BA Criminology with International Study / Course details

Year of entry: 2021

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Course description

BA Criminology with International Study offers an exciting opportunity to explore the challenges that criminal justice systems face today, as well as gaining further specialised knowledge by studying abroad  in one of our partner institutions.

Understanding the causes and consequences of crime will enable you to contribute to discussions about how some of these problems might be remedied.

Under the guidance of our extensive team of criminology experts, you will develop the necessary analytical skills to assess complex data related to experiences of criminality.

You will have the opportunity to take part in field trips and discussions with professionals to gain a real insight into how criminological knowledge is applied in a variety of sectors.

Studying a specialised degree in Criminology will enable you to develop skills relevant to a variety of key professions concerned with criminal justice and crime reduction, including:

  • the police;
  • prisons;
  • offender management;
  • youth justice; and
  • victimisation.

Delivered with support from some of the key criminal justice agencies, this course allows you to recognise and develop methodological, academic and practical skills that will enhance your professional development.

Special features

Student societies

Joining a society is a great way to enhance your CV, transferable skills, and experience by, for example, organising an end-of-year ball, maintaining a website or acting as a treasurer.

Our two main course societies  are student-led and organise social, career and academic-related events, as well as running a number of specialised groups to help you make the most of your time at Manchester.

Learning Criminology Inside

Learning Criminology Inside  enables you to take your weekly seminars in a local prison to study a final year option alongside prison-based students. 

Paid placement opportunity

Apply for a paid summer  Q-Step internship  between Years 2 and 3. This is an excellent opportunity to gain work experience and make contacts, while putting the skills you learn into practice. Recent placements include the Home Office, Ministry of Justice, and the College of Policing.

Study abroad

You will  study abroad  in Year 3, gaining experience of another culture, legal and educational system, and valuable international connections. Eligibility criteria apply.

Teaching and learning

Formal based contact hours consisting of lectures and seminars, amount to between 10 and 12 hours per week. You will spend about 40 hours per week studying inclusive of lectures and seminars.

Lectures are delivered to a large cohort of students, covering an overview of a particular subject.

Seminars are small groups of up to 12 students and an academic member of staff. You will discuss and present aspects of a legal topic you are learning. You are expected to prepare in advance for the discussion and required to submit written work for each subject.

We also offer skills sessions throughout the year, working in conjunction with local and international lawyers and our  Careers Service  to enhance your academic learning and employability. 

During your year abroad, you will study Criminology subjects in your host university. You also have the opportunity to study some course units outside your main area of study.

Most of our partner universities teach in English, but you can also study in a foreign language.

Coursework and assessment

Methods of assessing your work are:

  • exams;
  • essays;
  • oral presentations;
  • short exercises or written pieces such as book reviews; and
  • project work.

Your year abroad will be assessed while you are there, as well as continuous assessment in Manchester.

We give helpful and detailed feedback on all your written and oral work.

Course content for year 1

Compulsory course units allow you to develop an understanding of the sociological and psychological explanations for crime and criminal behaviour.

Study the criminal justice system and criminal law alongside the theories of social behaviour.

Course units for year 1

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Crime and Society CRIM10001 20 Mandatory
Criminological Research Methods CRIM10072 20 Mandatory
Foundations of Criminal Justice CRIM10421 20 Mandatory
Psychology, Crime and Criminal Justice CRIM10432 20 Mandatory
Foundations of Criminological Scholarship CRIM10441 20 Mandatory
Criminal Law (Criminology) LAWS10082 20 Mandatory

Course content for year 2

Extend your understanding of criminological theory and knowledge of the practices and techniques used in criminal justice systems.

Develop your knowledge of specific patterns of crime and criminality, as well as your understanding of quantitative and qualitative research methods.

Course units for year 2

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Policing and the Police CRIM20051 20 Mandatory
Explaining Crime and Deviance CRIM20412 20 Mandatory
Making Sense of Criminological Data CRIM20441 20 Mandatory
Modelling Criminological Data CRIM20452 20 Mandatory
Understanding Punishment CRIM20692 20 Mandatory
Criminology and Criminal Justice in Action CRIM20701 20 Optional

Course content for year 3

Year 3 will be completed in a host university in another country.

You will complete Criminology course units but, depending on the options available at the host university, you may also pursue other subjects of interest.

Course content for year 4

In Year 4, you will develop your knowledge of current research issues in selected areas of crime and criminal justice, together with a further understanding and appreciation of the inter-relationships between crime, law, criminal justice, and society.

You will develop specialised knowledge in particular areas of criminology. Specialist options is available on a wide range of topics.

A key element of final year is the opportunity to undertake a short or long dissertation. Allowing you to develop an extended piece of writing on a research topic that really interests you; perhaps doing fieldwork and then analysing and making sense of the data that you have collected. You will be supported by experienced academic staff.

Course units for year 4

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Drugs and Society CRIM30601 20 Optional
Long Dissertation CRIM30610 40 Optional
Short Dissertation CRIM30620 20 Optional
From Imprisonment to Rehabilitation CRIM30662 20 Optional
Victims, Crime and Justice CRIM30792 20 Optional
Serious and Organised Crime CRIM30811 20 Optional
Youth, Crime and Justice CRIM31101 20 Optional
Crime Mapping: an introduction to GIS and spatial analysis CRIM31152 20 Optional
The Criminal Psychopath CRIM31172 20 Optional

What our students say

Read  profiles of our students  to find out about their experiences of studying at Manchester.


While you study with us, you have access to first-class facilities to interact, work and practice your skills.

You can also volunteer to work in our award-winning  Legal Advice Centre . Here you can work on real legal cases with solicitors and barristers to refine your practical application of law.

Volunteering in our Miscarriages of Justice Review Centre enables you to work to support clients' claims of innocence. Working alongside legal experts, you will gain access and review real case files.

This unique first-hand experience of criminal justice allows you to connect and engage with experienced practicing lawyers.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: