Criminology and Criminal Justice careers
These pages look at career areas related to Criminology and Criminal Justice. Since Criminology can be studied as a joint honours degree at Kent, you may also wish to look at the pages for the other half of your degree.
The occupations listed below are a selection of those that may interest Criminology and Criminal Justice students and graduates. Many of these occupations are open to graduates in any degree subject and a degree in Criminology or Criminal Justice is not often a specific requirement: however, the knowledge you have gained from your degree studies will be highly relevant to these employers and will help to show your interest in and commitment to the career.
Court reporters produce verbatim reports of court proceedings, using traditional shorthand techniques or stenotype machines. They may also work at public inquiries, court martials, tribunals and police interviews.
Target jobs: Court Reporter
British Institute of Verbatim Reporters: Become a Verbatim Reporter
Criminal Intelligence Analyst
Criminal intelligence analysts collect and evaluate information that
they use to analyse patterns of crime, build up a picture of criminal suspects
and their activities to help solve crimes and prevent future crimes being
Prospects job profile: Intelligence Analyst
National Careers Service: Criminal Intelligence analyst
Forensic accountants investigate fraud and other financial
misrepresentation. Their work enables lawyers, insurance companies and other
clients to resolve disputes.
Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales: A career in forensic accounting
Police Officer and Detective Constable
Police Officers work to make communities safer by maintaining the law and preventing crime.
Prospect job profile: Police officer
Met Police: Detective constable
How 2 Become: Police careers
Immigration, Customs and Border Roles
These roles involve monitoring people, banned substances and other goods
leaving and entering the country to ensure safety and security and to maintain
Target jobs: Customs Officer
Target jobs: Immigration Officer
Prospects job profile: Border Force Officer
Prison Officers are responsible for maintaining security in prisons and supporting the rehabilitation of prisoners.
Prospects job profile: Prison Officer
National Careers Service: Prison Governor How2Become: Prison officer
Probation Officers work with offenders and aim to reduce rates of re-offending and protect the public.
Prospects job profile: Probation Officer
How2Become: Probation officer
Scene of Crime Officer also known as Crime Scene Investigator
The role of a Scene of Crime Officer focuses on finding, documenting (by notes/ photographs/ video) collecting, preserving and packaging physical evidence from crime scenes
National Careers Service: Scene of Crime Officer
Target job profile: Scene of Crime Officer
Social research covers a wide range of topics including migration,
poverty, and healthcare. Social Researchers could work for universities or
research organisations and manage research projects including collecting and
analysing data and presenting the results.
Prospects job profile: Social researcher
Social Research Association: Careers in social research.
Prospects job profile: Government social research officer
Gov.Uk: Government social research profession
Prospects job profile: Trade Union research officer
Victim Care Officer
Providing help to people who have been victims of crime, including
supporting them during court proceedings.
National Careers Service: Victim Care Officer
Youth Offending Team Officer
Working with young offenders with the aim of reducing rates of
re-offending and supporting young people to achieve positive outcomes.
National Careers Service: Youth Offending Team Officer
For further information on these and other careers, see also:
- Prospects: Job Profiles
- Target jobs: Graduate career sectors
The following career areas may also be of interest to Criminology and Criminal Justice students, or are careers where the skills and knowledge gained from studying this degree will be useful:
Civil Service Fast Streamer
The Civil Service Fast Stream is a leadership development programme for those wanting to become senior leaders within the Civil Service
Prospects job profile: Civil Service Fast Streamer
Read about the 15 different Fast Stream schemes
Housing Manager / Officer
Manages housing services for bodies such as housing associations, local authorities, charities and the private sector. It is common to work with specific clients, such as homeless people, ex-offenders or people with disabilities. The role may involve team management responsibilities and participation in more strategic projects.
National Careers Service: Housing officer
Prospects job profile: Housing manager/ officer
Insurance Claims Inspector / Loss adjusting
Insurance claims inspectors work on behalf of insurance companies to
assess or determine liability, negotiate payments and minimise the number of
Target jobs: Insurance claims inspector
Chartered Institute of Loss Adjusters: Careers in loss adjusting
Social Workers work with people in the community who need support, for example, the elderly, children who are at risk, people with disabilities or mental health difficulties.
Prospects job profile: Social worker
British Association of Social Workers: Become a social worker
Substance Misuse Worker
Supporting clients to overcome their problems with drug, alcohol or
National Careers Service: Drug and alcohol worker
National Careers Service: Substance misuse outreach worker
Working with young people to provide support, raise aspirations and
break down barriers to achieving. Achieved in a variety of ways including
through recreational activities, organising projects, mentoring and liaising
with other agencies.
Prospects job profile: Youth worker
Target job profile: Youth worker
As well as their subject-specific knowledge and skills, a graduate in Criminology and Criminal Justice will typically:
- Have research skills and familiarity with research methods
- Be able to analyse and evaluate problems and issues
- Be able to collect and interpret statistical data
- Have an awareness and sensitivity of the needs and values of others
- Communicate, debate and develop logical arguments
- Have planning and time management skills
- Be able to work in a group with other people
- Be able to write clearly and concisely
- Be able to present facts, ideas and arguments
This is not an exhaustive list of skills - you will develop many skills from your course, extra-curricular activities and work experience.
Employers related to Criminology and Criminal Justice
Here you will find a selection of employers across various industries that recruit for roles related to Criminology and Criminal Justice.
- College of Policing: Routes into and job roles in the police service
- Kent Police
- Metropolitan Police
- Police links to all UK police forces
- Ministry of Defence Police - protect sites of national importance, plus everything on them and everyone in them
- British Transport Police - protect and police 10,000 miles of track and 3,000 railway stations and depots
- Civil Nuclear Constabulary - a specialist armed police service dedicated to protecting the civil nuclear industry.
- Interpol offers paid internships
Prison and Probation Services
- Probation officer - give offenders support on the road to their rehabilitation and help them to make better life choices
- Prison officer – Unlocked graduates – leadership development programme
- Serco – Prison custody officers and prisoner custody officers
- KSS CRC - provides probation services in Kent, Surrey and Sussex
- MTC – Probation and rehabilitation
- GEOamey – Prison custody officer
G4S Security company – jobs board with opportunities in sectors such as care and justice, security, cash solutions and risk management.
- Independent Monitoring Boards Independent, unpaid volunteers who monitor the day-to-day life in their local prison or immigration removal centre and ensure that proper standards of care and decency are maintained
- Independent Custody Visiting Association Independent custody visitors are volunteers who visit people detained in police stations to ensure that they are being treated properly
- Lay Observers Volunteers who monitor the welfare of prisoners under escort. They inspect the conditions in which prisoners are escorted and held in custody by contractors.
- National Association of Official Prison Visitors Volunteers who offer friendship and commitment to the prisoner whilst they are in prison
- Private Investigation and Security
- International Professional Security Association - membership body for individuals and companies working in security and associated roles.
- Nationwide Investigations Group – private investigator – training, qualifications, job opportunities
- SmartWater International crime prevention company
- World Association of Professional Investigators – a professional investigator body formed by professional invesitgators
- Government Social Research – information on Summer placement, Fast Stream Scheme and Sandwich student placement
- Ipsos MORI – one of the world’s largest market research companies – graduate and Intern opportunities
- Centre for Crime and Justice Studies – independent educational charity that advances public understanding of crime and criminal justice.
- NatCen – Britain’s largest independent social research agency
Academic and Professional Bodies and Further Study
- British Society of Criminology – aims to further the interests and knowledge of both academic and professional people who are engaged in any aspect of work or teaching, research or public education about crime, criminal behaviour and the criminal justice systems in the United Kingdom.
- Criminal Justice careers – learn more about criminal justice careers by speciality
- European Society of Criminology – aims to bring together in Europe persons actively engaged in research, teaching and/or practice in the field of criminology.
- American Society of Criminology
- International Association of Law Enforcement Intelligence Analysts - largest professional organization in the world representing law enforcement analysts.
- The Criminal Justice Degree, College and Career Blog free research tool for college students, and those considering career or academic options related to the Criminal Justice field. Features 2,100 colleges, universities and schools offering programs in criminal justice and also career information.
Voluntary Organisations and Charities
- Catch 22 – “a social business providing services that help people in tough situations to turn their lives around”
- Centre for Justice Innovation A UK charity committed to improving the British justice system through testing ideas out in the real world.
- Churches Criminal Justice Forum - a network of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland with the primary purpose of upholding Christian values in the field of criminal justice.
- Clinks Supports voluntary organisations that work with offenders and their families. Has a jobs board.
- Crime Reduction Initiatives Works in prisons, custody suites and communities to support individuals who come into contact with the criminal justice system.
- Crimestoppers Independent charity helping law enforcement to locate criminals and help solve crimes. Volunteer and paid roles.
- The Howard League for Penal Reform – charity working for less crime, safer communities and fewer people in prison
- KeyRing Works with people with a learning disability. Has various projects for those involved with the criminal justice system.
- NACRO - crime reduction charity –voluntary opportunities
- PACT A national charity that supports people affected by imprisonment, providing practical and emotional support to prisoners' children and families, and to prisoners themselves. Volunteer opportunities
- Prisoners’ Advice Service Independent legal charity providing information and representation to prisoners. Recruits legal, fundraising and communications volunteers.
- Prison Reform Trust – works to ensure prisons are just,humane and effective
- Forward supports people with addictions or who have been involved with crime to move forward in a positive direction.
- Reprieve Provides free legal and investigative support to defend human rights.
- Change Grow Live works to strengthen communities by involving local volunteers in promoting social inclusion and reducing crime
- St Giles Trust Charity helping ex-offenders and disadvantaged people to move their lives forward and break the cycle of offending
- Turning Point social enterprise, providing specialist and integrated services which focus on improving lives and communities across issues including mental health, substance misuse, the criminal justice system and employment.
- Victim Support – free and confidential support for people affected by crime or traumatic events
Find a job
The Careers and Employability Service provides information and advice on job searching to University of Kent students and recent graduates. This includes a vacancy database advertising a range of graduate jobs, sandwich placements and vacation work/internships. The websites listed below may also be useful when searching for a job in the criminal justice sector.
- Blue Line Jobs
- Guardian Jobs
- Jobs go Public
- Ministry of Justice: Jobs and careers in the Justice System
- Sanctuary Criminal Justice Recruitment agency with a wide range of jobs for qualified and unqualified staff including probation, substance misuse and youth justice.
More and more students are following their first degree with further academic or professional study, and approximately 20% of Criminology and Criminal Justice graduates from the University of Kent continue into postgraduate study every year.
In some fields of work related to Criminology and Criminal Justice, such as social research, a postgraduate degree will give you a strong advantage. In others, particularly Law, you will be required to undertake a relevant professional qualification. However, many job roles in the justice system, such as police work or offender management, put a much higher value on personal skills and qualities than on further academic qualifications.
If you are interested in other careers, some, such as teaching or accountancy, will require study for a relevant professional qualification. In other careers, such as journalism, a postgraduate degree is not a requirement, but may be an advantage, while there are many careers that will put more emphasis on personal skills than on academic qualifications. The “Types of Jobs” section of the Prospects website will tell you whether postgraduate study is essential, useful or not needed for a specific career.
There are many reasons for choosing to continue into postgraduate study. You may wish to obtain a higher degree purely for interest rather than for career reasons. Whatever your motivation, you need to consider issues such as your suitability for further study, the options available to you and the costs involved.More and more students are following their first degree with further academic or professional study, and approximately 20% of Criminology and Criminal Justice graduates from the University of Kent continue into postgraduate study every year.
Looking for Careers Advice?
The Careers and Employability Service is open to all University of Kent students and recent graduates. We support students from the moment they start their course, throughout their student life and up to three years after their graduation.