Public Protection (Postgraduate Certificate)

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Study mode

Full-Time or Part-Time


Francis Close Hall, Cheltenham

The focus is on enhancing practitioners’ understanding of current issues in public protection, and developing their capacity to undertake their own research to underpin evidence-based practice.

Topics typically covered include domestic abuse and homicide, stalking, sexual violence, child abuse, child sexual exploitation, honour-based violence, trafficking and modern slavery, hate crime, elder abuse and missing persons.

By reviewing the current understanding of best practice in multi-agency working, risk assessment and threat assessment, the programme offers valuable professional development opportunities for those working in the criminal justice sector, victim organisations, advocacy roles, and a range of public services careers.

Participants develop their research skills, by conducting a live project to explore key issues relevant to their own employer or another organisation, thus generating new knowledge that can be applied directly to practice. Examples of recent projects include scoping the value of a pan-agency stalking clinic in the county, and the prevalence of autistic spectrum disorders within child sexual exploitation offenders.

The programme benefits from the innovative work undertaken within the Centre for Learning and Innovation in Public Protection at the university, including the application of research findings to the design of training and tools for frontline service delivery and development.


  • Work-based Research Project
  • Public Protection

Study style

Assessment is through coursework and research reports.

Course modules

Take a look at the course map for a breakdown of modules that you'll study to complete the course.

Entry requirements

  • At least a 2.2 honours degree or equivalent qualification, or relevant professional expertise
  • EU and international students need IELTS 6.0 overall (no less than 5.5 in any band) or equivalent.


Fees - 2019/20 Academic Year
Home and EU Students
Full-Time Fees
Certificate £2165
Non-EU Students
Full-Time Fees
Certificate £4750

The fee displayed is the total course fee for full-time or part-time study. Please refer to the Tuition Fee and Bursary Policy for payment methods and timescales.


Guest speakers

We invite a wide range of guest lecturers to speak on their own professional practice, drawing on our strong links with police forces, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Gloucestershire, public sector organisations, and charities providing support and training around domestic violence, homicide, stalking and sexual offences.


Develop research skills and specialist knowledge

Explore key issues relevant to your own employer or another organisation, generating new knowledge that can be applied directly to practice. Recent projects include examination of the effectiveness of the MARAC process in safeguarding high-risk domestic abuse victims, and the prevalence of autistic spectrum disorders within child sexual exploitation offenders.

live projects

Open routes to further study

On completion of the Postgraduate Certificate, you could choose to progress to the Postgraduate Diploma or MSc in Criminology. There is also the option of taking an individual module as continuing professional development (CPD).