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BSc (Hons)
Criminology

Criminology is as fascinating as Sherlock Holmes and CSI lead you to believe. If you’re interested in understanding the criminal mind, exploring the effect of social influences and looking into how the criminal justice system can combat issues such as drug abuse, robbery and terrorism, then this course could be for you.

Qualification: BSc (Hons)

UCAS code: M930

Study mode: Full-time

Location: High Wycombe Campus

Duration: Three years

Start date: September


Is this course for me?

Crime looms ever larger in our lives, from street robbery to drug abuse, terrorism to corporate fraud. Are you interested in finding out why people commit crime? What the police and criminal justice agencies can do to fight it? Criminology sheds light on these and a variety of other key issues shaping society.

What will this course cover?
As you begin this course, you’ll be introduced to criminological theory, method and historical understanding. This provides you with a solid grounding in the tools needed to carry out your own research. You’ll benefit from having lecturers from policing, sociology and psychology backgrounds. These tutors are highly experienced in providing academic and personal support throughout your research studies. 

In some modules of this course, there may be opportunities for you to participate in field trips which may require self-funding. These trips allow you to observe theory learned in the classroom being put into professional practice.

Over the course of this degree you’ll study the operation of the criminal justice system, looking at subjects such as law, human rights, prisons and probation. The key elements of policing will also be covered and you’ll get to choose from a range of criminological topics such as Critical Issues In Criminology and Understanding Crime: Types and Trends. During this programme you’ll be introduced to many of the major debates in criminology and given the opportunity to study specific areas in more detail.

What will this course cover?

Our teaching team is highly regarded for its research and publications. Many of our lecturers have active research interests and have worked on projects with the Home Office, Amnesty International, local authorities and other bodies.

Excellent facilities
Our criminal investigative suite includes a custody desk, interview room, cell and crime scene investigation room. There are also adjoining seminar rooms with live and recorded video feed. These facilities are mainly used by Criminology, Police Studies and Law students, but are also used by Thames Valley Police and their scene of crime officers for short course training.

Year One

  • Introduction to Criminology
  • Police, Crime and the Media
  • Criminal Justice Process
  • Making Sense of Society
  • Social Policy and Society

Year Two

  • Research Methods
  • Human Rights and Crimes Against Humanity
  • Forms of Crime
  • Knowledge of Policing
  • Issues in Criminology: Discrimination
  • Contemporary Criminology
  • Gender and Sexuality in Society
  • 'Race', Ethnicity and Migration

Year Three

  • Cybercrime
  • Radicalisation and Terrorism
  • Disability, Mental Health and the Criminal Justice System
  • Comparative Criminal Justice
  • Criminal Justice Policy
  • Globalisation and Social Change
  • Dissertation
  • Personal and Professional Development
  • Communication, Interaction and the Criminal Justice System
  • Victimology
  • Interpersonal Violence

What are the entry requirements?

A typical offer will include GCSE Maths and English at grade C or above and a UCAS Tariff score of 80-96. A minimum of two full A-levels (or equivalent) is required. Every application is considered on an individual basis.

For further details of our international English entry requirements, please visit our international pages.

Applications will also be considered from those who have gained relevant skills through vocational qualifications or from mature applicants with experience of work-based responsibility and of self-directed learning.

How much does it cost?

Full-time Home and EU: £9,250 per year
Full-time International: £10,500 per year

For information on fees and finance, please view our fees and funding section.

Fees quoted are for the next intake and are subject to change. Fee costs for subsequent years are subject to rise with inflation or course delivery costs.

For fees for international students, visit our international section.

Visit our Why Bucks? section to discover what studying at Bucks could mean for you.

How do I apply?

For application details please visit bucks.ac.uk/applynow.

What are my career prospects?

Criminal justice is a growth employment area and graduates will find themselves well qualified to pursue a range of related careers.

The police, prisons and probation service are perhaps the most popular employment channels, but criminological knowledge, awareness and experience are valuable in a range of government areas including the Home Office. Alternatively, you may choose to work in the private security sector.

You’ll also have the opportunity to further your criminology studies at postgraduate level.

How will you help me prepare for my future?
Throughout your time with us we’ll support you on the route to your chosen career. We’ll help you to develop crucial skills, encouraging you to become enterprising, employable and good leaders. Our modules and teaching expertise will help you become more independent as a learner and more certain of your discipline expertise.

We also help you find employment after graduation. Have a look at our Careers and Employability pages to find out more.


The course tutors are always finding new ways to introduce information in fun and creative ways. With such well qualified and passionate academics it's easy to see why so many people enjoy studying here.

Looking around Universities is daunting, but when I first came to view Bucks New University I was really taken by the dedication, friendliness and excitement of all of the team showing you the University. The friendly atmosphere is contagious!

Alexandria Vineyard - third year


The lecturers treat the students not as numbers, but as people. They are always there to give us support and direction. They always encourage us to achieve the best we can and apply what we learn to real life.

Della Harrison