Criminology

Criminology - MA, PhD

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Criminology at Kent is a dynamic and interdisciplinary subject with political and legal influences.

Overview

Criminology is an important part of the activities of the School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research (SSPSSR), which is one of the four top institutions of its kind in the UK. The atmosphere of the School is informal and friendly and there is a lively and diverse postgraduate community.

Regular staff/graduate seminars introduce you to the work of academic staff and research students as well as academic visitors, and provide opportunities both for sociability and for intellectual stimulation. The large number of academic staff and our favourable staff/student ratios mean that academic staff are readily accessible. Where appropriate, research students are encouraged to teach part-time in the School.

Entry requirements

A good honours degree or MA in criminology, criminal justice or a related social science discipline.

All applicants are considered on an individual basis and additional qualifications, professional qualifications and relevant experience may also be taken into account when considering applications. 

International students

Please see our International Student website for entry requirements by country and other relevant information. Due to visa restrictions, students who require a student visa to study cannot study part-time unless undertaking a distance or blended-learning programme with no on-campus provision.

English language entry requirements

For detailed information see our English language requirements web pages. 

Please note that if you are required to meet an English language condition, we offer a number of pre-sessional courses in English for Academic Purposes through Kent International Pathways.

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Course structure

Duration: MA 1 year full-time, 2 years part-time

PhD 3 years full-time, 5 years part-time

Fees

The 2022/23 UK fees for this course are:

Criminology - MA by Research at Canterbury

  • Home full-time £4596
  • EU full-time £17400
  • International full-time £17400
  • Home part-time £2298
  • EU part-time £8700
  • International part-time £8700

Criminology - PhD at Canterbury

  • Home full-time £4596
  • EU full-time £17400
  • International full-time £17400
  • Home part-time £2298
  • EU part-time £8700
  • International part-time £8700

For details of when and how to pay fees and charges, please see our Student Finance Guide.

For students continuing on this programme fees will increase year on year by no more than RPI + 3% in each academic year of study except where regulated.* If you are uncertain about your fee status please contact information@kent.ac.uk.

Your fee status

The University will assess your fee status as part of the application process. If you are uncertain about your fee status you may wish to seek advice from UKCISA before applying.

Additional costs

General additional costs

Find out more about general additional costs that you may pay when studying at Kent. 

Funding

Search our scholarships finder for possible funding opportunities. You may find it helpful to look at both:

We have a range of subject-specific awards and scholarships for academic, sporting and musical achievement.

Search scholarships

Independent rankings

In the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, research by the School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research was ranked 2nd for research power in the UK. The School was also placed 3rd for research intensity, 5th for research impact and 5th for research quality.

An impressive 94% of our research-active staff submitted to the REF and 99% of our research was judged to be of international quality. The School’s environment was judged to be conducive to supporting the development of world-leading research, gaining the highest possible score of 100%.

Research

Research areas

Our research areas are listed below; wider research areas are also available from our European partner institutions.

Crime, Control and Culture

The School has a long-established tradition of conducting criminological research. The group covers a diverse range of topics, employs both qualitative and quantitative methodologies and draws upon different theoretical traditions. We have particular expertise in the following areas: cultural criminology; crime, punishment and social change; drug use; gender, crime and criminal justice; penology and imprisonment (especially of female offenders); policing; quasi-compulsory treatment for drug-using offenders; race, crime and criminal justice; restorative justice and young offenders; crime and the ‘night-time economy’, terrorism and political crime; violence; youth crime and youth justice.

Present and current research has been funded by the ESRC, the Home Office and the Youth Justice Board.

Staff research interests

Kent’s world-class academics provide research students with excellent supervision. The academic staff in this school and their research interests are shown below. You are strongly encouraged to contact the school to discuss your proposed research and potential supervision prior to making an application. Please note, it is possible for students to be supervised by a member of academic staff from any of Kent’s schools, providing their expertise matches your research interests. Use our ‘find a supervisor’ search to search by staff member or keyword.

Full details of staff research interests can be found on the School's website.

Careers

Building on Kent’s success as the region’s leading institution for student employability we place considerable emphasis on you gaining specialist knowledge in your chosen subject alongside core transferable skills. We ensure that you develop the skills and competences that employers are looking for including: research and analysis; policy development and interpretation; independent thought; writing and presentation as well as time management and leadership skills. You also become fully involved in the professional research culture of the School. A postgraduate degree in the area of Criminology is a particularly valuable qualification that can lead to many exciting opportunities and professions.

Recent graduates have gone on to pursue careers across the criminal justice system, encompassing areas such as counter-terrorism, advocacy, probation, social policy and research. Our graduates have found positions in organisations such as the Civil Service, the Ministry of Justice, various police services and the Probation Service.

Study support

Graduate School

The Graduate School ensures that the academic and social interests of postgraduate students are provided for within the University. It works alongside academic schools to support and develop internationally distinctive, exciting and innovative programmes of study that combine academic excellence with an exceptional student experience and appropriate learning resources through the provision of:

  • high-quality postgraduate facilities
  • a supportive environment for the intellectual interests of our postgraduates
  • an excellent Researcher Development Programme
  • a strong framework of specialist support for our postgraduates across the University
  • the cultivation of external links with Research Councils, graduate schools and other organisations, both nationally and internationally, to provide further funding and study opportunities.

For more details see our Graduate and Researcher College page.

Postgraduate resources

Across SSPSSR, there is a breadth and depth of research expertise and we can offer high-quality supervision in a wide range of areas in criminology. There are further details on the research activities and publications of individual members of staff and the School’s research units on our website. All research students take a research training programme with the School or Graduate School. Our MA by Research and PhD programmes benefit from the strong research culture and expertise in the School.

Our postgraduate students are given 24-hour access to dedicated office space within the Department and are able to take advantage of excellent library and computing facilities.

The Common Study Programme in Critical Criminology

All Canterbury-based Kent postgraduate students are offered the opportunity to add an international dimension to their criminological study by participating in the Common Studies Sessions in Critical Criminology. This student-led event provides the opportunity to exchange ideas and deliver papers on topics relating to critical, cultural and international criminology at a bi-annual conference run in collaboration with Kent’s international criminology partners, which include Erasmus University, Rotterdam; the Universities of Barcelona, Bologna, Ghent, Hamburg, Middlesex, Porto and Utrecht; ELTE, Budapest; the Democritus University of Thrace; the University of the Peloponnese, Corinth; and the CUNY Graduate Center, New York. The Common Study sessions are hosted in turn by each of the participating institutions.

Dynamic publishing culture

Staff publish regularly and widely in journals, conference proceedings and books. Among others, they have recently contributed to: The British Journal of Criminology; Urban Studies; Theoretical Criminology; Crime, Media, Culture; Ethnography.

Researcher Development Programme

Kent's Graduate School co-ordinates the Researcher Development Programme for research students, which includes workshops focused on research, specialist and transferable skills. The programme is mapped to the national Researcher Development Framework and covers a diverse range of topics, including subject-specific research skills, research management, personal effectiveness, communication skills, networking and teamworking, and career management skills.

Apply now

Learn more about the applications process or begin your application by clicking on a link below.

Once started, you can save and return to your application at any time.

Apply for entry to:

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United Kingdom/EU enquiries

MA at Canterbury

PhD at Canterbury

Admissions enquiries

T: +44 (0)1227 768896

E: information@kent.ac.uk

Subject enquiries

E: StudyLSSJ@kent.ac.uk

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International student enquiries

Enquire online

T: +44 (0)1227 823254
E: internationalstudent@kent.ac.uk