The University of Winnipeg has received provincial approval for the creation of a new two-year Master of Arts in Criminal Justice degree which can be pursued full or part-time and will include the option to take courses in Indigenous Governance and the Public Administration graduate programs. It is the first graduate program of its kind in Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, or Northwestern Ontario.
“The MA in Criminal Justice is an important addition to the suite of innovative, multidisciplinary graduate programs offered by the University of Winnipeg.,” said Dr. Mavis Reimer, Dean of Graduate Studies. “This degree will offer a stream designed for professionals in the various sectors of the justice system and a stream designed for research students. An important focus of the program will be on Indigenous justice issues, supporting and extending the commitment of the University to the Indigenization of its curriculum.”
The new degree is expected to begin in 2018-2019 and once fully established, will accommodate 25 students in the program. Criminal justice is a popular undergraduate program at UWinnipeg with 630 undergraduate students currently selecting it as their major.
“We are very excited to have received approval for this new Master’s which will provide students with opportunities to learn about all aspects of the criminal justice system including policing, criminal law, and corrections,” said Dr. Steven Kohm, Chair, Criminal Justice. “Students in our MA program will be able to contribute to meaningful debate and serious research into pressing issues of justice facing Manitoba and Canada. This strengthens UWinnipeg’s leadership in justice education in Western Canada.”
The new Master’s will offer either a course-based stream or a thesis stream, designed for those continuing to PhD work. Concentrations within the program will be on traditional criminal justice theory, methods, criminal justice policy, and program evaluation.
The program is expected to attract professionals already working in the field as well as undergraduates from criminal justice and related disciplines such as sociology, political science, and conflict resolution. The new degree is also expected to appeal to adult learners already established in justice and social-service professions. The program has designed opportunities for students to pursue electives in the graduate Indigenous Governance program, with a view to specifically attracting students interested in Indigenous justice issues.
Criminal justice is a discipline that has arisen at the intersection of several disciplines, including law, psychology, sociology, urban studies, and criminology since the 1960s. The UWinnipeg approach is multi-disciplinary.