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BASS Philosophy and Criminology

Year of entry: 2021

Course unit details:
Youth, Crime and Justice

Unit code CRIM31101
Credit rating 20
Unit level Level 3
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Offered by School of Social Sciences
Available as a free choice unit? Yes


1 Who are ‘juvenile offenders’ and how do we manage them?

2 Why do young people commit crime?

3 From theory into practice: how do theories of youth offending feed into policy and practice?

4 Criminal responsibility of minors and sentencing 

5 The Youth justice system

6 Working with young people who offend

7 ‘What works’ and what doesn’t’: incarceration and restorative justice

8 Policing youth

9 Responding to troubled youth. Parents, schools, communities

10 Summary and group presentations


To introduce students to the complex area of youth crime, the contemporary forces that shape youth justice policy and how the criminal justice system has responded to it.

Learning outcomes

On completion of this unit successful students will be able to:

  • Understand different theoretical approaches to young people and crime
  • Describe the main elements and legal institutions that comprise the Youth Justice System
  • Critically assess recent policy developments in this area
  • Critically evaluate the success of interventions with young people
  • Appreciate how different societies construct the youth and crime problem and its solutions

These Objectives are in addition to the development of generic skills such as:

•   The ability to present a coherent, logical, well-constructed argument;

•   Independence of thought and the ability to critically appraise one’s own reasoning;

•   Effective use of literature and the use of appropriate referencing in essays;

•   Clear and accurate use of language with appropriate grammar/ spelling.

Teaching and learning methods

Teaching in academic year 20/21 will reflect both University policy and local and national lockdown restrictions operating at the time of delivery. We will offer face-to-face teaching where possible and provide a like for like on-line experience for those unable to be on campus. 

Our teaching models will be flexible and allow us to adapt to changing conditions, however, the common intention across units is to provide (1) media, activities and other learning material that should be engaged with before scheduled teaching; (2) a timetabled 2-hour online lecture/workshop slot used for a range of online Q&A and follow-up activities; (3) a timetabled weekly 1-hour seminar/activity slot that will be face-to-face if possible and ‘live’ online if not/preferred; (4) weekly opportunity for 1:1 support. In total, there will be the opportunity for up to 30 hours of contact time.

Assessment methods

100% coursework (3500 words)

Feedback methods

Formative feedback will be given on developing essay plans.

There will also be a formative group presentation.

Recommended reading

Goldson, B and Muncie, J (eds) (2015) Youth Crime and Justice. London: Sage. 2nd edition

Banks, C., (2013) Youth Crime and Justice. Routledge: Abingdon.

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 20
Seminars 10
Independent study hours
Independent study 170

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Jo Deakin Unit coordinator

Additional notes

This course is offered to all students university wide.
Pre-requisites: none

See Law School timetable


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