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BA (Hons) Sociology with Criminology

Course overview

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Subject area

Social Sciences





On campus

Course summary

Do you want to make sense of the rapidly changing society in which we live and the freedom with which information, money, goods and services now move across national boundaries? Would you like to understand the effects of this globalisation on modern Britain? 

Are you interested in how deviance in social circumstances can lead to crime? Are you fascinated by social justice, human rights and the workings of the criminal justice system?

On this course, you’ll study these issues in the vibrant, multicultural setting of east London. You’ll graduate with a degree that has vocational relevance, while putting no limit on your career options.

If you want to be a probation officer, for example, you need to know about criminology. This course is an exciting way of preparing for a career while studying the wider questions that sociology addresses and the impact it has on our daily lives.

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Contact us

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

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Student satisfaction

100% of our students said they were 'satisfied' or 'very satisfied' with our course, an incredible seal of approval from our own students, that puts Sociology at UEL amongst the top in the country. (NSS, 2017)


Ranked modern university in London

We’re ranked as the top modern university in London and the second-placed modern university in the country for sociology research. (latest REF, 2014)

The best place to study Sociology with Criminology in the UK

East London, is known for diversity of wealth and culture, and fast moving change, but still faces issues relating to inequality, racism and crime. By adding a broad sociological perspective to a more specialised focus on crime and deviance, you'll develop the critical perspective that employers in the public and private sector really value.

Enquire Visit UEL

Zenani Sibindi

Sociology with Criminology, BA (Hons)

The tutors are all very approachable. You can talk to them about things you are struggling with and they are very happy to help you. It’s an atmosphere of encouragement.

I had a real interest and passion for criminal behaviour and finding out what actually causes it. What stands out to me are all of the different theories about what may cause people to commit crime.

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 New Beginnings pre-entry course

Overall IELTS score of 5.5 with a minimum of 5.5 in Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking (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

This three-year (full-time) or four-year (part-time) degree course will connect you to the real-world issues that exist in our community.

Sociology is about the world we live in, how we interact and relate to each other. Developing your understanding of people will help your understanding of criminality.

The course combines social theory and the appliance of that theory to the real world beyond the classroom or the lecture hall with an unusual combination of criminology modules.

You can choose to study youth crime and sub-culture, football hooliganism and global illicit drug trafficking. Or perhaps you will be drawn to the appeal of terrorism studies and surveillance, technology and society.

You’ll learn about the different types of crimes that exist and explore various theories about why people commit certain crimes.

As well as providing you with a strong theoretical grounding through a variety of criminology options, we’ll also give you a comprehensive knowledge of criminal law.

What you'll study and when

Making a Social Scientist (Core)
Introduction to Criminology and Criminal Justice (Core)
Social Theory 1 (Core)
Research Methods for Sociology and Social Policy (Core)
Research Methods for Social Sciences (Core)
Crime, Deviance and Social History
Social Theory 2 (Core)
Social Policy 2 (Optional)
Crime, Danger, and the City (Optional)
Understanding Social Change (Optional)
Adventures in Intersectionality (Optional)
Research Dissertation (Core)
Work Placement (Core)
Global Illicit Drug Markets (Optional)
Terrorism Studies (Optional)
Psychological Criminology (Optional)
Policing and Criminal Investigation (Optional)
Organised Crime and Cyber-Crime (Optional)
Housing and Urban Regeneration (Optional)
Gender Studies (Optional)
Constructions of Race in Culture and Politics (Optional)
Surveillance, Technology and Society (Optional)
The New Cultural Sociology: Taking Culture Seriously (Optional)
Cultures of Work/Place (Optional)

How you'll be assessed

All modules are assessed through different forms of coursework – typically 2,000-word essays – and some of the optional modules also include exams.

In addition to traditional essays, we’ll expect you to write reports and policy reviews and to give presentations. This is to ensure you’ll gain the relevant skills that can be transferred to the workplace. In your final year, you’ll write a research dissertation.

Course specification

How you'll learn

Sociology with Criminology at the University of East London is taught by research-active staff who are passionate about their subjects. We’re committed to providing you with a world-class education in a socially diverse environment.

You’ll learn how to gather, organise and use data, information and evidence from a variety of sources. You’ll gain an understanding of how to construct reasoned argument and put forward solutions to problems.

Debate will be at the centre of your learning experience when you study criminology. The amount of data produced, particularly in relation to crime, can be colossal, and interpreting it intelligently – as you will learn to do – is the basis for conducting informed and coherent debate on social issues.

As a student, you'll be able to opt for a work placement and will be eligible to apply for paid summer work as part of our undergraduate research internship scheme. The scheme offers up to £2,000 to enable students to work on important research projects and boost their CVs.

We also have excellent links with postgraduate teacher-training and social work courses, as these are popular destinations for our students after they graduate.

 “We have ten people teaching in our sociology department, a big team, which is unique in London,” says Dr Penny Bernstock, Head of Sociology. “So you get a very rich experience and lots of subject choice.”

Your future career

A sociology degree from UEL will prepare you for a wide range of jobs such as teaching, journalism and social work. Add criminology to your qualification and you’ll be able to specialise, should you wish, with a career in the police force, the probation service, pressure groups or central and local government.

UEL has strong links with criminal justice organisations who work with us both in and out of the classroom. You’ll benefit from these links as they can help you choose your career after you graduate.

You may wish to become a prison officer, a community development worker, a probation officer or a youth worker.

This degree will also give you the skills to move into a career as an adult guidance worker, a housing management officer or manager or a social researcher, or it could set you on the road to becoming a solicitor.

Alternatively, you may decide you want to continue your fascinating discovery of the social issues that affect us all by staying on at UEL and helping to shape the local community on one of our postgraduate courses.

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Our international team travel overseas regularly to meet prospective students and attend recruitment fairs. Our academics also give regular lectures overseas and are happy to speak to prospective students. In addition, we have a large worldwide network of advisors who can provide guidance and support with applying to study at the University of East London.

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