Law Enforcement Schools Near San Antonio, TX

Find schools near San Antonio, Texas, offering law enforcement degree programs and courses. Learn about state requirements, and get career and salary info for law enforcement officers living in the San Antonio area. Schools offering Law Enforcement degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

If you want to study law enforcement in the San Antonio, TX area, you'll find 2-year, public and 4-year, public and private schools that offer associate's, bachelor's and master's degree programs related to the field. Some of these programs provide study abroad and internship opportunities. Earning a bachelor's degree will take at least 4 years, while the associate's and master's programs may require about 2 years of study. Read on to learn more about the schools near San Antonio where you can study law enforcement.


Law Enforcement Associate's Degree Programs near San Antonio

San Antonio College

  • Program Name: Associate of Applied Science in Criminal Justice: Law Enforcement
  • Program Length: Two years, full time
  • Tuition: $1,004 per semester for in-district students; $2,735 per semester for out-of-district students; $5,330 per semester for out-of-state students (tuition for fall 2012, based on 15 credit hours)
  • School Type: 2-year, public; approximately 26,000 students (all undergraduates)
  • Address: 1300 San Pedro Ave, San Antonio, Texas 78212
  • Phone: (210) 486-0000

This program can equip you with the knowledge and skills needed to meet Texas requirements for law enforcement officers. You'll learn about the societal aspects of police work through courses in sociology and social work. Courses in criminal investigation, the court system and police practices can give you a foundation in law enforcement, and you can choose from electives on the corrections system, the juvenile justice system and criminalistics. You must take a foreign language, and Spanish is recommended.


Law Enforcement Bachelor's Degree Programs near San Antonio

St. Mary's University

  • Program Name: Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice
  • Program Length: Four years, full time
  • Tuition: $11,800 per semester (tuition for 2012-2013)
  • School Type: 4-year, private, not-for-profit; approximately 4,200 students (about 2,500 undergraduates)
  • Address: One Camino Santa Maria, San Antonio, Texas 78228
  • Phone: (210) 436-3224

As a criminal justice major at St. Mary's, you'll study the function, methods and histories of organizations that attempt to prevent and control crime, such as the court system, the corrections system and law enforcement agencies. Required courses explore ethical and legal considerations for criminal justice professionals. You can choose from elective courses in various topics related to police work, including mediation techniques, juvenile delinquency, community relations, race relations and interviewing skills. St. Mary's also offers a bachelor's degree in criminology, a field that examines the causes and treatment of criminal behavior.

Texas State University - San Marcos

  • Program Name: Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice
  • Specializations: Law enforcement, corrections, general criminal justice
  • Program Length: Four years, full time
  • Tuition: $3,255 per semester for in-state students; $8,520 per semester for out-of-state students (tuition for fall 2012, based on 15 credit hours)
  • School Type: 4-year, public; approximately 34,000 students (about 29,000 undergraduates)
  • Address: 601 University Drive, San Marcos, Texas 78666
  • Phone: (512) 245-2174

The law enforcement specialty of the criminal justice program at Texas State University can prepare you to work as an officer with a local, county, state or federal department or agency. If you want to work in parole or probation, you can pursue a specialization in corrections. The generalist degree program teaches research skills and specialized knowledge that you could apply to law enforcement or rehabilitation counseling. Students who plan to attend law school might want to major in this field. During all of the programs, you'll complete general core courses in juvenile justice and crime theory. The school doesn't require you to undertake an internship, but does encourage this experience.

University of Texas at San Antonio

  • Program Name: Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice
  • Program Length: Four years, full time
  • Tuition: $2,964 per semester for in-state/military students; $8,229 per semester for out-of-state students (tuition for fall 2012, based on 15 credit hours)
  • School Type: 4-year, public; approximately 31,000 students (about 26,000 undergraduates)
  • Address: One UTSA Circle, San Antonio, Texas 78249
  • Phone: (210) 458-4011

As a criminal justice major, you must take core courses in the criminal justice system, research methods and management. With the help of an advisor, you'll choose from electives that may include family violence, juvenile justice, forensic science, white-collar crime and corrections supervision. An optional study abroad course allows you to travel to different countries to explore their criminal justice systems. You must complete an internship in the field unless you already have at least one year of experience working with a criminal justice agency.


Law Enforcement Master's Degree Programs near San Antonio

Texas State University - San Marcos

  • Program Name: Master of Science in Criminal Justice
  • Program Length: Roughly two years, full time
  • Tuition: $2,403 per semester for in-state students; $5,562 per semester for out-of-state students (tuition for 2012-2013, based on nine credit hours)
  • Prerequisites: Bachelor's degree in criminal justice or a related field, GPA minimum
  • Admission Requirements: GRE scores
  • School Type: 4-year, public; approximately 34,000 students (about 5,000 graduate students)
  • Address: 601 University Drive, San Marcos, Texas 78666
  • Phone: (512) 245-2174

During this graduate program, you'll study the criminal justice system and learn to develop and evaluate programs in a law enforcement atmosphere. Courses include management, statistics, crime theory and race relations, and you can explore law enforcement tactics involving terrorism, drugs and sex offenses. You can choose between writing a thesis or a professional paper. The school sponsors an optional study abroad program each year during which you can learn about law enforcement systems in other countries.

University of Texas at San Antonio

  • Program Name: Master of Science in Justice Policy
  • Program Length: Roughly two years, full time
  • Tuition: $2,336 per semester for in-state/military students; $8,654 per semester for out-of-state students (tuition for fall 2012, based on nine credit hours)
  • Prerequisites: Bachelor's degree; prior criminal justice coursework or experience in the field; minimum GPA
  • Admission Requirements: GRE scores, recommendation from the Justice Policy Graduate Admissions Committee
  • School Type: 4-year, public; approximately 31,000 students (about 5,000 graduate students)
  • Address: One UTSA Circle, San Antonio, Texas 78249
  • Phone: (210) 458-4331

A master's degree program in justice policy can teach you how to manage a criminal justice organization. You'll take core courses in research methods, analysis, justice policy implementation, justice organization management and crime theory. You can choose from elective courses in jury trials, crime control, gender issues and crime, research methods and crime theories. You must complete a thesis or research project and pass a comprehensive examination in order to graduate.


Requirements for Law Enforcement Officers in San Antonio, TX

To become a law enforcement officer in San Antonio, you'll need to hold a high school diploma and U.S. citizenship. If you have a GED certificate instead of a high school diploma, the San Antonio Police Department requires you to earn at least 12 hours of college credit. The department also requires applicants to fall between the ages of 20 and a half and 45 years old. You must pass medical and psychological exams, as well as a criminal background check.

The state of Texas requires that all law enforcement officers pass a basic training course and a licensing examination. The training courses are usually offered through a law enforcement academy, but the state can approve training that is part of a college degree plan. The San Antonio Police Department Training Academy provides training to recruits and re-training to officers who need to fulfill their continuing education requirements. If you wish to work at the federal level, you'll need to earn a bachelor's degree, reported the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Many state and local law enforcement agencies encourage their officers to pursue degrees, and some offer tuition assistance.

Job Outlook and Salary Info for Law Enforcement Officers

The BLS predicted that employment of police officers and detectives would increase by seven percent nationwide from 2010-2020, which was slower than the average for all other occupations. The BLS stated that it might be easier to be hired by local agencies rather than federal and state agencies, which can be more selective. These employers usually prefer bilingual applicants with bachelor's degrees and military or law enforcement experience.

Patrol and sheriff's officers in the San Antonio-New Braunfels metropolitan area made an annual mean wage of about $49,000 as of May 2011, according to the BLS. Correctional officers and jailers made nearly $35,000, while private detectives and investigators made around $43,000.

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