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Sociology and Criminology (Joint Honours) BA (Hons)

Key Facts

  • UCAS Code:


  • Level:


  • Duration:

    3 years full-time
    4-6 years part-time

  • Starting:


  • Fees UK:

    Full Time: £9,250 Part Time: £1,450

  • Fees International:

    Full Time: £12,900

  • Location:


Get in touch

For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:

UK/EU Students enquiries
0300 303 2772

International Students enquiries
+44 (0)1604 894503

TEF Gold. Teaching Excellence Framework.


Through this combination, you will develop a critical understanding and insight into contemporary sociological themes and issues. You can choose from a range of specialist areas within Sociology and gain thorough training in research methods. This is then combined with the study of crime, social order and social control that is central to the study of Criminology.

Updated 24/10/2020


  • Flexible module choices to tailor your degree to your needs.
  • Dedicated academic team.
  • Placement opportunities.
  • Guaranteed paid internship with the Northampton Employment Promise.
  • HP laptop and software included with this course*. (*Terms and conditions apply).

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Course Content

  • Sociology is an exciting and relevant subject, which will provide you with a range of practical and academic skills that are highly valued in today’s job market. We will help you to establish a solid basis in the fundamentals of Sociology as a discipline, as well as offer you a considerable range of specialist modules that give you the chance to pursue your own particular interests. This course gives you a taste of the world of work and allows you to apply your sociological skills in the ‘real’ world.

    The addition of Criminology will allow you to develop a critical understanding of crime, criminality and victimology in the context of broader structural developments, processes and conditions. You will also develop an informed understanding of how different aspects of the criminal justice system operate in relation to both broader social institutions and processes and to individuals.

    You are encouraged to develop employability skills through volunteering opportunities, events, workshops and research placements.

    Stage one

    You will be introduced to the core disciplines that underpin the academic analysis of both courses. Year one explores the introduction of Sociology and Criminology through compulsory modules and provides an excellent foundation of knowledge for you to advance to year two.

    Within Sociology you will learn to use your Sociological Imagination, as well as be introduced to key sociological concepts and perspectives related to identities and inequalities.

    The Criminology course begins by mapping out the relationships between crime, society and the legal system. Compulsory modules are:

    • Crime and Society: designed to introduce students to major theoretical debates and empirical studies that locate dimensions of crime and risk of crime within broader social divisions of class, ethnicity, gender and age.
    • True Crimes and Other Fictions
    • The Science of Crime and Criminals: explore the scientific evidence used in relation to questions of crime, criminality and criminal justice.
    Stage two

    The second year takes you into more detailed and developed areas, considering the wider issues and debates surrounding Sociology and Criminology.

    In Sociology, the second year builds on the conceptual foundations, knowledge and skills acquires in year one. You will explore how sociological research is carried out and will be able to apply these methods to real-life scenarios within society. You will also have the opportunity to take an international field trip module, as well as a placement module that includes skills-based workshops to enhance your employment prospects.

    Within the Criminology section of the course you will be introduced to issue and methods in social science research. The focus will be on crime and justice forms the boarder organising theme at this stage, taking you through the levels of criminal justice procedures, from point of arrest to disposal of criminal cases at court. You will consider a deeper analysis of your modules using professional theoretical research in their subject areas to supplement learning, growth, development and knowledge. The optional modules: Outsiders, Organised Crime and Youth, Victims and Restorative Justice.

    Stage three

    If you have an even split on your course, you can choose to write a dissertation on any topic within your Joint Honours programme. The dissertation builds on and expands your prior knowledge of research methodology acquired at stages one and two. It aims to foster the development of expertise in methodology and skills in the planning, conduct and write-up of research reports. This form of independent, experiential learning will require you to ask logical questions to diagnose and define problems, generate and implement solutions and evaluate the effectiveness of their action-outcomes.

    At this stage, you will also have the opportunity to develop specialised and intensive study on areas and aspects of Sociology and Criminology that you find particularly interesting.

    In Sociology, you will have the option to explore more complex sociological theories and concepts in areas such as the future, death and complexity.

    In Criminology, the core module for stage three is Crime and Punishment which provides an overview of the philosophy and theories of punishment as well as an examination of the institutions responsible for the punishment of offenders. This stage builds on the knowledge and the analytical skills acquired in the previous stages, in order to develop an advanced theoretical understanding of criminological debates and their application to a range of policies.

    In Criminology the range of possible dissertation topics include: studies of the police, courts, prisons, probation service, young offenders, rape crisis centres, women’s refuges, drug rehabilitation schemes.

    List of modules

    BSc (Hons) Sociology and Criminology module information can be found on the Award Map.

  • Standard entry requirements apply. A typical offer would be:

    • BCC at A Level or DMM at BTEC.
    • However, we welcome international applications and applications from those with a range of non-traditional educational or professional qualifications.
    • We welcome applications from anyone with a lively interest in Sociology or issues of crime and justice who is prepared to pursue and develop that interest through reading and study.
    Integrated foundation study entry requirements

    Admission to this Foundation Framework is normally:

    • DEE at A Level or MPP at BTEC.
    • However, we would also like to hear from you if you have professional or industry experience instead, a range of other qualifications or self-developed subject knowledge that relates to the course you wish to study.
    English Language Requirements

    All International and EU students applying for a course with us must meet the following minimum English language requirements:

    • IELTS 6.0 (or equivalent) with a minimum of 5.5 in all bands
      for study at undergraduate level.

    For information regarding English language requirements at the University, please see our IELTS page.

  • 2020/21 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 2020/21 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

    • UK and EU Full Time: £9,250
    • UK and EU Part Time: £1,450 per 20 credit module
    • International: £12,900

    2019/20 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 19/20 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

    • UK and EU Full Time: £9,250
    • UK and EU Part Time: £1,400 per 20 credit module
    • International: £12,500
    Additional costs

    Students who major in Criminology, studying The Beyond Justice module, will incur travel costs associated with trips to a prison.

    Additional costs will be incurred if you decide to participate in optional field trips/visits as part of your course. The exact cost will depend upon the location chosen for the trip.

    International scholarships

    For information on the scholarships available to you as an international student, please see our International scholarships page.

  • Every Criminology student (Single and Joint Honours) receives an undergraduate membership to the British Society of Criminology (BSC) for the entirety of their degree.

    Benefits of the membership include access to e-bulletins and newsletters, access to free BSC seminars and events, discounted rates to attend BSC events and many more. Check out the full Member Benefits list.

  • Our postgraduate courses are a great way to enhance the skills you have already learnt. Benefit from our 20% alumni discount on postgraduate fees to give you a CV that will catch the eye of employers.

  • At the University of Northampton, everything we do, from funded trips to paid internships, is to give you everything you need to make a difference when you leave.

    If you join this full time degree at Northampton you will receive a laptop when your course begins. The laptops are built to a bespoke custom specification ideal for use in the seminar room, collaborative group work or studying at home.

    Whatever your ambitions, we’re here to help you to achieve them. We’ll support you to identify the skills you’re learning during your course, find your strengths and secure practical experience so that when it comes to applying for jobs or further study you’ll feel confident in standing out from the crowd. We’ve created the Northampton Employment Promise because we are so confident that if you focus on your studies and complete one of our awards you’ll be highly employable by the time you graduate. Putting you in a great position to secure employment or continue your studies.

    To check out the full list of perks visit our Student Perks page.

  • The Integrated Foundation Year (IFY) offers a new and exciting route into studying for a degree, attracting ambitious and driven students who are willing to learn and advance.

    If you have non-standard qualifications or do not quite meet the admissions requirements we can offer you a fantastic opportunity to study a four year programme which includes an Integrated Foundation Year. The Integrated Foundation Year will help you develop the theoretical/practical and academic skills you need, in order to successfully progress to the full award.

    Featuring a reduced tuition fee in the first year, our four-year courses will enable you to successfully follow the degree pathway of your choice while gaining essential study skills. The foundation year of your chosen degree will be studied on a full-time basis and is aimed at supporting the transition to higher education. Years two, three and four are then studied as a standard degree programme.

  • How will I learn?

    The course is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials and research workshops, student-chaired debates and problem-solving exercises as well as directed private study. Students are also expected to work independently and to actively participate in seminar discussion through individual presentations and small group activities.

    How will I be assessed?

    A variety of assessment strategies are used at each level to ascertain your level of competence in a range of academic and transferable skills. These strategies include essays, practical reports, multiple-choice tests, oral presentations, time-constrained essays, seen and unseen examinations, critical reviews and group project work.

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Careers and Employability

Graduates from the Sociology and Criminology Joint Honours course go on to employment in the legal profession as well as education, the health service, the police force, youth offending teams, human resources management, marketing, social and caring services, the civil service, broadcasting, social work and many other professions.