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Law Enforcement Administration

Columbia College offers an innovative program for students who wish to become law enforcement officers (or currently in law enforcement): Partners in Law Enforcement. This collaborative initiative between Columbia College and the state’s police academies is designed to give students up to 24 semester hours in course equivalencies for successful completion of the academy. To qualify, students must successfully complete a state-certified basic police academy with a minimum of 400 hours. Academies completed over five years prior to applying for equivalency credit will not be considered unless the applicant can demonstrate adequate work experience in the field since completion of the academy. An approved demonstration of work experience is a letter on appropriate letterhead from a supervisor or human resources administrator confirming employment in the field; the letter should include employment dates/history and current position. The specific course equivalencies are listed below. 1


Criminal Justice Administration and Human Services Department

Degree requirements

Core Equivalencies 9 sem. hrs

  • CJAD 301 Criminal Law 3 hrs
  • CJAD 311 Police in a Democratic Society 3 hrs
  • CJAD 415 Criminal Procedures 3 hrs

Criminal Justice Lower-Level Electives 9 sem. hrs

General Electives 6 sem. hrs

  • The equivalency policy is effective based on the following provisions:
  • 1. Basic law enforcement academies must be a minimum of 400 hours in length and must have been completed within the five years prior to applying for equivalencies.
  • 2. Students who complete a basic law enforcement academy of less than 400 hours will be eligible to earn up to 12 semester hours of criminal justice elective credit in which one semester hour will be awarded for each 20 hours of training.
  • 3. Students may not be awarded credit for both the Partners in Law Enforcement (PiLE) program and the Partners in Corrections (PiC) program. Students may not be awarded credit for one of the Partners programs and also criminal justice electives for other training.
  • 4. If a student completes an acceptable academy for both of the Partners programs, the student may choose which program (PiLE/PiC) for which to be awarded credit (given both academy trainings meet the eligibility rules for acceptance). Credit cannot be awarded for both programs.
  • 5. If a student has completed basic academy training for both programs but neither training meets the eligibility rules for PiLE or PiC, the student may be eligible to earn up to twelve semester hours of criminal justice elective credit in which one semester hour will be awarded for twenty hours of basic law enforcement and corrections academy training. Total credit may not exceed 12 semester hours.
  • 6. Students must successfully complete 15 hours of coursework at Columbia College before equivalencies may be applied. Students must notify the Office of the Registrar when 15 hours have been completed.


The Law Enforcement Administration degree is available online and is approved at the following locations. Some locations may require a combination of in-seat and online coursework. Select one to view the tuition rate.


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