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Criminology and Law

BSc (Hons)

Undergraduate degree - combined honours

BSc (Hons) Criminology and Law
Bath Business School, School of Sciences
Campus or location
Newton Park
Course length
Three years full time, or four years full time with professional placement year. Part time available.
UCAS codes
Institution Code: B20
Course Code: CL21 or CL22
Campus Code: A,BSU

Entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. The main ones are listed under 'Typical offers' in the main column below. For combined courses, please check both subjects. If your qualification is not listed, please email with your specific details.

Develop an in-depth understanding of crime, justice and the legal system with our combined Criminology and Law degree.

  • Study and learn to apply the interrelated theory behind crime and the law.
  • Prepare for a wide range of careers, either within or beyond the criminal justice and legal sectors.
  • Studying Law and Criminology will allow you to appreciate complex legal situations through the lens of Criminology.

On this combined Criminology and Law degree, you’ll explore the connections between crime, the legal system and criminal justice.

In your Criminology studies, you'll explore the criminal justice system, analyse the causes of criminal behaviour, look at how crime impacts society, and learn how this can inform policing, law and punishment.

You’ll gain a broad understanding of the law and legal systems. You’ll learn the law, and also gain valuable practical skills that could be used by a lawyer in practice and in a range of related careers.  

If you decide not to pursue a career in law or criminal justice, this course will ensure you’re well prepared for a variety of roles that require a similar skill set, such as in governance, public policy and finance.

Why study Law and Criminology?

Criminology and Law are naturally overlapping subject areas, and by studying them together you’ll get to explore the causes, motivations and patterns of criminal conduct, while gaining a deep understanding of the justice system and the law.

Your studies will also cover other legal areas such as business, property, media and employment, giving you a wide range of skills and knowledge that will enhance and broaden your employability prospects.

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What you'll learn


In your Criminology studies, you’ll look at crime from a variety of angles and perspectives. Core modules focus on the main theories, debates, issues and research problems in criminology and criminal justice, while optional modules enable you to develop your particular interests.

Our Law modules will introduce practical skills such as case analysis, negotiation and alternative dispute resolution, drafting, interviewing and mooting. You'll have the opportunity to choose from a range of additional, interdisciplinary topics including business and sociology.

We’ll support and encourage you to gain practical experience in relevant fields through voluntary work and placements.

Course structure

Year one
You’ll be introduced to the key concepts, theories and issues of criminology, criminal law and criminal justice agencies and institutions. In your Law studies, you’ll gain a broad understanding of English legal systems and the British Constitution. You’ll develop skills in case analysis and legal research methods.

Year two
You’ll study contemporary debates in criminology and criminal justice, including a specific focus on policing. You’ll further develop your legal understanding to include subjects such as contract law and EU and international law, and you’ll develop skills of negotiation, advocacy and drafting.

You can choose from a number of optional modules to create a programme tailored to your personal interests. You can delve more deeply into the social divisions associated with crime, and explore areas such as employment law, marketing and entrepreneurship. You'll also be supported and encouraged to take a work placement.

You can choose to take a Professional Placement Year between the second and third year.

Year three
You’ll undertake an original piece of criminological research in an area that interests you, along with comparative study of criminal justice and punishment in a global context.

You’ll have the chance to hone your practice skills with our range of law co-curricular activities, or undertake a law project. You’ll be able to select from a range of modules, a number of which highlight the global dimensions of crime and justice. 

How will I be assessed?

We use a range of assessments to gain a comprehensive measure of your performance. Assignments may include essays, book reviews, examinations, portfolios, creative work, contributions to online resources, presentations, reports, in-class tests, reflective writing and individual and group projects.

Your Law studies will include a range of practice based assessments such as drafting, negotiating and mooting. 

How will I be taught?

You’ll learn through a wide variety of activities including lectures, seminars, workshops, one-to-one tutorials, and sessions with visiting speakers. You’ll participate in practical exercises and there may be fieldwork opportunities, such as court visits. Your learning will be supported by our VLE (Virtual Learning Environment)

To find out more about how we teach and how you'll learn, please read our Learning and Teaching Delivery Statement.


Study abroad

As part of your degree, you could study abroad on a placement at one of Bath Spa’s partner universities.

Work placements, industry links and internships

We strongly encourage you to take advantage of placement opportunities so you can apply your learning in the real world contexts of law and criminal justice.

Practitioners contribute to teaching in some modules and you can find out more from them about working in fields related to criminal justice.

Fieldwork opportunities, such as trips to local courts, will also provide opportunities to observe the legal system in action and learn more about potential careers.

We also have links with local criminal justice organisations including local police services.


A combined qualification in Criminology and Law will prepare you for a wide variety of careers in law and criminal justice, as well as closely-related fields such as social work, policing, crime prevention and security, probation and offender management, and community development.

If you choose not to follow a career in law or criminal justice, the course gives you a range of transferable skills which you can use in a number of other sectors such as health and social care, charities, marketing, HR, teaching and the media.

You may also choose to go on to further study. We offer postgraduate courses in Law through our LLM Law and Business or LLM Legal Foundations, should you wish to practise as a solicitor or a barrister. We also offer an MSc in Criminology, which you can complete on-campus or online.

Global Citizenship

If you’re a full-time undergraduate student starting your first year at Bath Spa University, you can apply for the Certificate in Global Citizenship, which you’ll study alongside your degree.

You’ll gain global awareness and add an international dimension to your student experience, and funding is available. On successful completion of the programme, you’ll be awarded a Certificate in Global Citizenship. This is in addition to your degree; it doesn’t change your degree title or results.

"Having a knowledge of legal concepts is invaluable within organisations and general life... Being able to practise debating, analyse and be concise in talking and writing is really useful. My favourite topic is employment law as I want to pursue a career in Human Resources."

Maisy Ward, final year Law module

Professional placement year


This optional placement year provides you with the opportunity to identify, apply for and secure professional experience, normally comprising one to three placements over a minimum of nine months. Successful completion of this module will demonstrate your ability to secure and sustain graduate-level employment.

By completing the module, you'll be entitled to the addition of 'with Professional Placement Year' to your degree title.


Before your Professional Placement Year, you'll work to secure your placement, constructing a development plan with your module leader and your placement coordinator from our Careers and Employability team.

How will I be assessed?

On your return to University for your final year, you'll submit your Placement Portfolio, detailing your development on your placement.

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

You'll be taught at our Newton Park campus, which is located on the edge of Bath and offers a blend of modern and eighteenth-century buildings, with good access to the city while being nestled in the countryside.

From your lectures, you’ll be able to visit the library, the Students’ Union, and access our student information and support teams, as well as many of our facilities.  

  • Our Library offers a wealth of learning resources including books, journals, DVDs and an extensive range of electronic services. Our Subject Librarians for Criminology and Law provide subject-specific support, including help with research.
  • The Writing and Learning Centre provides support for your academic work, including feedback on written drafts and other help with academic writing.
  • Our Virtual Learning Environment provides online access to learning materials such as lecture slides, assessment information, discussion boards and other resources. 
  • The Careers team run networking events and advisory workshops that explore your future options and the essentials of the job application process. They help you get experience by assisting with your search for work placements and paid part-time jobs while you're studying. When you're ready to progress into your chosen career, they can help you secure graduate-level employment, freelance opportunities, and funding for your own business ideas. Career support continues for years after you graduate with the dedicated Grad Support Unit.
  • You’ll have free access to thousands of business, design and tech courses online via LinkedIn Learning.
  • If English isn't your first language, our English Language Unit can help you improve your English, reach your full potential and boost your confidence.
  • Our Student Wellbeing Services are available to support you through your learning.


2024 entry
Student Annual tuition fee
UK full time £9,250
UK part time £4,625
International full time £15,750

Professional Placement Year

During the placement year, the fee is reduced to 20% of the full time fee. This applies to UK and EU/International students.

  • UK: £1,850
  • International: £3,150

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

We're looking for hardworking, articulate applicants with a strong and broad interest in the law, who are also fascinated by all aspects of crime, justice and punishment. You’ll be looking to study these issues in a multidisciplinary way, and you’ll be keen to develop your practical skills. Prior law qualifications or previous study in criminology are not required.

Typical offers

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. The main ones are listed below:

  • A Level – grades BBB-BCC preferred.
  • BTEC – Extended Diploma grades from Distinction Distinction Merit (DDM) to Distinction Merit Merit (DMM) accepted in any subject.
  • T Levels – grade Merit preferred.
  • International Baccalaureate – a minimum of 32 points are required.
  • Access to HE courses – typical offers for applicants with Access to HE will be the Access to HE Diploma or Access to HE Certificate (60 credits, 45 of which must be Level 3, at Merit or higher).

English Language Requirements for International and EU Applicants

IELTS 6.0 - for visa nationals, with a minimum score of IELTS 5.5 in each element.

Course enquiries

For further information about the programme or entry requirements, please email us at

How do I apply?

Ready to apply? Click the 'apply now' button in the centre of this page.

Need more guidance? Head to our how to apply pages.

Criminology course leader: Faye Vanstone

Law course leader: Steve Goulton

Three year course
With placement year

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