Criminology

​What is a criminology university degree?

If you choose to study a criminology degree at university, you’ll learn the fundamental principles of dealing with crime from the point of view of the victim, society, forensic investigation, policing in the community, the criminal justice system and prevention and deterrents.

A BA in criminology will equip you with the skills and knowledge necessary to understand the causes and implications of different types of crime. Undergraduate criminology courses typically take three years of full-time study to complete and provide the opportunity to develop skills through work experience at home and abroad.

What types of criminology degree are there?

At the University of Gloucestershire, you can choose to study from a range of criminology degrees. Completion of one of our undergraduate courses will provide you with a Batchelor of Science degree, while completion of a postgraduate course will provide you with a postgraduate certificate, postgraduate diploma or master of science degree.

Our criminology courses are in the UK top 20, rank 3rd in the UK for course satisfaction and 7th for graduate prospects according to the Guardian University Guide 2020.

View our undergraduate criminology degrees

View our postgraduate criminology degrees

Who would want a criminology degree?

If you have an interest in what motivates people to commit crime and act outside the normal boundaries of society, a criminology degree could be for you. As the scientific study of crime and criminals, Criminology also looks at detailed analysis of the consequences of crime and how theoretical methods of prevention are put into practice.

If you’ve considered studying sociology you may want to take a closer look at the criminology degree courses that are on offer. Criminology is very closely linked to sociology but with a specific focus on crime and the effects it can have upon society. Criminology also incorporates elements of psychology and biology as well as data analysis and the understanding of the need to be ready to challenge common sense assumptions.

If you like the sound of this and want to find out more, take a look at the criminology undergraduate courses we offer; you’ll find a more detailed description of what each course involves and also the criminology degree entry requirements for each one.

What are the benefits of having a criminology degree?

Studying Criminology (BSc Hons) or one of the other criminology courses available at the University of Gloucestershire will give you a fascinating insight into the world of crime and help you to understand the motivational factors that drive the people who commit it.

You’ll also look at it from the perspective of the UK criminal justice system to get an understanding of all facets of the subject. You’ll have real-world skills gained through work experience and benefit from close links with industry, meaning you’ll be in a great position to gain employment or begin postgraduate study.

What occupations can a criminology degree lead someone to?

Studying one of the criminology degree courses available at the University of Gloucestershire will open the door to a wide range of potential careers once you graduate. A very closely linked career is as a criminologist, collecting and analysing data on crime and those who commit it. You may want to consider a postgraduate degree or qualification if you want to pursue this.

Some other areas available to work in include: police, prison service, youth service, community and victim support organisations, local government, charities, Home Office, legal practices and Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner.

Specific roles within these areas might include: police officer, project support officer, probation officer, forensic engineer, crime scene investigator, prison officer, local government officer, service delivery assistant, case worker, team administrator, outreach worker and victims advocate.

What does the criminology university course consist of?

Criminology undergraduate courses at the University of Gloucestershire generally take three years to complete. Each year consists of a number of modules that students will need to complete in order to accrue CAT points and progress to the next year of study.

All Level 4 modules are compulsory while Levels 5 and 6 comprise a mix of compulsory and optional modules that can be chosen to make up the total number of CAT points required. Level 6 – the final year of study – includes a compulsory criminology dissertation module which allows students to develop a particular interest in one area of criminology. Examples of modules from each level are as follows:

Level 4:

  • Introductory Research & Fieldwork in the Social Sciences
  • Understanding Criminology

Level 5:

  • Crime and Society: Theorising Crime
  • Forensic Criminology

Level 6:

  • Comparative Perspectives on Criminal Justice
  • Homicide

There are also opportunities to enhance your learning experience by undertaking field work in the UK during the first year. then Belfast or Canada later in the course. Work experience may also play a part with recent placements including Gloucestershire Police, The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner and Gloucester City Safe.

You may also choose to gain experience in community policing, working as part of the Student Community Patrol which helps to keep people safe while they’re enjoying Cheltenham’s nightlife.

Why should someone choose University of Gloucestershire for their criminology degree?

Criminology degrees at the University of Gloucestershire are in the UK top 20, ranked 3rd in the UK for course satisfaction and 7th for graduate prospects according to the Guardian University Guide 2020. The Criminology BSc (Hons) degree scored 93% for learning resources in the National Student Survey 2019.

We have excellent industry links with Gloucestershire Constabulary, the Police and Crime Commissioner for Gloucestershire, Restorative Gloucestershire, Advocacy After Fatal Domestic Abuse, Youth Justice Services, Police Service Northern Ireland, Gloucester City Safe and Humber College (Canada). There is an emphasis on developing practical skills with frequent investigations taking place on mock crime scenes and many academic staff have industry experience.

You’ll also benefit from guest lectures with recent examples being delivered by Thames Valley Anti-terrorism Unit, Thames Valley Anti-terrorism Unit, HM Prison Service and the Metropolitan Police Service.

The next steps

Interested in studying criminology at university and applying for one of our criminology courses? Applications for undergraduate criminology degrees are made through UCAS, while applications for postgraduate criminology degrees are made directly to the university. You can find out more about applying for an undergraduate or postgraduate degree using the links below, where you’ll also find details about how to get in touch with our admissions team if you have any further questions.

Find out more about applying for a criminology undergraduate degree

Find out more about applying for a criminology postgraduate degree