The course was one of the first to take an internationally comparative perspective across a broad range of criminology and criminal justice issues. It is designed to meet the needs of three groups of potential students: those requiring a thorough research training specialising in criminology and criminal justice; those who are interested in pursuing criminology and criminal justice to an advanced level; and practitioners in the criminal justice field who wish to expand their horizons from national to international levels. The programme components consist of a generic research module (The Research Process) for training in qualitative and quantitative research methods in the Social Sciences, specialised training in Applied Research Criminology and a module on international case studies in Criminology, which allows students to incorporate their particular research interests and areas of enquiry in comparative criminological and criminal justice research. The MA includes a 20,000 word dissertation.
Structure The course aims to provide advanced training in research and analysis, linking theoretical awareness with empirical studies in criminology and criminal justice. The taught element of the course is studied by both MA and Diploma students and consists of core research training and theory modules, plus a module focussing on international and comparative criminological and criminal justice research. MA students who successfully complete the taught element proceed to the research dissertation.
The Research Process Comparative Criminological Research Key Issues in Crime and Justice Empirical studies:
Applied Research in Criminology MA students also take part in the fortnightly lecture series of the School of Social Sciences. Visiting speakers and Bangor staff present topics related to social policy, criminology and sociology.
Research Dissertation The dissertation is a piece of independent research where you are expected to apply your research skills to a specific criminological or criminal justice topic. You will conduct this work with academic guidance provided by your supervisor who will be a member of the criminology and criminal justice team. Examples of successful MA dissertations in the past include:
Youth crime: high spirits or a criminal act Sex offenders in the community Human trafficking An Englishman’s home is his castle ’Get out of jail free’ – malingered psychosis in prison populations Research Interests of the Criminology and Criminal Justice Team Youth homelessness and crime Institutional child abuse Critical approaches to law, crime and criminology Sociology of law Public opinion on crime and criminal justice Penal policy Rural criminology Lay judges and jurors Procedural justice Popular legal culture, including film and TV Victimology Islamic extremism and terrorism Trust in courts, police and the legal profession Teaching and assessment methods Teaching occurs via lectures, seminars and tutorials given by research experts in the School of Social Sciences. The team of lecturers employs the concept of ’active learning’ by students. Assessment methods include essays, assignments, presentations and a 20,000 word dissertation.
Careers The course prepares for a wide range of employment including:
Law-enforcement agencies: the police, customs, the prison service Public administration: including crime prevention units, offender management, general administration, international institutions Political associations, work for members of parliaments, for lobby groups related to the criminal justice system and to issues of social justice broadly conceived Research institutes, researching criminological and sociological issues Academic institutions such as universities
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