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The BSc Criminology is offered under the Q-Step programme with the purpose of developing data/statistical analysis and applied research skills amongst social sciences students.

Our programmes

One of the highlights of my course is the emphasis on quantitative analysis. To the uninitiated, that can sound extremely daunting, but I am so incredibly grateful for the numerous doors such a skill will open for me.

Simone, BSc Criminology



Criminology is a fascinating subject that explores the nature of crime and deviance, using an evidence-based approach to understand criminal behaviour and address the critical issues facing society today. Our Exeter Criminology programmes offer the opportunity to study traditional topics such as policing, prisons and probation, as well as more recent areas of criminological attention including terrorism, conflict, and human rights.  While located within the Department of Sociology, Philosophy and Anthropology, our programmes encourage students to take modules related to crime across varied disciplines.

Why choose Criminology at Exeter?

  • Taught within the research active Sociology, Philosophy and Anthropology department
  • 15th in The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2022
  • 100% of our Sociology research has internationally excellent impact*
  • Opportunities to study abroad in Europe, the USA, Australia and elsewhere
  • Leading experts in many fields who are widely published and quoted in the media
  • Benefit from studying applied data analysis with the Exeter Q-Step Centre
  • Work experience bursaries of up to £2,000 for BSc Criminology students taking applied research training
  • There may be the opportunity to undertake secondments with the police.

Our criminology research at the University of Exeter is interdisciplinary in nature. Within the Department of Sociology, Philosophy and Anthropology, criminological research and spans all research themes within the department:

We also have strong links with the University’s Strategy and Security Institute

The research conducted by our academics in Criminology has attracted substantial funding grants, such as Dr Katharine Boyd, Dr Hannah Farrimond, and Prof Brian Rappert’s award from the College of Policing and HEFCE, for the Exeter Policing, Evidence and Research Translation (ExPERT) project. Working with University colleagues and Devon and Cornwall Police, they and colleagues at the university will train officers in conducting and evaluating research about what forms of policing work to reduce crime. The recently established 'Policing and Evidence' Group at the university includes a number of other cross disciplinary projects that will enhance the understanding of effective policing practices.  

Our Criminology programme builds on our research strength and interests in policing, prisons and probation but also combines them with interests and strengths in international conflict; war and crime; and transitional justice.

We offer three undergraduate degrees in criminology:

Our programmes are career-focused designed to appeal to employers; provide students with an interdisciplinary perspective on crime and deviance, and an understanding of the criminal justice system; help students understand the causes and consequences of criminal behaviour; and knowledge of society and government responses to criminal activity.

As part of the BSc Criminology, students will receive extensive training in applied research and data analysis (such as analysing crime survey data), and training in industry-standard software and tools.

You will also benefit from a guaranteed work placement with an industry-leading partner in the UK or overseas as part of the Q-Step programme with a work bursary of up to £2,000 available as part of this.  As part of the BSc Sociology and Flexible Combined Honours with Criminology, you can receive a proficiency in Applied Data Analysis.

Learn more about our programmes on the Undergraduate Study Site.

By studying criminology you will expand your horizons and develop your understanding of all aspects of crime and criminal behaviour. You will develop key skills highly sought after by employers, including:

  • Evidence generation and analysis
  • Analysing and interpreting a wide range of data types
  • Critical thinking and report writing
  • Forming reasoned arguments and making ethical judgements
  • Excellent research, written and oral communication skills
  • Quantitative skills and knowledge of statistical software programmes 
  • Time management, planning and working to deadlines
  • Working on your own and as part of a team

The training you will receive as part of your Criminology degree including critical thinking and analytical and communication skills, will make you very attractive to employers, both inside and outside the criminal justice sector.

Criminologists can enter diverse and exciting careers in the media, government, police and prison services, non-profit organisations, social work and community education departments, as well as opportunities in the private sector in law firms or private security, as just some examples.

To learn more about the academic content of our Criminology programmes, please contact:

For admissions information:

WebEnquire online
Phone: +44 (0)1392 723192

**Based on research impact rated 4* + 3* in REF 2021, our research in Sociology, Philosophy, Anthropology and Criminology was returned to this UoA