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Bachelor of Arts

BA (Hons) Criminology

The BA (Hons) Criminology is an undergraduate degree designed to allow you to delve into the fascinating and diverse world of criminology, exploring areas such as drugs, cybercrime and terrorism. With this course you’ll be able to develop an understanding of contemporary criminology concepts and theories, looking at how they are viewed from a variety of perspectives. If you have aspirations of working in the criminal justice sector, or as a criminologist, and want to build a strong overview of criminology and its effects within modern society, then this course is an excellent place to start.


Call our Clearing hotline: 0800 289 997 (UK) or +44 (0) 1483 216 000 (International) or speak to our friendly advisors through Live Chat on our Clearing Hub

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Key Facts

Entry requirements

A Level: BBC
UCAS Tariff Points*: 112
GCSE: English Language Grade C/4 or above, or equivalent

Requirements for the Foundation Year differ from those listed.
*From three A Levels or equivalent

Course requirements ➔

Entry requirements

Next start date

September 2024

See all Start Dates



Learn more about the process for applying to us and where to get started.


Ranked Top 10 in the UK for Teaching in the 2024 National Student Survey.

We have an overall 5 Star rating from QS World University Rankings and 5 stars in Teaching, Employability, Online Learning, Academic Development and Inclusiveness.

We've been awarded an overall Silver rating, with a Gold rating for Student Experience and Silver rating for the Student Outcomes in the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) for 2023.

Course Details

Full-time three year Criminology

UCAS code: M900

Designed by expert criminologists, this three year degree programme will allow you to look at areas such as drugs, cybercrime, migration, mass incarceration, terrorism, and trafficking in detail. You’ll get to consider how these areas are viewed by groups from various backgrounds and with different outlooks, including how gender, race and cultural perspectives and issues can impact opinion.

This course is particularly interesting if you’re looking to work in the criminal justice sector or associated fields. You’ll benefit from learning in various ways, giving you a well-rounded understanding of both the theory and practice of criminology. This will enable you to develop a comprehensive understanding of criminology and apply this to current socio-economic policies and conditions.

You will learn through a variety of group sessions, workshops, digital media and a wide range of learning resources, completing a research methods module and a dissertation or research project in your final year. In addition to your knowledge of criminology, you will gain a wide range of analytical, research, problem solving and communication skills, which are in high demand by employers.

Statistics from the 2023 National Student Survey show that 96% of Policing and Criminology students were positive about learning opportunities on their course and 91% were positive about the teaching on their course.


Foundation Year (Four year)

UCAS code: M910

You can choose to take an additional Foundation Year before you start your course. This introductory year focuses on developing the key skills required to study at degree level. You will study six modules and on successful completion progress onto any of our 
three year degrees.

Course Structure

Semester 1

Communication Skills
You will develop communication skills and understanding of different methods and styles of communication. You will consider appropriate methods of communication in both formal and informal environments. You will develop your understanding of social media and how to use it effectively. By looking back at previous activities and considering the choices you made and how you may do things differently in the future, you will enhance your skills on reflection.

Digital and Research Skills
You will learn how to navigate responsibly around the internet using different search engines and resources, including AI, and will develop your understanding of how to stay safe online and create an appropriate online presence. Learn about interpreting information you find; how relevant and accurate it is and how to present it. Discover a variety of learning resources and understand the importance of academic integrity.

Sustainability and Society
You will explore the UN Sustainable Development Goals and how sustainability has a wider impact on society. A problem-solving approach to global sustainability will be adopted and you will be encouraged to think about the role you and others play in addressing sustainability issues and an understanding of who is accountable. Also looking at both the broad concepts of sustainability and the aspects which are relevant to your chosen discipline.

Semester 2

Foundation Year Project
Develop your research skills by learning how to choose, plan and carry out an investigation into a chosen topic. Discover the importance of ethics when conducting research and practice presenting research. This module helps prepare you for entry onto Level 4 of the degree programme through the formative e-portfolio containing a log of activities, your 2000 word written project and your video presentation.

Shaping Skills for Success
This module will enable you to develop wider skills that are needed to succeed during your studies and beyond. You will be introduced to different types of skills and how to track and reflect on your skills development. You will develop your skills by participating in sessions focused on specific skills and hearing from a variety of guest speakers. You will take part in a group challenge designed to develop your teamwork and communication skills and reflect on the skills you develop during this module as part of your Foundation Year Project.

Core Concepts for Criminology and Policing
Introducing you to some of the key concepts, theories and ideas in criminology. You will be encouraged to reflect on some of these concepts, theories and ideas and think critically about some of their implications on the criminal justice system and society more widely. You will also be given the opportunity to develop your research skills and group work in preparation for planning and completing coursework.

Choose one*:

  • Core Concepts of Business
  • Core Concepts of Computer Science
  • Core Concepts of Law
  • Core Concepts of Psychology

*Options available are indicative and available subject to numbers and the campus chosen. Students will also complete the Shaping Skills for Success programme.

Semester 1

Foundations of Criminology
This module introduces criminology including the importance of early criminology concepts, theories and ideas.

Society and Punishment
Demonstrating the understanding and knowledge of theories, concepts and ideas related to punishment, by describing and locating them in a range of contexts. Also, how they can contribute to addressing social issues.

Media Crime and Control
This module demonstrates the understanding and knowledge of the relationships between crime, criminalisation, victimisation and punishment within the context of media representations.

Semester 2

Drugs in the Criminal Justice System
Looking at the relationship between illicit drugs and crime. Also, the effect of drug policies on marginalised communities, and the links between illicit drugs and cultural contexts.

Criminal Justice in Modern Britain
This module will give an overview of the Criminal Justice System (including the police, prisons, probation service and the crown prosecution service) and its impact on marginalised communities and roles of victims in the system.

Contemporary Criminology
In this module we discuss and evaluate some of the challenges commonly encountered in the application of contemporary criminological theory. Including rural criminology, queer criminology, radical criminology, and cultural criminology.

Semester 1

Gender, Sexuality and Crime
This module helps to develop a critical understanding of traditional criminological theory through feminist critiques and perspectives, as well as of feminist critiques of criminology outside of the global Northwest. Also looks at the different patterns of victimisation and offending amongst women and men.

The Evolution of the Prison System
This module covers the current crisis of imprisonment in Britain and evaluates the British prison system, specifically in the context of rehabilitation and resettlement. It also looks at penal populism, mass incarceration and the over-representation of ethnic minorities, and the mentally ill, all within a global context.

Research Methods
A module to look at conducting research in the field of criminology and criminal justice. As well as looking at the strengths and weaknesses of the application of quantitative and qualitative methods and the design of research to the study of criminological questions, including the consideration of ethical issues.

Semester 2

Youth and Crime
This module looks at youth justice issues such as issues of social control mechanisms and punishment in the context of youth. It also covers the criminalisation of young people through a prism of race, gender and socio-economic class, and the place of youth in the city and public space.

Zemiology (Social Harms)
This is the study of social harms, which includes the role of the victim in criminal justice, the victimisation of women and girls and LGBTQ communities, the victimisation of the poor due to social policy and more.

Looking at the impact of cyberspace on the globalisation of crime and the effect that cyberspace has had on enabling ‘traditional’ and creating new opportunities for criminal behaviour.

Semester 1

Dissertation (all year - double module)

Urban Criminology - The City and Globalisation
This module covers all aspects of urban criminology in the context of issues such as urban youth, segregation in the city, homelessness and marginalisation, protests and riots.

A module about the processes of migration, their diversity, and consequences for sending and receiving societies by synthesising and critically evaluating them in a range of different contexts.

Semester 2

Dissertation (all year - double module)

Choose two*:

  • Race, Ethnicity and Religion
  • Terrorism
  • The Politics of Policing

*All options are indicative and subject to availability.

Course Start Dates

  • BA (Hons) Criminology
    • Full-time: Birmingham, Leeds, London Bloomsbury and Manchester
  • BA (Hons) Criminology with Foundation Year
    • Full-time: Birmingham, Leeds, London Bloomsbury and Manchester

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Course requirements

The course demands show you the requirements, prior knowledge and commitments our course will involve.

Find out more ➔

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Course Information


To get a full picture of how studying this course works during the year, take a look at our course date breakdowns.



At the end of each semester you’ll get a week for revision before two weeks of assessments.

Exams: Two hours, ten multiple choice questions and two long-form questions

Coursework: Essay, project report or portfolio

Oral presentation

We run mock assessments to allow you to practise before too.

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You must pass each module to be awarded your degree. A pass mark is 40% and above.

70%                  1

60-69%             2.1

50-59%             2.2

40-49%             3

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Employability We Set You Up For Success

We care about your career, which is why we offer support with job applications and other work experience opportunities as soon as you accept your place.

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Fees and Applying


Applications for all our undergraduate courses are open.

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UK - £9,250 per year

International (London) - £17,550 per year

International (non-London) - £16,700 per year


If you need to fund your studies with a student loan you can apply via Student Finance.



We have students from over 120 different countries throughout our campuses, with a dedicated team to help international students.

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Official course data