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MSc Criminology

Our Masters highlights international perspectives on criminology and criminal justice. We're ranked 1st in Scotland and top 10 in the UK for Criminology (The Guardian University Guide 2020).

Criminology

Key facts

  • Award Masters / MSc, Postgraduate Diploma, Postgraduate Certificate
  • Start date October
  • Duration MSc full-time: 12 months, MSc part-time: 24 months
  • Mode of study Part-time, Full-time, Campus based, Stand-alone modules

Our MSc Criminology course establishes clear connections between conceptual theories of crime and justice, and applied examples of how they affect contemporary societies. The course has an international focus that goes beyond UK or Scottish borders, making it appealing for a diverse student cohort.

The course content encourages the pursuit of innovative and socially just responses to the problem of crime, from crimes in the street or at home, to crimes of the powerful, crimes across borders, the much newer phenomenon of online crime, and the drug problem. Throughout the course, there's an emphasis on the need for a strong critical understanding of how research is framed, used and developed, which is delivered via modules in data analysis and research design, as well as criminological and socio-legal research methods. You’ll have the opportunity to explore concepts of criminal justice, the social contexts of crime, and a variety of criminological theoretical perspectives as well as applied insights.

With elective modules in specialist subjects you can acquire and develop a range of skills which will significantly enhance your confidence in criminology and your employability. Subjects include:

  • rehabilitation and criminal justice work
  • drug policy and interventions
  • criminalisation, social control and human rights

The course is ideal for those who are keen to continue their studies at postgraduate level, as well as for practitioners who wish to consolidate existing experience and training with a Masters qualification.

  • Top reasons to study with us
  • Course objectives

    This course offers interdisciplinary insights into pressing current social issues such as terrorism, ethical uses of technology in criminal justice, the issues faced by women in criminal justice, drug policy reform, emergence and regulation of psychoactive substances, or tracing the links between poverty and imprisonment.

    You'll gain a critical understanding of how research is framed, used and developed, and by whom, in criminology. Our academics are members of an internationally leading research centre; the Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research (SCCJR), as well as being affiliated with the Scottish Institute for Policing Research (SIRP). Our research features in the media and is used by policymakers and practice leaders.

  • Flexible learning

    If you’re interested in studying a module from this course, the Postgraduate Certificate or the Postgraduate Diploma then please email Graduate Admissions to discuss your course of study.

  • Research

    When you study MSc Criminology at the University of Stirling, you’ll be introduced to leading-edge empirical and theoretical research in a vibrant, multi-disciplinary environment.

    Underpinning the expertise of our staff, the University of Stirling scored highly in the most recent Research Excellent Framework (REF 2014) – a UK-wide assessment of universities’ research output. In the Social Work and Social Policy unit of assessment, highlights included:

    • 78% of our overall research activity was assessed to be internationally excellent or world-leading
    • 100% of research environment factors assessed as internationally excellent or world leading
    • 100% of our research impact was assessed as world leading or internationally excellent
    • we were judged to have the 2nd highest research power in Scotland and 13th highest in the UK
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