Criminal Psychology and Victimology (Distance Learning) at University of Portsmouth - UCAS

University of Portsmouth

Degree level: Postgraduate

Criminal Psychology and Victimology (Distance Learning) (Taught)

Course summary

Overview Explore what's behind the experiences of both offenders and victims of crime on this part-time Master's degree in Criminal Psychology and Victimology, studying at your own pace via distance learning. You'll learn how taking a psychological approach, such as through offender profiling, can be the key to a criminal investigation. You'll look at different types of offending behaviour with a view to understanding those behind it and working with them to reduce rates of reoffending. You'll also gain an insight into the challenges faced by victims of crime, and study the theoretical perspectives that inform our understanding of victimisation. You'll explore the wider historical and political contexts that influence victim-centred policy and legislation, gaining the skills you need to advocate for victims of crime anywhere within the criminal justice system. As you develop your skills in data analysis, research, and critical and evaluative thinking, you'll also tailor your degree with your choice of topic from the psychology of investigations, missing persons investigations, and vulnerability, risk and resilience of victims of crime. When you complete the course, you'll be ready to work on behalf of offenders or victims of crime and to achieve the best outcomes for them, within criminal justice agencies, related support services and collaborative partnerships.

  • Delve into the psychology of offending behaviour from the perspectives of causation, intervention and rehabilitation, while also assessing current legislation and placing a particular emphasis on reducing reoffending
  • Gain an in-depth understanding of the policies and legislation relating to victims of crime, including victimology theory, the processes of victimisation, the development of reforms, and the often controversial relationship between state, offender and victim
  • Learn from expert academics from our School of Criminology and Criminal Justice, many with previous experience as police officers, crime scene officers, probation officers and intelligence analysts
  • Be part of our community of researchers by getting involved with our criminology research groups, such as the Collaboration of Forensic Interviewing, the Probation, Prison and Penology research group, the Victimology and Ecological Justice research group and the Missing Persons research group
  • Complete a major project based on your chosen area of research, with the support of qualified and enthusiastic experts in the field
Careers and opportunities You'll graduate with insight into the difference criminal psychology can make solving and preventing crime, and the responsibilities involved in working with victims. Your knowledge will enable you to challenge existing criminal justice processes, policies and legislation, and to make improvements. If you already work in the field of criminal justice, you'll be ready to pursue higher-level roles, or to break into a different area of the discipline. If you're preparing to start your career in criminal justice, you'll gain the knowledge and advanced research problem-solving skills you need to stand out to employers and contribute positively to justice system reform. You could also go on to further study, or progress on to a graduate scheme such as PoliceNow or the Civil Service Fast Track Apprenticeship Scheme. Graduates of this course can go on to roles such as:
  • police or law enforcement officer
  • probation or prison officer
  • data analyst
  • intelligence analyst
  • cybersecurity
Graduates of this course can go on to work for organisations such as:
  • the Civil Service
  • national and international Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs)
  • Government agencies and departments internationally
  • probation and prison service
  • the Courts
  • local administration / authorities
  • private security companies
  • charities


Each module on this course is worth a certain number of credits. You need to study modules worth a total of 180 credits. For example, 4 modules worth 30 credits and 1 module worth 60 credits. Part-time Year 1 Core modules in this year include:

  • Psychology and Offending Behaviour (30 credits)
  • Research Methods and Research Ethics (30 credits)
  • Working With Victims of Crime: Theory, Policy and Professional Practice (30 credits)
There are no optional modules in this year. Year 2 Core modules in this year include:
  • Dissertation/Major Project (60 credits)
Optional modules in this year include:
  • Investigation and Psychology (30 credits)
  • Missing Persons: Global Perspectives (Dl) (30 credits)
  • Victimology: Vulnerability, Risk and Resilience (30 credits)
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, course content is revised and regularly reviewed. This may result in changes being made in order to reflect developments in research, learning from practice and changes in policy at both national and local levels.

Assessment method

You'll be assessed through:

  • essays
  • reports
  • oral presentations
  • projects and portfolios
  • seminar participation and engagement
  • dissertation
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 practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future.

Entry requirements

A minimum of a second-class honours degree in a relevant subject (Social Science, Humanities, Law, Psychology, or Management subject). Information Technology or science related subjects will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Applicants with equivalent professional experience in a relevant organisation will also be considered on a case-by-case basis.

English language requirements

TestGradeAdditional details
IELTS (Academic)English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.0.
Cambridge English AdvancedCambridge English: Advanced (CAE) and Proficiency (CPE) (taken after January 2015) An overall score of 176 with no component score less than 176.
Cambridge English ProficiencyCambridge English: Advanced (CAE) and Proficiency (CPE) (taken after January 2015) An overall score of 176 with no component score less than 176.
PTE AcademicAn overall score of 61 with a minimum of 61 in each skill.
TOEFL (iBT)91 with a minimum of 24 in Reading, 23 in Listening, 25 in Speaking and 24 in Writing.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

EU £4450 Year 1
England £4450 Year 1
Northern Ireland £4450 Year 1
Scotland £4450 Year 1
Wales £4450 Year 1
Channel Islands £4450 Year 1
Republic of Ireland £4450 Year 1
International £4450 Year 1

Additional fee information

Fees are accurate at the time of publishing and are subject to change at any time without notice. Fees may also go up in later years, in line with inflation.
Criminal Psychology and Victimology (Distance Learning) at University of Portsmouth - UCAS