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Criminology - MA


Course Description

How do we understand crime? How can it be prevented? Why should crime be punished, and how should we go about it? Criminologists engage with some of the most pressing issues, decisions and dilemmas facing societies today. On our course you explore the nature of crime, criminal justice and punishment within wider social contexts.

Criminology at Essex builds on strong sociological foundations and reflects the diversity of staff interests, including leading contributors to studies of women, young people and criminal justice, prostitution, homicide, victimisation, visual criminology and media, organised crime and law enforcement, terrorism and surveillance, environmental crime and more. Our courses provide critical, conceptual and theoretical analyses of crimes and harms, from the local to the global.

The course provides you with a strong grounding in the key theories, understandings and issues covered by cutting-edge criminology. You explore a wide range of topics, including:
-The analysis, politics and prevention of crime
-Globalisation and various forms of crime
-Security and the state
-New criminological theory
-Terrorism, counter-terrorism, surveillance and human rights

You also develop the skills needed to make your own contribution to the field, gaining a critical and coherent perspective on empirical research and examining the key assumptions and ideological underpinnings of qualitative and quantitative research.

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

You are taught by a team of award-winning internationally renowned scholars widely regarded as leading experts in their fields.

Criminology at Essex is led by Professor Eamonn Carrabine, Professor Pamela Cox, Dr Isabel Crowhurst, Professor Pete Fussey, Dr Anna Sergi, Professor Nigel South, Dr Darren Thiel and Dr Jackie Turton.

All staff are actively engaged in research at the cutting edge of their respective fields of interest and specialism and bring the very latest developments and findings into the classroom. All are prominent writers and the criminology team collectively author the best-selling criminology textbook, Criminology: A Sociological Introduction (now in its 3rd edition), used on undergraduate courses across the country.

Our staff have worked at local, national and international level with bodies from local councils and the Home Office, to Amnesty International and the United Nations.

Specialist facilities

-Our Centre for Criminology hosts expert speakers and practitioners
-Dedicated postgraduate support facilities through 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
-Our renowned off-campus Graduate Conference takes place every February
-The Sociology common room is open all day Monday-Friday, is stocked with daily newspapers, magazines and journals
-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 is 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 research organisations.

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

-Formative Debates in Criminology
-Current Controversies in Criminology and Criminal Justice Policy
-Sociological Research Design
-Dissertation
-Interviewing and Qualitative Data Analysis (optional)
-Organised Crime: Global and Local (optional)
-Critical Perspectives on Terrorism and Counter-Terrorism (optional)

Visit the Criminology - MA page on the University of Essex website for more details!

Entry Requirements


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Recipient: University of Essex

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