LAW4515 - International criminology - 2018

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Not offered in 2018


Part I, 'Understanding Criminology', presents an overview of criminology - now made more exciting via integrated coverage of terrorism and related crimes - and describes the vast horizon of this science. It explains what crime is and techniques for measuring the amount and characteristics of crime and criminals. It also traces the history of criminological thought through the era that witnessed the formation of the major schools of criminology, classicism and positivism (eighteenth and nineteenth centuries).

Part II, 'Explanations of Crime and Criminal Behaviour', includes explanations of crime and criminal behaviour on the basis of the various theories developed in the twentieth century. Among the subjects covered are theories that offer biological, psychological, sociological, socio-political, and integrated explanations. Coverage of research by radical, socialist, and feminist criminologists has been updated. Theories that discuss why offenders choose to commit one offence rather than another at a given time and place are also covered in this part.

Part III, 'Types of Crime', covers the various types of crimes from a legal and sociological perspective. The familiar street crimes, such as homicide and robbery, are assessed, as are other criminal activities such as white-collar and corporate crime, which are so much in the spotlight these days, as well as other high-tech crimes that have been highlighted by researchers only in recent years.


Upon completing this unit, students should

  • understand crime as a social phenomenon;
  • have participated in theoretical debates, contributed ideas, and been exposed to solutions to the problems of crime;
  • understand the threat posed by terrorism and by white collar crime;
  • be exposed to contrasting approaches to controlling terrorism;
  • be exposed to contrasting approaches to controlling white collar and corporate offences; and
  • be familiar with international research and statistical information on the critical issues facing the field of contemporary criminology


Research assignment (2,000 words): 25% and final open-book exam (2 hours 30 minutes plus 30 minutes reading time): 75%.

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. The unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information