Available entirely online!

Online Graduate Certificate Program in Victim Studies

Are you passionate about helping those who have been victims of crimes? This specialized four-course program will provide you with the skills required to work with crime victim issues and it can be completed entirely online.

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Your Future in Victim Studies Starts Here

UMass Lowell's Online Graduate Certificate Program in Victim Studies provides specialized knowledge of crime victim issues, crime victim rights and formal responses to victims so that students may apply that knowledge within their own professional context. Students will gain the background necessary to better understand the strengths and limitations of current crime victim responses. Completion of the certificate program will better prepare students to participate in initiatives and programs that prevent crime victimization, to engage in research and evaluation focused on crime victim issues, and to respond effectively to victims of crime in a culturally appropriate manner.

Students are required to take a core course in Victimology, plus one victimization elective course that focuses on a specific type of victimization. Students then customize their program by choosing two courses from a list of skills and knowledge electives.

Many of the courses in this certificate program can be counted toward UMass Lowell's Online Master's Degree in Criminal Justice.

Intended Audience

Individuals who are interested in gaining a better understanding of crime victims, especially those who provide direct services to victims or those who supervise victim programs, are ideal candidates for this program. Examples may include victim advocates, prosecutors, health services workers, law enforcement and corrections personnel, youth services workers, social workers, journalists and first responders.

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Curriculum Outline

- Required Courses: 1
- Electives: 3

The Benefits of Learning Online with UMass Lowell

The University has built a solid reputation by offering one of the largest selections of online programs available through a traditional university. Courses are taught by full-time faculty who are experts in their fields, and by adjunct faculty who, as practicing professionals, bring real-world experience to the online class discussions.

At UMass Lowell, we are committed to providing you with high-quality, affordable online programs that make earning your degree or certificate more convenient than ever before. Our students have access to online course technical support 24X7, and our academic advisors and program coordinators are happy to help you with your questions.

Gainful Employment Disclosure Information

Completion rates, median loan debts and program costs are outlined in the Graduate Certificate Gainful Employment Disclosure Information .

Course Descriptions

CRIM.5200 Administration of Justice

An examination of the components of the criminal justice system and a review of the administration of federal, state and local criminal justice agencies, including a focus on criminal law and procedure. 3 credits.


CRIM.5600 Gender, Race and Crime

The implications of criminal laws, criminal justice practices and programs. Focus on inequalities based on gender, race and class. 3 credits.


CRIM.5910 Research Design

Research design is a graduate-level introduction to methodology as used in criminology/criminal justice. The course surveys the research design enterprise and covers a host of issues on the measurement and collection of data, and other procedures that influence whether a research study will lead the investigator to scientifically rigorous information. This course explains various strategies for devising social science studies, compares the relative benefits of various designs, and identifies the tools necessary to conduct studies that will yield data worthy of analysis and interpretation. This material will be valuable for students who will conduct research and administrators who must evaluate the research of others. 3 credits.

Prerequisites:

CSCE Graduate Restrictions


CRIM.6130 Law and Public Policy

The course is an introduction to crime and the efforts to control crime through public policy. We explore the foundations of the policy-making process at the federal, state, and local levels. The course also considers broad theoretical applications pertaining to public opinion, national culture, and comparative analyses among Western democracies and their differing approaches to crime. This course employs a variety of learning tools, from roundtable discussions to policy cases. 3 credits.

Prerequisites:

CSCE Graduate Restrictions


CRIM.6300 Victimology

This course examines the study of crime victims and of the patterns, impact, and formal responses to criminal victimization. Particular attention is given to research issues such as measurement of victimization, fear of crime and related measures, and conducting research with victimized populations, as well as discussion of current issues in the field of Victimology. Substantive topics may include theories of victimization, the overlap between victims and offenders, social-psychological and other impacts of victimization on primary and secondary victims, media coverage of victimization, and evaluation of prevention and intervention programs for victims (criminal justice system based programs and others). 3 credits.

Prerequisites:

CSCE Graduate Restrictions


CRIM.6310 Intimate Partner Violence

An examination of the nature and extent of intimate partner violence and an analysis of the causes and consequences of violence between partners as well as the latest research regarding the criminal justice response. 3 credits.

Prerequisites:

CSCE Graduate Restrictions


CRIM.6320 Responding to Child Maltreatment

Introduction to empirical findings and theoretical perspectives concerned with the maltreatment of children and youth. Includes an examination of prevalence rates, risk factors, consequences, and system responses. 3 credits.


CRIM.6500 Violence in America

This course provides an in-depth analysis of the causes, context, and control of a wide range of violent crimes. Topics covered in this class include: Murder, rape, robbery, assault, and violence in the helping professions, the workplace, school, gang violence, cult violence, and institutional violence. For each form of violence, we examine issues related to(1) the extent of the problem, characteristics of the crime, victim, and offender, (2) causation, (3) crime prevention, and (4)crime control strategies. 3 credits.

Prerequisites:

CSCE Graduate Restrictions


CRIM.6510 Criminal Homicide

A survey of the nature and extent of criminal homicide. There will be five main components: statutory definitions of homicide; theories of homicide; homicide rates over time and across jurisdictions; trends and patterns in homicide characteristics; and cross-cultural comparisons. Homicide is an important topic in criminology for three reasons: (1) it is the crime of greatest severity in any penal code; (2) it is a fairly reliable barometer of all violent crime; and (3) at a national level, no other crime is measured as accurately, precisely, and comprehensively. 3 credits.


PSYC.5090 Psychological Approaches to Child Maltreatment

The course addresses the painful topic of Child Maltreatment in the context of research on optimal, typical, and unacceptable treatment of children, as maltreatment cannot be considered apart from acceptable and even optimal treatment. The impact of maltreatment on the development of the child from the first growth of physical organs in the prenatal infant through the development of moral reasoning in the adolescent is addressed. Both theories and research will be discussed. 3 credits.


Certificate Requirements

Students enrolled in graduate certificate programs through UMass Lowell must complete all courses indicated in the curriculum outline. Students may complete the certificate program at their own pace by registering for and successfully completing one or more courses each semester, depending upon his/her personal time constraints. Students are required to maintain a minimum grade point average of 3.0 with no more than one course grade below B to receive the certificate.

Online courses meet 10 to 14 weeks each semester during the Fall, Spring and Summer semesters (see Academic Calendar for details). Online students generally log into their online course website one or more times per week to retrieve lectures and assignments or to participate in a chat session. Online students should expect to spend 6 to 10 hours per week engaged in course-related activities for each course. For more information on online courses, visit our online program home page .

Certificate Completion

Once you have completed all courses in a graduate certificate program, please complete and submit via mail or fax the Graduate Certificate Clearance Form to the Registrar's Office.

Registration

The Division of Online & Continuing Education offers courses during the Fall, Spring and Summer semesters. Approximately two months prior to the start of each semester, we post the upcoming semester course schedule on our website. Once you know which course(s) you would like to take, current students can register using SIS Self-Service, while new students, who have not already applied and been accepted into a program, must use the Non-Degree Registration Form.

You may take courses without being officially enrolled in a certificate or degree program, but you must meet the particular course prerequisites. Registrations are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. Class size is limited. We recommend that you register early to reserve your place in class.

If you would like to be notified by email when we post our next semester's course schedule, click here.

For more information, please visit our Registration Information Page .

Tuition

Please refer to our tuition and fees page for up-to-date pricing information or refer to the Online & Continuing Education Course Bulletin that is published each semester.

New Students

If you have not already applied and been accepted to a program.
Register with Non-Degree Reg. Form

Current Students

If you have applied, been accepted and are currently enrolled in a program.
Register with SIS Self-Service

Questions:

Victim Studies (Cert) Program Support:
Email: cjgradadvisor@uml.edu
Online & Continuing Ed Support:
Email our Student Support Center for assistance, or call 800-480-3190 and press 1 to speak with an advisor.

Restrictions

RESIDENTS OF Arkansas, Kansas and Minnesota: State and federal laws require colleges and universities to be authorized to offer online degree programs in states other than their own. Due to these regulations, the University of Massachusetts Lowell is unable to accept applications or registrations for online courses, degrees or certificate programs from residents of Arkansas, Kansas or Minnesota. Current UML students that move their residence to one of these states should contact Catherine_Hamilton@uml.edu in Online & Continuing Education to determine their eligibility to continue their program of study.

Please Note: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information presented within this website, the Division of Online & Continuing Education reserves the right to implement new rules and regulations and to make changes of any nature in its program, calendar, locations, tuition and fees. Whenever possible, appropriate notice of such changes will be given before they become effective. In applying for a degree program or registering for courses, each student assumes full responsibility for knowledge of and compliance with the definitions, regulations and procedures of UMass Lowell as set forth on our website. For additional information, please refer to the Graduate Program Policies found within the UMass Lowell Graduate Catalog.

Admission Requirements

Applicants should have:

  1. An earned Bachelor's degree from an accredited four-year institution.
  2. A minimum undergraduate grade point average (GPA) of 2.8 or higher.
  3. Two copies of a complete and official transcript from each undergraduate and/or graduate institution attended. Please note, if the degree is from an international institution, then the transcripts may need to be evaluated.

An interview may be requested by the Graduate Admissions Committee. In addition, University regulations do not allow the transfer of class(es) from another institution for the graduate certificate program. The graduate criminal justice courses in this certificate program (those with a CRIM.xxxx course number prefix) may count towards both the certificate program and UMass Lowell's Online Master's Degree in Criminal Justice; however, the same course cannot be used for two different certificate programs.

Apply Online

Questions Regarding Your Graduate Application?

Email Graduate_Admissions@uml.edu or call 800-656-4723.

For General Assistance:

Call the Division of Online & Continuing Education at 800-480-3190 if you have general questions about registering for your online courses, or to find out who the advisor is for your graduate program. Our team of Student Support Specialists are here to help!

Already Applied?

Check the Status of Your Application

Fees

There is a $50 application fee when you apply into this graduate degree program. Please see the Student Financial Services website for more information.

Restrictions

RESIDENTS OF Arkansas, Kansas and Minnesota: State and federal laws require colleges and universities to be authorized to offer online degree programs in states other than their own. Due to these regulations, the University of Massachusetts Lowell is unable to accept applications or registrations for online courses, degrees or certificate programs from residents of Arkansas, Kansas or Minnesota. Current UML students that move their residence to one of these states should contact Catherine_Hamilton@uml.edu in Online & Continuing Education to determine their eligibility to continue their program of study.