The Sociology of Cybercrime - SO760

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2020 to 2021
Autumn 6 15 (7.5) DR E Van Hellemont checkmark-circle


This module provides students with an understanding of contemporary cybercrime, its implications and its sociological meanings. It examines how cybercrime functions, how it relates to wider criminological debates and theories, and how it raises challenges in our understanding of the nature of crime, criminality, crime control and policing. Students will become familiar with cutting edge research and theories in the field of cybercrime, and debates that are developing both within the UK and across the world. By focusing on the differing levels of both action and actors, this unit will provide a holistic and nuanced understanding of these vital contemporary challenges facing society. This module equips students with the necessary theoretical and practical tools and modes of social enquiry to make sense of an increasingly digital and networked world.


This module appears in the following module collections.

Contact hours

The module will be taught by lectures, seminars and private study
Contact hours 22
Private study 128 hours



Method of assessment

100% coursework:

3000 word essay or 10-15 min recorded interactive presentation - 75%,
MCQ in class test 15%
Seminar participation 10%

Indicative reading

Martellozzo, E., & Jane, E. A. (Eds.). (2017). Cybercrime and Its Victims. Taylor & Francis.
Martin, J. (2014). Drugs on the dark net: How cryptomarkets are transforming the global trade in illicit drugs. Springer.
Yar, M. (2013). Cybercrime and society. Sage.

Learning outcomes

1. Evaluate the relationship between contemporary cyber- and networked-enabled crime and the more traditional conception of crime and crime control.
2. Critically reflect on the challenges that the digital world poses to criminological understanding and modes of investigation.
3. Discuss issues of crime, control and crime prevention in the networked and digital world at an in-depth level.
4. Offer a critical analysis of the different roles public and private actors play in the management, security and enablement of cyber activity and practices.
5. Evaluate the consequences and implications that the global interconnectedness of cyber offending poses to individual nation states and other institutional bodies.
6. Critically evaluate and reflexively deploy sociological approaches to evaluate online behaviour


  1. Credit level 6. Higher level module usually taken in Stage 3 of an undergraduate degree.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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