Top 4 Major subjects in criminology

We welcome those looking for major subjects in criminology. We commend your zeal and to remunerate it, we would break down all the walls and misconceptions surrounding the subject of criminology.

We also would take an in-depth look at the top 4 major subjects in criminology that are constituent to the study. Therefore, without making it too bogus, here is the introduction to the major subjects in criminology. But, hold on, we need to explain;

What is Criminology?

Criminology is the scientific study of crime, including its causes, law enforcement actions, and preventative strategies. It is a sub-discipline of sociology, which is the science of social behavior. In the area of criminology, several fields of study are used, including biology, statistics, psychology, psychiatry, economics, and anthropology.

Just as criminology is a sub-discipline of sociology, criminology has multiple sub-disciplines of its own, including:

  • The study of prisons and prison systems is known as Penology.
  • The study of the biological underpinnings of criminal conduct is known as Biocriminology.
  • The study of women and crime is known as feminist criminology.
  • Criminalistics is the science of detecting crimes.

What is the difference between criminal justice and criminology?

Although the two concepts may appear to be interchangeable, criminology and criminal justice are distinct fields of study and practice. Although the two fields share some concepts and theories, they are distinct domains of study and practice. Here are a few ways to tell the difference between the two disciplines:

Criminal justice is concerned with the prevention of crime and the enforcement of the law. Criminology, on the other hand, is concerned with criminal acts and their origins, repercussions, and effects.

Investigation methods, acquiring evidence, arresting criminals, conducting trials, and sentencing and punishing criminals are all covered under criminal justice. Understanding why people commit crimes, how to forecast crime, and how to control it are all themes studied in criminology.

Criminal justice is mostly practiced in institutions like courts, whereas criminology can be done in labs, research centers, and social situations.

A law enforcement officer, lawyer, investigator, crime scene technician, court administrator, and customs officer are all careers in criminal justice. Careers in criminology, on the other hand, include crime management officers, community workers, and drug enforcement agents.

Variety of criminological schools of thought

Criminology is a broad discipline that is built on a variety of schools of thought, commonly known as criminological theories. To give you an idea, here are a couple of them:

Classical School of Criminology

Cesare Beccaria, an Italian lawyer, was the main force behind the classical school of criminology. Crime theories, according to him, are based on four ideas:

  • Individuals have free will and to act of their own volition;
  • Individuals seek pleasure and avoid pain, and they weigh the costs and benefits when deciding to commit an act;
  • Individuals seek pleasure and avoid pain, and they weigh the costs and benefits when deciding to commit an act.
  • Punishment is an effective deterrent in reducing crime. – Punishment certainty and swiftness are important variables in preventing crime.

Positivist School

Other variables, beyond pursuing pleasure and avoiding suffering, are involved in criminal behavior, according to the positivist school of thinking. Individuals may not be able to control these elements, which might be internal or external, according to positivism. Social, psychological, environmental, and biological factors can all play a role in these issues. The positivist school of criminology was the first to use science to investigate human behavior.

Chicago School

In the 1920s, the sociology department of the University of Chicago established the Chicago school of thinking. This school’s core idea was that human behavior is influenced by social structure. It looks at psychological and environmental aspects to figure out why people commit crimes.

After looking into the environmental factor, the Chicago school concluded that having a harmful social environment is the primary cause of the social structure collapsing, resulting in a community’s crime mentality.

Basic Requirement in Criminology

Criminologists are more interested in why a crime was committed than in how the law is applied. Even though there is a significant link between criminology and criminal justice, they are two distinct topics of study.

Criminology students study the social elements that influence criminal behavior. They’re interested in learning more about what motivates criminal activity and how to prevent it.

Criminologists study both individual criminal acts and their consequences for society as a whole. Psychology, criminal law, and law enforcement statistics are all topics studied by criminology majors.

Criminology Associate’s Degree

Before a student can be considered for admission in an associate program in criminology, many universities need certain requirements. Before enrollment, you must be a high school graduate or have taken the GED exam.

The student must express an interest in criminology, have a high school English grade of at least a C, and take and pass an English Proficiency Test.

Before enrollment in the criminology program, a student must pass a physical examination. This undergraduate degree takes two or three years to complete and prepares students for entry-level criminal justice positions. Students who desire to take classes part-time may need more than two or three years to complete their studies.

Careers in private security, law, and the police academy as entry-level employment in law enforcement abound for these graduates.

What Does It Mean to Be a Criminology Major?

The study of crime is known as criminology. Criminology majors learn about the biological, psychological, and social variables that contribute to crime, such as socioeconomic position. These majors look at crime in a variety of settings, from communities to countries.

They’ll investigate such crimes over time, honing their research abilities along the way. As major, several schools combine criminology and criminal justice. In such circumstances, pupils are also taught about the criminal justice system and its role in crime prevention.

Why is Criminology Important?

Various factors contribute to the importance of criminology:

  • Criminology aids society in understanding, controlling, and reducing crime. Studying crime aids in the discovery and analysis of its causes, which can then be used to policies and efforts aimed at reducing crime.
  • It aids in comprehending the psyche of criminals: Criminology aids in the understanding of criminals’ motivations, why they commit crimes, and the elements that influence them. This aids in the efficient allocation of resources in the fight against crime.
  • Criminal reform: In addition to controlling and reducing crime, criminology can also provide effective strategies for criminal rehabilitation.

Possibilities for a career in criminology

If you wish to pursue a career in criminology, you can choose from a variety of intriguing work opportunities, including:

  • Criminologist: A master’s or doctorate is required for this position, and Criminologists specialize in topics such as environmental criminology or psychological criminology.
  • They also assist in the improvement of police performance through predictive policing and community-oriented policing. Criminologists are typically employed by universities, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), legislative bodies, public-policy organizations, and research institutions.
  • Forensic psychologist: To work as a forensic psychologist, you must have a bachelor’s degree in criminology as well as a master’s or doctorate in psychology. Jury consultant, criminal profiler, and expert witness are all roles that forensic psychologists can play.
  • Community development worker: will assist you in bringing about social change and improving the quality of life in many communities.
  1. You will serve as the connector between communities and official bodies in this position. Identifying community needs and requirements;
  2. Assisting in the public knowledge of prevalent concerns in the community;
  3. Preparing policies and reports are all responsibilities of this profession.
  4. Fundraising and management;
  5. Strategy development;
  6. Fundraising and management;
  7. Strategy development.
  • Probation officer: As a probation officer, you will be in charge of supervising criminals after they have been released from institutions to protect the public and lower their risks of committing another crime and have other responsibilities which include;
  1. Managing high-risk offenders;
  2. Conducting risk assessments;
  3. Managing and implementing community orders;
  4. Encouraging offenders to modify their attitude;
  5. Attending and testifying in court are some of the obligations of this position.

Courses in criminology are expensive.

The cost of a criminology degree might vary depending on where you study and whether you study online or on campus. Edology offers the following online criminology courses:

  • BA (Bachelor of Arts) (Hons.) Criminology and Psychology: £13,500/£12,150 (UK/EU) (International)
  • BA (Bachelor of Arts) (Hons.) Criminology and Law: £13,500 (UK/EU) / £12,150 (international) (International)
  • LLB is a legal term that refers to (Hons.) £27,750 for a law degree in criminology (total fee)

Salary Earned by Criminologist

Criminalists are paid a lot of money.

According to PayScale, criminologists’ incomes range from £20,500 to £44,000, with the typical wage being £26,500. The criminologist’s remuneration is also determined by his or her job and seniority.

With all this juicy information been given, it is now ripe for us to drop the;


Top 4 Major Subjects in Criminology

  • Criminology
  • Criminology and Psychology
  • Criminology and Law
  • Criminology and Criminal Justice

1.      Criminology

Criminology is the scientific study of the non-legal aspects of crime and delinquency, including its origins, correction, and prevention, from the perspectives of anthropology, biology, psychology and psychiatry, economics, sociology, and statistics, among other disciplines.

From a legal standpoint, crime refers to both individual criminal acts (for example, a burglary) and the society’s response to those acts (e.g., a sentence of three years in prison). By contrast, criminology explores and encompasses a larger understanding of crime and criminals. Criminologists, for example, have tried to figure out why some persons are more inclined than others to participate in criminal or delinquent behavior. Criminologists have also looked at and attempted to explain disparities in crime rates and laws between societies, as well as changes in rates and laws over time.

Within this subject, there are important topics which students are taught and are required to master, topics such as;

  • Social Theory
  • Deviance and Crime Control
  • Contemporary issues in criminology

2.      Criminology and Psychology

Psychology is concerned with individuals and focuses on the study of the mind and behavior of humans. Criminology is the study of crime and deviance, and it covers a wide range of topics, from the structure of criminal justice systems to how the media portrays and influences crime.

These two categories together will provide you with the skills and information you need to excel in a variety of vocations.

The psychology and criminology course will provide you with a theoretical grasp of human behavior, as well as the opportunity to apply what you’ve learned to a variety of unique examinations.

The course is focused on employability and includes valuable practical exercises (such as courtroom observation, museum visits, and police station visits), fundamental skills (such as writing skills, presentations, and group collaboration), and lectures from industry experts (e.g. forensic, educational, and occupational psychologists).

Topics to be taught to students include;

  • Social and Developmental Psychology
  • Crime and Society
  • Key Studies in Psychology
  • Contemporary Debates in Criminology
  • Policing and Police Powers.

3.      Criminology and Law

Criminology is the study of crimes, offenders, and crime victims, as well as theories explaining illegal and/or deviant conduct, the social response to crime, and the success of crime control strategies. Law Studies is an interdisciplinary field that studies law and legality’s meanings, beliefs, practices, and institutions. The disciplines of Legislation Studies show how political, economic, and cultural forces shape and are shaped by law. In criminology and law studies, we look at the relationship between crime and the law. We also investigate how the police, courts, and correctional systems operate, as well as why the criminal justice system operates as it does.

To further understand the concept of Criminology and Law, the below topics will be taught and have to be understood by students;

  • Criminal Justice System
  • Criminal Law
  • Research and Ethics in action
  • Civil and Human Rights
  • Youth Justice
  • Crime Prevention

4.      Criminology and Criminal Justice

The study of the criminal justice system and those who work in it, such as police officers, judges, correctional personnel, and border patrol agents, is known as criminal justice. Criminal justice students learn everything there is to know about the law enforcement system, from its origins to its contemporary operations and structure. They prepare themselves for a variety of occupations within that infrastructure by studying. Criminal justice majors take more classes in criminal investigation, the justice system, criminal law, and correctional facilities, which is a distinction between criminology and criminal justice degrees.

Areas to be focused on include;

  • Criminology Theory Criticism
  • International Penal Policies
  • Social and Political Sciences
  • Introduction to Criminal Justice
  • Police Powers in the Criminal Justice System
  • International Criminal Justice.

Some schools offer and are known to be the best at teaching these subjects, students both past and present have recorded high grades at exams and on the field.

To this end, below are some of such schools which are arranged in no particular order;

  1. University of Pennslyvania 
  2. University of Florida
  3. University of Maryland 
  4. University of Sydney; Institute of Criminology
  5. University of Hong Kong
  6. University of Leicester