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About the course

Do you want to learn how thoughts and feelings can influence criminal behaviours? This exciting interdisciplinary course will help you to understand the underlying social and psychological causes of criminality, focusing on the various different forms of criminal behaviour and the ways in which the UK handles criminal justice. Alongside a foundation of psychological inquiry and research, you’ll study the methods by which crimes are investigated, responsibility allocated and prosecutions secured.

Psychological and criminological study at Solent starts with our programme of lectures and guest speakers. Past students have benefitted from talks delivered by criminal justice professionals and psychology practitioners, giving detailed insight into the industry and the careers it offers. Previous speakers include Martin Fisher, consultant forensic psychologist with NOMS, and Adam Murton, forensic psychologist.

The course team themselves have had extensive experience of the criminal justice system and psychological practice, providing students with personal insights gained through first-hand experience. The ties they have with the professional world have also helped past students obtain work experience including volunteer placements, temporary paid work, work shadowing weeks and internships.

Past placements have included the Association of Chief Police Officers Criminal Records Office, Sustainable Criminal Justice Solutions, Tempforce, and the prison service, as well as positions with criminal justice support services such as youth offender panels.

Can you see yourself working at the point where criminal investigation meets psychological study? With a range of industry-standard facilities, close links with local employers and an experienced course team, Solent University’s criminal investigation and psychology programme could be the ideal next step towards your dream career.

If you apply for this course with a placement year, you have the opportunity to undertake a year in industry between your second and third years.
Placement year
You have the opportunity to study abroad in one of our partner universities for a semester on this course.
Study abroad
If you're not quite ready for a full undergraduate degree, there's alternative entry through one of our foundation years.
Foundation year available
This course has access to Solent's specialist facilities.
Specialist facilities
After successfully completing your studies, there's an opportunity to continue your studies at Solent.
Further studies
If you have an appropriate Level 5 qualification, you can top it up to a degree in just a year.
Top-up option

Students have embarked on educational visits to institutions including the Old Bailey and Houses of Parliament, as well as the Pentagon, the Department of Homeland Security, Washington DC and the British Embassy in the USA.

What does this course lead to?

Police, probation, prisons and court services in both ‘frontline’ and support roles. Case workers and intelligence analysts for a variety of policing agencies, including the Association of Chief Police Officer Criminal Records Office, the National Crime Agency and local crime reduction partnerships.

Who is this course for?

This interdisciplinary course is ideal for student who want to study psychology while gaining a broad understanding of criminal investigation and justice. Graduates will be well prepared for a range social care, mental health and community safety roles within both the public and private sector.

Facts and figures

UCAS codes icon

UCAS codes

Full Time

  • 3 Years Standard Entry L4C8
  • 4 Years Law & Criminology Foundation Year VG92

Placement (480 credit course)

  • 4 Years Standard Entry L329
Fees icon

Fees and costs

Tuition fees

The 2020/21 fees are not yet available. For guidance, the 2019/20 fees were:
UK, EU and Channel Island full-time fees: £9,250 per year
International full-time fees: £12,875 per year
UK, EU and Channel Island placement year fees: £1,385
International placement year fees: £1,750

For further information, please visit our tuition fees page.

Other costs

While most course costs are covered by your tuition fees, some essential resources and optional extras may need to be paid for separately. These additional costs are listed below. For advice on budgeting and managing your money, please contact

The 2020/21 other costs are not yet available. For guidance, previous other costs have been:

Optional costs:

The course offers optional trips to all students to the USA and Strasbourg.

  • USA trip is around £1,400 - £1,500
  • Strasbourg trip is around £500

There will also be occasional trips to courts, police training etc. where students must pay for own transport and subsistence.

Study trips occur throughout the year, and although optional, prove very popular. Previous UK trips have included: Hampshire Police Training, Houses of Parliament, Sustainable Criminal Justice Solutions, Middle Temple, Southampton Crown Court, Old Bailey, The Ripper Tour, Team building YMCA activities, and various legal firms.

International trips include our annual USA and Brussels Trips. Further trips are being considered to Amsterdam and the Hague. These trips are typically three days in duration except the USA trip that has been 6-7 days. Costs are based on current air fares and hotel prices.

Bursaries and scholarships

Solent University offers a range of bursaries and scholarships that provide financial assistance or waive fees for tuition or accommodation. Each bursary or scholarship has specific eligibility criteria. Check out our bursaries and scholarships pages to find out more.

Key entry requirements icon

Key entry requirements

96 - 112 UCAS tariff points from A-levels or equivalent

  • A minimum of two completed A-levels, a BTEC Extended Diploma at MMM or BTEC Diploma at DM or equivalent qualification, or a combination of qualifications which comply with the minimum entry requirement of 96 UCAS points.
  • Direct entry into year two or three may be considered for this course.
  • Alternative entry to the course is available through the Law and Criminology Foundation Year.
  • If you are applying from outside the UK, find information about entry requirements, visas and agents for your country here.
  • For further information about UK, EU and international qualifications, please refer to our course entry requirement statement.

English language requirements

Applicants who do not have English as their first language will be required to demonstrate an approved level of proficiency in the use of the English language. The agreed minimum requirements for this course are:

  • IELTS minimum 6.0 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each individual component
  • TOEFL IBT minimum 80 with a minimum of 19 in each individual component
  • or equivalent.

Qualifications are checked before enrolment, and international students must bring their original certificates or certified copies when coming to study at the University.

The University also offers a pre-sessional English programme for international students who wish to improve their level of English before starting a degree course.

Study location

East Park Terrace

Got a question about this course?

Contact our Ask Solent team: 023 8201 5066

How to apply

Any student applying for the first year of a full-time/sandwich undergraduate course must apply through UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service). This includes mature, overseas and EU students.

Nearly all schools and colleges offer their students the facility of applying electronically through the UCAS website using 'Apply'; it may also be used by those applying independently in the UK and overseas. This facility and all course information can be found on the UCAS website:

Your application should reach UCAS by 15 January if you hope to enter a course the following autumn. Early application is advised for the most popular subject areas. Late applications may be made until the end of June. The UCAS code for the University is S30, code name SOLNT.

Please click on the links below to apply through UCAS:

Mode of study
Full-time 3 years Apply
Placement year 4 years Apply

Law and Criminology Foundation Year route:

Mode of study
Full-time 4 years Apply
Placement year 5 years Apply

Top-up route:

We welcome applications from students currently studying a Foundation Degree, DipHE, HNC, HND or modules of an undergraduate degree course at another university, who wish to enter directly into Years 2 or 3 of one of our undergraduate degree courses. Please contact our admissions team for more information: contact us

How to apply

What you'll study

Year one

Core units
  • Criminal Processes and Responsibility
  • Criminological Research Methods & Skills 1
  • Key Perspectives in Criminology
  • Understanding Criminology
  • Exploring Psychology
  • Psychology Across the Lifespan

Year two

Core units
  • Contemporary Debates in Crime, Culture and Society
  • Criminological Research Methods & Skills 2
  • Crime Scene to Court: Criminal Evidence and Procedure
  • Critical Issues and Professional Practice in Criminal Investigation
  • The Social Individual
  • The Psychology of Crime


Year three

Core units
  • Dissertation Proposal and Dissertation
  • Leadership and Management in Investigation and Policing


  • Global Perspectives on Crime and Justice
  • Terrorism and Political Violence
  • Youth Crime, Youth Justice
  • Dangerous Offenders?
  • Gender, Crime and Justice
  • Security, Public Order and the State
  • Crime, Risk, Community Safety
  • Cybercrime and Security
  • Alcohol, Drugs and Crime
  • Crimes of the Powerful
  • Crime, Media, Culture
  • Police, Law, Community
  • The Bloody Code: Punishment and Control
  • Developing Professional Practice in Forensic Psychology
  • CBT and Mindfulness Based Approaches
  • Behavioural Change for Health and Wellbeing
  • Applied Psychopathology

Please note: Not all optional units are guaranteed to run each year.


Web-based learning

Solent's virtual learning environment provides quick online access to assignments, lecture notes, suggested reading and other course information.

The Student Hub

The Student Hub is a central space where you can access all of the information and support you need during your time at University.

Professional and experienced staff can help resolve any query, and if they cannot answer the question themselves they will find the person who can.

Career support

Meet the course team

Simon Fox academic profile Simon Fox Head of Subject View profile
Rhodri Davies academic profile Rhodri Davies Senior Lecturer View profile
Esther Snell academic profile Esther Snell Senior Lecturer View profile

The university cannot guarantee any particular members of staff will teach specific aspects of the course in the future, but will endeavour to ensure the teaching team maintains their balance of experience and qualifications.


We provide a stimulating learning environment and access to state-of-the-art resources to help you make the most of your time with us. Flexible spaces, Wi-Fi facilities and learning zones all contribute to our lively and contemporary study environment at Solent.

Learning is also supported by our purpose built labs, which allow students to collect data from human participants using the same resources as professional psychologists. These facilities include the psycho-physiology laboratory, the observation laboratory, and the cognitive psychology laboratory.

Students have used these facilities to carry out cognitive and psycho-physiological investigations. For example, the sophisticated eye tracker can trace eye positions on a computer screen while our Biopac programme measures participant’s physiological reactions. Collecting a wide range of data using these resources gives students the opportunity to enhance their knowledge of psychological methods and analysis, as well as helping them to gain first-hand experience of psychological research.

Students use a range of industry standard facilities including dedicated observation, cognitive, psychophysiology and computer laboratories.

Your future

The course supports entry to a range of public- and private-sector careers. If you have a particular interest in criminal psychology you could choose to work as, for example, a mental health case worker in local authority community safety units, or in the intelligence or organised crime departments of the National Crime Agency.

Suitable roles for graduates include:

  • Police
  • Probation
  • Prisons and court services;
  • Public, private and charity sectors within criminal justice
  • Legal services
  • Teacher training
  • Further study/training.

Industry links

The course team have extensive experience in criminal justice and in applied psychological settings, and strong ties to the professional world.

You will also receive guest lectures from a wide range of criminal justice professionals (examples include chief officers of police and probation, visiting judges and members of charity and crime reduction partnerships) who provide detailed insight into the field, and there are varied opportunities for work experience in criminal justice and related areas – including voluntary or temporary paid work, work shadowing and internships.


Students have the opportunity to apply for a number of internships and work placements through the course’s excellent professional links.

Past internships have included the Association of Chief Police Officers Criminal Records Office, Sustainable Criminal Justice Solutions, Tempforce and the prison service, as well as positions with criminal justice support services such as youth offender panels.

There are also work-shadowing and volunteering opportunities in a range of criminal justice settings, including the Special Constabulary, drugs and alcohol, youth and victim support services.

Further study

Enhance your career prospects by continuing your study at Solent.

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