If you find it easy to build and maintain positive relationships with different types of people and are looking to help others change their lives, the Correctional Studies program may be right for you.


Request information  Apply now

Future Students

Everything you need to know to be successful.



If you possess strong communication and interpersonal problem-solving skills, good decision-making skills and want to make a difference in people’s lives then a career in Corrections may be for you. Professionals working within the Corrections field may find themselves working in a jail, federal penitentiary, half-way house or community corrections agency etc. Correctional professionals assist and supervise individuals involved with the justice system to ensure public safety. Our Correctional Studies program provides a solid foundation for you to launch your career. Our exceptional instructors have a wide range of academic credentials, with many also having relevant experience within the Corrections field.

Students develop knowledge of theories that inform the field of corrections such as risk assessment & management, principles of behaviour change, conflict resolution skills, criminology and psychology. Our courses have an applied focus with many opportunities for you to practice and develop essential skills needed. Students may elect to enroll in a practicum elective that will provide an opportunity to learn first-hand about a correctional agency or facility.

As an added bonus, all our courses are available through online learning on a full- or part-time basis to suit your lifestyle. And, should you choose to expand your knowledge of this challenging field, completion of the Correctional Studies diploma qualifies you for entry into the third year of our Bachelor of Applied Arts – Justice Studies program.

Start your career in corrections – apply today!

Career opportunities

At the end of the program, you’ll be prepared for work throughout the criminal justice system in positions such as:

  • Federal Correctional Officer
  • Halfway house Counsellor
  • Provincial Correctional Officer
  • Youth Worker
  • Victim Services Worker

2019 Convocate Profile - Kristi Austin

A mother, wife, student and advocate, Kristi Austin managed it all while completing the Correctional Studies program at Lethbridge College. Her end goal is to open a house for the LGBTQ+ youth who are coming out of the criminal justice system, and the first step was earning her Correctional Studies diploma.

Starts In: September and January (on campus and online), May (online only)
Application Deadlines:

For current application status, terms being processed and application deadlines visit the Program Application Status page.

Duration: 2 years
Credential: Diploma

  • Athabasca University
    Graduates of the Correctional Studies - diploma are eligible to receive up to 60 credits towards the Athabasca University Bachelor of Professional Arts (BPA) in Human Services , Bachelor of Professional Arts (BPA) in Criminal Justice or a Bachelor of Professional Arts in Governance, Law and Management.
  • Griffith University (Australia)
    Correctional Studies diploma graduates may enter into the third semester of the Bachelor of Criminology and Criminal Justice degree at Griffith University, Mt. Gravatt campus. Please visit www.griffith.edu.au/credit for more information.
  • Lethbridge College
    Graduates of the two-year Correctional Studies diploma who choose to enter the Bachelor of Applied Arts - Justice Studies degree program at Lethbridge College will get two full years of credit towards the degree. Courses are provided on campus or through distributed/online learning. Details regarding this program can be found in this calendar and on the Lethbridge College website.
  • University of Calgary
    Graduates of a two-year diploma program will be awarded up to 5 full junior course options.

Delivery Format
Blended (classroom + online)
Learning Environment

All courses in the Correctional Studies diploma program are available through online learning.

Year 1 Term I

The following courses are also available through online learning:

  • CJP-1160 Introduction to Criminal Justice System
  • COM-1159 Applied Interpersonal Communication
  • ENG-1175 Writing in Public Safety Industry
  • PED-1157 Health, Wellness and Personal Fitness
  • PRS-1172 Effective Presentation and Speech
  • SOC-1160 Introduction to Sociology
Year 1 Term II
Course Code Course Name Credits

The following courses are also available through online learning:

  • CJP-1183 Diversity Issues in Criminal Justice
  • COR-1152 Fundamentals of Corrections
  • COR-1153 Career Development Strategies
  • COR-1154 Suicide Prevention
  • COR-1180 Youth in the Justice System
  • LAW-1172 Law for Corrections
  • PSY-1160 Introduction to Psychology
Year 2 Term I
Course Code Course Name Credits

Please note: Students are also required to complete a total of 3.00 credits in Approved Electives (Please see Electives list).

The following courses are also available through online learning:

  • CJP-2281 Conflict Management
  • COR-2253 Correctional Classification
  • COR-2262 Drugs in Corrections
  • COR-2290 Correctional Practices
  • SOC-2255 Offenders with Special Needs
Year 2 Term II
Course Code Course Name Credits

Please note: Students are also required to complete a total of 3.00 credits in Approved Electives (Please see Electives list).

The following courses are also available through online learning:

  • CJP-2278 Criminology
  • COR-2277 Corrections Administration
  • COR-2279 Correctional Casework and Counselling
  • COR-2287 Crisis Resolution

Choose electives from the above list.

Note: If it is your intention to pursue a career in a public safety organization that requires fitness testing for employment purposes, it is highly recommended you take the PED-2255 (Physical Readiness Training for Public Safety) elective.

The following courses are also available through online learning:

  • CJP-1178 Individuals with Disabilities
  • CJP-2280 Intro to Commercial Vehicle Enforcement
  • FWK-2272 Corrections Practicum I
  • FWK-2273 Corrections Practicum II
  • HUM-1180 Introduction to World Religions
  • PSY-1170 Human Development across the Lifespan
  • PSY-1171 Child Growth and Development
  • PSY-1177 Psychology of Aging
  • PSY-1179 Adolescent Development
  • PSY-2253 Child Psychopathology
  • PSY-2260 Abnormal Psychology
  • SOC-1167 Sociology of Aging


New students are accepted into the Correctional Studies program in the Fall (September) and Winter (January) terms for on-campus and online study. Online learners can also apply for the Spring (May) term.

General admission requirements

All applicants must meet the general admission requirements for Lethbridge College programs as indicated in the Admissions section of this calendar.

Practice-based experience (PBE) requirements

This program has an elective practice-based experience (PBE) coordinated by the Placement Office. The college dictates the legal terms and conditions governing the practicum experience.

Applicants are advised they will be required to undergo a Criminal Record Check prior to enrolling in the practicum. The existence of a criminal record may affect practicum placement and future employment prospects. The agencies reserve the right to determine who is considered a suitable candidate.

Find out more about pre-placement requirements for your program.

Medical requirements

Although no physical requirements are placed on applicants for entry to the program, applicants should ensure through a medical examination that their cardiovascular system is suitable to undertake fitness-related exercise.

Prior learning assessment (PLA)

If you have experience working in this field of study, you may be eligible for prior learning assessment.

Applicants who lack the required academic admission requirements can apply to the Academic Upgrading program to upgrade their academic skills.

Academic Year Tuition Fees Books & Supplies
Year 1 $3,497.00 $1,047.00 $1,487.00
Year 2 $3,426.00 $1,013.00 $554.00

Our Budget Wizard is a free self-service tool that can help you make sense of your finances and the cost of your education. Give it a try!

Budget Wizard

  • Costs for supplies may vary considerably depending on what students already have or where they purchased their supplies; cost provided is on the moderately high end.
  • Students will be charged a medical/dental benefit fee unless they opt out by demonstrating alternative coverage prior to the end of the first week of class.
  • Tuition for international students is assessed at three times that of domestic students. The cost of additional fees, books and supplies is the same for all students.

A long history of success

We work closely with law enforcement agencies to ensure our grads are always able to meet the needs of the industry.

In one way or another, versions of the programs in the School of Justice Studies have been around for 50 years. During that time, we’ve worked closely with industry, adjusting and refining our programs to ensure our grads are always able to meet the needs of the industry. And we continue to adapt and respond to new developments today, providing an education that delivers success. Our grads can be found across Canada and the United States, finding their slice of success as parole officers, federal corrections officers and so much more.

Hands-on, immersive learning

Video games in college?
Video games in college?

That's right! You’ll learn to make scenario-based decisions with video game-like technology.

Video games in college?

Using video game-like technology, judgment simulators improve your judgment, decision making, communication and observation skills using real-world, real-time scenarios. We’re one of the only post-secondary institutions in western Canada with this type of simulator technology.

The two simulators allow you to experience and respond to nearly 700 different scenarios that range from verbal compliance situations to lethal action outcomes, depending on your program. You could be dealing with an emotionally disturbed individual, a routine traffic stop that reveals a potential poacher, or a highly agitated youth threatening self-harm. The technology is dynamic enough that our instructors can build their own scenarios to meet the individual needs of their courses.

These real-life training scenarios emphasize the importance of improving your knowledge and skills for your chosen career path, giving you immediate feedback that allows you to acknowledge which skills may need a little extra attention. And spending time practicing real-world simulations gives you the tools and knowledge you’ll need to respond to everyday situations that arise once you’re on the job.

Order in the classroom
Order in the classroom

Simulated spaces on campus prepare you for the tough moments on the job.

Order in the classroom

Despite what movies and TV shows might lead you to believe, a career in justice isn’t all about action. You need to understand the challenging moments of the job: what it’s like to handle evidence, how best to recount your interviews and investigation for a judge, and what it’s like to notify next of kin. Our program teaches all that and more with simulated settings on campus that prepare you for the environments and the scenarios you’ll encounter on the job.

The courtroom

At the end of a winding walk through the Andrews’ wing, there’s a room on campus that most are surprised to find. On one side, it’s a traditional classroom with desks and whiteboards. On the other side? A realistic courtroom complete with wood-paneled walls, a well-worn Bible, leather-lined tables and podiums for the prosecutor and defense. All these furnishings were donated by a Calgary courthouse, providing students with an authentic courtroom.

Here, you’ll be able to experience the roles of lawyer, accused, witness and police officer while an instructor sits as judge. You’ll feel the stress and tension of the courtroom and you’ll get a sense of what real-world justice is really like.

The crisis lab

On the west end of campus, tucked away among the classrooms of the Andrews building and the Technologies and Trades buildings, you’ll find another simulated space. A small apartment furnished with couches, chairs and a TV might be the scene of a drug bust or domestic violence call.

Here, you’ll face professional actors who set the stage for scenarios you’ll deal with on the job. It’s as close to a real-life experience as you can get. And it will feel real, but it’s all part of the training experience.

From here to there: alumni updates

Lethbridge College isn’t just a place to go to school – we’re a community that is here to support you from your initial interest in our program through to the moment you cross the stage at Convocation and beyond. Just take a look at where an LC education has taken some of our grads.

Matthew Kennedy

“Between 2003 and 2006, I worked as a provincial Correctional Officer at Lethbridge Correctional Centre and Red Deer Remand Centre. In February 2007, I began my career in federal corrections at Bowden Institution. In October 2007, I was promoted to parole officer. Between 2010 and 2015, I specialized in Aboriginal offenders and contributed toward the creation of a nationally-recognized reintegration program for Aboriginals. In December 2013, I received the Exceptional Service Award for my efforts with Aboriginal offenders; I was nominated for this award by the Deputy Commissioner for the Prairie Region. In 2015, I returned to working with general population offenders of all ethnicities and I remain there today. Corrections Canada has offered frequent opportunities to act in management capacities and these opportunities were available after just two years in the service. However, after several stints in a manager position, it is clear to me that my heart is in parole and I expect to remain a parole officer until the end of my career.”

– From Winter 2017 Wider Horizons

Nathalie Porter

“After graduating with my Correctional Studies degree in 2012, I worked in various fields before getting hired on with the B.C. government in Community Corrections. It took three years of auxiliary work before I managed to score a permanent position, but it was well worth the wait! For anyone who may be looking at work in B.C. in a related position for the government, the hiring process can be highly competitive, but if you keep at it, it will all work out! I felt highly prepared for my career because of the Correctional Studies program at Lethbridge College and the amazing instructors and mentors I had during my time there. If you are looking at a career in the corrections field, this four-year degree program will give you the best chance of success, and put you ahead of the game. Thank you Lethbridge College!”

– From Fall 2017 Wider Horizons

Kimberly Big Swan Dashper

“I completed my applied degree with Correctional Studies while working as an intern with Alberta Government – Alberta Works Fraud Department in 2005, which then turned into one-year project as Aboriginal Employment Counsellor in 2006. From there, I became the fulltime support and financial services coordinator and now am a career employment consultant. I have been with the Alberta government for 11 years now – almost 12. I do still remember my time at Lethbridge College with all the instructors who supported me while I was completing my program such as Ian Hepher, Barb Mantello, Earl Nilsson and Hugh Richards. Their efforts have not gone unnoticed. I still remember fondly how passionate they were about Criminal Justice and how open and easy they were to speak with and help with my assignments. I do commend the instructors at Lethbridge College as they help many students go on to their career goals as I continue to aid and carry on what I have learned.”

– From Spring 2016 Wider Horizons

Nadine Dalheim

“I am currently just over half done with my Masters in Psychology at Kaplan University … When I complete it next year I am debating my Masters in Corrections as well, as I miss the criminology side of schooling. Although I am not working directly in corrections, as I live in rural Alberta and this is hard, I am working as a coordinator for an FASD diagnostic clinic part time, and I have contracts with FSCD to work with special needs and mental health kids for behavioural support… The fact that I did my corrections degree through distance learning has been a huge pro as it demonstrates that I can organize myself fairly well! …Again thanks for all your help over the years of school and let students know that this degree is a HUGE step up in life and will make having a career in human services very possible.”

– From Winter 2016 Wider Horizons

Shawn Auger

Shawn currently works as a team lead for the Youth Assessment Centre in High Prairie. He wrote to a former instructor the following update: “Work is awesome. I am a part of an awesome team who are doing our best to help troubled youth in our region. Most days are fun and rewarding, but that 10 per cent of rough times comes up as well – like all jobs it can’t all be smiles” but it has been a great experience to work there.

– From Spring 2015 Wider Horizons

Success stories from Wider Horizons

Experience the courtroom lab for yourself

Use our virtual tour to get a first-hand look at our classroom-turned-courtroom.