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BSc (Hons) Criminology and Sociology

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UCAS code: 
Institution code: 


Three years full-time.

Four and a half to nine years part-time.

Typical Offer: 

96 UCAS tariff points (or above)
CCC (A-Level), MMM (BTEC).



  • Excellent links with Suffolk Constabulary, local magistrates, the Crown Prosecution Service and the probation service.
  • Modern teaching with new topics and modules such as Drugs and Crime - to keep up with a changing world.
  • Graduates can progress in to a range of careers or in to further education.
  • Criminology and Sociology graduates are well equipped with the advanced skills and confidence to thrive in a variety of occupations.


Criminology is a discipline with a number of robust and lively theoretical and empirical debates. Through engaging in these debates students will gain the very important undergraduate skill of critical understanding. Sociology is a subject that developed with the modern world and its key task is to analyse the changing nature of the social world with particular reference to recent developments.

Students will challenge common-sense notions of criminal and deviant behaviours by critically examining academic research and making informed decisions based on available evidence. Sociology at the University of Suffolk aims to equip students with the tools they need to understand the world they live in by developing relevant analytical and research skills.

The aim of the sociology joint programme is to produce well informed sociologists who can develop sociologically informed arguments. 



Course modules

Typical course content will follow the below format, with some optional modules being available subject to appropriate student numbers and specialist staff availability

Level 4 All Mandatory Criminology and Sociology Modules Plus 2 optional modules from the level 4 (Year 1) options below.

Level 5 All Mandatory Criminology and Sociology Modules Plus 2 research methods modules, 1 optional Criminology module and 1 optional Sociology (Year 2) modules below OR 1 or 2 optional Sociology modules and 1 or 2 optional Criminology level 5 (Year 2) modules below  

Level 6 All Mandatory Modules Plus 2 optional Criminology modules  Plus 2 optional Sociology modules from the level 6 (Year 3) options below.

Preparatory reading list

Full downloadable information regarding all University of Suffolk courses, including Key Facts, Course Aims, Course Structure and Assessment, is available in the Definitive Course Record.

Introduction to Criminology (Mandatory)

Introduction to Criminology aims to introduce students to the history of criminological thought, combining biographical fact with historical and cultural context. Students will develop an understanding of how crime is defined and measured and examine theoretical perspectives that seek to explain causes of criminal behaviour. 

Introduction to Sociology (Mandatory)

This module is concerned with making the everyday strange and the far away near so as to gain a better grasp on key aspects of social life. This leads into a key concern of sociology with questions of power and inequality. 

Social Change (Requisite)

This module will introduce the major aspects of social change that have led to and developed within modern societies. The emphasis will be upon structural changes in Britain and Europe, but will give room for students to explore social change in rapidly changing middle income countries as well. 

Social Science Research Skills (Mandatory)

Social Science Research Skills aims to give students an introduction to social science research methods, in addition to progressing important study skills during Level 4. Social Science Research Skills provides the foundation for the Level 5 Quantitative and Qualitative Data modules. 

Politics, Crime and Policy (Optional)

Politics, Crime and Policy gives students the skills and knowledge to identify the connection between political ideology and policy responses to crime and deviance, in addition to investigating how modern societies understand equality and social justice. This will enable students to form responses to criminal and perceived deviant behaviour.

Migration and Ethnicity (Optional)

The module will look into the history of people’s movement across the globe. Moreover, a focus on migration also includes discussions about different causes of migration, and its voluntary and forced forms, as well as asylum seeking.

Social Theory (Mandatory)

Social Theory provides students with the opportunity to engage with the ideas of a range of important theorists from the late 20th and early 21st centuries, allowing for an engagement with the insightful, often challenging and sometimes counter-intuitive perspectives that come from a range of contemporary social theorists. 

Criminological Theory (Mandatory)

Criminological Theory explores the importance of political and cultural concerns when considering the search for the “causes” of crime. Students will examine the ways in which criminological theories are shaped by changing economic, social, cultural and policy contexts. Students will be able to identify a range of concepts and successfully evaluate how theory influences policy and practice. 

Questionnaire Design and Analysis (Mandatory)

Questionnaire Design and Analysis provides students with the skills to carry out research of sufficient quality and rigour to complete their independent studies. The module aims to promote a critical and questioning approach, provide students with an advanced awareness of SPSS in addition to ethical concerns, reliability and validity in research. 

Qualitative Research Design and Analysis (Mandatory)

Qualitative Research Design and Analysis serves as a basis for the Dissertation research at Level 6, providing students with the opportunity to develop and apply skills in managing, collecting, analysing and reporting qualitative data. Students will identify and discuss ethical considerations relating to qualitative research. 

Secondary Quantitative Data Analysis (Optional)

Understanding and ability to conduct a secondary quantitative data analysis is very useful to students of social sciences. This module continues on from the level 4 Social Science Research Skills Module, looking to provide students with the skills to carry out research of sufficient quality and rigour to complete their own independent studies. 

Advanced Qualitative Research Design and Analysis (Optional)

All researchers require a basic understanding of qualitative research methodology. This module provides students with the opportunity to further develop and apply skills in managing, collecting, analysing and reporting qualitative data that was touched upon in the Qualitative Research Design and Analysis module. Ethical issues will also be discussed.

Youth Crime and Justice (Optional)

Youth Crime and Justice aims to enable students to develop a critical understanding of the contemporary youth justice system through examining the main concerns and policies applied to young people in trouble with the law. Students will critically evaluate the impact of current legislation on youth justice services and identify and analyse themes on oppression and discrimination.

Policing (Optional)

The Policing module seeks to being together key areas of criminological inquiry and explore the role of policing. Students will develop an understanding of contemporary concerns such as antisocial behaviour and terrorism, and demonstrate the ways in which law has become a significant area of public concern. 

Criminal Justice (Optional)

Criminal Justice aims to analyse the social, economic and political factors that underpin the policing, court, penal and probation institutions. Issues to be discussed include the implementation of legislation, the balance between due process and crime control and the impact of Human Rights legislation on criminal justice policy. 

Psychology and Crime (Optional)

Psychology and Crime explores the ways in which psychology can be applied to criminology and examines how psychology can be applied to criminal and deviant behaviour. The module explains a number of psychological theories of crime, in addition to the psychology of responding to crime. 

Sociology of Health & Illness (Optional)

The central theme running through this module is the social nature of health. Understanding the broad patterns of morbidity and mortality are fundamental to enabling informed discussion regarding the social nature of health. The module seeks to broaden student’s understanding of contemporary health and illness with a content which is topical, wide ranging combining contemporary issues in health with classic debates within this field.

Work and Employment (Optional)

The module will consider theoretical aspects of work and employment, as well as, it will review the most recent sociological research related to work and employment.  The examples will focus on Ipswich, Suffolk, and more widely on the UK and a global dimension of work and employment.

Globalisation (Optional)

This module intends to examine definitions of globalisation, the dimensions of globalisation and the evidence to evaluate the extent to which globalisation is now a key element in important aspects of social life. This module will allow students of sociology should be able to engage with these debates by evaluating a range of data and arguments about globalisation.

Research Dissertation (Mandatory)

Research is an important and integral part of your degree, and the Research Dissertation gives students the opportunity to expand learning and develop interests in a particular topic. Students will critique research by others and will reflect on their own work, moving students from a theoretical knowledge of research toward a more informed level of skill and application. 

Penology (Optional)

Penology considers both custodial and non-custodial punishment and various issues and dilemmas that might derive from penal intervention. Issues such as the ‘Americanisation’ of the penal system and the impact of prison privatisation will be discussed, in addition to the assessment of the ethos and effectiveness of incarceration. 

Victimology (Optional)

Victimology allows students to recognise the extent, patterns and impact of victimisation which is fundamental to enable informed discussion regarding crime and deviance. Through exploring the concept of victimisation, the experience of crime victims and developments in response to them, students will have the opportunity to broaden their understanding of contemporary crime and criminal justice.

Drugs and Crime (Optional)

This new module covers a range of topics related to the central theme of illicit drugs. The module introduces the student to issues and theories relating to the nature of drug use throughout the twentieth century and in contemporary society. Substantive topics include critical engagement with explanations of drug use from the psychological and sociological literature; the perceived 'normalisation' of drug use and societies fixation with the current War On Drugs.

In addition, recent drug policy developments are placed under analytical scrutiny such as problems arising from the problematic nature of measuring drug use and the complex and often tumultuous relationship between research production and policy formulation in this area. Furthermore, national and international political debates relating to drugs are also considered as is the debate over drug legalisation.

Gender and Sexuality (Optional)

Gender and sexuality are an everyday experience for most people and impact on their daily lives. However, great complexity surrounds gender and sexuality in a contemporary society and culture. The module will consider theoretical aspects, as well as, it will look at different ways of researching gender and sexuality.

Mental Health Policy and Practice (Optional)

This module introduces the sociological perspective to the discussion about and the debates on mental illness and the development of the psychiatric treatment and services. 

Contemporary Issues in Criminology (Mandatory)

Contemporary Issues in Criminology students will engage with selected contemporary issues, debates and perspectives in criminology, developing a critical overview of the discipline as it stands. Students will explore and critique the influence of current political and cultural contexts on particular policies and practices.

Career opportunities

  • The most recent figures available from the Higher Education Statistics Agency(HESA) reveal that 85% of Criminology and Sociology graduates in 2014/15 found employment within six months of graduation.
  • Around 60% of graduate jobs are open to graduates of any discipline and Criminology and Sociology graduates are well equipped with the advanced skills and confidence to thrive in a variety of occupations
  • Criminology and Sociology are good at problem solving, have good analytical and research skills, and have excellent information and data management skills
  • Employability is taken very seriously at University of Suffolk and employers are directly involved in a number of taught and additional sessions over the course of the degree.
  • Excellent links with Suffolk Constabulary, local magistrates, the Crown Prosecution Service and the probation service.
  • Quite a number of our graduates also go on to pursue further qualifications at masters and doctoral levels
  • Online and face to face resources and advice are available from the University Careers and Employability Service for all University of Suffolk students. 

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Fees and finance


  • Full-time Tuition fee: £9,250 p.a.
  • Part-time Tuition fee: £1,454 per 20 credit module (Please contact the Infozone for further information).
  • International Tuition fee: £12,150 p.a. 


  • Full-time tuition fee: £9,250 p.a
  • Part-time tuition fee: £1,454 per 20 credits (please contact the Infozone for further information)
  • Full-time International tuition fee: £13,000 p.a

Further Information

At University of Suffolk, your tuition fees provide access to all the usual teaching and learning facilities that you would expect. However, there may be additional costs associated with you course that you will need to budget for. 

* 2022-23 tuition fees are subject to change in line with inflation, or a government change in the fee cap.

Entry requirements


Associate Professor in Sociology

Associate Professor in Criminology

Senior Lecturer in Criminology

Lecturer in Criminology

Lecturer in Sociology

Facilities and Resources

Criminology and Sociology teaching takes place at our modern, fully-equipped Waterfront or Atrium buildings at our Ipswich campus. As a University of Suffolk student, you will have full access to our well-stocked library in addition to discounts at our cafes and restaurants. If you are looking for a quiet place to work, our break-out areas on each floor of our Waterfront Building are an excellent choice. 

The Criminology and Sociology team has extensive links with all local agencies that operate within the field, and as such they are able to embed contemporary research into their teaching demonstrating the applied nature of criminology and sociology at the University of Suffolk.