Across the autumn and spring semesters, you will take 120 credits of core and optional modules.
MA students will complete a 60-credit dissertation over the summer supported and advised by a supervisor with appropriate skills and expertise.
Theoretical Frontiers in Criminology
This module considers a range of theoretical and conceptual issues in criminology relating to the nature and scope of criminology as a discipline as well as recent developments in criminological theory. The work discussed during the course of the module will be at the forefront of the discipline.
Research Methods and Research Management
This module provides a general introduction to a range of key issues in the design and conduct of social research, plus guidance on writing both a dissertation proposal and a dissertation. The module combines more formal taught sessions with practical exercises, some of which are group-based.
By the end of the module you will be equipped with the methodological and practical skills to carry out independent research using a variety of research designs and methods.
Contemporary Issues and Debates in Criminology
The module engages with a range of issues and debates in contemporary criminology.
Contributions to the module will be made by a number of guest speakers with experience in the criminal justice system and related areas of practice as well as from members of staff in the School of Sociology and Social Policy and other schools in the University.
The issues and debates covered in the course of the module will vary from year so the following list is provided for illustrative purposes only:
- The political economy of crime and justice in an age of austerity
- Defining and responding to 'hate crime'
- Pluralised policing
- Prosecuting complex cases
- Mental health in prisons
- State crime, human rights and transitional justice
- 'Whole life' sentences
Criminology in Practice
This module offers you the opportunity to spend some time with an organisation working in a field related to crime, victimisation or criminal justice (a 'criminal justice organisation').
The organisation may be in the public, private or third sectors and you will be able to get a sense of the way in which the issues you have encountered in your academic studies are experienced and addressed in practice. In some cases you may also be able to contribute in a practical way to the work of the organisation.
The academic element of the module focuses on encouraging you to reflect on your experiences observing and contributing to the work of the organisation with which you have spent time in the light of a relevant body of criminological literature and what you have learnt in other contexts.
Dissertation in Criminology (MA only)
The module is based on a structured series of meetings between you and your supervisor, the aim of which is to support you in planning, carrying out and writing up a piece of independent research on a criminological topic of your own choosing, subject to the approval of the programme director.
You will choose 40 credits of optional modules from the below list and/or from schools/departments across the University, subject to the approval of the MA Programme Director.
Between Europe and the Middle East: Critical Questions of Citizenship and Identity
This module will focus on two geo-political regions: Europe and the Middle East in order to explore and analyse a set of relevant discourses that pertain to understandings and experiences of citizenship and the political conditions for full citizenship. Discourses and practices of freedom, human rights, democracy, gender and multi-culturalism will be of particular concern.
Five sessions will focus on Europe and will concentrate on neo-liberalism, historical formations of freedom and citizenship, democracy, ecology and multi-culturalism. More specifically, the module will focus on a number of significant historical events and developments within the European context.
These will include the European Enlightenment, Europe’s revolutionary past (including Marxism, Anarchism and the Velvet Revolitions of 1989) and more recently Brexit. These features will be investigated in terms of their significance for European identities now and in the past.
Dynamics of International Social Policy
This module introduces you to comparative analyses of different welfare state models and approaches to social and public policy; institutions, issues and debates in international social and public policy; and methods of cross-country comparative analysis.
- perspectives of international social policy
- welfare state typologies and cross-national comparisons
- international institutions, standards and goals
- the European Union
- social policy in less developed countries
- globalisation and welfare states
- international migration and the boundaries of welfare
- discrimination in a multicultural world
- international cooperation, policy learning and policy transfer
- comparative research methods
Economics and Policy Analysis
The module will provide an introduction to the application of economic theories and concepts to policy analysis and provide an overview of public sector economics and of current issues in public sector economic analysis.
Topics covered include competition and market failure/externalities, public goods, discount rates and cost benefit analysis. Although focused on the UK, other countries will be discussed as a way of further understanding the ongoing policy developments.
The module is designed for 'non-mathematicians' and does not involve any econometric analyses. No prior knowledge of economics is required.
Globalisation, Citizenship and Identity
This module considers the following key debates in the contemporary study of citizenship, identities and globalisation:
- Globalisation, identity and politics of difference
- Gendering globalisation and citizenship, and globalising gender
- Global and cosmopolitan citizenship
- Intimate/sexual citizenship
- From 'imagined communities' to the 'shock of denationalization'
- Ethnicity: culture politicized
- Globalisation and 'resistance identities'
Human Rights and Critical Modern Slavery
This module critically interrogates dominant liberal discourse on human rights and modern slavery.
Drawing on academic, popular and policy debate on human rights and case studies of phenomena that are deemed to constitute contemporary human enslavement - such as human trafficking, prostitution, domestic servitude, worst forms of child labour, forced labour and bonded labour in a number of sectors and regions - the module offers an opportunity to critically deconstruct the theoretical and political assumptions that underpin this discourse.
The module ultimately aims to draw your attention to the deep connections between human rights and social, economic and political inequality on the basis of gender, class, race, sexuality, age and other identity markers under contemporary conditions of globalisation.
Information Age Management in Government
The module will examine a range of themes and issues within the domain of electronic government and democracy. It will aim to demonstrate the embeddedness of information and communications technologies, including the internet, in the everyday managerial life of government administration. As such it will locate information and its communication as crucial resources for management in government, including for the establishment both of new working practices and for new relationships in and around government, particularly those with citizens.
Leadership, Strategy and Performance in the Public Sector
This module will examine the role of leadership in the public sector. It will discuss different concepts of:
- organisational culture and change
- performance in the public sector
- the use of knowledge and information in organisation learning
- performance improvement in public sector organisations
- the use of strategy in the public sector
You will study different models and approaches to these concepts, how they are affected by and interact with the policy environment, and how they influence each other.
This module will examine the concepts, models and practices of managing people in the public sector. It will study the development and approaches of how staff are managed in the public sector in a range of countries (for example, UK and other European countries). The module will also investigate how public sector staff are recruited, rewarded etc and how their performance is measured.
Policy Analysis: Concepts and Theories
This module provides an applied, critical and informed understanding of policy-making and policy analysis in government.
It examines key concepts, models and theories of policy-making and policy analysis, and illustrates them by examining policy-making in Britain and other countries.
The module will examine theories of welfare, the funding of the welfare state and key changes in welfare policies, such as the increasing focus on markets and consumer choice, partnerships, the personalisation of service delivery, and the increasing role of the not for profit sector in service delivery.
It will use developments in health service, social care and social security to explore wider issues in the development of welfare services. Although focused on the UK, other countries will be examined as a way of further understanding the developments in the UK and as a form of policy learning for UK reform. It will look at the obstacles and issues associated with these changes.
The above is a sample of the typical modules that we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. This course page may be updated over the duration of the course, as modules may change due to developments in the curriculum or in the research interests of staff.
Teaching methods and assessment
Modules are assessed using a number of methods. As well as exams, you will complete essays or reports, usually on a topic of your choice.