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MA in Criminology

About This Masters Degree

Course Description

The MA offers an advanced study of criminology and criminal justice. You follow a comprehensive programme of modules which draw on the expertise of staff within the department. As such it offers a unique blend of related criminology subjects, covering both theory and policy. Students can also select modules from the Law School, allowing real choice in your postgraduate studies.

The course is taught through a selection of core and optional modules. Core modules are carefully designed to provide the necessary theoretical, methodological and empirical foundations of the course. The module Contemporary Issues and Debates in Criminology does this by examining criminological theory in relation to issues of contemporary importance such as hate crimes, surveillance and genocide. This allows you to see how conceptual frameworks can be applied to policy problems and the lived experience. Criminological Research Methods enables you to enhance your methodological learning by focusing on the application of methods to criminological research. You will then use these skills in producing your dissertation.

Options are taught by specialist academics based on their areas of expertise. The MA in Criminology uses a variety of teaching, learning and assessment methods to enhance the range of skills you will develop. Teaching methods include lectures, workshops and seminars and the modes of assessment include presentations, essays and briefing papers.

Your student experience is enhanced by being part of the Department of Sociology at Sussex, which is a research intensive department that provides distinctive and critical ways of thinking about the social world. Our research is world class, with strengths ranging from gender to globalisation, health to crime, alternative societies to migration, childhood to sexuality, and identity to cosmopolitanism.


Module assessments are varied. We use essays, portfolios, individual and group presentations, and a research-based dissertation. These methods facilitate the development of analytical and transferable skills, such as written and verbal communication, advanced critical analysis, time management, effective planning, carrying out research, and independent learning and working.

Course structure

Autumn term: you take two core modules in Contemporary Issues and Debates in Criminology • Criminology Research Methods.

Spring term: you focus on two areas of interest and choose from Children, Childhood and Violence • Inequalities of Justice • Hate Crime and Sexual Violence • Youth Justice • International and Transnational Offending.

Summer term: you implement the research skills and knowledge you have acquired throughout the course by carrying out a research project in the form of a Dissertation. This core module will explore themes in an area of your own criminological interest.

Visit the MA in Criminology page on the University of Sussex website for more details!

Entry Requirements

A first- or upper-second class undergraduate honours degree in a social science or humanities subject, or equivalent experience

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