Criminology BA Honours | Middlesex University London
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Criminology BA Honours

Learn about the course below
Code
L350
Start
October 2018
Duration
3 years full-time
4 years full-time with placement
Attendance
Full-time
Fees
£9,250 (UK/EU) *
£12,500 (INT) *
Course leader
Elena Martellozzo

You will join one of the longest-established university criminology departments in the world where we produce pioneering research to support policy development at the national and international level.

Why study BA Criminology at Middlesex University?

This degree provides a generic overview of crime, criminals, victims and interaction with the Criminal Justice System. It is aimed at those who have an interest in how society responds to deviant behaviour and challenges the concept of social deviancy. Your studies will be framed by research from within our Centre for Social and Criminological Research (CSCR) where our areas of expertise include youth crime; community safety strategies; and inter-ethnic conflict. The centre combines psychology and criminology with a focus on real life and online experience, and uses a range of research methods including those online.

This degree blends theory with practice through placements within criminology focused organisations and work-based projects, which frame your knowledge with real life case study examples from within the criminal justice system. We regularly invite practitioners from different key organisations to speak to our students to ensure that the theoretical and practical are blended together.

In your final year, your can choose a credit bearing Placement Module or the Special Constable Module which enables you to explore employment opportunities without commitment. You could complete your placement students in a range of areas including the Police Service, Prison Service, Victim Support Schemes, or Youth Offender Schemes. As a consequence of choosing the Placement Module, previous graduates have accepted full-time employment within the criminal justice system.

Criminology is constantly debated in government, the media and across wider society. It is the ideal subject for those keen to pursue a career in the criminal justice system, or to progress to postgraduate study in a related field.

Course highlights

  • You have the option to extend the course by a year in order to spend your third year in a paid work placement relevant to the course
  • The Police Service is currently undergoing a fundamental change in its recruitment process, requiring all new recruits to attain a degree in a related subject, Criminology is one of those subjects
  • Our excellent links with criminology-focused organisations in London ensure you can secure prestigious placement opportunities and gain excellent professional experience while you study
  • Our specialist teaching approach offers high levels of support, ensuring you achieve excellent academic results
  • As a student of this course you'll receive a free electronic textbook for every module

What will you study on the BA Criminology?

You will be introduced to the changing nature of crime and criminality and how social, economic and political influences can determine what is considered to be deviant and punishable behaviour. You will focus on the theoretical concepts of crime and criminality and gain a thorough grounding in the important elements of criminology that will enable you to progress to postgraduate study, or begin your career within a criminal justice setting.

All staff are involved in researching key issues related to crime and justice, and the findings of their research will influence your learning and research skills. As such you will learn to understand the factors that influence criminological research, policy and practice, and learn the fundamental skills of research and analysis.

Throughout the course you will take part in active debates affecting policy, in areas such as the relationship between the police and the public, reform of the prison and probation services, and the working of the criminal courts. You will explore the various theoretical arguments that try to explain why some individuals commit crime, whilst others do not. We also use current events in the media to stimulate theoretical, philosophical and political debates, which will help to sharpen your critical thinking skills.

Our close links with key criminal justice agencies such as the police, the probation service, and youth offending teams means you take part in real life projects from within the system, which can support and inform your thinking and help you produce original and progressive academic work.

What will you gain?

At the end of this course, you will have developed a suite of professional skills to equip you for success in your career journey. You will be able to research a given topic, analyse the data and prepare a critical summary of your findings supported by empirical evidence. You will enhance your skills to communicate verbally through presentations, the written word by essay assignments and electronically utilising the Universities e-learning platforms.

You will develop excellent awareness of how policy is created, interpreted and implemented, and how this informs society. You will also be able to draw on a wide range of criminological theories and concepts in order to develop a debate or discussion and to justify your conclusions. You will gain confidence in your own ability to work as an individual and as a team member in order to produce a final product for scrutiny by your peers. ·

You will develop advanced analytical skills that will enable you to critically evaluate a wide range of materials including theory and policies, strategies, and operational plans.

Modules

  • Year 1

    • Crime and Control in Social Context (30 Credits) - Compulsory

      The objective of this module is to introduce a number of key criminological concepts and issues. More specifically, the key factors that influence official definitions and societal perceptions of crime and deviance, and the differing involvement of identifiable social groups in crime and deviance. You will explore the differing levels of victimisation amongst such groups, and the main reasons behind these differences. Also, it will introduce the sources of information on crime, deviance and victimisation and to a number of specific types of crimes

    • Explaining Crime (30 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module is designed to introduce the major theoretical perspectives that have emerged in the discipline of Criminology over the past 200 - 300 years and enable you to apply these theories to concrete examples of crime. It considers how historical context, political influence and basic philosophical differences on such questions as what it is to be human have influenced the development of criminological perspectives. It will introduce the academic research that underpins different theories and help you to understand the key arguments and reflect upon the relative merits of each theory through engagement with relevant literature.

    • Researching the City: Skills and Methods in Criminology and Sociology (30 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module aims to instruct you on the skills required for undertaking an undergraduate degree in either sociology or criminology, and the basic components of social science research through researching the city. This module provides an engaging opportunity to be introduced to different research methods and approaches as well as more generally study skills while exploring from an academic point of view the city where you study in and live in. Many of these skills will have relevance beyond your degree, and will be attractive to future employers. You will also be introduced to a range of critical writing skills that link to other modules across the year. Many of these skills will have relevance beyond your degree, and will be attractive to future employers.

    • Introduction to Criminal Legal Processes (30 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module aims to provide criminology students with a basic understanding of the legal framework and operation of the English legal system and the essential legal principles of key areas of law applicable to your future criminological study. The course also provides criminology students with an overview of basic criminal procedure and a selection of criminal offences and the defences relevant to these offences. The course will enable you to gain knowledge and experience of criminal procedure from a practical perspective through case study analysis.

  • Year 2

    • Approaches to Research in the Social Sciences (30 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module aims to develop your evaluative abilities regarding quantitative and qualitative research methodologies as well as to introduce you to the underlying philosophical and ethical principles of social research. It aims to make clear the links between theory, method and data, to define what data is within different research paradigms and the various ways of generating and analysing it, and to understand and critique published research. Emphasis is placed on developing awareness and critique of secondary sources. The module also aims to prepare you for the development of a proposal for the final year dissertation project. Throughout the module, you will apply the various components of research methods to the specific subject of the programme you are studying.

    • Criminology in Late Modernity (30 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module introduces the recent developments in criminological theory and research. As well as familiarising you with a substantial range of contemporary theoretical perspectives in criminology, it will introduce the central themes and substantive concerns central to current criminological research. In particular, you will focus on the consequences of globalisation and neoliberal politics on patterns of crime and social control in the Global North, looking at issues such as terrorism, state crime, cybercrime, and environmental crime.

    • Institutions of Criminal Justice (30 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module provides an introduction to key criminal justice institutions and agencies and an understanding of contemporary criminal justice issues. The main focus of the module is on the criminal justice system in England and Wales, though other material is drawn upon for European and international comparative purposes. At the end of the module, you should be familiar with recent and current policy issues and debates relating to the different criminal justice institutions, such as pluralised policing and the extended police family, contemporary crime investigation, sentencing in the criminal courts, and reform of the prison and probation systems.

    • Urban Criminology (30 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module begins with the classic distinction between mechanical and organic solidarity in the work of Durkheim. The module uses the city as a unit of analysis to study the interplay between urban space, city residents, economics, cultural identity in late-modern society, the blurred lines between legal and illegal leisure/pleasure industries, and entrepreneurial criminal opportunity. In this way it draws upon the discipline of urban sociology criminology and the classic studies of urban and social life that emanated from the Chicago School in the 1930s and 40s. The module offers an important appreciation of ethnographic research and social ecology in relation to criminal activity, policing and the control of crime in the urban setting. The module is also conceptual in that you will be required to conceive and re-conceive of the city in terms of its representation in film in relation to crime. The module will make much of the idea that city life has certain aspects which make it peculiarly suited to personal reinvention, entrepreneurial activity and transgressive opportunity and how this accounts for a lot of what counts as crime in contemporary society.

  • Year 3

    • Dissertation (30 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module aims to synthesise learning from the criminology programmes of study, providing an opportunity for you to study independently and investigate a topic in depth, in accordance with the Criminology Benchmark Statement. It fosters academic curiosity, an inquiry based approach, and the employment and application of research skills thus facilitating the development of a higher level of theorising. You will select a topic of personal interest on which you wish to undertake an in-depth study and manage your own learning with the support of an allocated supervisor for this period of independent study. Furthermore, those studying criminology will have criminology specific dissertation workshops to support the independent study and formative assessments during the dissertation year to assist with the development and completion of the dissertation

    • Gangs and Group Offending (30 Credits) - Optional

      This module critically examines the concepts of serious group offending and in particular the growing phenomenon of gangs. The existence and prevalence of gangs is contested academically and by practitioners. The module will consider classic and contemporary theories as to why gangs form and thrive in places; the challenges of defining gangs as opposed to street cultures and peer groups will be considered. Issues such as risks and motivations for joining, membership, behaviours, territoriality, recruitment, levels of violence, criminal activity, gender, links to organised crime, deprivation and globalisation are all pertinent topics addressed in the module. Key issues are identified and critically reviewed such as divergent experiences between the USA and the UK, race, gender, and partner/agency involvement. The module takes a left realist approach notably in consideration of recent police and practitioner strategies and initiatives under development regarding desistance, prevention and intervention models.

    • Violent Crime (30 Credits) - Optional

      This module aims to discuss the dynamics of interpersonal violence and its control, with an additional focus on the links between sex and violence. You will learn about the social and spatial parameters of violent crime, the possible causes and explanations for why violent crime happens (are we born violent or do we learn how to be violent?), theoretical and layperson perspectives on violence,  the forms that violence can take, and how violence can be gendered. Current prison forensic psychologists will also help you to understand how violent, and sexually violent, offenders are managed within the prison environment.

    • Justice, Punishment and Human Rights (30 Credits) - Optional

      This module will equip you with an understanding of the complex function of punishment as a practice and institution. More specifically, it aims to create a critical awareness of the influence of country specific values and circumstances as well as of global developments on the formulation of criminal justice, its responses to crime, deviance and public insecurity, and on its modes of punishment and their utility. It will also foster an appreciation of the human rights issues that different punishment measures and criminal justice responses can give rise to.

    • Drugs, Crime and Criminal Justice (30 Credits) - Optional

      This module aims to introduce the contemporary debates surrounding drugs, drug use and its control. It will develop your knowledge and understanding of the processes involved in social definitions of drugs and drug users and your skills in applying criminological theories to drug issues. It aims to facilitate critical analysis and evaluation of the laws, policies and institutions of drugs control and their social, economic and political contexts. The module also aims to foster and develop your critical interest in the reform of drugs control policy.

    • Organised and White Collar Crime (30 Credits) - Optional

      This module will introduce the critical debates on Organised Crime and Corporate Offenders. You will also become acquainted with the issues of defining these areas of criminality and the problems of conducting meaningful research. The module will begin with explanations of how social, political and economic conditions allowed organised crime to develop and discuss the links with White Collar and Corporate Crime.

    • Environmental Justice and Green Criminology (30 Credits) - Optional

      This module investigates perspectives on green criminology, and crimes against the environment and animals. It considers environmental and green offending, the regulation of environmental problems, and global perspectives on green crimes and crimes affecting ecosystems. It introduces the key ideas in green criminology, particularly theoretical debates on animal rights, the legal personhood of animals, and the prosecution of environmental crime. The module also examines the link between violence towards animals and violence towards humans and the extent to which animal abuse might be seen as an indicator of future violent offending or anti-social behaviour. You will develop an understanding of theoretical concepts and practical considerations in environmental justice, the enforcement of environmental and species legislation and the application of a green perspective to criminal justice.

    • Children as Victims and Offenders (30 Credits) - Optional

      This module examines and critically appraises the issue of children as victims and offenders. It explores the functions, roles and responsibilities of a variety of agencies whose task is to protect children and to work with those in trouble with the law, and enables you to develop a critical understanding of the issues underpinning policy and practice in these fields with particular attention to the importance of and problems associated with multi-agency working. The first part of the module focuses on children as victims of physical, sexual and emotional abuse noting the relatively recent discovery of these crimes, examining the high profile cases and enquiries which have accompanied this process and explaining current legislation relating to and the organisation of child protection in England and Wales. The second part of the module turns to how the criminal justice system regards and deals with young people if they break the law. It provides you with a detailed knowledge of how Youth Offending Teams (YOTs) are structured and operate, and contains a strong practice focus. You may wish to move on to working with young people in the criminal justice system upon graduation and this module is designed to acquaint you with the knowledge and skills required in this field.

You can find more information about this course in the programme specification. Module and programme information is indicative and may be subject to change.

  1. Overview
  2. Teaching and learning
  3. Assessment and feedback
  1. UK & EU
  2. International
  3. How to apply
  1. UK & EU
  2. International

How can the BA Criminology support your career?

Many of our graduates have gone on to develop careers in a wide range of third sector organisations including those that deal with victim support, offender and drug rehabilitation, and community based private projects often with the young and the elderly.

Previous graduates have been successful at gaining employment in a wide range of organisations, including:

  • The Metropolitan Police
  • The National Offender Management Service
  • Jural Legal Services
  • The Crown Prosecution Service
  • The Court Service

What support is available?

Our Employability Service will help you to develop skills desired by top employers and gain valuable work experience. We provide workshops, events and one-to-one support with job hunting, writing your CV and cover letters, interview coaching and advice on how to network effectively. We also support you in securing part-time work, placements, internships, and volunteering opportunities, and offer an enterprise support service for those looking to start their own business.

  • Andrew Serghides

    Criminology BA student

    I have always been interested in understanding criminal behaviour, and wanted to gain a theoretical understanding to add to, and improve on, my previous policing perception. I particularly enjoyed the 'Institutions of Criminal Justice' module which required court visits to both Magistrates' and Crown Courts. However, on the whole, the knowledge, experience, and skill that I have gained throughout the course are collectively the most enjoyable aspect of my undergraduate degree at Middlesex.

    Prior to studying Criminology, I was sure that I wanted to join the Metropolitan Police. While this remains an option for the future, my current priority lies in further education and I am presently looking at applying for a GDL (Graduate Diploma in Law).

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Code: L438

Criminology with Psychology BA Honours

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Duration: 3 years full-time, 4 years full-time with placement

Code: L3CY

Foundation Year in Law and Social Sciences

Start: October 2018

Duration: 1 year full-time, + 3 years full-time

Code: See How to apply tab

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