Criminology Degrees

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You can study criminology online with Australian universities. Criminology can be taken as a major within social science programs. Universities also offer specialist degree courses.

  • Criminology is a large study field which is connected to social science, psychology, law and science.
  • Graduates of online courses pursue careers in crime prevention, detection and justice.

Criminology can be combined with the study of other subjects. As a bachelor degree student, you can choose units from social science and other fields to support your career goals.

Contemporary criminologists investigate a broad range of topics including justice, conflict, deviance, security, policing, drugs and violence. Key concerns include the nature of crime, how crime is defined, why crimes are committed and how society responds to criminal behaviour.

Criminology Studies

Criminology is the study of crime and criminal justice. Students examine crime in a social science context.

As a criminology student, you examine how individual and group behaviours give rise to criminal acts. You consider ways to identify crime and prevent or predict future occurrences. And you study societal impacts, including how offenders are dealt with and potentially reformed.

Subjects you may study as part of a criminology degree include

  • criminal and delinquent behavior, white-collar crime, crimes against humanity
  • crime detection and investigation, law enforcement, victimology
  • the courts, theories and methods of offender treatment, public policy.

Studying criminology provides a foundation for different roles across the criminal justice system. Note that few graduates become "criminologists" as such. For most students, a degree course is a path to an applied (non-research) career.

Criminology Careers

A criminology degree is useful as a general qualification – similar to other degrees in the arts and social sciences. Graduates gain skills in research methods, social and statistical analysis, written communication and critical thinking.

But the degree also provides a platform for a career in law and justice. Across the law and justice system, jobs are available for degree holders with criminology knowledge. Potential work areas include

  • Law Enforcement and Investigation (corporate security, computer fraud, private investigation, public law enforcement)
  • Courts and Law (court administrators, victim and witness assistance workers)
  • Corrections (probation and parole officers, detainee supervisors, education and rehabilitation program managers)
  • Community Services (domestic violence crisis centres, delinquency prevention and diversion programs, child abuse prevention, and drug and alcohol-abuse programs)
  • Research, Planning, and Teaching (in universities, government planning agencies, and private research institutes).

Crime scene investigation

Online Bachelor Degree Courses

Australian online universities offer high-quality courses in the social sciences, including criminology.

  • You can start a general degree with criminology as one of multiple possible majors. You don't normally have to settle on a single major until the 2nd or 3rd year of a bachelor program.
  • By choosing complementary elective units from other disciplines, you can construct the ideal program to further your career goals.

Here are the best bachelor degrees. We've chosen the top courses based on program depth and student satisfaction ratings.

Online Bachelor of Criminology student.

Deakin Bachelor of Criminology

Deakin University allows you to gain a degree in Criminology through cloud (distance) learning. You can potentially finish the degree in 2 years by studying continuously (3 semesters per year). Specialisations are available in areas such as media, terrorism, crime prevention, security and surveillance, and victimology. You can also participate in practitioner-driven seminars during your final year.

UNE Bachelor of Criminology

The University of New England offers a specialist Bachelor of Criminology degree. It combines the study of criminology with forensic science, law and criminal justice. Hands-on experience is available through a WorkReady program. Graduates work in border control, corrective services, government agencies, intelligence and security, juvenile justice, policing and welfare.

Masters Programs Online

An online Master of Criminology degree is useful for professional development or changing careers.

If you majored in criminology

Criminology graduates (with a Bachelor of Criminology or criminology major) who want to become criminologists can benefit from extra training and qualifications.

  • Criminologists should have advanced research skills. Gaining a masters shows you have knowledge and ability.
  • A masters degree is also useful for developing expertise in a specific field.

If you studied something else

You can start a career in criminology by doing a masters course.

  • Masters courses are potentially available for graduates of any discipline, though it helps to have studied social sciences.
  • To be eligible for entry, you may need to start with a shorter postgraduate course (graduate certificate or diploma).
Criminology analysis online using laptop.

Griffith Master of Criminology and Criminal Justice

Griffith University offers a 3-semester masters degree by distance learning. Subjects include advanced theories, quantitative and qualitative skills, policy analysis, research and evaluation, justice and crime. Students without a relevant undergraduate degree can start by enrolling in the 1-semester (4 unit) Graduate Certificate in Criminology and Criminal Justice.