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BA (Hons) Criminology and Criminal Justice

Course overview

Start date

September 2017

Subject area

Business and Law





On campus

Course summary

If you’re interested in the problem of crime in contemporary societies, our Criminology and Criminal Justice course is for you.

As a criminology student you’ll investigate the nature of crime and criminality, studying society’s response through the criminal justice system. You’ll learn how societies try to control and punish crime and disorder, gaining a theoretical and practical understanding of this fascinating subject.

Criminology takes a social sciences approach by studying and classifying crime, and exploring theories around criminal behaviour. As well as the theory, you’ll learn how society deals with criminal behaviour by studying institutions and roles such as the police, courts, prisons and probation service.

The course offers a wide choice of options in your final year and you’ll be expected to undertake an independent piece of research on a relevant topic of particular interest to you.

UCAS points


Course options


UCAS code


UCAS points

Less points?

Course options

Degree + Foundation year

Contact us

If you have any questions, talk to a member of our Applicant Enquiries team on +44 (0) 20 8223 3333 or email

Get in touch

Learn from the best

You’ll be taught by world-renowned experts in criminology who are regularly called upon by governments and the media to provide skilled analysis, comment and advice.


student satisfaction

Our students love the course: we achieved 90% overall satisfaction in NSS 2017, with 100% agreeing that staff were 'enthusiastic' about the subject.

Flexible study

You can tailor the course to your own interests with a wide choice of 12 optional modules in your final year.

Enquire Visit UEL

Besnik Vrapli

Criminology and Law, (BA Hons)

It’s been fantastic -  a really good course. I’ve learned a huge amount and this backed up my practical work experience as a special constable. My degree has been essential in helping me to get a full-time job with the Met, and I’d encourage anyone to volunteer in the community early on as it really backs up your theoretical learning.

Entry requirements


New UCAS Points

A Level
Must include passes at A2 in at least two subjects.
Extended Diploma (QCF) or Diploma (QCF)
International Baccalaureate
Diploma with 25 points including a minimum of 15 points at Higher Level.
We would normally expect you to have Grade C in GCSE English and maths (See below for accepted equivalences)


(Including European Union)

We accept a range of qualifications from across the world. Please see our country pages for information on specific entry requirements for your country.


Access to HE Diploma (QAA approved) with 60 credits overall and 45 credits at Level 3

We will also consider the UEL Introduction to Law and Criminology short course 

Overall IELTS 6.0 with a minimum of 6.0 in Writing and Speaking; minimum 5.5 in Reading and Listening (or recognised equivalent).

Level 2 equivalences such as Level 2 Functional Skills in English / Maths, Level 2 Key Skills in Communication / Application of Number and Level 2 Adult Literacy / Adult Numeracy

As an inclusive university we recognise that applicants who have been out of education for some time may not have the formal qualifications usually required for entry to a course. We welcome applications from those who can demonstrate their enthusiasm and commitment to study and have relevant life/work experience that equips them to succeed on the course. We will assess this from the information provided in your application (particularly your personal statement) and may ask you to attend an interview or submit a piece of work to help us decide on your eligibility for the course. Our pre-entry Information Advice and Guidance Team are able to provide further advice on entry requirements and suitability for study.

You can speak to a member of our Applicant Enquiries team on +44 (0)20 8223 3333, Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm. Alternatively, you can visit our Information, Advice and Guidance centre. Please click here for details.

What you'll learn

We recently revised this course to ensure you benefit from the most up-to-date ideas, concepts and research in this evolving field of study.

In the first two years you’ll gain a solid grounding in the subject through an introduction to criminology and criminal justice. You’ll study contemporary issues in criminology, the legal framework, research methods, applied criminology and professional practice, and crime, deviance and social history.

In your last year, you’ll be able to research a relevant topic of your choice in a final project. Recent student projects include the impact of police stop-and-search policies in ethnic communities and the psychology of serial killers. The choice is yours.

You’ll also be able to choose from a wide variety of optional modules, including drug trafficking, mentally disordered offenders, terrorism, prison studies and football hooliganism. You can also choose to take a work-based learning module, where you will apply learning from volunteering or work experience to your academic studies.

What you'll study and when

    • Introduction to Criminology and Criminal Justice (core)
    • Contemporary Issues of Youth Justice and Criminology (core)
    • Constitutional And Administrative Law (core)
    • Thinking Sociologically (core)

      • Research Methods in Criminology (core)
    • Applied Criminology and Professional Practice (core)
    • Theoretical Criminology (core)
    • Crime, Deviance and Social History (core)
Project (core)

Global Illicit Drug Trafficking (optional)

Mentally-disordered Defendants and Suspects (optional)

Preventing and Correcting Offending Behaviour (optional)

Psychological Criminology (optional)

Race, Ethnicity, Crime and Justice (optional)

Prison Studies (optional)

Terrorism Studies (optional)

Youth Crime and Subculture (optional)

Work-based Learning (optional)

Football Hooliganism (optional)

Surveillance, Technology and Society (optional)

Psychosocial Perspectives on Criminal Behaviour (optional)

How you'll be assessed

We’ll assess you with a mixture of coursework and exams. Coursework includes essays, reflective reports and group and seminar presentations. You’ll be given plenty of feedback to help you improve.

You will also have the chance to complete a work-based learning module, where you’ll be assessed on your practical work. In your final year, you’ll complete a project based on your own independent research.

Course specification

How you will learn

You’ll find the course stimulating and varied, with a wide range of teaching methods to fire your interest.

With our expert team of lecturers, you’ll be in safe hands as you begin to learn through a mixture of lectures and smaller seminar groups. These will help you to get to grips with the key issues, concepts and ideas in criminology and criminal justice.

We’re looking for students who are genuinely engaged with the issues and debates that make up this subject, so you’ll be expected to play an active role to get the most out of the course - and make the most of yourself.
You’ll also learn through a mixture of tutorials, presentations, workshops and ‘learning by doing’. The work-based learning module will enable you to put the practice into the theory – and vice versa.

Some students have worked as volunteer community support officers, while others have volunteered in local community groups. If you choose this approach, you’ll be able to count your community experience towards your degree.

Your learning will be supplemented by field trips, conferences and events to help build your network, understanding and experience. And you’ll be given notes, handbooks and online materials to help you study, prepare for assignments and support your learning.

Course Leader Dr Anthony Richards says, “The teaching staff are engaged in cutting-edge research in the area and are highly motivated in delivering an excellent learning experience for students, as well as sharing their own research insights.”

Your future career

UEL Criminology graduates have found work in a wide variety of roles. Some have pursued a career in a related field while others have used the transferable skills they have learnt in other areas.

The course has a strong focus on preparing you for the world of work, with a specific employability module in year two. This is geared towards providing you with the best advice on preparing yourself for the job market and applying for jobs.

While a degree in Criminology and Criminal Justice is focused on your future career, it doesn’t limit your options. You’ll learn a host of skills that will appeal to many employers, including writing and presenting, the ability to make a case, meet deadlines and work independently.
Students have found jobs in a number of related areas, such as:

▪ The police, prison and probation services
▪ Central and local government
▪ Social work
▪ Voluntary organisations, including victim support groups.

While these roles are particularly suited to students with a criminology degree, our graduates have also found employment in fields such as market research, journalism and the public sector. Some have also gone on to postgraduate study.

To enhance your career prospects, we run a dedicated employability programme for students in the School of Business and Law. Called 'Employ', it includes employability workshops, skills training sessions, guest speaker events, voluntary work, student ambassador roles and work experience opportunities.

You may also be interested in

  • Why study at UEL?

  • Student finance

  • Introduction to Law and Criminology

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