Why study this course?

The Organised Crime and Global Security MA is the ideal choice if you have an interest in organised crime and security matters on a global scale.

This degree will provide you with the leadership, management and analytical skills needed to succeed in the field. You'll gain valuable experience in research and the study of crime and politics.

You'll critically assess current policies and practices related to national and international crime control, as well as the links between these and international relations and politics. Option modules will allow you to specialise in a field that interests you, these include international law and order, conflict resolution and contemporary issues in criminology.

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

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. The course is an opportunity to open up new thinking and to expand your career opportunities within the security industry.

More about this course

This degree is taught by specialists in criminology and international relations, many of whom are internationally recognised for their quality of work.

Practitioners regularly visit the University to share their expertise. We also organise a number of trips to public policy agencies, Non-Governmental Organisations, and relevant government bodies and international organisations.

The course will help prepare you for employment in the criminal justice and security sector. Those working in a related occupations will benefit greatly from this course, as it provides the contextualisation with which to understand the complexity of varied agencies, departments and policies related to crime, criminology and criminal justice.


You'll be assessed through essays, projects, 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

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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 you may need to provide the results of a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. For more information about English qualifications please see our English language 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 2021/22 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:

  • 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 students in designing and conducting research for their thesis, and in developing their 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 their employment prospects.

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  • This module will explore the concept of security as it is understood in international relations discipline. What has been the rationale for the development of a distinct concept of ‘human security’? What are the implications of the concept of human security for our understanding of security in the international system? It will then examine the application of the concept to substantive problems and policy areas. These include the impact of environmental degradation, mass population movement, human trafficking and international crime. Finally, it will assess the impact of the concept on the strategies and policies of international organisations and states.

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  • The module enables students to investigate in depth a topic within the field of organized crime analysis and global security. Students can select their own research area, but this is subject to authorisation of
the course leader. The dissertation must include independent and original empirical research.
    Students will be required to submit a formal dissertation plan by the beginning of the Spring
    Once this has been approved, students will be allocated a dissertation tutor, and for the
remainder of the module, supervision of the dissertation will be conducted on an individual basis.
    It is expected that pertinent knowledge and skills gained in other course modules will be reflected
in the dissertation.

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  • This module explores 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. Students 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

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  • This module explores 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. Students 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

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  • The module seeks to enable students to:

     identify and critically assess contemporary developments in criminology
     explore the theories used in current research, including neoclassicism; biosocial approaches, developmental and life-course criminology; and critical realism

    The teaching will be focused on exploring some of the contemporary issues relevant to criminology and underpinning this by making links tor relevant theories. The module will seek to accommodate the varying previous experiences found in MSc groups by providing a contextual knowledge of the subject matter linked to further research with a view to allowing students to present in depth analysis and evidence of research on their chosen issues.

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  • This module provides a broad introduction to cybercrime and cyber security evolution. The module examines the relationship between advances in Internet-based and digital technologies, and their criminal exploitation within cyberspace. It examines a wide range of cyber threats, attacks and risks, and the strategies employed to mitigate these, including the laws that are in place to protect and prevent online crimes/cybercrimes.

    The module provides essential coverage of the principles and concepts underpinning cybercrime and cyber security, maintaining focus on the identification, examinations and assessment of the key threats, attacks and risks, and in areas related to legal, ethical, social and professional issues.

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  • This module examines the theory and institutionalized practice of human rights and the significance of human rights politics for the structure of the changing world order, and of domestic politics for both rights and order. It contextualises, analyses, evaluates and applies various conceptions of human rights that are operative within international relations, and in relation to academic paradigms used to explain international relations. Attention is paid to the transformation of state sovereignty by human rights discourse and practice. The relation of human rights to the international order is questioned in the context of the history and philosophy of human rights, liberalism and its critics and opponents, and institutions and systems of international governance and conflict. Conversely, ideas of realism and constructivism in international relations are questioned by liberal claims for human rights. The globalization and recent reverses of human rights are critically analysed. Students ae encouraged to explore particular cases of international order or conflict and of human rights’ observance or abuse in a way that is sustained and rigorous.

    Module aims

    1 This module contextualises, analyses, evaluates and applies various conceptions of human rights that are operative within international relations, and within the study of international relations.
    2 Three subjects in particular are addressed:
    i the causes of, and reasons for, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the broader development of human rights as a universalizing, globalizing, Westernizing and institutionalizing force in relations between states;
    ii the variety of particular states, domestic and foreign policies, other political actors, cultures, and motivating ideologies with which human rights has come into conflict;
    iii the transformation of state sovereignty by human rights discourse and practice. These subjects are problematized in the context of the history and philosophy of human rights, liberalism and its critics and opponents, and institutions and systems of international governance and conflict.

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  • This module aims to:

    • Examine a range of approaches to the cessation of contemporary conflicts and the conditions that may be necessary for peace
    • Focus upon both the domestic and international actors involved in these processes
    • Provide students with an understanding of relevant theories and empirical material for comparative analysis
    • Explore the differing ways in which particular conflicts tend to be viewed by participants, external commentators and public policy-makers

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  • The aim of this module is to provide students with an understanding of (a) the practical reality of international law (b) the essentials of the existing international legal order and (c) the main politically effective alternatives to (b) proposed since 1945.

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  • This module cultivates students’ familiarity with a range of policies and regulatory frameworks that have emerged in the context of ensuring the identification of risks and the meeting of safeguarding needs. The module builds on the Safeguarding and Security MA’s ethos of developing critical awareness of contested notions of vulnerability and policy responses addressed across core modules. This module will enable students to theorise aspects of legal reform and be equipped with conceptual tools for the evaluation of legislative procedures and policy arrangements. The module assignments are designed to develop core course objectives relating to the development of individual judgement and reflexivity and to apply evaluative skills in practice through an evidence-based approach.

    The module aims to:
    • build student’s awareness of the underpinning historical and social policy context of regulatory safeguarding frameworks
    • critically engage students in themes within safeguarding and their relevance to existing and emerging policy and legislation
    • develop student’s capacity to apply knowledge to the communication, interpretation and development of safeguarding policy and practice

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  • This module introduces students in the main issues surrounding political violence in a contemporary world: key definitions, past and present accounts, current theories, and tactics for prevention and solution to political violence in selected settings. This introductory module presents the ethos for the course by challenging students to think critically about different forms of political violence (e.g. such as conventional and civil war, ‘New Wars’, colonial and decolonisation violence, counter-insurgencies, torture and domestic repression, demonstrations and riots, and terror) from a sociological, political, human rights and media perspectives. Ultimately, the module enables critical engagement with government responses and a comparative view of where the UK sits in relation to political violence in other countries.
    The content in the module is organised in five sections: political violence – causes and consequences; the politics of naming: ‘New Wars’, genocide and crimes against humanity; Citizenship and war: refugees, Internally Displaced Peoples (DPs), women and children; Political violence and humanitarian intervention; and finally, Political violence: the role of media and social media. Students have the opportunity to return to the content addressed in this module throughout their module choice in the course.

    This module aims to:

    1. introduce students to the concepts of the radicalisation; its development globally in different settings, e.g. war, civil war, colonial and postcolonial times and its different manifestation including political violence
    2. explore the impacts of radicalisation and political violence on governments, society and individuals..
    3. explain the different forms of political violence and the political and social policy responses to them
    4. provide account of mass media involvement with radicalisation and political violence and use of contemporary communication modes for dissemination and prevention.

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  • The main aim of this module is to provide students with core knowledge and understanding of approaches to explaining criminal behaviour and its impact upon individuals and society. More specifically, the aims are:

    To provide an overview of the measurement of crime and factors influencing the degree of error in this measurement.
    To 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).
    To evaluate the contribution of psychology to the explanation of criminal behaviour relative to and in interaction with explanatory frameworks and factors from other disciplines.

    To provide a brief introduction to victimology.

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  • This module is an opportunity for students to engage with the growing literature in this field, to learn about statutory obligations like the Prevent Duty and to critically analyse socio-political movements and state responses to those movements from a human rights perspective. This module will challenge students to think about the usefulness and operationalisation of particular concepts (extremism, radicalisation, terrorism, racism, fascism, and fundamentalism), it will provide a detailed analysis of current modes of radicalisation (face to face, online, offline, through networks and through institutions like prisons) and specific right wing or extremist formations (white supremacist, Christian Right, Muslim fundamentalism or Islamism, Zionism, Sikh and Hindu fundamentalism) and consider in detail the impact on specific groups of people (women/girls, children/young people, dissenters and minorities). The module will enable critical engagement with government responses and a comparative view of where the UK sits in relation to counter-radicalisation strategies in other countries.

    The module aims are as follows:
    • To consider and critically engage with key concepts;
    • To provide an understanding of the ideological projects of the groups concerned and their mobilisation tactics;
    • To nurture a human rights framework for responding to radicalisation;
    • To encourage a comparative analysis of these formations;
    • To encourage a comparative analysis of state and civil society responses.

    This is a core module for the MSc Political Violence and Radicalisation Studies, the PGCert in Political Violence and Radicalisation Studies, and the PGDip in Political Violence and Radicalisation Studies. It will also contribute to teaching in Sociology, Criminology and Politics and International Relations. It provides an important foundation for anyone that wants to make a contribution to countering the rise of racism, fascism, fundamentalism and terrorism.

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  • • Enables students to evaluate differing interpretations of the political importance of religious actors in international relations
    • Educates students about doctrines and organizational methods of major religious currents insofar as these are relevant to international relations
    • Informs students about Transnational Religious Actors and their role in international relations

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  • By the end of the module students will

    1. Appreciate what is at stake in security, both as a theoretical concept and as an ontological category.
    2. Gain an understanding of how the concept of security has been rearticulated and challenged in our contemporary context through an engagement with some of the most pressing issues of our day.
    3. Be able to question the ethical dimensions of the Westphalian order based on notions of sovereignty and narrow State interests and determine whether theories highlighting human emancipation need to be strengthened.
    4. Be able to demonstrate a good grasp of public policy, especially the processes and structures of decision-making in the area of international security.
    5. Be able to examine the contemporary themes in international security, such as the legacy of the Cold War, the impact of terrorism, the proliferation of dangerous weapons, the rise of great powers and the impact of globalisation.

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  • This module reflects the Safeguarding and Security MA’s ethos of enabling students to engage with contested perspectives and values relating to effective safeguarding practice. It therefore complements core modules addressing the legislative landscape and politics of vulnerability by turning to the implementation of policies and questions of agency.

    The module aims to:

    • develop students’ understanding of the concept and ideology of social responsibility and its relationship to constructs of state agency and inter-agency partnerships
    • develop students’ critical understanding of the theoretical models, methods and approaches which frame mandatory and voluntary interventions
    • facilitate the development of students’ capacity to evaluate the impact of economic, political, sociological and cultural factors on the design and implementation of interventions promoted to support social change and control
    • develop the intellectual tools that enable the safeguarding practitioner to demonstrate the fundamental course objectives of critical reflexivity and practical judgment in relation to structures of institutional intervention

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  • This module serves as a central component in realising the Safeguarding and Security MA’s objective of enabling students to develop a critical awareness and appreciation of contested views of vulnerability and responses. It therefore complements core modules addressing modes of intervention, responsibility and institutionalisation of policies. In addition, the module conceptually informs students’ perspectives on methodological approaches to researching vulnerability and violence. The module invites students to develop a critically-informed approach to categories of vulnerability and risk as an introduction to safeguarding policy and practice. The module traces the emergence of vulnerability and risk in social, cultural and political contexts encouraging students to understand their social construction in relation to broader social issues. The module equips students with a range of theoretical positions and concepts allowing sociological insight into the inter-subjective dynamics of risk and vulnerability. These include attention to dominant moralising agendas, societal influences, cross-cultural comparisons, the normalisation of abuse, precarity, and/or exploitation, and the implications of media representations of the vulnerable.

    The module aims to:
    • explain the historical development of safeguarding measures in terms of social attitudes and welfare policy mechanisms
    • provide the theoretical and conceptual tools as a basis for defining and measuring vulnerability and risk
    • explore a range of tensions between the conceptualisation of vulnerability and the effective implementation of prevention policies
    • study the nature of abuse/exploitation in relation to age, gender, social class and ethnicity
    • develop a systematic understanding of the complex relationship between society and vulnerable groups

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Where this course can take you

Graduates from our masters programmes have found employment with the police, probation, prisons, the Border Agency, National Crime Agency, Europol and the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime, as well as academic or government research posts.

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.

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