M.S. in Law Enforcement & Public Safety Leadership

Admission Process

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Next Class Starts in September – Application deadline: August 1

The MS-LEPSL program offers three start terms each year.

Admission Requirements

The following elements are the standard admissions requirements for the Master of Science in Law Enforcement and Public Safety Leadership program.

Please contact your advisor at (888) 832-0239 or use the chat feature on this page if you are interested but do not meet all published admissions requirements. Our application review process always includes a holistic look at your law enforcement and/or military experience and other professional training opportunities you’ve had, as we understand that a low undergraduate GPA is not a reliable indicator of your potential success as a graduate student. Please also note that meeting all admission requirements does not guarantee admission to the program.

Application Process

Applying to a graduate program can be complicated – which is why we are here to help answer your questions and even pay for your transcripts! If you have questions regarding the application, contact one of our enrollment advisors who will be able to answer your questions and assess your situation. Our enrollment advisors will also assist you with ordering and tracking your transcripts.

Applications are accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis. You can apply and start in any semester (spring, summer, or fall.  Ready to apply? Start your application online.

Special Note: please anticipate that some colleges and universities can take 2 – 3 weeks to prepare and send official transcripts. Your application package is not complete until all official transcripts are received.

At a Glance

20 Months
31 Units
$679 with discount
September 5
August 1


Our borders are open to international students of all regions.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Do you accept transfer credit from professional leadership training programs?

Yes! USD has entered into formal partnerships with several law enforcement training and professional development organizations to make it easier for graduates of those programs to seamlessly transition into the LEPSL program. Current transfer credit opportunities include:

  • FBI National Academy (up to 12 units)
  • FBI-LEEDA’s Trilogy (6 units)
  • PERF’s Senior Management Institute for Police – SMIP (6 units)
  • California POST’s Command College (12 units)
  • California POST’s Sherman Block Supervisory Leadership Institute (6 units)
  • San Diego County Regional Leadership Institute (6 units)
  • Marine Corps University’s Command and Staff College – CSCDEP (6 units)

We are constantly evaluating new partnerships – check the transfer credit page on this website for more details.

Can I still apply if I don’t meet all of the admissions criteria?

Please work with your enrollment advisor if you are interested but do not meet all published admissions requirements. The two most important and least flexible criteria are that you must have completed your bachelor’s degree and you must have at least two years of experience working professionally in law enforcement. Military experience may also be considered. Beyond that, if your bachelor’s GPA falls short, or if you earned your undergraduate degree from a nationally accredited school rather one that is regionally accredited, we encourage you to speak to an enrollment advisor about your specific circumstances. Sometimes a low undergraduate GPA can be offset by exceptional experience and/or the completion of prestigious leadership training programs like the FBI National Academy. Alternately, you may be given the opportunity to write an additional graduate-level essay to demonstrate your readiness to take on the writing demands of a rigorous master’s degree program.

What is the cost of tuition for the MS-LEPSL program?

Tuition for the MS-LEPSL program is $729 per unit. Members of law enforcement and public safety associations or unions are eligible for a reduced tuition rate of $679 per credit hour. Active duty military and veterans are also eligible for this discount.

Does the program have to be completed within 20 months?

The curriculum schedule functions on a carousel system, meaning that if you miss a course you will have to wait for the rotation to complete before jumping back in. Each course is offered once every five semesters. We encourage you to speak with an enrollment advisor or your program coordinator if you think you might need to take a leave of absence.