Sheffield Hallam University logo
  • Tuition Fee:
  • Local: $ 5.1k / Year
  • Foreign: $ 11.9k / Year
  • Languages of instruction:
  • English


    Forensic study is increasingly popular in universities and a forensic approach is often used in the workplace. This course focuses on debating and examining how criminology and law work in practice and how criminology influences forensic study.

    It is suitable if you work in criminal justice or are considering a career with agencies such as the police, the probation service and the courts.

    You explore

    * the historical developments of the agencies involved in criminal justice and how they interact in today´s society
    * how they work together to detect crime, arrest suspects, and deal with offenders when imprisoned and in the community
    * the history behind criminological theories and theories which apply today
    * how theory influences research and policy, which informs practice in the criminal justice system, and how practice may inform research

    You learn research methods used in forensic criminology and the resulting ethical problems. You also study modules that focus on

    * the institutional framework of criminal law
    * laws of evidence
    * advocacy skills.

    Our lecturers draw on their professional experience in criminal justice practice to develop your understanding of how academic theories relate to crime. Throughout the course you gain critical analysis skills, which you use to complete a dissertation in an area of your interest.

    Our criminology department has an active criminological society run by students. It involves visits to appropriate organisations and guest speakers who give an overview of their speciality.


    Legal methodology

    This module provides the necessary grounding to study law effectively. It teaches the core skills required with emphasis placed on research and legal reasoning. You examine the court system and legal professions and we introduce the Human Rights Act of 1998.

    Criminal litigation

    Criminal litigation is essentially the steps required to take a criminal case to trial. This module examines the initial stages of an investigation.

    You examine

    * police powers
    * the processing of crime scenes
    * the importance of continuity of evidence and establishing a chain of custody
    * the general principles of criminal law required to ensure that charges are understood and correctly drafted
    * the law on confessions and inferences from silence
    * the law concerning taking samples from suspects
    * the initial stages of a criminal prosecution with emphasis on how they are significant to expert witnesses

    Law of evidence

    This follows on from the criminal litigation module and progresses the investigative process from the initial court hearings through to the completion of the trial.

    It addresses subjects including

    * rules and principles on expert testimony
    * the burden of proof
    * the significance of disclosure and pre trial hearings for expert witnesses
    * the rules governing advocacy and trials
    * salient rules of evidence, such as hearsay

    You also examine recent miscarriages of justice involving expert witnesses to identify how error arose and how to eliminate repetition.

    Forensic criminology 1 - conceptual and methodological issues

    You develop a critical awareness of various theoretical issues in forensic criminology. You examine the development of forensic criminology in its wider social and political context.

    Forensic criminology 2 - issues in policy and practice

    You develop your ability to think critically about the links between theoretical and policy developments relating to forensic criminology. You analyse policy developments in the criminal justice sector resulting from the increasing impact of forensic criminology.

    Research project

    This module allows you to demonstrate researcher skills at masters level. You produce a persuasively argued piece of writing that demonstrates knowledge and skills, researcher competence and the ability to work independently.

    UK requirements for international applications

    Universities in the United Kingdom use a centralized system of undergraduate application: University and College Admissions Service (UCAS). It is used by both domestic and international students. Students have to register on the UCAS website before applying to the university. They will find all the necessary information about the application process on this website. Some graduate courses also require registration on this website, but in most cases students have to apply directly to the university. Some universities also accept undergraduate application through Common App (the information about it could be found on universities' websites).

    Both undergraduate and graduate students may receive three types of responses from the university. The first one, “unconditional offer” means that you already reached all requirements and may be admitted to the university. The second one, “conditional offer” makes your admission possible if you fulfill some criteria – for example, have good grades on final exams. The third one, “unsuccessful application” means that you, unfortunately, could not be admitted to the university of you choice.

    All universities require personal statement, which should include the reasons to study in the UK and the information about personal and professional goals of the student and a transcript, which includes grades received in high school or in the previous university.

    University requirements

    Program requirements

    Normally you must have * an undergraduate degree in a relevant field. If you don´t have a degree we may considered your application if you have at least five years´ professional experience. * you need two appropriate references * you need a high level of English language competence to successfully complete the course. If the language your first degree was taught in was not English, then typically you need an IELTS 6.5 or TOEFL 620. If you are concerned, you can attend the TESOL centre´s pre-session induction course. This may be recommended or required. * places are limited but there is no discrimination against any group or individual on the grounds of ethnic origin, nationality, gender, disability, marital status, sexuality, political or religious belief * we normally interview students before admissions are finalised. International students may be interviewed by phone or e-mail. English Language Requirements IELTS band: 6 CAE score: (read more) Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) is part of the Cambridge English suite and is targeted at a high level (IETLS 6.5-8.0). It is an international English language exam set at the right level for academic and professional success. Developed by Cambridge English Language Assessment - part of the University of Cambridge - it helps you stand out from the crowd as a high achiever. 75 (Grade B) TOEFL paper-based test score : 620 IMPORTANT NOTE: Since April 2014 the ETS tests (including TOEFL and TOEIC) are no longer accepted for Tier 4 visa applications to the United Kingdom. The university might still accept these tests to admit you to the university, but if you require a Tier 4 visa to enter the UK and begin your degree programme, these tests will not be sufficient to obtain your Visa. The IELTS test is most widely accepted by universities and is also accepted for Tier 4 visas to the UK- learn more.
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