Why choose this course
What is criminal behaviour? What motivates offenders? How does crime impact victims, and which punishments should be imposed on criminals? These are some of the questions you’ll explore on this BSc (Hons) Criminology course.
At Surrey, we’re proud to be ranked 2nd for criminology by the Guardian University Guide 2020.
Our research-led BSc (Hons) Criminology course will help you develop a critical perspective on contemporary problems relating to crime, deviance and social control, teaching you the methods necessary to conduct and evaluate research in these areas.
What you will study
This course focuses on the study of crime, deviance and the criminal justice system. It will develop your understanding of the concepts, theories and principles of criminology and their application across a range of case studies and examples.
- The cause and effect of criminal actions
- The form and outcome of social disorders
- The policing and regulation of public order
- The procedures and techniques of the criminal justice system
- The relationship between behaviours and punishments.
Through combining criminological theory with training in professional social research, you’ll graduate with a broad range of communicative, analytical and organisational skills – and the confidence to apply them in your future career.
You’ll benefit from our modern teaching facilities including a recently expanded and fully networked computer laboratory based in the Department.
The course also makes increasing use of online resources, including videos, podcasts, web-based audience response systems and student discussion forums.
Careers and graduate prospects
We offer careers information, advice and guidance to all students whilst studying with us, which is extended to our alumni for three years after leaving the University.
Studying criminology will provide you with a broad social science basis and wide range of analytical and communication skills that are attractive to employers.
Our course gives you the knowledge and analytical skills you need to pursue a professional career in criminal justice, the public sector, forensic science, business, education, health and medicine, social work or counselling.
It offers preparation for fields that involve investigative skills and working with diverse people, such as policing, journalism, politics, marketing, business, human resources or public administration.
Our criminology course also provides you with the strong research skills needed for positions in the criminal justice system, business, social service and government. It’s a first step for future graduate work in criminology in order to become a researcher or academic.
One of the benefits of a degree in criminology is flexibility in the job market. Some of the roles our recent graduates have gone on to work in include:
- Police Officer, British Transport Police
- Training Assistant, Citizens Advice Bureau
- Safer Custody Coordinator, HMP Maidstone
- Trainee Probation Officer, National Probation Service
- Police Constable, Metropolitan Police
- Research Officer, HM Inspectorate of Prisons
- HR Case Manager, Ministry of Justice.
Academic year structure
The academic year is divided into two semesters of 15 weeks each. Each semester consists of a period of teaching, revision/directed learning and assessment.
The University operates a credit framework for all taught programmes based on a 15-credit tariff.
Modules listed are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that modules may be subject to teaching availability, student demand and/or class size caps.
Please note: If there is an optional Professional Training placement as part of your course you can view the full module listing for this on the relevant programme specification.
The structure of our programmes follows clear educational aims that are tailored to each programme. These are all outlined in the programme specifications which include further details such as the learning outcomes:
Course timetables are normally available one month before the start of the semester. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week (Monday–Friday). Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities. Part-time classes are normally scheduled on one or two days per week, details of which can be obtained from the course administrators. View our Timetabling Policy (PDF).
At Surrey, we emphasise the development of your practical and analytical skills in addressing contemporary criminological problems.
You’ll benefit from a range of teaching methods, including small group tutorials, projects and workshops, as well as lectures and classes. We find that our students learn effectively in this environment, and projects will contribute to the development of your personal skills in leadership, effective communication and analytic ability.
During your studies, you’ll develop sophisticated skills in conducting both qualitative and quantitative research. Our excellent facilities – including a dedicated networked computer suite – are available to aid your studies.
There may be occasions when the delivery of your teaching is supported by postgraduate research students. The University has a set of procedures that govern the use of postgraduate research students in this way.
We assess modules individually and award credits for the successful completion of each one. Assessment takes place through a combination of examination and/or coursework, practical examinations and reports.
Check individual module information to see full details at a module level.
Contact hours can vary across our modules. Full details of the contact hours for each module are available from the University of Surrey's module catalogue. See the modules section for more information.
As a student at Surrey, you can also sign up to our free courses in the following areas:
Find out more
Living in student accommodation is a great way to meet new people and spark friendships.
Other international qualifications
If you are an international student and you don’t meet the entry requirements to this degree, we offer the International Foundation Year, run by the Surrey International Study Centre.
English language requirements
IELTS Academic: 6.5 overall with 6.0 in Writing and 5.5 in each other element.
View the other English language qualifications that we accept.
If you do not currently meet the level required for your programme, we offer intensive pre-sessional English language courses, designed to take you to the level of English ability and skill required for your studies here.
We normally make offers in terms of grades.
If you are a suitable candidate you will be invited to an Applicant Day. During your visit to the University you can find out more about the course and meet staff and students.
Recognition of prior learning
The University of Surrey recognises that many students enter their higher education course with valuable knowledge and skills developed through a range of professional, vocational and community contexts. If this applies to you, a process called recognition of prior learning (RPL) may allow you to enter your course at a point appropriate to your previous learning and experience, or to join the start of a course without the formal entry requirements. This means that you may be exempt from certain elements of study in the course for which you have applied and be awarded credit based on your previous qualifications/experience. There are restrictions on RPL for some courses and fees may be payable for certain claims.
Please see the code of practice for recognition of prior learning and prior credit: taught programmes (PDF) for further information. Please email Admissions with any queries.
UK and EU To be confirmed
Overseas To be confirmed
BSc (Hons) (with professional training year)
UK and EU To be confirmed
Overseas To be confirmed
Professional training £1,850
- Fees for UK students: The University will apply annual regulated increases in the fee rates as set by Government each year, in order to maintain the same value in real terms.
- Fees for EU students: While the UK is part of the EU, the University will apply annual regulated increases in the fee rates as set by the Government each year, in order to maintain the same value in real terms. Once the UK has left the EU, the fees rules may change and the University is bound to comply with applicable legislation.
- Fees for international students: Annual fees will increase by 4% for each subsequent year of study, rounded up to the nearest £100, subject to any overriding applicable legislative requirements.
- Fees for international students with an integrated foundation year: The programme fee for Year 0 will match the lowest Year 1 overseas fee rate from across the substantive programmes for that year of entry. Students subsequently progressing into Year 1 will be liable for the same fee as overseas students joining at Year 1 for the same programme in that year. Annual fees after Year 1 will increase by 4% for each subsequent year of study, rounded up to the nearest £100, subject to any overriding applicable legislative requirements.
The University will assess your fee status. If you are unsure whether you are likely to be considered a home, EU or overseas student for fees purposes, the UKCISA website offers more information.
- Students in receipt of a Tuition Fee Loan: will have their fees paid by the Student Loans Company in line with their schedule.
- International students, or UK/EU students who have not taken out a Tuition Fee Loan: are required to pay their fees either in full at the beginning of the programme or in two instalments as follows:
- 50% payable 10 days after the invoice date (expected to be early October of each academic year)
- 50% in January of the same academic year.
The exact date(s) will be detailed on invoices. Students on certain part-time programmes, where fees are paid on a modular or stage basis, are not eligible to pay their fees by instalment.
If you are sponsored: you will provide us with valid sponsorship information that covers the period of your study.
Professional Training placement fees
If you are studying on a programme which contains a Professional Training placement year there will be a reduced fee for the academic year in which you undertake your placement. This is normally confirmed 12 to 18 months in advance, or once Government policy is determined.
See the information about 2019/20 academic year Professional Training placement fee.
There are no associated costs for this programme.
Students may wish to partake in optional trips within Surrey and/or London - £70 approximately.
You have the option to complete a Professional Training placement as part of this course. This will give you the opportunity to develop your professional, academic and personal potential, helping to prepare you for your future career.
A significant proportion of placement students at Surrey are offered graduate-level jobs or go onto postgraduate study.
Find out more about Professional Training placements and discover how these have transformed our students’ lives and career choices.
On our four-year BSc (Hons) Criminology course, you’ll enhance your knowledge by taking a Professional Training placement during the third year.
This provides you with an opportunity to apply the knowledge and skills gained during your first two years of study in a work environment, while receiving training and carrying out responsible work.
As a result of the placement, we find that our students return to their final year significantly more confident, mature and organised, and with clearer career aspirations.
The process of preparing and applying for placement positions also significantly enhances job-seeking skills, which come into play in the final year and beyond when applying for graduate employment. After graduation, some students take up permanent posts with their professional placement employer.
We make every effort to identify possible placement opportunities according to your interests, career plans and location preferences.
While you are expected to find your own placement, support is available both internally in the Department of Sociology and through our careers service. Some of our placements are paid, usually in the region of £12,000-15,000 a year. If you work on an unpaid placement, you can claim extra financial support and may also work for a reduced amount of time.
Companies and organisations that have participated in the scheme include:
- Home Office
- Citizens Advice Bureau
- HM Prison High Down
- Surrey Youth Support Service
- Ministry of Justice
- Romford Police Station
- Surrey County Council.
Applying for placements
You can apply for numerous opportunities via an open and free-to-all process. Placement providers use their own recruitment and selection procedures and the majority of students will secure their placement in this way.
Students are generally not placed by the University, however we offer support and guidance throughout the process alongside access to a vacancy portal representing thousands of placement opportunities each year. We also provide support if you wish to source your own placement.
Find out about more about the application process.
Please be aware there may be travel costs incurred when attending interviews and assessment centres at the placement provider’s premises.
Study and work abroad
We give our students the opportunity to acquire international experience during their studies by taking advantage of our exchange agreements with overseas universities or by completing a Professional Training placement abroad.
Want to study at an overseas institution as part of your degree or work abroad during your Professional Training year? Perhaps you would like to volunteer in India or learn about Brazilian business and culture in São Paulo during your summer holidays? With more than 200 partnerships, from 50 different countries worldwide, there is something for everyone.
Not only is the opportunity to go abroad a hugely enjoyable experience, you will develop key skills and knowledge that will strengthen your CV and increase your employability.
View our study and work abroad exchange information to find out more and see where you can go.
Please note: the status of the Erasmus+ scheme is dependent on the outcome of the Brexit negotiations.
You have the choice between working at an overseas organisation or studying at one of our partner universities, including:
- Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
- Seoul National University, South Korea
- University of Cincinnati, US
- North Carolina State University, US
- University of Central Florida, US
- Maryland University, College Park, US
- Monash University, Australia
- University of Queensland, Australia
- La Trobe University, Australia
- Brock University, Canada
- Virginia Commonwealth University, US
- University of North Carolina, Wilmington, US
- George Mason University, US.
Terms and conditions
When you accept an offer of a place at the University of Surrey, you are agreeing to comply with our policies and regulations, and our terms and conditions. These terms and conditions are provided in two stages: first when we make an offer and second when students who have accepted their offers register to study at the University. View our offer terms and conditions and our generic registration terms and conditions (PDF) as a guide as to what to expect.
Please note: our offer terms and conditions will be available in the September of the calendar year prior to the year in which you begin your studies. Our registration terms and conditions will vary to take into account specifics of your course.
This online guide has been prepared and published in advance of the academic year to which it applies. The University of Surrey has used its reasonable efforts to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content or additional costs) may occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for a course with us. Read more.
Campus locationStag Hill
Stag Hill is the University's main campus and where the majority of our courses are taught.
As part of this course you have the option to complete a Professional Training placement which would require attendance off campus, depending on where you secure your placement.