During the first and second terms, you will study core and option units. You will plan, research and write your dissertation during the third term and over the summer.
Contemporary and Comparative Criminology: This unit focuses on contemporary criminological debate. You will learn how to connect criminological theory with contemporary developments, such as globalisation, and examine the various issues in the international study of criminology.
Contemporary and Comparative Criminal Justice: You’ll examine how crime, criminal justice policy and practices have developed globally and how this, and cross-jurisdictional approaches to crime, affect criminal justice in England and Wales. You will also explore major international shifts in the justice process and the delivery of punishment.
Project Design and Professional Development: You’ll develop your knowledge of the theoretical and practical issues involved in research. You will look at various perspectives related to the fields of study and build your awareness of different methodologies.
Methods of Inquiry in the Human Sciences: This unit covers research skills and methods in the human sciences. You will learn about quantitative and qualitative investigative techniques and the broader epistemological framework. There is a central focus on research ethics and the application of research to policy and practice.
Master's Project/Dissertation: You will design, write and present a challenging 20,000-word project or dissertation in your chosen area. The theme will be agreed with your supervisor.
Two options (during the second term) from:
Contemporary Penology: You will gain a critical understanding of the consistencies, contradictions and conflicts in current penal policy. The unit also examines key discourses and debates on diversity and division centred on poverty, social exclusion, race, gender and age.
Comparative Legal Systems: You will gain a comprehensive understanding of legal systems, focusing on criminal law in the global context. The unit covers the history and development of comparative law as well as emerging challenges. You will look at the issues of global diversity and examine in-depth some of the major legal systems.
Comparative International Policing: This unit explores the international nature of policing. You’ll look at the globalised character of crime, which has led to co-operation, investigation and prevention beyond localised jurisdiction.
Political Violence, Terrorism and Security: You’ll learn about the history and contemporary nature of terrorism. Using historical case studies, you will consider the long-standing problem of defining terrorism. You will look at the root causes of terrorist conflicts, urban terrorism in western Europe, the birth of global terrorism, Al-Qaeda and the global war on terror.
Researching Historic and ‘True Crime’: This unit examines the cultural significance of criminal cases through a critical analysis of historic and ‘true crime’ representations. You will learn how to research criminal cases and their representations, using official and historical resources and popular narratives.
Drugs, Crime and Justice: You’ll study issues relating to illegal drugs in the global and domestic context. This includes: the development of drug controls and drug policy; the links between production, trafficking, organised crime and terrorism; and the nature and context of criminal justice interventions.
Teaching, learning and assessment
The course is taught through lectures, group work and projects, and supervision for independent writing and research.
You will be allocated a personal tutor and a dissertation research supervisor.
Past students have completed a wide range of interesting and informative placements with:
- the Association of Chief Police Officers Criminal Records Office
- the criminal justice sector (paid work)
- witness and victim services
- probation services
- youth offending teams
- voluntary positions in the criminal justice field.
You will participate in group work, independent writing and research, group projects and discussions. You will be assessed via a number of 3,500-word assignments and individual and group presentations, in addition to a 20,000-word dissertation.
We run an optional ten-day study trip to the USA during the Christmas break, with visits to the FBI and New Jersey State Police.
There will be opportunities to attend lectures and share views and ideas with students at Ocean County College and Monmouth University. Please note this trip is not included in your tuition fees, and you’ll need to cover your travel and living costs.
Other study trip opportunities may also be available.
Solent’s virtual learning environment provides quick online access to assignments, lecture notes, suggested reading and other course information.