this average salary goes up to $46,730.

This chart maps the average workforce wage by years of experience:

Wage ($USD)

Wage Range Median Wage

Years of work experience

Highest paying jobs for criminal justice graduates

The highest paying careers for criminal justice graduates are detective, special agent, fraud analyst and forensic science technician, with top salaries averaging around $78,513.

Highest Paying Careers

Avg Pay (USD)

As per most recent US census

Pro tip
Still unsure if a degree in criminal justice is your calling? Read our comprehensive guide on choosing a career


Discover what you’ll learn—and what you can do after you graduate.

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