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The Master of Arts in Criminology and Criminal Justice is a 12 month programme that aims to provide graduates with the necessary skills and knowledge to work in criminal justice settings across a wide range of services including the public service and non-profit sector.

Course Objectives 

This MA aims to provide students with the necessary knowledge and skills to evaluate theory and policy, conduct research and contribute to contemporary debate in the fields of criminal justice and criminology. 

The programme’s objectives focus on developing students' knowledge and skills necessary to develop a critical appreciation of the criminal justice system. It also aims to explain the contribution made by a range of disciplines to criminological analysis. This knowledge will form a base from which graduates can develop and inform their own practices and develop their identity as criminal justice researchers and practitioners.

Semester 1 Semester 2

Research Methods in Criminology (10 ECTS)

Terrorism and Political Violence (5 ECTS)

Criminological Theories & Debates (10 ECTS)

Victims of Crime (5 ECTS)

Criminal Justice & Penal Process (10 ECTS)

Comparing Criminal Justice Systems (10 ECTS)


Desistance, Reintegration and Rehabilitation (10 ECTS)


Semester 3

Criminal Justice Dissertation (30 ECTS)


Applicants require a full Level 8 Award, an undergraduate honours degree in criminal justice or in a cognate discipline, such as criminology, social policy, sociology, politics, law, history, psychology or equivalent, and must meet the Institute’s English Language Requirements, where necessary. The programme will also be accessible to international students with such equivalent qualifications as no prior knowledge of the common law is required, though desirable.

In the instance that programme applicants do not meet the initial entry requirements set out for the programme, they may be eligible to be considered for admission under SETU’s Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) policy.

This MA also offers opportunities for progression to other programmes at SETU principally the structured doctorate in the School of Humanities. The MA in Criminology and Criminal Justice will provide students with an opportunity to acquire the research and literature skills to undertake primary research in the field of criminology under the structured doctorate programme at SETU. Various other universities have similar postgraduate options for which graduates of the MA would also be eligible. 

This MA aims to create skilled staff that will promote the effective management of a range of issues relating to crime and criminal justice.

The MA also offers a gateway towards practice by enhancing the skills and knowledge of graduates, which in turn sets them aside from other candidates in the jobs market. For those practitioners already working in the criminal justice sphere, this level of qualification will not only enhance their confidence in their own role but also allow them to progress to other roles which may require additional levels of qualification.


Course Leader

Dr Niamh Maguire

Senior Lecturer in Law -

Call: +35351302470

Email: [email protected]