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Teaching Excellence Framework 2023 - Gold Award

BA (Hons) Criminology with Psychology

What motivates people to behave as they do? Why do people commit crime? BA (Hons) Criminology with Psychology explores how the mind works and how that relates to crime and society and prepares you for a wide range of careers within the criminal justice system.

A psychologist listens to a sad looking client

Explore the criminal mind and the causes and consequences of crime

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Full-time Part-time

Entry requirements

Three A-levels at grades CCC or above

Or BTEC triple grades MMM or above

Or Access with 23-45 D/M with a minimum of 6D

Or T level P (C+)

And GCSE English Language at grade 4 or grade C or above and GCSE Maths or a Science at grade 4 or grade C or above (or equivalent qualifications)

We will accept 2 AS levels in lieu of one A level but must be accompanied by 2 A Levels or BTECs (General Studies is excluded).

UCAS points 96


UCAS institution code P63

Duration Three years full-time or up to six years part-time

Any questions?

Contact Charley Lumley, our Applicant Support Coordinator, if you have any questions. Email and Charley will get back to you.

Course Summary

Our BSc (Hons) Criminology with Psychology degree explores the causes of crime, the criminal justice system, the legal framework and responses to crime. It combines the sociology of crime and causes and responses, with the study of Psychology. Teaching and learning gives equal weight to the two core subjects of Criminology and Psychology, developing a deep understanding of human behaviour and how this relates to the criminal justice system.

During the course you'll be introduced to psychology and criminology theories with a focus on the social psychology of crime. You’ll investigate the common traits of actors in the criminal justice system in a criminal justice setting, such as a court or a crime scene. You'll also have opportunities to develop research techniques and to complete your own piece of social psychological research and to do 50 hours of work placement in a criminal justice organisation. You'll also develop a sound understanding of the ethics of criminology and take an in-depth look at the psychology behind crime.

Why this course at Marjon?

Learn to apply criminological and psychological tools to any type of investigations, but with an emphasis on crime scene investigations

Study in dedicated psychology lab spaces and at simulated crime scenes in our 'crime scene house' with the support of specialist tutors

Small groups for teaching and learning allow you to have support to develop your individual projects

Learn how to apply psychology to develop effective forms of crime deterrent, rehabilitation and victim support

Visit real criminal justice environments

Get a broad perspective by studying crime in the context of local communities, as well as nationally and internationally

Modules for this course

Course Snapshot

Your first year will see you develop an understanding of psychological perspectives as well as learning broad knowledge about crime and law in society. In the second year you will learn about the biology of emotion in the brain and how criminologists think differently about crime scenes. You will also take on a work placement to gain experience in the industry. In the third year you will learn about the mind of criminals and what underpins criminal behaviour. You will also develop communication skills and focus on the ethics of working in criminal justice.
Dr Hazel Bending - Lecturer

1st Year

Crime and the criminal justice system
This module focuses on the challenges of defining and responding to crime and deviance. You'll consider the punishment of crime and learn about the criminal justice system in England and Wales.
People: Social beings
The module answers questions such as how do people work in groups? What influences our group roles and behaviour? Is the Zimbardo study (of the roles people play in prisons) still relevant today?
Academic personal and professional development
You'll reflect on your own academic, personal and professional aspirations, and plan for the personal development needed to achieve these. We'll help you to develop a broad understanding of careers available to criminologists. You'll learn how to manage yourself and your work at university, how to access and create resources, and how to develop the core knowledge, skills and attributes needed to become an enterprising Marjon graduate!
Criminological theory
You will explore the philosophies of crime and deviance. You will also study the key theories and theorists of crime and deviance, and apply these criminological theories to criminal justice in practice.
Health and wellbeing
Investigate factors which impact on wellbeing including ill-health and stress and loss. You'll consider how illness & disability are displayed in the media and you'll design an information leaflet to support people with a mental health condition.
Criminal law
This module introduces students to criminal law within a social science context. It will provide students with a broad understanding of what constitutes crime, how crimes are defined and dealt within the criminal justice system and the role of criminal law in society.

2nd Year

Understanding punishment: prisons and penology
In this module, you will study the philosophy of punishment. You will investigate how and why society punishes, and explore the impact of punishment and alternative approaches to punishment.
Our social selves
Leadership, social influences, group dynamics, styles, personality and identity all in one module!
Research methods
In this module you'll undertake an original piece of research, learning the process of research design, quantitative and qualitative research methodologies, literature review and how to analyse and write up your research findings.
Globalisation and crime
This module introduces students to the relationship between globalisation, crime, and justice, involving a diverse range of activities that affect the political, economic, and social development of countries around the world. We will contemplate the proliferation of crime emphasizing topics such as migration, international policing, drug/human trafficking, international terrorism, environmental/green crime, cybercrime, and economic exploitation.
Understanding violence
Violent crime often triggers social outcry and political response when targeted towards vulnerable groups within society. However, the notion of violent crime moves beyond the obvious offending into areas such chastisement of children, violence in social disorder, domestic violence, state violence and violence against nature. Drawing on theoretical considerations from sociological, penological and psychological fields of knowledge alongside political, social and media reactions, the module offers a multi-disciplinary view on this form of offending. The aim of this module is to explore the range of violent offending currently criminalised within and beyond the criminal justice system, the social and political responses to such offending and the treatment of violent offenders.
Human cognition
The human mind is amazing, this module looks at aspects of cognition from attention and perception through to problem solving and decision making.

3rd Year

Criminology honours project
The honours project is an individual piece of research on a topic of your choice related to criminology. You'll ask a research question and design your research, which is to include a literature review, data collection, data analysis and reporting. You'll write it all up to produce your dissertation.
Investigative psychology
The psychological study of crime, criminals and victims within an investigative framework is known as criminal or investigative psychology. The module explores different ways investigative psychology contributes to police training, investigations and interviewing, as well as their contribution to understanding evidence in the courtroom. Drawing on theoretical and practical considerations from global fields of knowledge alongside political, social and media reactions, the module offers a multi-disciplinary view on investigative psychology and its applications.
Contemporary issues in psychology
Again, you decide the content. Together we explore topics and questions which are of interest to the class.
Understanding violence
This module explores different forms of violence and prevention mechanisms, inter alia interpersonal, cultural, systemic, political. It focuses on our modern understanding of violence and violent behaviour, theoretical approaches, culture, environment, and pro-active and re-active actions against violence and violent crime.
Contemporary issues in crime and criminology
This module focuses on a variety of contemporary issues explored through a criminological lens. You will study issues such as migration, organised crime, social exclusion, media impact/influence, social control, human trafficking and societal reaction to crime.
Working with people
Time to put your social psychology knowledge to the test! You'll look at your own management and leadership styles and those of others. You'll work in a team and explore the social psychology of organisations.

This course is perfect if you’re curious about

Who commits crime?

What drives an individual's offending behaviour?

What causes criminality and how does psychology explain it?

How can an understanding of psychology help us reduce criminal behaviour?

How best do we support victims and offenders to prevent crime?

How do we encourage resilience to loss and trauma?

What might you become?

BA (Hons) Criminology with Psychology prepares students for careers in offender management, civil service, youth services, community development and the police.

How you’ll be taught and assessed?

How will you be taught?

Includes lectures, seminars, experiential learning, guest speakers and field trips (domestic and international) to criminal justice agencies/sites such as prisons, police stations and other relevant organisations.

How will you be assessed?

Assessment methods are varied and in some modules allow students to choose their own topics so that can further explore their own areas of interest. Types of assessments include exams, case studies, formal reports, poster presentations, essays, blogs, journals and reports.   

 Samantha Hauptman

Dr Samantha Hauptman

Course leader

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Sam has spent over 17 years teaching criminal justice and sociology in Higher Education. Before that she worked for six years in administration at the South Carolina Department of Corrections, working with youthful offenders, and victims, and eventually in educational programming. She teaches a broad range of classes and has a variety of research interests including globalization, criminal and social deviance, social control, and immigration. She is the author of The Criminalization of Immigration: The Post 9/11 Moral Panic (2013) and co-author of the forthcoming publication: Security and the State in the Era of Globalization: Criminology in the XXI Century.

Fees and funding

Fees UK students: £9,250 per annum

Fees for International students: £14,500 per annum

This fee covers your tuition and access to course-specific equipment and facilities, as well associated services including access to the library, study skills support, IT support, student support and wellbeing services and membership of the Student Union. There may be additional costs by course.

Funding available for this course

Our Student Funding Advisors offer confidential and impartial advice about your funding options.

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Dr Katheryn Edwards

Lecturer in Psychology

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Dr Katheryn Edwards is a BPS Chartered Psychologist and Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Her PhD investigated a dual process account of human mind-reading. Katheryn teaches across a number of modules relating to cognitive psychology, developmental psychology, research methods and study skills.

Damien Hackney


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David Moore

Programme Lead

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Currently serving police sergeant with over 26 years of experience. 9 years lecturing. Policing experience includes - response, neighbourhood, training and assessing officers, burglary squad, interview teams, custody, evidence review, licensing in both urban and rural police areas. Recently used forensic science in developing effective crime prevention within policing. Recipient of the Plymouth Police Commander's Mayflower Memorial Award in 2019. Recently received national recognition for work around the developing evaluation and investigative working practices around drink spiking offences in the UK

Dr Rosanna Walters-Symons

Senior Lecturer

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Rosanna specialises in the psychology of sporting performance, examining the critical perceptual cognitive factors that enable elite performance. Her research fields are cognitive psychology, performance psychology and quantitative methods.

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