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Course content

Explore the relationship between crime and the law, from the criminal justice system and issues with reoffenders, to crime in the media and the glamorisation of drugs.

Our MSc Criminology and Socio-Legal Research forms part of our ESRC Doctoral Training Centre accreditation and combines training in current debates in criminology with an introduction to legal theory and legal methods. It provides a good basis if you wish to conduct criminological research with a socio-legal dimension.

On this course you investigate topics including:
-Philosophy of law and jurisprudence
-Ripping, remixing, and viral culture
-Surveillance and punishment
-The English legal system
-Methods of social control

This course should also interest you if you are without a background in law, as we make good use of legal materials, in addressing our sociological and criminological research questions.

Our Department of Sociology was rated top 10 in the UK for research quality (REF 2014), and we consistently receive strong student satisfaction scores, including 96% overall student satisfaction in 2015.

Our expert staff

We are a large and friendly department, offering a diverse range of research interests and with staff members who are committed to teaching, research and publication that covers a broad geographical spectrum.

Many have worked at the local level with local authorities, justice councils, community partnerships and charities. Others have worked at a national and international level with bodies like the United Nations, the European Commission’s Expert Group on Public Understanding of Science, Amnesty International, The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, the Home Office and national non-governmental organisations.

Specialist facilities

-Dedicated postgraduate support facilities
-Our renowned off-campus Graduate Conference takes place every February
-A unique Student Resource Centre where you can get help with your studies, access examples of previous students’ work, and attend workshops on research skills
-The Sociology common room is open all day Monday-Friday, is stocked with daily newspapers, magazines and journals, and has free drinks available
-Links with the Institute of Social and Economic Research, which conducts large-scale survey projects and has its own library, and the -UK Data Archive, which stores national research data like the British Crime Survey
-Our students’ Sociology Society, a forum for the exchange of ideas, arranging talks by visiting speakers, introducing you to various career pathways, and organising debates

Your future

This course provides excellent preparation for further academic study, and many of our postgraduates go on to successful academic careers, both in the UK and overseas.

Others have established careers in non-governmental organisations, local authorities, specialist think tanks, government departments, charities, media production, and market intelligence.

We work with the university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Example structure

-Dissertation
-Legal Research and the English Legal System
-Approaches to Legal Theory
-Sociological Research Design
-Current Controversies in Criminology and Criminal Justice Policy
-Introduction to Quantitative Analysis (optional)
-Digital Economy (optional)

Visit the Criminology and Socio-Legal Research - MSc page on the University of Essex website for more details!

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