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  • Double major?

    Hi everyone,

    Simple question here, I am already set to be graduating in Dec 2015 with a BS in Criminal Justice. I realized due to previous classes and pre-reqs, I could also get a BA in Psychology and graduate only one semester later. Would this be beneficial to a LE career? Also would recruiters be more interested with a double major?

    Thanks!

  • #2
    A degree in psychology couldn't hurt your chances and it would be good to fall back on if you don't get hired quickly in the HIGHLY competitive field of law enforcement.

    “Truth is not what you want it to be; it is what it is, and you must bend to its power or live a lie.”

    Miyamoto Musashi

    “Life Is Hard, But It's Harder When You're Stupid”

    George V. Higgins (from The Friends of Eddie Coyle)

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    • #3
      It won’t mean that much.

      In most city/county/state civil service agencies you are scored on the number of correct answers you give to questions on a written exam that measures your ability to perform the duties of the position you are seeking. You are also scored on an oral exam that usually grades you on:

      • Experience – assesses your ability and experience in accepting responsibilities and performing assigned tasks as demonstrated through achievements in work, school, and other activities.

      • Problem Solving – assesses your reasoning skills in developing timely, logical responses to a wide variety of situations and problems.

      • Communication Skills – assesses your oral communications skills, which includes speaking, listening, and non-verbal communication.

      • Interest/Motivation – addresses your interest in and preparedness for the peace officer job. It includes an assessment of your general level of interest, initiative, and goal orientation.

      • Interpersonal Skills – assesses many facets, such as social knowledge/appropriateness, social insight, empathy, social influence, social self-regulation, sociability, team orientation, social self-confidence, conflict management skills, and negotiating skills.

      • Community Involvement/Awareness – focuses specifically on your experiences and interest in community issues, as well as your interest in and ability to fill multiple roles and serve a diverse community.

      Education is only one small factor in oral scoring and may count for a fraction of your overall score.

      Written and oral scores are then combined and applicants are hired in the order of their scores (highest first, next highest second, etc.)

      Look at the exam announcement for the position you are seeking. Buried in the fine print you should find language telling exactly what you will be scored on. No one reads it. Be the first one on your block to do so and it may give you an advantage in preparing for the testing process.
      Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

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      • #4
        The Psych degree will let you apply for some entry level jobs that your CJ degree won't get you in but, generally speaking, no one cares what your major is, what your minor is, or if you double majored. If you want to do it for you, go ahead, but it is not going to have any impact on the hiring process.

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        • #5
          I'd get the double major. Not because it will help you with the job, but because then you wouldn't have to tell people you have a CJ degree. I'm sure they have some sort of use but I find them useless in the LE arena.
          1*

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          • #6
            Originally posted by vdfnco View Post
            I'd get the double major. Not because it will help you with the job, but because then you wouldn't have to tell people you have a CJ degree. I'm sure they have some sort of use but I find them useless in the LE arena.
            Agreed get the psych degree. Gives you something to fall back on.

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            • #7
              Thanks everyone for the insight! I think I'm going to follow through with it, the results can only be beneficial.

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