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MSc Criminology and Criminal Justice

Course Description


Are you fascinated by criminology? Hoping to increase your suitability for higher level positions within the criminal justice sector? Southampton Solent University’s postgraduate criminology and criminal justice programme will help you to develop an advanced understanding of the contemporary issues and debates surrounding criminal justice institutions, crime and criminal punishment.

- The course is delivered by an experienced course team with established links to criminal justice agencies, private businesses and charities.
- The teaching team are active researchers and have contributed internationally renowned research projects.
- Students study contemporary and comparative criminology, criminal justice and essential human science research skills.
- Students can also tailor the degree to their own unique career ambitions, picking from optional units in penology, international policing, historic crime, drugs and terror security.
- Optional study trips are available throughout the year, including an unfunded visit to the USA.
- The course concludes with a final research project, where students will research and write a unique dissertation under the guidance of a specialist supervisor.
- Many students focus their dissertation on the area of criminology in which they would like to work, using it to demonstrate their knowledge to employers after graduation.
- Students benefit from small class sizes and regular one-to-one support.

The industry -

Whether you want to work in the social support and welfare sector, in the justice system or with relevant charities - your understanding of criminology and criminal justice will give you the opportunity to make a positive impact on people’s lives.

This is an essential degree for many careers in these sectors, but can also help with a range of roles in other industries. These include various applied and research-based roles that focus on helping people with social or personal issues and supporting the rehabilitation of offenders.

The programme -

Students on Southampton Solent University’s postgraduate criminology and criminal justice programme study the core curriculum alongside a choice of two specialist units. This chance to specialise is important, helping students to orient their knowledge towards specific roles in the criminal justice sector.

This programme also encourages students to develop a range of transferable interpersonal and verbal communication skills through presentations, role-plays, debates, interviews and group work. These competencies are valued in a wide range of industries.

To find out more about the content of each specific unit, please see the ‘course content’ tab.
Enrichment activities and learning opportunities are available alongside the core curriculum, giving students the chance to learn from guest speakers, visit criminal justice organisations and network at industry events. These additional activities help to provide detailed insights into the criminal justice system and the careers it offers. Past speakers have come from the police, courts, prisons, probation services, youth justice services and cyber security firms.

The course team themselves have had extensive experience of the criminal justice system and its related disciplines, providing students with unique personal insights. The ties they have with the professional world have helped past students secure volunteer placements, temporary paid work, work shadowing weeks and internships.

Course Content

Programme specification document - http://mycourse.solent.ac.uk/course/view.php?id=6152

Teaching, learning and assessment -

The course is taught through lectures, group work and projects, and supervision for independent writing and research.

You will be allocated a personal tutor and a dissertation research supervisor.

Work experience -

Past students have completed a wide range of interesting and informative placements with:

- the Association of Chief Police Officers Criminal Records Office
- the criminal justice sector (paid work)
- witness and victim services
- probation services
- youth offending teams
- voluntary positions in the criminal justice field.

Assessment -

You will participate in group work, independent writing and research, group projects and discussions. You will be assessed via a number of 3,500-word assignments and individual and group presentations, in addition to a 20,000-word dissertation.
Study abroad
We run an optional ten-day study trip to the USA during the Christmas break, with visits to the FBI and New Jersey State Police.

There will be opportunities to attend lectures and share views and ideas with students at Ocean County College and Monmouth University. Please note this trip is not included in your tuition fees, and you’ll need to cover your travel and living costs.

Other study trip opportunities may also be available.

Web-based learning -

Solent’s virtual learning environment provides quick online access to assignments, lecture notes, suggested reading and other course information.

Why Solent?

What do we offer?

From a vibrant city centre campus to our first class facilities, this is where you can find out why you should choose Solent.

Facilities - http://www.solent.ac.uk/about/facilities/facilities.aspx

City living - http://www.solent.ac.uk/studying/southampton/living-in-southampton.aspx

Accommodation - http://www.solent.ac.uk/studying/accommodation/accommodation.aspx

Career Potential

With this internationally respected qualification, you’ll be well placed to pursue a variety of career opportunities.

Past graduates have pursued careers in police management, international law enforcement, the National Offender Management Service, financial security and academia.

Suitable roles for graduates include:

- Prison service
- Police
- Probation
- Courts
- Drugs services
- Security
- Public and private sector security and investigation
- Local government community safety

Links with industry -

We welcome regular guest lecturers who provide a detailed insight into working in the criminal justice sector and prospective career opportunities.

Recent speakers have included:

- serving and former police detectives in the Metropolitan and Hampshire Police
- serving chief officers from Hampshire and Dorset Police
- judges and magistrates
- staff from the National Crime Agency, the Association of Chief Police Officers, the National Offender Management Service and the Crown Prosecution Service.

Transferable skills -

You will gain a detailed understanding of criminological issues, which can be applied to many different careers. You will also develop your research and critical analysis skills and gain experience in communication, teamwork and leadership.

Further study -

The MSc provides a solid foundation for subsequent research at MPhil and PhD level.

Tuition fees

The tuition fees for the 2016/2017 academic year are:

UK and EU full-time fees: £5,665

International full-time fees: £12,380

UK and EU part-time fees, year one: £1,895

UK and EU part-time fees, year two: £3,790

International part-time fees: £6,190 per year

Graduation costs -

Graduation is the ceremony to celebrate the achievements of your studies. For graduates in 2015, there is no charge to attend graduation, but you will be required to pay for the rental of your academic gown (approximately £42 per graduate, depending on your award). You may also wish to purchase official photography packages, which range in price from £15 to £200+. Graduation is not compulsory, so if you prefer to have your award sent to you, there is no cost.
For more details, please visit: http://www.solent.ac.uk/studying/graduation/home.aspx

Next steps

Would you like to improve your career prospects within the criminal justice sector? With an expert teaching team, strong links with industry and a curriculum, tailored to suit your ambitions, Southampton Solent University’s postgraduate criminology and criminal justice programme could be the ideal next step towards your dream career.

Visit the MSc Criminology and Criminal Justice page on the Southampton Solent University website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Jamie Curry, graduate

The MSc course is brilliant and being taught in small groups means that the learning can be tailored to your interests. Everybody has a chance to have their say and engage in the discussions.
"I am currently working for the Hampshire Police Constabulary, and I feel that the MSc will benefit me in the job market.

(Student Profile)

Ruth Curtis, student

Studying at Solent has been great, particularly given the expertise of the lecturers and the wide-ranging links with criminal justice agencies.
"The MSc has enabled me to build upon my skills and knowledge in a specialised area. I really enjoy the classes as they allow us to debate important issues and the lecturers are always willing to help out with any queries you have.

(Student Profile)

Paul Stickler, Freelance Lecturer and Researcher in Criminology and ex Police Officer

I found the theory on society and human biological impact on criminal behaviour fascinating and I wish I had been aware of some of this earlier in my career. The tutors were all very helpful and willing to engage in wider debates. Overall, an excellent course which I can recommend to aspiring and established practitioners in the criminal justice area.

(Student Profile)

Natalia Sabadas, Alumni - Researcher at Sustainable Criminal Justice Solutions CIC Limited

The curriculum was structured and developed around contemporary themes in policing such as transnational police cooperation and the fight against terrorism. The research methods and comparative international policing units in particular, offered an array of theoretical insights within the applicability and practical issues surrounding these themes. Such theoretical and practical perspectives have provided me with an insight and the baseline knowledge which I am now able to apply in my current employment.

(Student Profile)

Adrian Kingswell, Alumni – Chief Inspector, (Former), Head of Learning & Development - Hampshire Constabulary

3760.jpg One of the striking elements for me personally, as a former student of this programme, was how the lecturers prompted and encouraged me to critically analyse historical relevant elements of my police career. I can remember policing through the public disorders of the 1980’s particularly the New Age Traveller phenomenon. What I gained through the MSc was understanding the ‘why’. I started to questioned why I did what I did as a police officer back then; the difference being this was now within a far broader, richly informed and deeper context


Entry Requirements

An honours degree at 2:2 or higher in an area related to criminology, and/or an equivalent professional qualification. More Information: View Website

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