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Criminology at Ursuline College

Course description

Level 3 Diploma in Criminology

Course content

This is a two year programme of study. The two units that students study in Year 12 are Changing Awareness of Crime, with a particular focus on learners planning a campaign for change relating to crime, and Criminological Theories where learners will consider how changes in criminological theory have influenced policy and how the theories can be applied to a specific crime or criminal to explain their behaviour. In Year 13 students will study Crime Scene to Courtroom, where learners will develop the skills to review criminal cases, evaluate the evidence in the cases to determine whether the verdict is safe and just, and Crime and Punishment which focuses on the criminal justice system in England and Wales and how it operates to achieve social control.


The specialist teachers in the department do make occasional changes to the selection of units of study, according to their own on-going research interests, and also the feedback provided by students.

Entry requirements

Five 9-4 grades at GCSE (or equivalent).

In order to study a Diploma in Criminology students need to achieve a Grade 4 or above in English and in one of the following GCSEs: History, Sociology, Law, Psychology, Citizenship or another comparable Humanities subject. Students not taking one of these subjects would be welcome to apply but should discuss this with the Head of History and Social Sciences who will consider their application and advise on alternative entry requirements.


25% Changing Awareness of Crime – This is a piece of coursework whereby learners will need to plan a campaign for change in relation to crime; for example to raise awareness, change attitudes or change reporting behaviour.


25% Criminological Theories – This is a written examination of 1 hour and 30 minutes in length, worth 75 marks. There will be three questions with short and extended answers required based on stimulus material.


25% Crime Scene to Courtroom – This is a piece of coursework whereby learners examine information in order to review the justice of verdicts in criminal cases.


25% Crime and Punishment – This is a written examination of 1 hour and 30 minutes in length, worth 75 marks. There will be three questions with short and extended answers required based on stimulus material.

Future opportunities

Criminology is a well-regarded subject in higher education and employment. Successful criminology students will possess valuable background knowledge to current affairs, criminal justice and public policy. Equally significant, they will have developed skills generally desired by employers such as research, analysis of sources and data, planning campaigns and constructing a well-evidenced argument.


The main purpose of the Level 3 Diploma in Criminology is to use the qualification to support access to higher education degree courses, such as: BSc Criminology, BA Criminology, BA Criminology and Criminal Justice, BSc (Hons) Criminology and Psychology, LLB (Hons) Law with Criminology, BA (Hons) Criminology and Sociology, BA (Hons) Criminology, BSc (Hons) Psychology and Sociology, and BSc Criminology with Law.


While some students each year will proceed to go and take Criminology degrees at University, others will use it as a stepping stone to enter other related areas of study and employment. Typical progression routes of students who have studied criminology include: Law, Journalism, Politics, Sociology, International Relations, History, Social Studies, Police and Armed Forces. Alternatively, the qualification allows learners to gain the required understanding and skills to be able to consider employment within some aspects of the criminal justice system, e.g. the National Probation Service, the Courts and Tribunals Service or the National Offender Management Service.

Further information

The Department organises regular fieldtrips to consolidate student knowledge. The most relevant and enjoyable trip is our annual visit to London where visits are arranged in Parliament, the Old Bailey, the Clink Museum, the City of London Police Museum and a walking tour of the East End of London. There are also trips organised by the wider department to Barcelona and Berlin where aspects of social justice could be analysed at an international level.

How to apply

You can apply for this course through UCAS Progress. Add this course to your favourites so you can start making an application.

Last updated date: 06 November 2018
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Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 2 years