Wednesday, February 7, 2024
  Academics, Rankings and Achievements

By Amanda Alaniz

RIO GRANDE VALLEY, TEXAS – UTRGV’s Criminal Justice Online Master’s Degree Program has received recognition in the U.S. News 2024 Best Online Programs rankings, released Wednesday.

The program ranked #26 of 98 U.S. institutions in the Best Online Master’s in Criminal Justice Programs.

UTRGV also ranked in the Top Five among Texas Public Institutions, joining Sam Houston State University, West Texas A&M University, University of Houston-Downtown, and University of North Texas. 

The U.S. News rankings evaluate degree-granting online programs at regionally accredited institutions. For the Best Online Master’s in Criminal Justice Programs, U.S. News evaluates the programs in five categories, including:

  • Engagement.
  • Faculty credentials and training.
  • Peer assessment.
  • Services and technologies. 
  • Student excellence.

UTRGV President Guy Bailey said that, as the era of education continues to grow in a digital direction, national attention for UTRGV’s online programs shows the dedication of the faculty and strength of the curricula.

“Our university’s recent top ranking for our online programs reflects an unwavering commitment to excellence in education,” Bailey said. “This is where innovation meets accessibility, and we are seeing our students thrive.”

The Master of Science in Criminal Justice is an intensive graduate-level program that stimulates deeper inquiry into the underlying causes of crime and how they may be addressed through social reform and changes within the criminal justice system.

Master’s students can then develop research skills and expand conceptual and practical knowledge critical to fulfilling leadership roles in criminal justice or social services.

To view the full list of the U.S. News 2024 Best Online Programs Ranking, visit 

Visit to learn more about UTRGV’s Department of Criminal Justice.


The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) was created by the Texas Legislature in 2013 as the first major public university of the 21st century in Texas. This transformative initiative provided the opportunity to expand educational opportunities in the Rio Grande Valley, including a new School of Medicine, and made it possible for residents of the region to benefit from the Permanent University Fund – a public endowment contributing support to the University of Texas System and other institutions.

UTRGV has campuses and off-campus research and teaching sites throughout the Rio Grande Valley including in Boca Chica Beach, Brownsville (formerly The University of Texas at Brownsville campus), Edinburg (formerly The University of Texas-Pan American campus), Harlingen, McAllen, Port Isabel, Rio Grande City, and South Padre Island. UTRGV, a comprehensive academic institution, enrolled its first class in the fall of 2015, and the School of Medicine welcomed its first class in the summer of 2016.