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Postgraduate taught

Criminology PgCert

What is Criminology?

Criminology is the study of crime, deviance and society – but it is so much more than that. Exploring the way we define, commit, respond to and punish crime is a vast and exciting area of work.  We take a ‘real world’ approach to Criminology focusing on what happens at the current time. This also means that you’ll have many opportunities to apply your criminological knowledge in contemporary settings.

Using our strong links with a wide range of organisations, you can collaborate on projects with organisations such as Gloucestershire Constabulary, Restorative Gloucestershire, CCTV Inspectorate, community groups, business partnerships active in crime prevention and reduction initiatives, and charities providing support and training around issues such as domestic homicide, stalking, sexual violence and victim support.

Study style

You’ll learn through seminars, workshops, lectures, field trips and projects. Your studies will be assessed through a mixture of coursework, research reports, presentations and a dissertation.

You will also have available a range of extra-curricular activities such as participating in the work of one of our specialist research groups, Sexual Violence Research Group; Homicide Research Group etc.) which all work on ‘live’ projects for external organisations.

Working on real-world challenges like these can open up opportunities for your dissertation topic and your chosen career.

You’ll be encouraged to read, watch, attend events, volunteer or get involved in things wider than just the taught sessions as a way of developing your skills and knowledge in criminological settings and enhance your employability and employment readiness. We focus on ensuring students get individual guidance, discussions with tutors and chances relevant to their interests. 

Our students go oto varied jobs – from the Police, Probation and the Prison Service through to charities, local and national governments to working for private companies, sometimes internationally.  

Get Criminology MSc, PgCert, PgDip course updates and hear more about studying with us.

Entry requirements

    • You should hold at least a  2.2 Bachelors degree with honours.

    • Relevant work experience will also be taken into consideration

Course modules


Fees and costs

Start date Location UCAS code Total Fee (UK) Total Fee (international)
Sep 2022 Francis Close Hall, Cheltenham £2,380 £5,000
Sep 2023 Francis Close Hall, Cheltenham TBC TBC

Possible careers

Graduates from this course can go on to work in:

  • police officer or staff, youth justice, prison service, diversionary schemes
  • victim support organisations
  • crime analyst
  • housing, community, development, and work with ex-offenders.
  • research and evaluation including advanced further study.

Industry links

You’ll be able to work on live projects with partner organisations. We have links with police forces, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Gloucestershire, Restorative Gloucestershire, community organisations active in crime prevention such as Gloucester City Safe, and charities providing support and training to victims of crime and the professionals who support them.

We also encourage you to join one of our research groups – the Homicide Research Group, the Sexual Violence Research Group or the Prisons Research Group. They give students and staff the opportunity to work together, develop skills, create employability related contacts and experiences, forge links with professionals and impact on current practices. We have a healthy pipeline of projects for the future, all of which will create real, practical applications and improvements. These and other exciting and impactful projects are giving students valuable experience, and helping victims and organisations develop their practice and policies.

Join our Sexual Violence Research Group

We work on projects to improve sexual violence responses. We’ve delivered a report for a police force on learning from a detailed review of case files, and contributed expertise to a local authority initiative on sexual violence service provision for men and boys.

Student chatting to Helpzone adviser

Join our Homicide Research Group

We work with organisations and charities to produce research which can help reduce or prevent homicide. We’ve already produced a report for the Suzy Lamplugh Trust which has been influential in assessing risk in stalking cases. Currently, we’re working with AAFDA to produce a report for the Home Office which will look at family involvement in Domestic Homicide Reviews. We’re also working with the Police and Crime Commissioner in Sussex to produce a stalking response model.

Trips and experiences

You’ll have the opportunity to join a residential field trip to explore a specialist theme such as community policing or restorative justice – recent destinations have included Belfast, Bosnia and Toronto.

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