The LLM/MSc in Criminal Justice & Penal Change examines the range of legal, political and social responses across the world to what is widely known as 'the penal crisis'.
Blending a rigorous understanding of fundamental theory with evidence about real world problems you’ll analyse recent innovations in theory, policy and practice.
Drawing on a range of disciplinary approaches, the course will enable you to develop a rational and just response to crime.
The LLM/MSc in Criminal Justice & Penal Change is unique in both its approach and its flexibility.
You can choose to graduate with either an LLM or MSc or complete the course early with a PGDip/Cert.
You'll have the option of studying full or part-time and attending classes in the early evening.
You’ll benefit from the work of the CLCJ, which brings together expertise in the study of law, crime, criminal justice as well as interdisciplinary areas between law, sociology, social work, psychology and computer and information science.
As well as providing distinctive postgraduate courses and research opportunities, it conducts internationally leading research and helps to shape public policy, discourse and practice.
You'll be taught by some of the world’s foremost experts not only in academic research but also from the fields of policy and practice.
The course is run by Strathclyde Law School’s Centre for Law, Crime and Justice. It brings together world leading research expertise with some of the most accomplished practitioners and policy officials.
As well as seminars, you’ll be asked to take part in role play exercises, presentations and other forms of learning.
We've an active programme of public lectures from eminent visiting speakers on contemporary topics. There'll be a programme of visits to local justice agencies designed to stimulate your academic learning.
Students on the Strathclyde Masters (LLM or MSc) in Criminal Justice and Penal Change come from a range of backgrounds.
Some are recent graduates in law, humanities and the social sciences from around the world. Many are current practitioners, policy-makers in different fields of criminal justice. They find the course of invaluable assistance in gaining a step up the career ladder.
Where are they now?
Occupations which criminal justice students may (and do) take up include:
Criminologists investigate the causes, consequences and reactions to crime – and this course gives you hands-on experience in real-world situations, designing, analysing and evaluating criminal justice and crime control strategies.
With an interesting and varied curriculum, this programme has a very strong emphasis on applied knowledge and job market skills. You’ll learn by doing; bridging the gap between the classroom and the police station, the lecture theatre and the community centre, and between research and policy. This course is intended to create sophisticated criminological practitioners, able to navigate the realities of criminal justice and crime control, with superior experience, skills and knowledge of how to think, act and reflect criminologically.
This MA has a strong emphasis on communication, research, problem-solving, teamwork, and policy analysis. These skills will be developed through classroom discussion and debate through practical engagement with external criminal justice and community safety organisations. You’ll be taught by a team of expert criminologists from a variety of specialist backgrounds, including: law, sociology, psychology, history, and politics.
Classes will be interactive, discursive, and task-based. There will be few traditional ‘lectures’, but plenty of workshops where you’ll be involved in planning, preparing and leading. With support from staff, you’ll have the freedom to shape the course of your learning and focus on your personal interests and career ambitions.
The course is flexible, teaching is blended between fortnightly 2-hour workshops interspersed with preparation and online support. Assessment is task-based and varied, and will include: written essays, oral presentations, events organisation, engagement projects, research projects and problem-solving exercises. The Crime Control and Community Safety Hub provides a separate resource room and office space for students on this degree to meet and undertake project work.
You’ll be provided with a high level of support throughout your studies, and academic support tutors work with small groups to provide support and advice.
The MA in Criminal Justice and Crime Control aims to produce postgraduates who are versatile communicators, effective problem-solvers, policy analysts, and evidence-led decision makers.
Completing this course opens up a wide range of careers in the following fields: policing, probation, offender management, prison service, community safety, crime prevention, private and corporate security, civil service, border agency, customs and excise, military policing, security services, legal professions, social housing, offender rehabilitation, youth justice, supporting people, crime analysts, victims and survivors support, local government, and retail / industrial surveillance.
The skills you’ll develop on this programme will be transferable in a number of other careers, including: information technology, management, and administration. Careers in retail and hospitality management, marketing and sales, financial services, research and product development are also successfully pursued by graduates with criminology qualifications.
* All modules are subject to availability.
The General Law programme at Aberdeen is one of the best programmes in terms of scope and areas of interest you can choose to study at advanced level. If your first degree was in a specific area of law there is nothing preventing you from choosing another area of law completely or a complementary area. You could study environmental law areas such as oil and gas law, energy and environmental law, low carbon energy transition with further environmental regulation. If you are more interested in criminal law you could look at Criminology, the politics of human rights, humanitarian law. If you are more interested in business you might choose international law, intellectual property law, world trade organisation or for business with a creative aspect you might think about specialist in cultural property issues or law for business and arts and museums law. There are many possible mixes of these general areas of law you might want to explore. Employment possibilities are huge from this range of areas of law and include all notable areas to practise law and careers within the legal profession to welfare sectors such as employment, business, HR and finance.
You may become a Barrister if you wish to represent people at High Court and Magistrates court to put legal argument forward for decision. You could start off as a legal executive to later qualify as a solicitor with further training or after a number of years experience you may wish to become a judge. If you want some work experience you could become a court usher. Other careers include a Paralegal. This role undertakes much of a lawyers role in drafting documents, meetings and contracts. If you decide your law degree is useful for other areas you may look at Civil Service careers, become a politician, work in the police, city, or teach.
This programme is ideal if you want to be a generalist to an advanced level rather than a specialist in a specific area of law. You develop your analysis and research skills and you have the option of wide ranging courses to choose from which stretches your intellectual thinking capabilities in a top 10 School of Law (Complete University Guide 2018)
Courses listed for the programme
Optional (4 courses 2 in Semester 1 and 2)
Find out more detail by visiting the programme web page
Find out more about:
Find out more about living in Aberdeen and living costs
You may be interested in:
This course is specifically designed for those needing strategic level skills and knowledge to effectively develop and implement plans in the security sector. Enabling participants to analyse, evaluate and communicate emerging security challenges within state, regional, national and international frameworks.
This course is suitable for those with a keen academic and practical interest in responding to the challenges associated with security sector reform. You might be an official in a government department or a member of the security forces, or an aspirant for leadership in an international organisation, an international NGO or in civil society. The course is also relevant to those who wish to enhance their knowledge and skills based on a related first degree, or those seeking to pursue a career in the fields of human security or national security.
By the end of their course of study, graduates will be able to:
NOTE: Cranfield University believes that our academic provision should remain current and relevant and to achieve this we periodically review and update our courses. The MSc Security Sector Management course is currently undergoing such a review and this may mean some changes are made before the next academic year. Applicants will be kept informed of these exciting new developments before an offer of admission to the course is made.
This course is offered as an executive part-time blended learning programme combining residential sessions, each consisting of two modules, at either end of the taught phase of the course with distance learning for the remaining 8 modules. The awards of MSc, PgDip and PgCert all apply to the blended learning option.
Postgraduate certificate: Requires the completion of Module 1 and 2, plus 4 other modules. Postgraduate diploma: Requires the completion of all modules. Masters of Science: Requires the completion of all modules as well as a 20,000-word research dissertation.
The dissertation phase of the course for MSc students gives them the opportunity to research and write up to 20,000 words on a security topic of their choice. It could well be related to their regular work and will take approximately 6 months to complete. It will allow the student to explore their chosen interest by thought, wide reading, research, debate and discussion, supported by an academic supervisor with knowledge of the general topic, in order to produce a document of academic and practical value.
Comprehensive online learning resources with opportunities for collaborative group work at residential schools, together with assignments and an individual project dissertation.
This degree is for independent, critical thinkers who want to work, or are working, within criminal justice or want to undertake further research. Many of our students have undergraduate criminology degrees, and come from universities across the world. Often they want to continue their learning or specialise within a specific subject area. Students also come from other science, humanities and legal backgrounds and from within the criminal justice system. Research methods form a key component of the programme so having an interest in data collection and analysis is valuable.
At City we believe crime is multi-dimensional, which is why this MSc course brings the victim into focus, not just the offender. The criminal mind is complex and our understanding of it matters – not just to the individual, but also to their family, the community and wider society at large.
We live in a criminogenic global society; one that is producing new forms of crime, and new criminal opportunities. City’s Criminology and Criminal Justice MSc course unpicks the power of the criminological imagination within this society.
This is not a Masters that focuses purely on criminal justice or crime control – instead we emphasise cutting-edge theoretical analysis and methodological training, so you can research the contemporary significance of crime and see how it can be a powerful marker of social and institutional change.
Originally part of City’s MA in Human Rights, this degree offers a distinctive perspective on the relationship between criminology and human rights violations. It is global in outlook because, by its nature, crime is transnational and is taught by eminent criminologists who author the books that appear on reading lists across the country.
Here are some of the questions the course poses:
We will teach you through a combination of lectures, interactive workshops and seminars, in the first and second term (September-April). This is supplemented by insight from external visiting criminologists, criminal justice charities, research agencies and, in some cases, retired criminals. This gives you the opportunity to ask questions, debate your ideas and present your own evidence around particular arguments.
During the dissertation phase of the degree you also have the chance to visit the Central Criminal Court (otherwise known as the Old Bailey) and in some cases undertake a prison visit. One student is currently in New York, researching the New York Police Department, as part of her dissertation on the stresses of being a police officer in 2016.
The majority of postgraduate sociology modules are assessed by coursework. However, if you choose to study some modules outside of the department you may have different assessment methods so please check this carefully. You will need to gain a minimum pass mark of 50% in all assessment components.
The dissertation marks the point in the course where you begin to take hold of your research and let your criminological imagination come into play. The dissertation (of 15,000 words) accounts for one third of the total marks for the Criminology and Criminal Justice MSc degree. By the end of the first term you will have to start considering your dissertation topic. You may already know you area of focus, but we offer guidance and support through dissertation workshops.
You will take three 30-credit compulsory core modules and two 15-credit elective modules. Your choice of elective modules will hone your degree towards your own area of interest. In the final part of the course you take part in a dissertation workshop and produce a dissertation over the summer period.
The first module, ‘Analysing crime’ makes up the course’s theoretical base. You then research contemporary developments in criminal justice and penal policy within the second core module. At this point in the course you get to choose from a number of elective modules covering diverse topics including the dark side of media notoriety and celebrity, and the criminal mind. All these modules draw on the School’s research strengths making them unique to City.
NB: Elective module choices are subject to availability and timetabling constraints.
The Criminology and Criminal Justice course is taught by internationally recognised experts and prepares you for careers across the public, private and voluntary sectors.
From research to policy development and from the security services to the criminal justice system and victim support, you will have a wealth of employment options once you graduate. Previous graduates are now working in:
This MSc, designed by a panel of academic departments, industrial partners and law enforcement and security agencies, introduces students to the fundamental knowledge, core expertise and advanced, evidence-driven methodological tools and approaches required to understand, analyse, prevent, disrupt and detect organised crime and terrorism.
Students develop an understanding of how science, engineering and a variety of professional disciplines can contribute to tackling organised crime and terrorism. By the end of the programme, they will be able to apply appropriate scientific principles and methods to security problems, think strategically to develop and implement countermeasures, and appreciate the complexity involved in the design and implementation of organised crime and terrorism threat-reduction technologies.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
Students are required to complete five core modules (75 credits), three optional modules (45 credits), and a dissertation (60 credits).
A Postgraduate Diploma comprising five core modules (75 credits) and three optional modules (45 credits), and which may lead to the MSc, is offered.
Students choose three of the following:
NB: places for optional modules are awarded on a first-come first-served basis.
All MSc students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 10,000 words.
Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, projects and laboratory classes. Student performance is assessed through laboratory and project reports, unseen written examination, coursework, presentations, and the research project and dissertation.
Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Countering Organised Crime and Terrorism MSc
This unique linking of organised crime and terrorism, and the study of methodologies that can practically tackle both of these areas, means that this MSc holds appeal for employers across a broad range of industries.
Recent career destinations for this degree
This programme equips students with the knowledge to develop operational strategies to counter organised crime and terrorism. This unique linking of organised crime and terrorism, and the study of methodologies that can practically tackle both of these areas, means that this MSc holds appeal for employers across a broad range of industries.
Each year we ask our graduates to tell us about their experience of the programme and their career after leaving UCL and we include some real-life graduate profiles on our website.
Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.
The UCL Jill Dando Institute, of which UCL Security & Crime Science is the core component, is the first research institution in the world devoted specifically to reducing crime through teaching, research, public policy analysis and by the dissemination of evidence-based information on crime reduction.
This MSc programme is delivered by experienced practitioners and researchers working in counter-terrorism, intelligence, law enforcement, risk assessment and security technology. It boasts a unique multidisciplinary platform, being the only postgraduate programme of its kind in the world taught in a faculty of engineering sciences, integrating the cutting-edge of the social and engineering sciences in the security domain.
Our graduate students come from varied backgrounds; many are practitioners and are encouraged to contribute their experience in and out of the classroom.
The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.
Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.
Recognising the challenge for politicians, policy makers and practitioners in the criminal justice, and criminal law fields, this programme addresses the complex problems that crime poses for contemporary societies.
You will take two core and four optional courses, as well as submit a dissertation on a subject of your choice.
You will be well equipped for careers in public, private and third sector agencies concerned with crime prevention and community safety. The programme provides an excellent professional development choice for social workers and social work managers, prison governors or officers, police officers and lawyers.
This specialist masters degree appeals to practitioners in the field of criminal justice, particularly: solicitors, barristers, CPS employees and police officers. Lawyers at the start of their career have found this course helps them to build their knowledge and expertise in a specialist area.
The Specialist LLM in Criminal Litigation is the first postgraduate degree course in the UK to be devoted exclusively to the critical study of criminal litigation. It focuses on the principles upon which the criminal justice system is based by placing them in a comparative context. This masters course has been designed to allow you to examine important areas of criminal litigation in greater depth than is usually possible either at undergraduate level or on a professional training course.
As a City Law School student you will benefit from everything City has to offer including the Learning Success department and Lawbore, an online resource designed to help you find the information you need for the course modules. All course modules have online depositories through Moodle.
You will benefit from City, University of London’s extensive library of hard copy and electronic resources, including its comprehensive database of domestic and international caselaw, legislation, treaties and legal periodicals. There are two law-specific libraries – one at the Gray’s Inn campus and one at our Northampton square campus - with individual study spaces and dedicated rooms for group work.
Additionally, we are a short walk away from the British Library and the Law Library of the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies.
This course is taught by leading academics as well as visiting practitioners including barristers and solicitors who work in private practice and in legal departments of major companies.
All modules are structured as 10 weekly two-hour seminars which comprise both lectures as well as interactive tutorials. All modules are supported by our online learning platform - Moodle.
Assessment is by way of coursework which comprises 100% of the final mark in each module. Each module carries the same weight in terms of the overall qualification.
You will be allocated a dedicated supervisor for your dissertation who will help you develop a specific topic and provide support in terms of resources, content and structure.
As with all LLM specialisms at City, University of London, you may take either 5 modules and a shorter dissertation (10,000 words) or 4 modules and a longer dissertation (20,000 words). All modules are of the same duration and are taught per term (September – December or January – April) rather than the whole academic year. If you take 4 modules you will take 2 per term in each term and if you take 5 modules will have 3 in one term and 2 in the other. Dissertations are written during the summer term when there are no classes.
In order to obtain this specialism, you must choose at least three modules from within this specialism and write your dissertation on a subject within the specialism.
Dissertation (incorporating research methods training)
Choose from the following 30-credit modules:
For your remaining modules you can choose from more than 50 modules covering a diverse range of subjects.
Our past students have included lawyers on a career break and those seeking judicial appointment wishing to broaden their knowledge and raise their practical awareness. Many students have taken this LLM as an in-depth transition from their LLB or BA courses prior to studying for the Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC) or Legal Practice Course (LPC).
If you are interested in how current societies are shaped by modern issues this programme looks at European developments and how new frontiers came about. The programme comes from a very informed body of research undertaken for the European Commission and at the 'New Europe Centre' in Aberdeen. People who have studied this programme go on to work within the civil service, as foreign correspondents or diplomats, within international offices, in NGOs, political parties and advisors and as researchers.
You consider how European societies have been shaped and changed looking at migration, social policy, ethical relations, citizenship, work and family looking at population, divisions and social relationships. You study population decline and increases, xenophobia, divisions in society, social relationships within Europe from a range of contemporary resources.
Find out more detail by visiting the programme web page
Find out about fees
*Please be advised that some programmes have different tuition fees from those listed above and that some programmes also have additional costs.
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Find out more about living in Aberdeen and living costs
This MA Criminology and Criminal Justice programme is designed to offer students, with or without a first degree in Criminology and Criminal Justice, the opportunity to progress academically and professionally. The programme builds on expertise and specialist interests across the Criminology and Social Work programmes. It offers students and professionals the opportunity for Continuing Professional Development.
A distinctive feature of the MA Criminology and Criminal Justice programme is that it is delivered 100 per cent online, affording the busy student the flexibility to access postgraduate study while maintaining other commitments. The lectures are delivered via Moodle software, allowing excellent flexibility for times and days of study. Students will experience the programme and its online inter-active approach, its relevance to the work place and its challenging blend of modules both stimulating and supportive. This also means that the programme can be studied internationally.
The range of modules are contemporary and relevant to the current criminal justice landscape and will help to build on a number of key skills that enhance the student’s critical thinking and in turn, will thrive in a professional environment. Students will acquire an extensive range of generic skills which are widely accepted as providing an excellent preparation for many careers. In addition to subject skills and knowledge, graduates also develop skills in communication, numeracy, teamwork, critical thinking, computing, and independent learning. All are highly valued by employers.
The MA Criminology and Criminal Justice programme integrates theory, social research, skills and professional experience, preparing students with critical thinking skills for employment in the workforce in criminal and community justice related settings. The programme aims to:
The MA Criminology and Criminal Justice programme begins with two core modules. The Advanced Research Methods module explores paradigms and methods for research in the criminal justice area as a prelude for the Research Project module to be undertaken by those progressing to the MA award. Students complete one other core module called Contemporary Crime and Justice which explores various types of offences and categories of offenders so that students develop a critical appreciation of how processes of justice understand and respond to particular types of offending.
Students then have the option of completing two out of four modules which deal with issues of relevance across a range of criminal justice practice contexts. Attachment Theory has become increasingly important in child and adult context for understanding offending behaviour and so this module explores how attachment deficits are linked to crime. Substance Misuse is a cross cutting concern in a range of criminal justice contexts and therefore also forms the basis for a specific module of study. Negotiated Learning will give students the academic flexibility to study a topic of their own choosing, which could be related to their work. Finally, students have the option of studying Terrorism and its Consequences.
Each module is delivered weekly over 12 sessions.
The MA concludes when students submit a Research Project based on primary research into an issue of criminological significance.
The information listed in this section is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal academic framework review, so may be subject to change.
Each module (except the Research Project) requires students to complete a 5,000 word essay. Trimester Three requires students to complete a 12,000 word Research Project.
Glyndwr University offer excellent support for students with learning differences.
The MA Criminology and Criminal Justice programme allows students to reach their vocational aspirations, making them stand out to a wide range of employers attached to the fields of:
With further postgraduate study, career paths open to graduates may include Counselling Psychology, Forensic Psychology, Social Work or teaching and research.