Criminology focuses on the causes and consequences of crime, as well as how the criminal justice system responds to crime. Criminologists are interested in how activities come to be defined as criminal, and why definitions of crime vary across countries and over time. The subject includes a wide range of social and psychological theories that attempt to explain criminal behaviour and the effective operation of the criminal justice system.
For 2020, Criminology at Queen’s has been ranked in the top ten criminology degrees in the Guardian League Tables, having also been the number one ranked criminology degree in UK in 2018.
"I loved my time at Queens, I would do it all over again if I could. My Criminology degree was literally the most interesting thing I have ever done. I learned so much about crime, in Northern Ireland especially, because I am English so I didn’t know about it to start with. Third year I loved how you get to choose what you want to learn more about and what you want to go into further depth with …"
BA Single Honours Criminology graduate 2017
|Introduction||Modules often draw on international comparisons with a strong Irish (North and South) emphasis. All of the optional modules are taught by experts in the area, who have published textbooks and research articles on the topic at hand.|
|Stage 1 Core Modules||These core modules aim to introduce students to the discipline of criminology, provide you with a range of intellectual and practical skills to develop your understanding of crime, criminal justice and criminalisation. These modules are delivered by our core criminology team - as experts in their respective fields - and who have published widely on the topics you will be learning. These core criminology will be taught alongside complementary optional modules in stage 1 (below) which develop student understandings of wider societal, government policy and sociological dynamics which inform understandings of, and responses to, crime phenomenon.|
- Introducing Criminology
- Exploring Criminology
|Stage 1 Optional Modules||- Visualising the Social World|
- Introducing Social Policy
- Themes and Issues in Social Policy
- The Sociological Imagination
- Comparative Politics
- Issues in Contemporary Politics
- Rethinking Society
- Digital Society
|Stage 2 Core Modules||As student progress into year two, the criminology degree builds upon the foundational skills and knowledge developed at stage one, and begins to specialise down in to specific fields of criminological interest. This includes applied theoretical considerations, considering important criminological issues in society, along with with examining policing and security in society. In particular, level two focuses on providing students with key research skills - to develop applied quantitative and qualitative research approaches to criminological and societal issues. There are additional optional modules (below) which allow students to further develop areas of interest and expertise delivered by our research-active team.|
- Criminological Theory
- Qualitative Research Skills
- Quantitative Research Skills
- Crime and Society
- Policing and Society
|Stage 2 Optional Modules||- Crime and the Media|
- Environmental Justice
- Theory Counts
|Stage 3 Core Modules||In the final year of your degree, students will further extend and deepen their criminological knowledge into specialist, research-led modules, developing analytical and critical skills across a range of areas including border criminology, prisons and desistance, youth justice and psychology. For single BA Criminology students, you will also undertake your own research in the form of a dissertation topic of your choice - which will draw on the the research and intellectual skills accrued across the various stages of the the degree.|
- Punishment, Penal Policy and Prison
- Research Project and Dissertation
- Youth, Crime and Criminal Justice
- Criminology Beyond Borders
|Stage 3 Optional Modules||- Psychological Perspectives on Crime|
- Reintegration after Prison
- Modelling the Social World
- Social Identity: Difference and Inequalities
|The Optional Q-Step Exit Pathway||Students who wish to benefit from specialist training in quantitative research can undertake a series of dedicated social science research modules over the course of their degree studies. Successful completion of 80 CATS credits of advanced quantitative research training (four modules) in level 2 and level 3 will receive the enhancement of BSc “with Quantitative Methods” added to the name of the degree awarded.|
|Value Added to Your Degree||As part of international expertise and profile of the criminology academics at QUB, you will get a range of opportunities to engage with ‘real-world’ stakeholders in the criminal justice and voluntary / community sector world. These will include expert inputs, field trips and engagements with a range of actors and organisations with whom many of our academics work with as part of their wider research. In addition, students will also become part of the vibrant research community at QUB, with opportunities across year to attend criminology talks, events and guest speakers to broaden you knowledge and understanding of the criminological field.|
A range of modules throughout second and third year invite guest speakers from criminal justice organisations and NGOs to discuss the practices of policing, offender management, supporting offenders. This includes representatives from the Police Service of Northern Ireland, the Northern Ireland Prison Service, the Youth Justice System. Local NGOs discuss their work with young people in conflict with the law, offender reintegration, supporting refugees and asylum seekers.
Degree Plus is an opportunity for any current Queen’s student to get involved and gain accreditation from Queen’s for completing extra-curricular work related learning alongside their degree.
Why do it?
Over 2000 Students successfully complete Degree Plus each year. In doing so, they build up valuable experience(s) and practice in articulating their development and achievements to others (e.g. employers or activity providers via application, presentation or interview). They also receive a certificate at graduation.
Andy’s research interests are in adolescent development;teenage alcohol and drug use; longitudinal research; longitudinal data analysis; SEM.
John’s research interests are in the broad area of policing. He has a particular interest in police stop and search powers, community policing, police reform, public order policing and paramilitarism.
Mary-Louise's research interests are in youth offending, youth justice, domestic violence and youth homelessness.
Michelle’s research interests are in identity, violence, imprisonment, shame, masculinity, penal reform, reintegration, desistance, criminological psychology and restorative justice.
Dr Siobhán McAlister is a Lecturer in Criminology. Siobhan's research interests are in youth marginalisation, youth and conflict and youth justice.
Teresa’s reseach interests are in social control, reactions to criminal and deviant activities, war and its relations to issues of crime and justice, forms of punishment in war, military intervention, security sector reform; state crimes, security and technology, risk, and feminist issues.
Shadd's research interests are in Desistance from crime, offender reintegration, penal reform, narrative methodology.
|Large Group Teaching||6 (hours maximum)|
hours of lectures
|Personal Study||24 (hours maximum)|
22–24 hours studying and revising in your own time each week, including some guided study using handouts, online activities, etc
|Small Group Teaching/Personal Tutorial||6 (hours maximum)|
At Queen’s, we aim to deliver a high quality learning environment that embeds intellectual curiosity, innovation and best practice in learning, teaching and student support to enable students to achieve their full academic potential.
On the BA (Hons.) in Criminology we do this by providing a range of learning experiences which enable our students to engage with subject experts, develop attributes and perspectives that will equip them for life and work in a global society and make use of innovative technologies and a world class library that enhances their development as independent, lifelong learners.
Criminology students at Queen's are taught in a dynamic academic environment by an award-winning teaching staff, in a School which was rated as one of the leading departments in the United Kingdom.
Examples of the opportunities provided for learning on this course are:
Details of assessments associated with this course are outlined below:
As you progress through your course you will receive general and specific feedback about your work from a variety of sources including lecturers, module co-ordinators, personal tutors, advisers of study and your peers. As a university student, you will be expected to take a greater role in reflecting on this and taking the initiative in continuously improving the quality of your work. Feedback may be provided in a variety of forms including:
The School is located within a recently renovated building, with state of the art teaching and learning facilities, together with dedicated student space including a large student common room. The teaching facilities enable an interactive learning environment.
|A level requirements|
|Irish leaving certificate requirements|
Successful completion of Access Course with an average of 70%.
|International Baccalaureate Diploma|
33 points overall, including 6,5,5 at Higher Level. If not offered at Higher Level/GCSE then Standard Level grade 4 in English would be accepted.
|BTEC Level 3 Extended/National Extended Diploma|
QCF Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma (180 credits), with 120 credits at Distinction grade and 60 credits at Merit grade.
RQF Level 3 BTEC National Extended Diploma (1080 Guided Learning Hours (GLH)), with at least 660 GLH at Distinction grade (minimum 240 GLH to be externally assessed) and 420 GLH at Merit grade.
There are no specific subject requirements to study Criminology.
A minimum of a 2:2 Honours Degree
In addition, to the entrance requirements above, it is essential that you read our guidance below on 'How we choose our students' prior to submitting your UCAS application.
Applications are dealt with centrally by the Admissions and Access Service rather than by individual University Schools. Once your on-line form has been processed by UCAS and forwarded to Queen's, an acknowledgement is normally sent within two weeks of its receipt at the University.
Selection is on the basis of the information provided on your UCAS form. Decisions are made on an ongoing basis and will be notified to you via UCAS.
Demand for places differs from course to course and for this degree, past performance at GCSE is taken into account when deciding whether or not to make conditional offers. For entry last year, we started making offers to applicants offering A-Level/BTEC Level 3 qualifications, who have achieved 6 grade B/6 (or averaged to 6 grade B/6) at GCSE. This threshold may be lowered as the cycle progresses depending upon the number and quality of applications. The final threshold is not usually determined until late in the admissions cycle, so there may be a delay in processing applicants who do not meet the initial threshold. GCSE English Language grade C is also required
Offers are normally made on the basis of 3 A-levels. The offer for repeat applicants is set in terms of 3 A-Levels only and is normally the same as that asked from the first time applicants. Grades may be held from the previous year.
Applicants offering two A-levels and one BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/National Extended Certificate (or equivalent qualification), or one A-level and a BTEC Diploma/National Diploma (or equivalent qualification) will also be considered. Offers will be made in terms of performance in individual BTEC units rather than the overall BTEC grade(s) awarded. Please note that a maximum of one BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/National Extended Certificate (or equivalent) will be counted as part of an applicant’s portfolio of qualifications. The normal GCSE profile will be expected.
For applicants offering a HNC, the current requirements are successful completion of the HNC with 2 Distinctions and remainder Merits.
For those offering a HND, to be eligible for an offer, a minimum of 4 Merits and remainder of units at pass grade is necessary in the year 1 performance. Applicants must successfully complete the HND with 2 Distinctions and remainder Merits in all units assessed in the final year. Any consideration would be for stage 1 entry only.
For those offering an HNC or HND , some flexibility may be allowed in terms of GCSE profile.
For applicants offering the Irish Leaving Certificate, please note that performance at Junior Certificate is taken into account and at the end of last year’s application cycle, the Junior Cert profile was a minimum of 6 B grades.
The information provided in the personal statement section and the academic reference together with predicted grades are noted however, these are not the final deciding factors as to whether or not a conditional offer can be made. However, they may be reconsidered in a tie break situation in August.
A-level General Studies and A-level Critical Thinking would not normally be considered as part of a three A-level offer and, although they may be excluded where an applicant is taking 4 A-level subjects, the grade achieved could be taken into account if necessary in August/September.
Applicants are not normally asked to attend for interview, though there are some exceptions and specific information is provided with the relevant subject areas.
If you are made an offer then you may be invited to a Faculty/School Open Day, which is usually held in the second semester. This will allow you the opportunity to visit the University and to find out more about the degree programme of your choice and the facilities on offer. It also gives you a flavour of the academic and social life at Queen's.
If you cannot find the information you need here, please contact the University Admissions Service (email@example.com), giving full details of your qualifications and educational background.
For information on international qualification equivalents, please check the specific information for your country.
An IELTS score of 6.5 with a minimum of 5.5 in each test component or an equivalent acceptable qualification, details of which are available at: http://go.qub.ac.uk/EnglishLanguageReqs
If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this degree programme, INTO Queen's University Belfast offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for admission to this degree.
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, we will be offering Academic English and Pre-sessional courses online only from June to September 2020.
INTO Queen's offers a range of academic and English language programmes to help prepare international students for undergraduate study at Queen's University. You will learn from experienced teachers in a dedicated international study centre on campus, and will have full access to the University's world-class facilities.
These programmes are designed for international students who do not meet the required academic and English language requirements for direct entry.
INTO - English Language Course(QSIS ELEMENT IS EMPTY)
The diversity of interests and topics covered in the discipline, plus the wide range of skills it equips you with, means that our students enter a wide range of careers on graduation. Public and private sector organisations involved in the criminal justice system continue to expand and the demand for criminology graduates is strong. The number and variety of career opportunities related to the criminal justice system has increased in recent years.
As well as the traditional criminal justice agencies such as the police, probation service and the prison service, criminology graduates work in a range of occupations, including the media, civil service, research, teaching, business, voluntary organisations and management. Criminology graduates also work in victim support organisations and in other social care agencies. Some graduates build on the degree by undertaking further post-graduate training in fields such as policing, probation work, prison service, social work, law, human rights, social science research and teaching. The School has a strong post-graduate programme, offering both Master's and PhD degrees.
Studying for a Criminology degree at Queen’s will assist you in developing the core skills and employment-related experiences that are valued by employers, professional organisations and academic institutions. Graduates from this degree at Queen’s are well regarded by many employers (local, national and international) and over half of all graduate jobs are now open to graduates of any discipline.
You should also take a look at www.prospects.ac.uk for further information concerning the types of jobs that attract Criminology graduates.
Further study is also an option open to Criminology graduates. You can choose from a wide range of Master's programmes as well as a comprehensive list of research topics
Employment after the Course
Typical career destinations of graduates include:
Youth and Community Worker
Graduate employers include:
Northern Ireland Civil Service
Northern Ireland Housing Executive
National Health Service
Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency
Belfast City Council
Commission for Victims and Survivors NI
Utilising Q-Step resources Criminology, students can apply (on a competitive basis) for placement opportunities. Recent placements have been with the NI Assembly, and Praxis Care.
There are no specific additional course costs associated with this programme.
The highest achieving graduates are awarded the Lockheed Prize annually.
Top performing students are regularly awarded prizes and scholarships. One of our BA students was a Global Winner of the Undergraduate Awards (2017), the world’s leading undergraduate awards programme which recognises top undergraduate work.
In addition to your degree programme, at Queen's you can have the opportunity to gain wider life, academic and employability skills. For example, placements, voluntary work, clubs, societies, sports and lots more. So not only do you graduate with a degree recognised from a world leading university, you'll have practical national and international experience plus a wider exposure to life overall. We call this Degree Plus. It's what makes studying at Queen's University Belfast special.
|Northern Ireland (NI)||£4,395|
|England, Scotland or Wales (GB)||£9,250|
|Other (non-UK) EU *||£4,395|
The undergraduate fees for 2021 entry have not yet been set. The fees shown are for 2020 entry and are to be used only as a guide. Please check back later in 2020 to view updated fees.
Tuition fee rates are calculated based on a student’s tuition fee status and generally increase annually by inflation. How tuition fees are determined is set out in the Student Finance Framework.
* The tuition fees that EU students starting courses at UK universities following the agreed transition period are required to pay will depend on what is agreed as part of the UK's exit negotiations. Please refer to www.qub.ac.uk/brexit-advice/information-for-students
Depending on the programme of study, there may be extra costs which are not covered by tuition fees, which students will need to consider when planning their studies.
Students can borrow books and access online learning resources from any Queen's library.
If students wish to purchase recommended texts, rather than borrow them from the University Library, prices per text can range from £30 to £100. A programme may have up to 6 modules per year, each with a recommended text.
Students should also budget between £30 to £75 per year for photocopying, memory sticks and printing charges.
Students undertaking a period of work placement or study abroad, as either a compulsory or optional part of their programme, should be aware that they will have to fund additional travel and living costs.
If a final year includes a major project or dissertation, there may be costs associated with transport, accommodation and/or materials. The amount will depend on the project chosen. There may also be additional costs for printing and binding.
Students may wish to consider purchasing an electronic device; costs will vary depending on the specification of the model chosen.
There are also additional charges for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines.
There are no specific additional course costs associated with this programme
There are different tuition fee and student financial support arrangements for students from Northern Ireland, those from England, Scotland and Wales (Great Britain), and those from the rest of the European Union.
Information on funding options and financial assistance for undergraduate students is available at http://www.qub.ac.uk/Study/Undergraduate/Fees-and-scholarships/.
Each year, we offer a range of scholarships and prizes for new students. Information on scholarships available.
Information on scholarships for international students, is available at http://www.qub.ac.uk/International/International-students/International-scholarships/.
How to Apply
Application for admission to full-time undergraduate and sandwich courses at the University should normally be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). Full information can be obtained from the UCAS website at: www.ucas.com/students.
When to Apply
UCAS will start processing applications for entry in autumn 2021 from 1 September 2020.
Advisory closing date: 15 January 2021 (18:00). This is the 'equal consideration' deadline for this course.
Applications from UK and EU students after this date are, in practice, considered by Queen’s for entry to this course throughout the remainder of the application cycle (30 June 2021) subject to the availability of places.
Applications from International (non-UK/EU) students are normally considered by Queen’s for entry to this course until 30 June 2021. If you apply for 2021 entry after this deadline, you will automatically be entered into Clearing.
Applicants are encouraged to apply as early as is consistent with having made a careful and considered choice of institutions and courses.
The Institution code name for Queen's is QBELF and the institution code is Q75.
Further information on applying to study at Queen's is available at: www.qub.ac.uk/Study/Undergraduate/How-to-apply/
The terms and conditions that apply when you accept an offer of a place at the University on a taught programme of study. Queen's University Belfast Terms and Conditions.
Fees and Funding
Queen's University Belfast is committed to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion.
For more information please read our Equality and Diversity Policy.
Queen's University Belfast is registered with the Charity Commission for Northern Ireland NIC101788
VAT registration number: GB 254 7995 11