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    Distance Learning


Suitable for: Introductory level 3

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Course programme

Criminology - NCFE Level 3 Award
Supported Home Study
Course Summary

Could you be a criminal case cracker?
Are you ready to solve the mysteries of crime and the minds of those who carry it out?

In the dark of the underworld only the criminologist sees clearly. Assisting police and government in tackling crime, criminologists help in diverting criminal intent before it matures into a criminal act. Though their actions may be considered repellent or absorbing, criminals are as fascinating as ever, and today's law-enforcement agencies are equipped with the most modern techniques in order to catch them.

Criminology is simply the scientific study of criminals and the crimes they carry out, examined alongside society's reaction to the offences committed and how it treats the offender. Professional criminologists explore patterns of criminal behaviour in order to understand the reasons behind them and to determine what steps can be taken to minimise their occurrence in society. A complex topic such as this looks to many related fields for explanation, inspiration and remedies. With responses to errant actions ranging from psychoanalysis, through politically rigorous criticism of the system right along to simply putting the villains behind bars, it's an inexhaustible and deeply absorbing field.

Criminology Course Outline

Could you spot the single thread of evidence that links the victims of a killer? Could your talents help reform young delinquents and turn them away from crime? Are you prepared to turn your interest in the subject into a personal specialty? Move over Sherlock! There's a new detective in town, kitted out with the most modern knowledge and using more techniques than Dr Watson could never comprehend.

Introduction to Criminology Module 1: Text: Introducing Criminology by Coleman and Norris

Crime, the criminal and criminology

  • What is crime and what is criminology
  • The legalistic position
  • Crime as violation of human rights
  • Crime as social construction
  • A historical background, (which covers: the classical school, the moral statisticians, the Italian positive school, and the British context.)

Approaches to criminology

  • Physical characteristics of crime
  • The new biology of crime
  • Psychological approaches
  • The revival of approaches locating the source of the crime in the individual.

A Broader Vision of Crime

  • Environmental criminology
  • White collar crime
  • Control theory
  • Interactionism, labelling and moral panics
  • Radical criminologies (including post-modern and Feminist perspectives)

Introduction to Criminology Module 2: Text: Introducing Criminology by Coleman and Norris

Thinking about serial Killers.

  • Defining serial murder
  • Types of serial murder
  • Understanding serial murder: the psychology, biology and sociology of the serial killer.

Key issues in Criminal Justice

  • Definitions and delivery
  • Enforcement, prevention and detection
  • The police role
  • Due process and deviancy
  • Crime control


  • Crime prevention
  • The rise of cctv
  • What is meant by crime and how can it be measured
  • Does cctv, crime discrimination

Criminology Module 3: Text: Textbook on Criminology by Katherine S Williams

  • Definitions, terminology and the criminal process
  • The judicial process
  • Public conceptions and misconceptions of crime
  • Media hype and the effects on
  • The criminal
  • The extent of crime, official and unofficial calculations
  • The recording of crime
  • Victims survivors and victimology
  • The fear of crime

Criminology Module 4: Text: Textbook on Criminology by Katherine S Williams

  • Influences of physical factors and genetics on criminalities
  • Influence of biochemical factors and the nervous system on the criminality
  • Insanity and criminal law
  • Nutritional effects on biochemical imbalances.
  • Psychological and psychoanalytical theories of criminalities
  • The criminal personality
  • Mental disorder and criminalities
  • The link between crime and learning

Criminology Module 5: Text: Textbook on Criminology by Katherine S Williams

  • The sociology of criminality
  • Environmental effects on crime
  • Subcultural theories
  • Control theories
  • Labelling behaviours
  • Conflicting theories of criminology

Criminology Module 6: Text: Textbook on Criminology by Katherine S Williams

  • Criminology and realism the cause of crime
  • Biological theories of crime
  • Sex role theories of crime
  • Positivist explanations of female criminality
  • Feminist and gender issues
  • Terror and state violence
  • Terrorisms motives
  • Governance, risk and globalisation theories

Criminology Career Opportunities

Students who follow criminology are well prepared for careers in the criminal justice system. These careers may take the form of hands-on police work, or possibly as positions in administration and policy-making.

The following is a list of areas where criminologists are often employed:

Court systems
Correctional Facilities
Security and Investigation Services
Law Enforcement Agencies
Customs Services
Group Homes
Public Insurance Companies
The list goes on and on...

The fact remains that many employers in a wide variety of fields are interested in the skill set provided by a student of criminology.

Additional information

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