Studying criminology is an interesting, engaging and rewarding study path. Criminology is a degree that can lead you to make a significant difference in society. When you study criminology you gain insight into the social, personal and even political elements of crime. You’ll develop an understanding of how to approach and solve these.
Criminology is the study of crime and criminal behaviour, how and why it may occur as well as methods to try and prevent it. The subject covers the scientific analysis of both individual criminal behaviour and wider societal or sociological trends. Criminology is a multifaceted discipline that draws on numerous other fields including history, anthropology, psychology, sociology and criminal law. Criminology offers a method of trying to understand the causes of crime and what strategies offer solutions for its reduction and mitigation.
Due to the multi-disciplinary nature of criminology, a degree in the subject will see you cover a range of theories, topics and ideas. What you will study can also depend on whether you are taking a degree exclusively in criminology or have combined the subject with another specialisation such as law, psychology, criminal justice and social policy. The modules you cover will also depend on where you study, however, there will be some core areas that you’ll need to master including:
- Criminal behaviour
- The legal context of crime
- Crime prevention methods
- The sociological scope of crime
- Social anthropology
- Quantitative analysis
- Social policy
- Criminal psychology
- Qualitative research skills
- The historical context of crime
- Physiology of crime
- Gender and society
This is certainly not an exhaustive list of all the topics that you will cover and you may find a particular area of specialisation that is of particular interest to you. This may come in handy when you reach your final year or postgraduate studies, as you’ll potentially be writing a dissertation on the topic.
The entry requirements to study criminology
Criminology degrees are offered at both bachelor of arts (BA) and bachelor of science (BSc) qualifications. Make sure to check what’s on offer at the university you wish to attend and whether you can take a dual major by combining criminology with a complimentary subject. Entry requirements for a criminology degree will differ but, in most cases, you will need a minimum of an ABB result at A-level or equivalent. It is also a requirement to demonstrate that you have the necessary understanding of English, especially with the written assessment-based nature of the degree.
One of the good things about a degree in the subject is that you’re equipped with some key skills that many employers value. These include:
- Critical thinking
- Analytical skills
Studying for a degree in criminology will open up doors for you in several areas of specialisation, depending on your interests. This can be but is not limited to:
- Forensic psychology
- Forensic science
- Criminal law
- Criminal Justice
- Social policy
- Human rights
- Applied social science
You can also pursue a degree in criminology at both a master’s degree and doctoral degree level. Much will depend on your career ambitions and the profession you wish to pursue.
Careers Available for Criminology Major
Speaking of careers and professions, you’re likely wondering what you can do with a criminology degree and what sort of jobs are available in the field. Some of the roles that you could fulfil having completed a criminology degree include:
- Social worker
- Law enforcement officer
- Civil servant
- Risk analyst
- Community development manager
The other good news is that you’re unlikely not to be able to find work after graduating, with 84 per cent of graduates in employment or further study. Your earning potential will also increase with experience.