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BSc (Hons) - Criminology (with integrated foundation year)

You are passionate about developing a deep understanding of the causes and consequences of crime and committed to providing a specialist response.

We are here for you with a criminology course designed by academics with a wealth of research and practice expertise.

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Course Overview

Our foundation year has been designed to provide you with the essential university skills and confidence needed to progress to our degree programme.

You will learn to understand how and why crime occurs at local, societal and global level.

You will develop a critical insight into the work of the criminal justice system in bringing offenders to justice. We will encourage you to sharpen your sense of social justice by exposing you to the realities of crime committed by the powerful and relatively powerless, and the different ways these impact on victims.

From the outset, you will be able to satisfy your curiosity about criminology in innovative ways, such as exploring how crime stories are told. Through developing creative criminology research skills, you will be empowered to produce knowledge, not just learn it. Our strong links with criminal justice and community-based organisations and groups in Cumbria will provide you with excellent volunteering opportunities and job prospects.

On this course you will...

  • Study a degree programme which has been designed and informed with our connections in the Police, Solicitors Regulator Authority, and the British Psychological Society.
  • Learn from academic tutors who are former or practising professionals in diverse fields including policing, probation, substance misuse, domestic violence work and the law.
  • Have the opportunity to volunteer with organisations connected to the criminal justice system, gaining real-life criminology in practice experience to boost your cv.
  • Engage in our active student-led Criminology Society with socials, film nights and crime reading groups.
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Course Structure

What you will learn

You won’t just ‘learn about’ criminology theoretically, you’ll apply your knowledge to real life issues and modern day problems – giving you the edge as a future expert in this fascinating subject area.

You’ll have the flexibility to shape your degree with modules that interest you and fit your intended career path, because your employability is important to us.

Year one
  • Essential University Skills One
    Develop the academic and professional skills required for effective learning and successful progression through your chosen course.
  • Essential University Skills Two
    Further develop the skills acquired in Essential University Skills 1.
  • Contemporary Issues and the Media
    Explore a range of contemporary issues through the lens of the media that relates to your subject area.
  • Families, Communities and the Criminal Justice System
    Gain an understanding into the psychological and societal risk factors and pre-cursors to criminality.
  • Professional Practice in the Community
    Develop your awareness of community groups and activities to help your understanding of society.
  • Introduction to Policing, Criminology and Law
    Gain a basic understanding of the English and Welsh Legal and Criminal Justice system, and Criminology as a discipline.
Year two
  • Crime and Deviance
    An introduction to the concept of crime and deviance in both its historical and contemporary context.
  • Criminal Justice System
    An introduction to the structure of the Criminal Justice System of England and Wales.
  • Becoming a Criminologist
    An introduction to the wide range of professions that studying Criminology and associated disciplines can lead to.
  • Crime Stories
    Study and practice the qualitative social scientific research methods used in Criminology.
  • Crime and Social Justice
    An introduction to the mutually reinforcing relationship between societal inequality, poverty, social divisions, youth, race, ethnicity and crime with its associated harms.
  • Global Crime
    An introduction to key aspects of global crime.
Year three
  • Explaining Crime
    Explore how society decides what is and is not ‘criminal’. Definitions of ‘criminal’ and ‘criminality’, taking into account social contexts of crime such as youth, race and ethnicity will be discussed.
  • Bringing Offenders to Justice
    Examine, analyse and evaluate policy, procedures and practices involved in bringing offenders to justice.
  • Prisons and Punishment
    Consider the nature and development of penal institutions, the penal regimes within late-modern societies, and the role of rehabilitation.
  • Real-world research
    An introduction to the themes, processes and skills need to conduct effective research.
  • Social Exclusion
    Explore ways of understanding and enacting social justice in the context of social welfare and crime control polices.
  • Crimes of the Powerful
    Explore the nature and prevalence of white-collar, corporate and state criminality.
Year four
  • New Challenges in Criminology
    Consider crime and social harm beyond national borders, exploring innovative ways to consider crime, harm and victimisation.
  • Inequalities in the Criminal Justice System
    Critically examine current debates and controversies in society concerning marginalisation, social exclusion and discrimination and their relationship to the criminal justice system.
  • Victimology
    Develop an understanding of victimisation in contemporary society.
  • Research and Practice
    Plan and produce a clear outline of all the stages of a proposed research project.
  • Dissertation
    Pursue an investigation on a topic of interest in criminology.
  • Criminal Law and Evidence (optional)
    An introduction to the general principles of criminal liability, the main criminal offences and defences and vulnerable victims/suspects.
  • Representations of Crime (optional)
    Explore the role of the media as a significant producer of knowledge about crime and the dominant discourses that are represented in all forms of media.

Attend an Open Day at Cumbria

An Open Day is your opportunity to explore one of 5 campuses, meet your lecturers, and find out how the University of Cumbria could become your new home.

Take the next step towards achieving your dreams.
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