Criminology and Cybercrime BSc (Hons)
BSc Hons Criminology and Cybercrime
Applying for 2021/22 entry? See how you'll be taught in our Covid information for applicants.
In the digital age, crime is becoming more complex and diverse with the internet creating new types of crime and reinventing old ones.
If you’re interested in fighting cybercrime, this combined course – the first of its kind in the UK – covers traditional criminology theory while exploring modern issues like cyber-security, online terrorism and digital forensics. You'll examine the methods and motivations of cybercriminals and learn first hand about the challenges of digital investigations.
After the course, you'll be ready to take on roles in criminal justice agencies, local government, and private and public industries.
No. 17 in the UK for Criminology courses (The Guardian University Guide, 2021)
BSc (Hons) Criminology and Cybercrime degree entry requirements
- A levels – ABB–BBC
- UCAS points – 112–128 points from 3 A levels or equivalent (calculate your UCAS points)
- BTECs (Extended Diplomas) – DDM–DMM
- International Baccalaureate – 29–30
English language requirements
- English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.
We also accept other standard English tests and qualifications, as long as they meet the minimum requirements of your course.
If you don't meet the English language requirements yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.
What you'll experience
On this Criminology and Cybercrime degree course, you'll:
- Examine criminology and cybercrime at one of the largest criminology departments in the country
- Practise modern digital investigative techniques and develop transferable skills in analysis, research and using new technologies
- Tailor the course to meet your interests, by studying topics that match your career aspirations
- Learn from cybercrime, criminology, probation and policing experts, and interact with practitioners from criminal justice agencies, businesses and charitable organisations
You can also:
- Get professional counter-fraud qualifications during your studies
- Get relevant practical experience for your future career in the Institute of Criminal Justice Studies Cybercrime Awareness Clinic
- Meet potential employers during work placements
Careers and opportunities
When you complete the course, you’ll be prepared for a career in specialised cybercrime units in police or private organisations. You could work in areas such as:
- crime prevention
- criminological research
- intelligence analysis
- digital investigations
- security consultancy
You could also work in the prison system or do postgraduate study in criminology or cybercrime.
By choosing certain optional modules on this course, you can get pre-entry qualifications for a career in probation work and community justice.
Work experience and career planning
To give you the best chance of securing a great job when you graduate, our Careers and Employability service can help you find relevant work experience during your course. We can help you identify placements, internships and voluntary roles that will complement your studies and build your CV.
We'll also be available to help, advise and support you for up to 5 years as you advance in your career.
This course allows you to take the Learning From Experience (LiFE) option. This means you can earn credits towards your degree for work, volunteer and research placements that you do alongside your study.
After your second year, you can do an optional work placement year to get valuable longer-term work experience in the field.
Previous students have secured placement positions at organisations such as the Hampshire Constabulary High Tech Crime Unit.
You can also spend this year studying overseas at one of our partner universities in Europe, south Asia and Canada.
We’ll help you secure a work placement that fits your aspirations. You’ll get mentoring and support throughout the year.
This course combines traditional criminology with an innovative look into information technologies and the future of crime and policing. It offers exciting new modules on cybercrime, the darkweb and digital investigations as well as real-life experience through participation in the cybercrime awareness clinic and interaction with practitioners. Join us into bridging the past with the future of criminology.
What you'll study on this BSc (Hons) Criminology and Cybercrime degree
Each module on this course is worth a certain number of credits.
In each year, you need to study modules worth a total of 120 credits. For example, four modules worth 20 credits and one module worth 40 credits.
Core units in this year include:
- Criminal Justice
- Cyberspace, Subcultures and Online Deviance
- Essential Skills for Criminologists
- Understanding Criminology
You'll also study one of the following units:
- Cyber Security and Forensic Computing (requires prior knowledge of programming/technology)
- Introduction to Digital Forensic Investigations
Core units in this year include:
- Cyberlaw: Governance And Human Rights
- Questioning Criminology
- Researching Criminology
Options to choose from in this year currently include:
- Community Justice
- Crimes of the Powerful
- Cultural Criminology
- Cybercrime Clinic
- Forensics Fundamentals *
- Forensics Investigations *
- Foundation of Economic Crime
- Fundamentals of Forensic Investigation
- Gang Crime
- Global Environmental Justice
- Global, State and Corporate Security
- Hate Crime
- Learning From Experience
- Modern Language (Institution-wide Language Programme)
- Online Activism, Cyberterrorism and Cyberwarfare
- Penology and Prison
- Policing and Society
- Principles of Economic Crime Investigation
- Psychology and Security
- The Dark Web: Threats, Freedoms and Responses
- Underworlds: Crime, Deviance and Punishment in Britain, 1500–1900
- Victims of Crime: Key Players in Criminal Justice
- Wildlife Crime: Threats and Response
- Youth Crime, Youth Justice
* only available if you have studied the L4 module above on cybersecurity and forensic computing
On this course, you can do an optional work placement year between your 2nd and 3rd years to get valuable experience working in industry.
We’ll help you secure a work placement that fits your situation and ambitions. You’ll get mentoring and support throughout the year.
Core units in this year include:
- Cybersecurity: Theory and Practice
- Dissertation / Major Project
Options to choose from in this year currently include:
- Contemporary Terrorism and the Global Response
- Crime and New Technologies: Theory and Practice
- Dangerous Offenders and Public Protection
- Economic Crime and Fraud Examination
- Forensic Psychology and Mental Health
- Forensic Psychology: Investigation
- Gender and Crime
- Green Crime and Environmental Justice
- Information Security Management
- Intelligence Analysis
- Introduction To Teaching
- Learning From Experience
- Miscarriages of Justice
- Money Laundering and Compliance
- Policing: Law, Policy and Practice
- Policing:Communities, Intelligence and Information
- Political Extremism
- Professional Development: Recruiters and Candidates
- Social Policy, Justice and Crime
- State Crime
- Treatment and Rehabilitation of Offenders
We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.
Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry and some optional modules may not run every year. If a module doesn’t run, we’ll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.
How you're assessed
You’ll be assessed through:
- group projects
You’ll be able to test your skills and knowledge informally before you do assessments that count towards your final mark.
You can get feedback on all practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future.
The way you’re assessed may depend on the modules you select. As a guide, students on this course last year were typically assessed as follows:
- Year 1 students: 18% by written exams, 7% by practical exams and 75% by coursework
- Year 2 students: 10% by practical exams and 90% by coursework
- Year 3 students: 8% by written exams, 13% by practical exams and 79% by coursework
Teaching methods on this course include:
- group discussions
- practical workshops
You can access all teaching resources on Moodle, our virtual learning environment, from anywhere with a Web connection.
For more about the teaching activities for specific modules, see the module list above.
How you'll spend your time
One of the main differences between school or college and university is how much control you have over your learning.
In 2021/22, we're planning for most of your learning to be supported by timetabled face-to-face teaching with some elements of online provision. Please be aware, the balance between face-to-face teaching and online provision may change depending on Government restrictions. You'll also do lots of independent study with support from staff and our virtual learning environment, Moodle. Find out more about how our teaching has transformed to best support your learning.
A typical week
We recommend you spend at least 35 hours a week studying for your BSc Hons Criminology and Cybercrime degree. In your first year, you’ll be in timetabled teaching activities such as lectures, seminars and workshops for about 9 hours a week. The rest of the time you’ll do independent study such as research, reading, coursework and project work, alone or in a group with others from your course. You'll probably do more independent study and have less scheduled teaching in years 2 and 3, but this depends on which modules you choose.
The academic year runs from September to June. There are breaks at Christmas and Easter.
It's divided into 2 teaching blocks and 2 assessment periods:
- Teaching block 1 – early October to January
- Assessment period 1 – late January to early February
- Teaching block 2 – February to May
- Assessment period 2 – May to June
Extra learning support
The amount of timetabled teaching you'll get on your degree might be less than what you're used to at school or college, but you'll also get face-to-face support from teaching and support staff when you need it. These include the following people and services:
Your personal tutor helps you make the transition to independent study and gives you academic and personal support throughout your time at university.
As well as regular scheduled meetings with your personal tutor, they're also available at set times during the week if you want to chat with them about anything that can't wait until your next scheduled meeting.
Learning development tutors
You'll have help from a team of faculty learning development tutors. They can help you improve and develop your academic skills and support you in any area of your study.
They can help with:
- Improving your academic writing (for example, essays, reports, dissertations)
- Delivering presentations (including observing and filming presentations)
- Understanding and using assignment feedback
- Managing your time and workload
- Revision and exam techniques
Academic skills support
As well as support from faculty staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University’s Academic Skills Unit (ASK).
ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:
- Academic writing
- Note taking
- Time management
- Critical thinking
- Presentation skills
- Working in groups
- Revision, memory and exam techniques
If you have a disability or need extra support, the Additional Support and Disability Centre (ASDAC) will give you help, support and advice.
Library staff are available in person or by email, phone or online chat to help you make the most of the University’s library resources. You can also request one-to-one appointments and get support from a librarian who specialises in your subject area.
The library is open 24 hours a day, every day, in term time.
Support with English
If English isn't your first language, you can do one of our English language courses to improve your written and spoken English language skills before starting your degree. Once you're here, you can take part in our free In-Sessional English (ISE) programme to improve your English further.
Tuition fees (2021 start)
- UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £9,250 a year (may be subject to annual increase)
- EU students – £9,250 a year (including Transition Scholarship – may be subject to annual increase)
- International students – £15,500 a year (subject to annual increase)
Additional course costs
These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending.
Our accommodation section shows your accommodation options and highlights how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.
You’ll study up to 6 modules a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each module.
You can borrow most of these from the Library. If you buy these, they may cost up to £60 each.
We recommend that you budget £75 a year for photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.
If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.
You’ll need to pay additional costs of £50–£1000 to cover travel, accommodation or subsistence if you take a placement abroad. The amount you’ll pay will vary, depending on the location and length of your stay.
How to apply
To start this course in 2021, apply through UCAS. You'll need:
- the UCAS course code – L311
- our institution code – P80
If you'd prefer to apply directly, use our online application form.
You can also sign up to an Open Day to:
- Tour our campus, facilities and halls of residence
- Speak with lecturers and chat with our students
- Get information about where to live, how to fund your studies and which clubs and societies to join
If you're new to the application process, read our guide on applying for an undergraduate course.
How to apply from outside the UK
If you're from outside of the UK, you can apply for this course through UCAS or apply directly to us (see the 'How to apply' section above for details). You can also get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region.
To find out what to include in your application, head to the how to apply page of our international students section.
If you don't meet the English language requirements for this course yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.
Admissions terms and conditions
When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to abide by our Student Contract (which includes the University's relevant policies, rules and regulations). You should read and consider these before you apply.