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BSc (Hons) Psychology and Criminology

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UCAS code: 
Institution code: 


Three years full-time.

Four and a half to nine years part-time.

Course Options: 
Professional Placement
Study Abroad
Typical Offer: 

2023-24 and 2024-25 entry; 112 UCAS tariff points (or above), BBC (A-Level), DMM (BTEC), Merit (T Level).


  • Our Psychology course is accredited by the British Psychological Society.
  • Excellent links with Suffolk Constabulary, local magistrates, the Crown Prosecution Service and the probation service.
  • Graduates can progress in to a range of careers and further education, including roles within the NHS, prison service, education authorities and more.
  • Brand new Health and Wellbeing building, opening early 2022, with dedicated specialist facilities.


Psychology at the University of Suffolk at our main campus in Ipswich is accredited by the British Psychological Society.




Students who wish to become professional psychologists are eligible for Graduate Basis of Chartered Membership of the British Psychological Society, providing that they gain a minimum of second class honours and have completed all the required psychology modules.

Contemporary Psychology is a scientific discipline dealing with human behaviour, cognition and action. In Psychology at the University of Suffolk you will explore and examine the interaction between mind and behaviour, the nature of the unconscious, the functioning of memory, individual behaviour in social situations, prejudice and altruism.

Psychology and Criminology student, Emma, talks about her experience joining us through Clearing. Watch her story below.

    Further information about the University's relationship with the British Psychological Society (BPS) is available in the PSRB register.

    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

    Year 1 All Mandatory Psychology and Criminology Modules 

    Year 2 All Mandatory Psychology and Criminology Modules Plus 1 optional module from the Year 2 options below.

    Year 3 All Mandatory Psychology and Criminology Modules Plus 2 optional module from the Year 3 options below.

    For Years 2 and 3, optional modules available in any year will be communicated prior to enrolment to facilitate module choice. Some optional modules may not run in every year of study, and the availability of optional modules depends both on student demand and the availability of specialist staff.

    For a preparatory reading list please click here

    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.

    Foundations in Biological and Cognitive Psychology (Mandatory)

    Foundations in Biological and Cognitive Psychology is a mandatory module for all students taking a psychology degree route. Together with the “Foundations in Social and Developmental Psychology” module, level 4 students will attain a holistic underpinning to the major approaches in psychology. The module will cover conceptual and historical issues of behavioural, biological and cognitive approaches to psychology.

    Foundations of Social and Developmental Psychology (Mandatory)

    Social Psychology is concerned with the scientific study of human social behaviour, experience and thought. Developmental Psychology is concerned with the scientific study of systematic changes in human psychology across an individual’s lifespan, particularly cognitive, perceptual, social and emotional development in childhood, adolescence and adulthood. This module provides an introduction to key theories and approaches in Social and Developmental Psychology.

    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. 

    Psychological Research Methods and Skills (Mandatory)

    This module is designed to provide students with two essential aspects of further psychological study. Firstly, an introduction to psychological research methods; including a consideration of methodology and data analysis for both quantitative and qualitative data.  Secondly, this module will also equip students with the essential academic study skills required for their degrees.

    Politics and Policy (Requisite)

    This module will introduce students to political concepts, principles and theories that shape the operation of politics in the UK, and how this affects policy responses to various social issues and problems with a particular emphasis placed upon crime and deviance. As well as introducing students to the political institutions of the UK, the module examines the different ways that political choices are framed and made in the UK and the process of debate and dialogue is a key part of the content of the module.

    Sociological Imagination (Requisite)

    This module aims to introduce you to key features of the sociological perspective and what many call the sociological imagination. It is concerned with making the everyday strange and the far away near 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. Students will be able to engage with key debates about the nature of inequality and power using contemporary examples and analysis.

    Biological and Cognitive Psychology (Mandatory)

    Biological psychology (biopsychology) looks at psychological processes from a biological perspective, dealing with issues such as behaviour genetics, endocrinology and physiological psychology. Cognitive psychology studies how information is processed by the brain and sense organs. It is concerned with issues of how people perceive, understand, make decisions about and remember information. 

    Criminological Theory (Mandatory)

    This module builds upon the foundations laid in the module Introduction to Criminology and explores theoretical perspectives that influence criminology and social control. ‘Scientific’ theories of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries were crucial to the construction of a new ‘common sense’, in which the solutions of social problems would be found - it was believed - in an applied science and technology of social order and control. 

    Qualitative Research Methods (Mandatory)

    All researchers require a basic understanding of qualitative research methodology. This module develops the knowledge gained in the Psychological Research Methods Module, and provides students with the skills to carry out research of sufficient quality and rigour to complete their own independent studies.

    Quantitative Data Analysis (Mandatory)

    This module provides students with the skills to carry out quantitative research of sufficient quality and rigour to complete their own independent studies.  Students will attain a holistic underpinning to the major research skills utilized within psychology.

    Social and Developmental Psychology (Mandatory)

    This module will build on the broad introduction at Level 4 and seek to provide research-based accounts of social and developmental behaviour in key areas, such as people in groups, prejudice and discrimination, aggression, social influence, emotional and social development, life-span adult development and developmental social psychology.  

    Contemporary Issues in Criminology (Optional)

    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.

    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. 

    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. 

    Psychology and Crime (Optional)

    The relationship between psychology and crime is an important area of study. The purpose of this module is to explore the ways in which psychology can be applied to criminology and to critically discuss the relationship between psychology and crime. The module examines the ways in which key approaches, perspectives, theories and debates in psychology can contribute to understanding criminal and deviant behaviour.

    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.

    Abnormal Psychology (Mandatory)

    Abnormal Psychology seeks to explain unusual or maladaptive behaviour through the examination of rigorous, research-based subject matter. The concept of ‘abnormal’ can be problematic given negative connotations with ‘not normal’ and this will be a key area of debate: the essence of normality and the appropriateness of labels which may have important ramifications for how people suffering psychopathology are in some way perceived as ‘not normal’ or as inferior members of society.

    Individual Differences (Mandatory)

    This module seeks to primarily explore and touch upon individual differences in personality and intelligence. The module also aims to introduce students to other elements of differential psychology for example creativity, cognitive styles, motivation and leadership.

    Psychology Project (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. 

    Drugs, Crime and Society (Optional)

    The module explores key issues, themes and debates from the field of drugs, crime and society. Students explore established and more recent academic and policy debates surrounding drug use, regulations and criminalisation. It is expected that students will come to the module with a 'taken-for-granted' perspective on the nature of drugs, their links with crime, and their wider social consequences and the module aims to challenge some of these.

    Forensic Psychology (Optional)

    This module will involve discussions of the theory and practice of contemporary forensic psychology and an exploration of the role it plays in prisons, probation, policing and the courtroom. In studying this module students will appreciate the interaction between psychology and the investigation and detection of crime, legal and trial processes and in dealing with offenders.

    Penology (Optional)

    The purpose of the module is to critically analyse and evaluate theoretical justifications of punishment together with political ideology that impact upon penal policy and practice. This module considers both custodial and non-custodial punishment and a range of issues and dilemmas that might derive from these two key strategies of penal intervention.

    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.

    Career opportunities

    • The most recent figures available from the Higher Education Statistics Agency(HESA) reveal that 85% of Psychology and Criminology graduates in 2014/15 found employment within six months of graduation.
    • Around 60% of graduate jobs are open to graduates of any discipline and Psychology and Criminology graduates are well equipped with the advanced skills and confidence to thrive in a variety of occupations.
    • Psychology and Criminology graduates 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 Psychology and Therapeutic Services (Suffolk County Council), 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. 

    What our students say

    ''I studied Psychology and Criminology at the University of Suffolk. I found the course interesting and challenging. Lectures were informative and engaging, and seminars provided the opportunity to enhance learning through debate and class discussion. The programme has inspired me to pursue a career in a Social Science discipline. My next step is to progress to postgraduate study in a relevant area." 

    While considering the most appropriate programme I have taken some time out from my studies and have been working for the university in Academic Support. This role has opened my eyes to the hard work that goes on behind the scenes. The course has changed my way of thinking and working. I'm therefore able to work more effectively. I can't wait to continue with further study, and I'm very grateful to the university lecturers for the support and encouragement they have given me in achieving my longer term objectives."

    Colin Boyd, BSc (Hons) Psychology and Criminology

    BSc (Hons) Psychology and Criminology student

    Fees and finance


    • UK full-time tuition fee: £9,250 p.a
    • UK part-time tuition fee: £1,454 per 20 credits (please contact the Student Centre for further information)
    • International full-time tuition fee: £13,992 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. 

    Entry requirements

    Course options

    This courses offers a Professional Placement and Study Abroad 


    Course Leader, Politics, Sociology and Criminology

    Director, The Centre for Academic & International Partners

    Associate Professor in Criminology

    Senior Lecturer in Criminology

    Senior Lecturer in Sociology and Youth Studies

    Course Leader for BSc (Hons) Psychology and MSc Applications of Psychology

    Senior Lecturer in Psychology

    Lecturer in Psychology

    Lecturer in Psychology

    Lecturer in Psychology

    Senior Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Psychology

    Lecturer in Criminology

    Lecturer in Psychology and Deputy Course Leader for BSc (Hons) Psychology and associated routes

    Facilities and Resources

    Psychology and Criminology 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 cafés 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 Psychology and Criminology 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 psychology and criminology at the University of Suffolk.

    View the below video to find out more about our brand new Health and Wellbeing building, opening early 2022.