Why study this course?

Our Criminology MSc degree will allow you to develop an advanced knowledge of crime and offenders, as well as assess contemporary trends and concepts in criminal justice policy and community safety. You'll explore approaches to crime control within the community and penal institutions to gain the skills required to conduct research within the field of crime and criminal justice. This level of knowledge can prepare you for doctoral study or research posts within the criminal justice arena, but it's also ideal for consolidating your professional experience.

More about this course

The course looks at criminology from both a theoretical and an applied perspective, covering areas including criminal justice, prisons, crime prevention, and crime and offender patterns.

You’ll apply research methods and techniques such as assessing patterns in specific forms of crimes and offending behaviour, and considering the prevalence, characteristics and typologies of specific types of offence. You’ll also critically assess recent and current policies and practices with crime control and community safety. Option modules will allow you to develop a specialism in a field that interests you, such as intelligence analysis, psychology and crime, sexual violence, terrorism and counter-terrorism, and urban patterns.

London Met invites visiting professors and experts in criminal justice and criminal areas to the University to share their expertise. These guest visits complement the knowledge of our academics who are actively engaged in areas research including street crime, gangs and police body cameras. Their expertise will support you when undertaking your dissertation in criminology and criminal justice.

By the end of the course you’ll be able to deal with complex issues both systematically and creatively, making sound judgements in the absence of complete data and communicating your conclusions clearly.


You'll be assessed through essays, projects, examinations and a dissertation between 12,000 and 15,000 words. The dissertation forms a key element of your master's degree. It allows you to pursue a topic of your choosing in depth and is to be completed over the summer study period.

Fees and key information

Course type
Entry requirements View
Apply now

Entry requirements

You will be required to have:

  • at least a lower second class honours degree in a relevant discipline such as criminology, or social and behavioural sciences (applications are also welcome from those who have experience in criminal justice or possess relevant professional qualifications)

Accreditation of Prior Learning

Any university-level qualifications or relevant experience you gain prior to starting university could count towards your course at London Met. Find out more about applying for Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL).

English language requirements

To study a degree at London Met, you must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. If you require a Student visa (previously Tier 4) you may need to provide the results of a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. This course requires you to meet our standard requirements.

If you need (or wish) to improve your English before starting your degree, the University offers a Pre-sessional Academic English course to help you build your confidence and reach the level of English you require.

Modular structure

The modules listed below are for the academic year 2023/24 and represent the course modules at this time. Modules and module details (including, but not limited to, location and time) are subject to change over time.

Year 1 modules include:

This module currently runs:
  • spring semester - Wednesday morning

The module seeks to provide a good grounding in the understanding and appreciation of criminological research methods. You will be taken through the process of conducting social research from the formulation of a research question through to the completion of a research project. You will learn how to design social research, analyse research data and present it in a clear and accessible way.

The module is comprised of lectures and seminar/workshops sessions. These are designed to help you understand the practicalities and challenges of conducting research in the 'real world'. You will receive tuition on quantitative methods with an emphasis on the use of SPSS in quantitative data analysis.

The module aims to:

1. Provide a thorough grounding in the understanding and appreciation of criminological research methods.
2. Develop a competence in understanding the strengths and limitation of quantitative and qualitative research.
3. Develop a competence in analysing quantitative and qualitative research data and writing research reports.
4. Assist you in designing and conducting research for your thesis, and in developing skills of critical reflection and analysis.
5. To critically appraise quantitative and qualitative research produced by statutory agencies (such the Home Office, the Metropolitan Police) and voluntary sector
organisations related to the Criminal Justice System to enhance your employment prospects.

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Friday morning
  • summer studies - Friday morning

The dissertation is a triple-weighted module and is designed to provide an opportunity for you to undertake a substantial piece of research in their subject field. The dissertation is intended to build on the taught modules of the award and is underpinned by the Research Methods module, SS7079 Criminological Research Methods. The dissertation is designed to demonstrate synthesis of knowledge and skills developed throughout the award. It is the largest piece of assessed work undertaken on the award, and is seen as the clearest expression of your ability to study at Masters level.

The dissertation allows you to undertake an independent and sustained piece of research into a substantive topic of your own choosing. The dissertation
must include appropriate empirical research in the field of criminology and criminal justice. It must also be grounded in related criminological theories and relate to previous criminological research.

The dissertation has the following aims:

1. To undertake an independent investigation of one area or topic within the field of Criminology;
2. To demonstrate advanced and original application of research knowledge and skills to the proposed topic;
3. To provide an opportunity for systematic critical reflection on the research topic and its relationship to advanced scholarship in the field of study.

This module currently runs:
  • autumn semester - Friday afternoon

In this module you will examine some key debates in criminology and criminal justice, by looking at core theoretical frameworks and contemporary research used to explain crime. You will apply this understanding to policy developments within criminal justice responses to crime.

This module currently runs:
  • autumn semester - Wednesday afternoon

This module will allow you to investigate the complex issue of violence through a multidisciplinary approach. Indicative topics include serious youth violence, murder, football hooliganism and violence in the home. The module will be structured to identify and explain violent behaviour both in the West and the Global South. These will then be tied to the wider criminological field and possible prevention strategies will be considered.

There is a negotiated element to the module, allowing you to focus on topics specific to your own interests.

You are expected to attend and contribute to all seminar sessions, and attendance will be monitored. Sessions will require you to do some preparation, including the reading of academic journal articles, book chapters and research reports.

The module aims to:

1. Explore the prevalence of and trends in violence in the UK and globally
2. Identify and assess violent crimes
3. Recognize and contextualize various types of violence
4. Use various theories within the field of criminology and sociology to explain violent

This module currently runs:
  • spring semester - Thursday afternoon

You will explore the relationship between the state and terrorism and considers how the nation state has been the perpetrator and a motivating factor behind terrorist acts, as well as considering other reasons behind such acts of violence. You will consider the role of the state as a protector of its citizens has been challenged by its own actions and by terrorist organisations including groups such as ISIS. The module goes on to outline contemporary terrorist tactics and reviews the impact on national and international responses to terrorism.

The module aims are

1. Allow an exploration of the role of the state as protector from and perpetrator of terrorist violence
2. Learn about the different motivations for individuals and groups to become radicalised
3. Understand contemporary terrorist tactics within a historical context
4. Consider terrorism desistance
5. Outline the impacts of counter terrorism measures and the war on terror on both radicalisation and the wider public

This module currently runs:
  • autumn semester - Wednesday morning

This module takes a collaborative and student-centred approach, to identify, research and analyse crimes and harm-related issues outside of the western public eye. Taking a global approach, the key emphasis will be on exploring issues and stories not widely known or reported on in the west or in Europe. Each week, you will be required to research and report to the class about an issue from a country of their choice.

The module aims to:

1. Broaden your horizons and understandings of global crimes and crime related issues
2. Develop an understanding of how communities, both cosmopolitan and rural, across the globe are impacted by crime and social harms
3. Consolidate your research skills drawing upon both academic sources and media items
4. Discuss and critically analyse a particular international crime or harm related issue

This module currently runs:
  • spring semester - Thursday morning

This module explores the connections between the many factors that contribute to the onset of, prevention of, and desistance from, crime and other forms of risk-taking. It examines how these shape patterns of offending and victimisation. It takes an empirically-grounded, theoretically-informed approach and investigates the inter-relationships between formal social controls (as exercised through the criminal justice system) and informal social controls (as exercised through families, neighbourhoods, local economies and other social policies). It examines the relationships between youth offending, victimisation and crime, looking at a range of topics such as gangs and drugs, and trafficking. Finally, it will consider prevention strategies to understand what interventions might have reduced risk.

● To develop an understanding of the history of the social construction of youth offending and the government’s responses to these issues.
● To analyse the connections between the many factors contributing to the onset of, prevention of, and desistance from, crime.
● To explore the role of support systems such as family, mentoring, schools in crime prevention and desistance.
● To critically explore the role of the criminal justice system in crime prevention.
● To apply key theoretical positions to a range of empirically-grounded studies of crime.

This module currently runs:
  • autumn semester - Tuesday afternoon

This module examines the gendered nature of crime and victimisation. You will be introduced to key theories of the relationship between gender, crime and victimisation. You will gain an understanding of contemporary issues in the field of intersectional and post-colonial feminist theories. The module examines global crime issues including sex trafficking and illegal migration, drug trafficking, sexual violence in war, forced marriage and cybercrime and gender violence. In doing so, key definitional debates relating to social, political, media, cultural and ideological understandings of the phenomena are examined. Questions about the victim-offender overlap and the problematic responses will be tackled throughout the module.

The module aims to:

● Understand theories of gender, crime and victimisation.
● Develop a critical awareness of the broad social, cultural, economic and political aspects of gendered crime.
● Engage critically with the laws and policies.
● Assess the impacts and consequences of gendered crime.

This module currently runs:
  • autumn semester - Tuesday morning

This module examines the phenomena of modern slavery, human trafficking and organised crime from critical and theoretical perspectives. It explores an understanding of the forms, patterns and trends of modern slavery, human trafficking and organised crime. It will also include consideration of some relevant policy and legislation needed to address modern slavery, human trafficking and organised crime.

The module aims to:

1. Consider a variety of terms associated with human trafficking; its relationship with modern slavery, the sex industry and forced labour.
2. Examine the broad social, cultural, economic and political aspects of modern slavery, human trafficking and organised crime.
3. Evaluate the geographical and global influences on trafficking; such as migration flows, globalisation and conflict zones.
4. Understand the impacts and consequences of modern slavery, human trafficking and organised crime activities.
5. Discuss the relationship between the various forms of trafficking and organised crime, and both national and international legislation that has been established to address this growing criminal enterprise.

This module currently runs:
  • spring semester - Tuesday morning

The main aim of this module is to provide you with core knowledge and understanding of approaches to explaining criminal behaviour and its impact upon individuals and society.

During the course of studying this module you will cover some diverse topics including an overview of the major perspectives in criminology, a discussion on the measurement of crime and following from this workshops focusing on psychological elements to forms of crime and violence, such as sex offending, domestic violence, stalking and homicide.

When studying this module you will:

● Provide an overview of the measurement of crime and factors influencing the degree of error in this measurement.
● Provide an account of psychological factors that are related to or help to explain crime at both a general level and in terms of specific offences (e.g., arson) and specific offender groups (e.g., juveniles).
● Evaluate the contribution of psychology to the explanation of criminal behaviour relative to and in interaction with explanatory frameworks and factors from other disciplines.

This module currently runs:
  • autumn semester - Tuesday afternoon

The aim of this module is to give you a thorough theoretical and operational understanding of transnational organised crime and the social, political and economic dynamics in which it thrives. There will be a focus on trafficking, including of drugs, people and arms, corruption and money laundering as well as looking at how organised crime groups are using the internet for criminal purposes. Corporate and state-corporate crime and the way they intersect with organised crime, particularly in fragile states is also given a specific focus. On this module, you will also gain an understanding of the difficulties experienced when trying to prevent and regulate transnational organised crimes. You will be encouraged to actively participate in discussion and debates linked to key themes and given opportunities for reflective learning. You will develop the skills to investigate, critically examine, and present, orally and in writing, detailed analysis of transnational organised crimes, and the role played by states, corporations and individuals.

This module currently runs:
  • spring semester - Tuesday afternoon

This module will look at the harms and crimes inflicted upon wildlife across the globe, and focus on different conservation measures used to combat this. In doing so, the module will pay particular attention to the convergence of security measures and conservation strategies and consider the impact this may have on the wellbeing and human rights of local populations.

The module aims to:

1. Identify and investigate the harms and crimes inflicted upon wildlife across the globe.
2. Examine a range of conservation approaches and strategies used to tackle wildlife related crime.
3. Explore the convergence of security measures and conservation strategies in tackling wildlife crime and the illegal wildlife trade.
4. Consider the impact that conservation initiatives may have on local communities.
5. Consider the role that criminology can play in informing and analysing these initiatives and impacts.

What our students say

"The tutors and lecturers were always supportive and welcoming to new ideas. The most interesting part of my master's was that I was given the chance to speak to practitioners from the UK Border Agency, National Crime Agency and police officers. I was given the chance to understand the reality of working within the criminal justice system, not just the theoretical part of it."

Ellada Lariondou, graduate

Where this course can take you

The aim of the course is to prepare you for employment or further study in the criminal justice sector. The curriculum will equip you for a range of careers in the criminal justice system and related professions, all with excellent recruitment prospects. Key career paths include the Metropolitan Police Service, Probation Service, Foreign Office, Prison Service, youth offending and community safety departments, as well as academic or government research posts.

Past graduates have gone on to work as senior detective constables, researchers, fraud officers, criminal lawyers and probation officers.

Important information about this course

We're committed to continuously improving our degree courses to ensure our students receive the best possible learning experience. Many of the courses in our School of Social Sciences and Professions are currently under review for 2023-24 entry. We encourage you to apply as outlined in the how to apply section of this page and if there are any changes to your course we will contact you. All universities review their courses regularly and this year we are strengthening our social sciences and professions courses to better reflect the needs of employers and ensure you're well-equipped for your future career.

Additional costs

Please note, in addition to the tuition fee there may be additional costs for things like equipment, materials, printing, textbooks, trips or professional body fees.

Additionally, there may be other activities that are not formally part of your course and not required to complete your course, but which you may find helpful (for example, optional field trips). The costs of these are additional to your tuition fee and the fees set out above and will be notified when the activity is being arranged.

How to apply

Use the apply button to begin your application.

If you require a Student visa and wish to study a postgraduate course on a part-time basis, please read our how to apply information for international students to ensure you have all the details you need about the application process.

When to apply

You are advised to apply as early as possible as applications will only be considered if there are places available on the course.

To find out when teaching for this degree will begin, as well as welcome week and any induction activities, view our academic term dates.

News and success stories

You may also like...