10 Law Enforcement Jobs Without a Degree (With Salaries)

Updated February 3, 2023

Law enforcement professionals have the important job of keeping people safe from harm. They have essential responsibilities in the criminal justice system, and many employers hire for law enforcement positions based on skill instead of education level. If you're interested in finding a law enforcement career you can pursue without a degree, you have many options. In this article, we explore 10 law enforcement jobs without a degree for you to consider, including their national average salaries and primary duties.

10 law enforcement jobs without a degree

Here are 10 law enforcement jobs without a degree for you to consider when researching careers:

1. Correctional officer

National average salary: $32,349 per year

Primary duties: A correctional officer is a law enforcement professional who works at a jail, prison or another correctional facility. They oversee the care and supervision of inmates by monitoring their activities, resolving conflicts, providing them with necessities such as food and personal care items and transporting them to medical appointments and court proceedings as necessary. Correctional officers may also arrange for phone calls and visits between inmates and their loved ones. They often work non-traditional hours such as evenings, weekends and holidays.

2. Park ranger

National average salary: $35,828 per year

Primary duties: A park ranger is a federal law enforcement officer who patrols national parks and monuments. They ensure visitors follow all laws and park regulations, ensure their safety and respond to emergency situations that arise on park grounds. Park rangers may also lead educational programs about conservation and fire prevention, provide tours of the park or monument and maintain park trails and common areas. The National Park Service (NPS) may require candidates to have specialized education credentials, training or certification, such as CPR or First Aid.

Read more: Learn About Being a Park Ranger

3. Bailiff

National average salary: $36,206 per year

Primary duties: A bailiff is a security officer who ensures safety in courthouses and during court proceedings. They prevent the public from having contact with jurors during a trial, remove people from courtrooms as necessary, make announcements on behalf of judges and swear in witnesses. Bailiffs may also provide emergency medical services and guard rooms containing sequestered jurors. Some bailiffs are sworn police officers, while others receive on-the-job security training.

4. Emergency dispatcher

National average salary: $41,389 per year

Primary duties: An emergency dispatcher is a telephone operator who responds to 911 calls from people reporting crimes, fires or medical emergencies. They serve as the first point of contact in emergency situations, and they use advanced communication skills to collect information from the caller, deescalate the situation by encouraging the caller to remain calm and dispatch police, fire and emergency medical services to the scene. Emergency dispatchers may also instruct callers on basic emergency medical care, such as CPR, until first responders arrive.

5. Crime scene technician

National average salary: $46,559 per year

Primary duties: A crime scene technician is a laboratory technician who specializes in the collection of evidence from crime and accident scenes. They gather evidence from the scene, such as fingerprints, footprint impressions and physical objects that may be relevant to the crime, take photographs of the scene and bring the evidence to a laboratory for analysis. They may also create reports of the evidence they collect, photograph or fingerprint suspects in criminal cases and prepare their findings for court proceedings.

6. Correctional records technician

National average salary: $51,167 per year

Primary duties: A correctional records technician is an administrative professional who maintains incarceration records. They refer to state and federal court decisions to input sentencing data, bond amounts, probation or parole information and release dates. Correctional records technicians may also assist correctional officers with certain aspects of the intake process, such as collecting contact information, recording charges and fingerprinting arrested individuals. They typically have excellent communication skills and a thorough understanding of applicable laws.

7. Police officer

National average salary: $53,448 per year

Primary duties: A police officer is a law enforcement officer who prevents crime, responds to criminal activity and other emergencies and helps keep communities safe. They pursue potential criminals, arrive at crime scenes to investigate the situation, interview witnesses and involved parties and arrest suspects. Police officers also patrol traffic, write citations for legal violations and write police reports. They sometimes testify about certain cases in court proceedings.

Read more: Learn About Being a Police Officer

8. Fire investigator

National average salary: $63,888 per year

Primary duties: A fire investigator is a law enforcement officer who responds to structural fire scenes to gather information about how the fire occurred. They collect evidence to evaluate the incident for signs of arson, communicate with law enforcement and witnesses to the fire and analyze data to determine a cause. They examine the scene and the evidence for signs of accelerant and to determine where the fire started. Fire investigators also create reports of their assessments and may arrest suspects or appear in court to testify about their findings.

9. Detective

National average salary: $84,826 per year

Primary duties: A detective is a law enforcement agent who specializes in solving criminal cases. They work with police officers and other members of law enforcement to collect evidence, gather information about the circumstances of the crime, interview witnesses and conduct in-depth research to solve cases. Detectives may also issue arrest warrants, arrest suspects and appear in court to testify. They often gain experience as police officers before becoming detectives.

Read more: Learn About Being a Detective

10. Border patrol agent

National average salary: $88,617 per year

Primary duties: A border patrol agent is a federal law enforcement officer who secures United States borders. They work in areas that border Canada, Mexico and Caribbean coasts to oversee international trade processes and manage traffic that enters and exits the country. Border patrol agents have the responsibility of reporting instances of illegal activities that occur at U.S. borders and ensuring the safety of U.S. residents and visitors.

Read more: Learn About Being a Border Patrol Agent

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