Skip to content

Professional Policing BSc (Hons)

What is Professional Policing BSc (Hons)?

If you have a strong sense of justice and the ability to diffuse tension in stressful situations, you might want to consider a career in policing.

By June 2021, policing will become a graduate-qualified profession in England and Wales – so a relevant degree is a requirement for anybody wanting to become a fully operational police officer. Licensed by the College of Policing, our course is the first approved ‘pre-join degree’ in the South West, providing an excellent route into the profession and ensuring the required standards are met.

A £1,000 subject award bursary is available for this course for 2023 entry UK UCAS applicants.

Study style

The course combines academic study with skills training to provide a thorough grounding in the theory and practicalities of contemporary policing.

You’ll gain practical policing skills by participating in live projects, a residential field trip and other exercises – helping you to build your skills and apply knowledge to real-world scenarios.

The emphasis is on the application of knowledge to the real world – with reference to the College of Policing’s Competency and Values Framework for Policing. Styles of assessment include problem-solving exercises, reports, case files, presentations, research projects, and a professional development portfolio.

Get Professional Policing BSc (Hons) course updates and hear more about studying with us.

Entry requirements

    • 104 – 120 UCAS tariff points, BCC – BBB at A levels, MMM – DDM at BTEC, or a Merit in your T-Level.

      If you are unsure whether we could make you an offer or you have any questions, just get in touch with our admissions team who will be able to advise you.

    • English Language or Literature and Maths Grade 4/C in GCSE (or equivalent) are normally required.

    • We welcome applications from mature students (aged 21 and over) and do not necessarily require the same academic qualifications as school leaving applicants, although some entry requirements may still apply for Professionally Accredited Courses. We accept Access to Higher Education Diplomas and make offers on an individual basis.

Course modules


Fees and costs

See the further details of fees and potential extra costs when studying a course at the University of Gloucestershire.
Start date Location UCAS code Fee (UK)
per year
Fee (international)
per year
Sep 2023 Francis Close Hall, Cheltenham L312 £9,250 £15,450
Sep 2024 Francis Close Hall, Cheltenham L312 TBC TBC

Ready to apply?

Possible careers

Graduates from this course can go on to work in:

  • police services
  • border forces
  • the court system or in prisons
  • roles with local authorities or third sector organisations
  • areas such as social housing, victim support or substance abuse.

Find out more about joining the police and police careers.

Please note

There are no guarantees of entry to a police force after completing this course – as with all other policing-related courses, you should be aware there are associated recruitment processes required when you apply to a particular force. These include successful completion of the national police recruitment process (eg Police SEARCH / Day One Recruit Assessment Centre), passing medical and fitness tests, and background and security checks (force vetting) before being appointed as a Police Officer.

Find out more from the College of Policing.

Industry links

You’ll follow a programme of professional development. We’ll encourage you to join the Special Constabulary – which if you’d like to, you’ll make a separate application when you join the course.

Acceptance into the Special Constabulary isn’t guaranteed – and is dependent on a successful evidence-based application, interview, fitness test, medical and vetting procedure.

Study a highly ranked course

Our criminology courses are in the UK top 20 and ranked 3rd in the UK for course satisfaction.

Prepare to apply for police recruitment

As with all other Pre-Join Degree courses in Professional Policing licensed by the College of Policing, the course has a currency of 5 years after graduating for the purposes of recruitment into policing. This doesn’t mean our course only lasts for 5 years – it’s a lifetime award demonstrating significant academic achievement and transferable skills.

Trips and experiences

Your skills of observation, information collection and analysis are developed through a live project conducted to a brief set by an external organisation – currently we’re working on a crime reduction initiative on behalf of Gloucester City Safe.

You’ll attend a residential field trip to examine the different social environments and policing challenges in another part of the UK. Your crime investigation skills will be developed during exercises carried out in our Crime Scene House, forensic interviewing suite and moot court. You’ll also participate in scenarios where you will develop skills for policing incidents and managing crime scenes, working in collaboration with students from paramedic science, social work and forensic computing.

Consider a career in policing

“If you have a strong sense of justice and the ability to diffuse tension in stressful situations, you might want to consider a career in policing.”

John Clay-Davies, Senior Lecturer in Policing

Keep Me Updated

Fill in the form below and we'll be in touch with Professional Policing BSc (Hons) updates, upcoming events and everything you need to know about university life.