History and Criminology (Including Placement Year)

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Academic Year of Entry: 2023/24
Course overview
(BA) Bachelor of Arts
History and Criminology (Including Placement Year)
University of Essex
University of Essex
Colchester Campus
Honours Degree


Professional accreditation


Admission criteria

A-levels: BBB

BTEC: DDM, depending on subject studied - advice on acceptability can be provided.

IB: 30 points or three Higher Level certificates with 555
We are also happy to consider a combination of separate IB Diploma Programme Courses (formerly certificates) at both Higher and Standard Level. Exact offer levels will vary depending on the range of subjects being taken at higher and standard level, and the course applied for.
We can also consider combinations with BTECs or other qualifications in the Career-related programme – the acceptability of BTECs and other qualifications depends on the subject studied, advice on acceptability can be provided. Please contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office for more information.

Access to HE Diploma: 6 level 3 credits at Distinction and 39 level 3 credits at Merit, depending on subject studied - advice on acceptability can be provided.

T-levels: Distinction, depending on subject studied - advice on acceptability can be provided.

What if I don’t achieve the grades I hoped?
If your final grades are not as high as you had hoped, the good news is you may still be able to secure a place with us on a course which includes a foundation year. Visit our undergraduate application information page for more details.

What if I have a non-traditional academic background?
Don’t worry. To gain a deeper knowledge of your course suitability, we will look at your educational and employment history, together with your personal statement and reference.

You may be considered for entry into Year 1 of your chosen course. Alternatively, some UK and EU applicants may be considered for Essex Pathways, an additional year of study (known as a foundation year/year 0) helping students gain the necessary skills and knowledge in order to succeed on their chosen course. You can find a list of Essex Pathways courses and entry requirements here

If you are a mature student, further information is here

IELTS (International English Language Testing System) code

English language requirements for applicants whose first language is not English: IELTS 6.0 overall. Different requirements apply for second year entry, and specified component grades are also required for applicants who require a visa to study in the UK.

Other English language qualifications may be acceptable so please contact us for further details. If we accept the English component of an international qualification then it will be included in the information given about the academic levels listed above. Please note that date restrictions may apply to some English language qualifications

If you are an international student requiring a visa to study in the UK please see our immigration webpages for the latest Home Office guidance on English language qualifications.

If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.

Additional Notes

If you’re an international student, but do not meet the English language or academic requirements for direct admission to this degree, you could prepare and gain entry through a pathway course. Find out more about opportunities available to you at the University of Essex International College here.

Course qualifiers


Rules of assessment

Rules of assessment are the rules, principles and frameworks which the University uses to calculate your course progression and final results.

Additional notes


External examiners

Staff photo
Dr Ingeborg Dornan

Reader in History

Brunel University London

External Examiners provide an independent overview of our courses, offering their expertise and help towards our continual improvement of course content, teaching, learning, and assessment. External Examiners are normally academics from other higher education institutions, but may be from the industry, business or the profession as appropriate for the course. They comment on how well courses align with national standards, and on how well the teaching, learning and assessment methods allow students to develop and demonstrate the relevant knowledge and skills needed to achieve their awards. External Examiners who are responsible for awards are key members of Boards of Examiners. These boards make decisions about student progression within their course and about whether students can receive their final award.

eNROL, the module enrolment system, is now open until Monday 23 October 2023 8:59AM, for students wishing to make changes to their module options.


Core You must take this module.
You must pass this module. No failure can be permitted.
Core with Options You can choose which module to study.
You must pass this module. No failure can be permitted.
Compulsory You must take this module.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.
Compulsory with Options You can choose which module to study.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.
Optional You can choose which module to study.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.

Year 1 - 2023/24

Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Min Credits Max Credits
01  HR173-4-FY-CO  Rebellious Pasts: Challenging and Creating Histories  Core  30  30 
02  SC104-4-FY-CO  Introduction to Crime, Law and Society  Core  30  30 
03  SC101-4-FY-CO  Researching Social Life I  Compulsory  30  30 
04    History option(s)  Optional  30  30 
05  HR510-4-FY-CO  History Works: Career Portfolio  Compulsory 

Year 2 - 2024/25

Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Min Credits Max Credits
01  HR242-5-FY-CO  Exploring History: Research Workshop  Compulsory  30  30 
02  SC204-5-FY-CO  Sociology of Crime and Control  Compulsory  30  30 
03    (SC202-5-AU and SC203-5-SP) or History option(s)  Compulsory with Options  30  30 
04    History or Sociology option(s) from list  Optional  30  30 
05  HR510-5-FY-CO  History Works: Career Portfolio  Compulsory 

Year Abroad/Placement - 2025/26

Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Min Credits Max Credits
01  HR701-6-FY-CO  Placement Year  Compulsory  120  120 

Year 3 - 2026/27

Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Min Credits Max Credits
01  SC304-6-FY-CO  Globalisation and Crime  Compulsory  30  30 
02    HR831-6-FY or SC831-6-FY  Compulsory with Options  30  30 
03    History option(s)  Optional  30  30 
04    Criminology or Sociology or History option(s) from list  Optional  30  30 
05  HR510-6-FY-CO  History Works: Career Portfolio  Compulsory 

Exit awards

A module is given one of the following statuses: 'core' – meaning it must be taken and passed; 'compulsory' – meaning it must be taken; or 'optional' – meaning that students can choose the module from a designated list. The rules of assessment may allow for limited condonement of fails in 'compulsory' or 'optional' modules, but 'core' modules cannot be failed. The status of the module may be different in any exit awards which are available for the course. Exam Boards will consider students' eligibility for an exit award if they fail the main award or do not complete their studies.

Programme aims

  • To provide a wide-ranging and sound academic grounding in the disciplines of history and criminology .
  • To equip students with a range of subject-specific skills fostered by the study of history and criminology, preparing them for subsequent research or further study, and for a wide range of careers .
  • To enable students to design and conduct an independent research dissertation on an historical and/or criminological topic.
  • To encourage critical reflection on crime and criminology from a historical perspective.

  • Learning outcomes and learning, teaching and assessment methods

    On successful completion of the programme a graduate should demonstrate knowledge and skills as follows:

    A: Knowledge and understanding

    A1: Knowledge and understanding of the intellectual foundations of criminology

    A2: Knowledge and understanding of key criminological concepts and theories

    A3: Knowledge and understanding of a range of historical and social developments in the modern era

    A4: Knowledge and understanding of fundamental principles of historical analysis

    A5: Knowledge and understanding of aspects of the history and/or sociology of crime and social regulation

    Learning methods

    Lectures introduce students to course content in a general manner and through specific examples.

    Lectures are also designed to stimulate students' interest in the subject under discussion.

    Each module entails a weekly class or workshop, for which students have to prepare, and where emphasis is placed on discussion.

    Students make independent use of all library resources (databases, books, articles and in some cases films) in preparing for classes and writing essays.

    Revision classes are provided to help students prepare for exams.

    Individual supervision is given on the independent research dissertation; tutors provide feedback on all forms of coursework.

    There is strong emphasis on developing students' theoretical understanding of criminology, as well as their sense of the historical construction of criminology as a subject.

    History options are chosen from a substantial list of modules which relate particularly to the history of crime and social regulation.

    Assessment methods

    Outcomes A1-A5 are assessed through continuous coursework and written examinations.

    Coursework consists mainly of essays, supplemented by other types of assignment such as book reviews, document analyses, glossaries of concepts, assessed presentations and oral contributions.

    For SC104, students submit a self-reflective journal as all or part of their coursework.

    The ability to produce, under set time conditions and without access to notes, cogent arguments demonstrating the interconnectedness of themes, concepts and issues covered in the course components is assessed by the first-year examination of the pre-requisite module for the course.

    Examinations are typically unseen, essay based, of two or three hours' duration.

    B: Intellectual and cognitive skills

    B1: Assemble, synthesise and analyse evidence

    B2: Understand, summarise and critically assess criminological work

    B3: Understand, summarise and critically assess historical work

    B4: Formulate and present ideas and arguments

    B5: Evaluate and compare approaches, theories and interpretations

    Learning methods

    Skills B1-B5 are primarily enhanced through all the activities involved in preparing for class discussions and producing essays and other assignments, although lectures and classes provide a means for teachers to demonstrate these skills through example.

    Preparation for classes and class presentations involve the reading, interpretation and evaluation of historical and criminological texts and the collection and evaluation of empirical evidence.

    Students keep a journal for SC104, encouraging the development of B2, B3 and B5.

    Skill B1 is particularly cultivated in SC203, while HR211 and SC242 are designed to foster B5.

    Students are provided with feedback on all coursework, including class presentations and contributions to classes through comment and discussion.

    Assessment methods

    All skills are assessed through the usual means of coursework and examination; a variety of types of coursework across the curriculum assess skills specifically.

    The ability to understand questions and produce answers under set time conditions and without access to notes is assessed by the first-year examination of the pre-requisite module for the course.

    C: Practical skills

    C1: Critically read, summarise and evaluate sources in history

    C2: Critically read, summarise and evaluate sources in criminology

    C3: Retrieve relevant evidence using bibliographic and web searches

    C4: An ability to plan work and manage timetables

    Learning methods

    Preparation of written work and oral presentations develops C1, C2 and C3, as does participation in class discussions; some courses emphasise work in groups by including assessment of the student's general participation in class discussions.

    SC203 and the Research Project enable students to take C1 and C2 to a higher level.

    Students have to carry out criminal justice web searches as one of their class assignments for SC104.

    Students are strongly encouraged to discuss their projects with members of academic staff but are required to conduct their own bibliographic research and formulate their own lines of investigation.

    Assessment methods

    C1 and C2 are assessed through the usual means of coursework and examination;

    C3 is assessed in the final-year dissertation as well as in SC203;

    C4 is assessed by the requirement that students meet coursework deadlines, as well as by interim deadlines in preparing their final-year dissertation.

    The practical skill of working under pressure and without notes to produce cogent arguments in written work is assessed by the first-year examination in the pre-requisite course for the scheme.

    D: Key skills

    D1: Ability to produce fluent and effective communication

    D2: Use of relevant information technology to research and present work

    D4: Critically assess existing and proposed solutions to problems; understand and produce answers to essay questions

    D6: A student's ability to reflect on his or her own progress and to respond constructively to the comments of others.

    Learning methods

    D1, D2, D4, and D6 are acquired and developed through the teaching and learning methods described above, including seminar/class discussions.

    Students are encouraged to use the University key skills on-line package.

    Early in the first year, specific assignments are given such as carrying out bibliographic or web searches; thereafter students are expected to make routine use of word-processing packages, email, library searches and internet sources as part of effective study and course participation.

    Students have the opportunity to discuss essay feedback and essay plans with members of staff.

    Assessment methods

    Key skills are assessed through the usual methods of coursework, including evaluation of seminar performance, and also for D1 and D4 by examination.

    IT skills are a component in most assessed work which usually entails word processing as well as bibliographic and web searches, but there is a particular focus on them in coursework such as the criminological journal (SC104).

    Coursework journal for SC104 requires students to reflect on their progress.


    The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its programme specification is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to courses, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include a change of law or regulatory requirements, industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key personnel, change in government policy, or withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to courses may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications.

    The full Procedures, Rules and Regulations of the University governing how it operates are set out in the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.


    If you are thinking of studying at Essex and have questions about the course, please contact Undergraduate Admissions by emailing admit@essex.ac.uk, or Postgraduate Admissions by emailing pgadmit@essex.ac.uk.

    If you're a current student and have questions about your course or specific modules, please contact your department.

    If you think there might be an error on this page, please contact the Course Records Team by emailing crt@essex.ac.uk.