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Criminology


Criminology is the study of crime, criminality and how it relates to social inequality, victimhood and different sections of society: the media, prisons and the courts. Lessons will be varied as per any A Level subject. You will be required to undertake independent research during lesson time and to present your findings to the class. PowerPoints, videos and case studies will often form the basis of stimulus material to illustrate key concepts. There will be a lot of reading and note-taking as well as class discussion.

The course could be studied alongside other Level 3 qualifications. However, as there is overlap between the material covered in Criminology and the material covered in Sociology, Psychology and Law, it is advised that a maximum of one of these three subjects is studied alongside.

There are four units that make up the Level 3 Diploma.

  • Unit 1 – Changing Awareness of Crime: You will develop an understanding of different types of crime, influences on perceptions of crime and why some crimes go unreported. You will also plan and design your own campaign for change.
  • Unit 2 – Criminological Theories: You will gain an understanding of theories behind why people commit crime and also the difference between criminal behaviour and deviance.
  • Unit 3 – Crime Scene to Courtroom: You will gain an understanding of the criminal justice system from the moment a crime has been identified through to the verdict.
  • Unit 4 – Crime and Punishment: You will examine the effectiveness of social control to deliver criminal justice policy.

Course Essentials

Courses Available
Level 3 Diploma (equivalent to 1 A Level)
Entry Requirements
How The Course is Assessed

100% exam and controlled assessment. No coursework.

  • Units 1 and 3 assessed through computer-based controlled assessments lasting 8 hours in total for each unit.
  • Units 2 and 4 assessed through written exams lasting 1½ hours for each unit. The controlled assessment and external exam marks are added together to give you an overall grade.
Career Pathways
This course would benefit students looking to go straight into work. It could lead to work with employers such as the National Probation Service, the Courts and Tribunals Service, or the National Offender Management Service. For students wanting to progress into higher education, it is equivalent to an A level in terms of UCAS points.
Transferable Skills
  • cognitive and problem-solving skills: using critical thinking, approaching non-routine problems
  • interpersonal skills: communicating, working collaboratively, negotiating and influencing, self-presentation
  • intrapersonal skills: self-management, adaptability and resilience, self-monitoring and development
  • the ability to learn independently and research actively and methodically
  • the ability to give presentations and be active group members
Other Information
Tutors will use a variety of teaching techniques such as class discussions, group work and individual research. These are also supported with outside speakers and a variety of trips.
Enquiries To
Sophia Smith: scs@varndean.ac.uk