Report an accessibility problem

Criminal Sentencing and Sentencing Advocacy (Graduate Certificate)

Criminal Sentencing and Sentencing Advocacy (Graduate Certificate)

Academic Programs / Graduate Degrees / Criminal Sentencing and Sentencing Advocacy (Graduate Certificate)

Click to save to my favorites

Criminal Sentencing and Sentencing Advocacy (Graduate Certificate)


Corrections, Criminology, Justice, Policing, Social Work, Victim Advocate, government, law

Social media and nightly news are filled with events influencing the justice system. As a practitioner and advocate seeking advanced expertise, you will develop the skills needed to serve confidently as a presentence investigator, mitigation specialist, sentencing advocate or victim advocate through this certificate.

Program Description
Degree Awarded: Certificate  Criminal Sentencing and Sentencing Advocacy (Certificate)

The certificate program in criminal sentencing and sentencing advocacy assumes that in order for any professional to function effectively they must have a fundamental knowledge of the respective roles sentencing professionals play during various phases of the criminal justice process.

In keeping with this viewpoint, all students are required to take courses for practice as both a presentence investigator and a sentencing advocate. Those courses are seminars in courts and sentencing, in presentence investigations and in alternatives to penal sanctions. After taking these required courses, they select an area of specialization to further their expertise as either a probation professional, mitigation specialist or victim advocate. They take these courses from a range of electives available in the schools of Criminology and Criminal Justice and Social Work.

This interprofessional certificate program also provides participants with content on the relationship between mental disorder and crime and the way in which differential sentencing frameworks affect the sentencing of offenders suffering from mental disorders.

This course is highly recommended for social workers desiring to practice as mitigation specialists and in criminal justice professions responsible for making recommendations about the appropriateness of sentencing alternatives.

At a Glance
Degree Requirements

15 credit hours

Required Core (9 credit hours)
CRJ 513 Seminar in Courts and Sentencing (3)
SWG 528 Presentence Investigations (3)
SWG 529 Alternatives Penal Sanctions (3)

Electives (6 credit hours)

Additional Curriculum Information
For electives, students should see the academic unit for the approved course list.

Admission Requirements

Applicants must fulfill the requirements of both the Graduate College and the Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions.

Applicants are eligible to apply to the program if they have earned a bachelor's or master's degree in social work, criminology, criminal justice or a related field, or if they are individuals who are currently enrolled in the master of criminal justice program.

Applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in the last 60 hours of their first bachelor's degree program, or applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in an applicable master's degree program.

All applicants must submit:

  1. graduate admission application and application fee
  2. official transcripts
  3. proof of English proficiency

Additional Application Information
An applicant whose native language is not English must provide proof of English proficiency regardless of current residency.

There are no required admission examinations for this program.

Attend Online
ASU Online

ASU offers this program in an online format with multiple enrollment sessions throughout the year. Applicants may view the program description and request more information here.

ASU Local

Earn an ASU degree with ASU Local, an integrated college experience where students take advantage of in-person success coaching and programming experiences on site while completing one of 130+ undergraduate online degrees that come with online faculty interaction and tutoring support. Learn more about ASU Local.

Career Opportunities

Social workers, criminal justice professionals and recent graduates of psychology and other social and behavioral sciences perform a number of roles in the disposition and sentencing of public offenders. They also provide support for victims of crime during the criminal justice process.

Career examples include:

  • mitigation specialist
  • probation professional
  • victim advocate
Contact Information

School of Social Work | UCENT 800 | 602-496-0800

What are Accelerated Programs?
Accelerated Programs allow students the opportunity to expedite the completion of their degree.

3 year programs

These programs allow students to fast-track their studies after admission and earn a bachelor’s degree in three years or fewer while participating in the same high-quality educational experience of a 4-year option. Students should talk to their academic advisor to get started.

4+1 year programs

These programs allow students to accelerate their studies by combining undergraduate with graduate coursework, which may allow them to earn a bachelor’s and a master's degree in as few as five years (for some programs).

Each program has requirements students must meet to be eligible for consideration. Acceptance to the graduate program requires a separate application. During their junior year, eligible students are advised by their academic departments to apply.
What are Concurrent Programs?
Students pursuing concurrent degrees earn two distinct degrees and receive two diplomas. ASU offers students two ways to earn concurrent degrees: by choosing a predetermined combination or creating their own combination. Predetermined combinations have a single admissions application and one easy to follow major map. To add a concurrent degree to your existing degree, work with your academic advisor. Either way, concurrent degrees allow students to pursue their own personal or professional interests.
What are Joint Programs?
Joint programs, or jointly conferred degrees, are offered by more than one college and provide opportunities for students to take advantage of the academic strengths of two academic units. Upon graduation, students are awarded one degree and one diploma conferred by two colleges.

What constitutes a New Program?
ASU adds new programs to Degree Search frequently. Come back often and look for the “New Programs” option.
What are Online Programs?
ASU Online offers programs in an entirely online format with multiple enrollment sessions throughout the year. See for more information.
What is WRGP (Western Regional Graduate Program)?
The Western Regional Graduate Program (WRGP) provides a reduced tuition rate to non-resident graduate students who qualify. Visit the WRGP/WICHE webpage for more information:

click back to top