Policing Studies (CERT)


The certificate is for students who already have a conferred bachelor's degree in any discipline who want to meet the education requirements to become a licensed peace officer in the State of Minnesota and work for a law enforcement or related agency. The successful completion of the curriculum in the certificate, along with the successful completion of the clinical skills component, will allow students to be eligible to take the Peace Officer Standardsd and Training (POST) examination for licensing.

Catalog Year




Major Credits


Total Credits




Career Cluster

Law, Public Safety, Corrections, and Security

Program Requirements

Major Common Core

The foundational tenets of peacekeeping are based on building relations between peace officers and the communities they serve. The student will be introduced to the value of positive interactions between peace officers and the populations they serve, as well as how negative interactions can impact public perception, funding, and trust. Students will also learn ways to incorporate problem-solving strategies and critical analysis on both micro and macro levels to address community and peacekeeping concerns.

Prerequisites: none

The history, development, and application of criminal laws and criminal procedures in the criminal justice system.

Prerequisites: none

An extensive study of the rules, statutes, criminal laws, and traffic laws that directly relate to the role of a peace officer in the State of Minnesota.

Prerequisites: none

The history, legal aspects of investigation, the evolution of investigations and forensics, procedures of crime investigations, procurement and preservation of evidence and interviewing.

Prerequisites: none

This course will introduce students to theoretical concepts in sociology, social psychology, psychology, and criminology pertaining to human behavior. Students will gain an understanding of how individual and societal factors influence the behaviors of the people they serve, as well as how those same factors influence the peace officer personality. Students will also be introduced to many of the mental disorders they will encounter in the field so that they may more easily identify those in crisis when in the field and determine the most appropriate course of action to assist them.

Prerequisites: none

A critical consideration of definitions of juvenile delinquency, emphasis on micro and macro level of struggle in which delinquent behavior takes place, critique of current theories on delinquency, and the juvenile justice response to delinquency from a criminal justice lens.

Prerequisites: none

Goal Areas: GE-05, GE-09

Diverse Cultures: Purple

This course is designed to provide peace officer students with the foundational information, tools, and skills needed to improve interpersonal communications with coworkers and the public from all ethnic and cultural groups. This course also provides some historical information so students can contextualize and better understand why particular groups may distrust and resist peace officers and the criminal justice system as a whole.

Prerequisites: none

The course will provide the student with a solid foundation in effective peace officer communications and prepare the student analytically for a career as a peace officer. This course also has a writing intensive requirement that involves drafting, editing, and reviewing a variety of written assignments.Must be a major or minor in Corrections, Criminal Justice, and/or Peace Officer (Law Enforcement) Programs.

Prerequisites: none

Students will engage in community experiences, public service interactions, experiences with a variety of diverse groups, and/or interactive panels that will provide for opportunities to reflect, observe, conceptualize, and grow as a future criminal justice professional.

Prerequisites: none

Senior Seminar is a capstone course that is specifically designed for Peace Officer Program students to be eligible to become licensed peace officers. This course will assist the student in several areas to include preparation for the MN POST test, interviewing skills, critical thinking and decision making skills, scenario based learning, and job application skills.

Prerequisites: none


  1. Students must have a conferred Bachelor's degree before they start the certificate, this certificate cannot be completed in concurrence with the BS in Criminal Justice at MSU Mankato.
  2. Students must achieve a "C" or better in each course with an overall GPA of 2.6 in the certificate.
  3. Students must complete the academic portion of the certificate and a clinical skills program to eligible to take the POST examination.