Criminology WJEC Applied Diploma

close up of hand cuffs
Getting Ahead

Criminology WJEC Applied Diploma at Alton Campus

Criminology is a rendezvous subject; it brings together a variety of different subjects including sociology, psychology, law and forensic science to explore the world of crime. It asks questions such as how crime is defined and why does this definition change over time/place/culture. Why do people commit crime, and how can we prevent future crime? Criminology examines the world of criminals, as well as the world of criminal justice, including the process of crime scene to courtroom.

This course has been designed to support you in making the next steps into the world of work, or into higher education at university. The coursework elements allow for the development of your time management, research and organisational skills. The exam elements allow for the development of the presentation of information in a precise manner and will see you develop your own methods of ensuring information is stored in the long-term memory. Studying criminology will help you to become more effective in the skills above, as well as more employable.

Did you know? Previous students have followed a range of future pathways, including attendance at university to study criminology, law, sociology or forensic science, as well as apprenticeships with the police force.

a police van parked on the side of a road
  • Imagine you have witnessed someone stealing an item from a shop. Do you report this crime? Why/why not? Do you think the average person would report this crime? Why/why not
  • Imagine you have witnessed someone underage drinking in the local park. Do you report this crime? Why/why not? Do you think the average person would report this crime? Why/why not?
  • Imagine you have witnessed a murder. Do you report this crime? Why/why not? Do you think the average person would report this crime? Why/why not?

Create a short report upon this research question, using your own research.

What impact has COVID-19 had upon crime in the UK?

You may wish to use this article.

Stretch and challenge: create a poster to raise awareness of a particular type of crime that has increased during COVID-19.

Write a short report on this research question, using the resources below or your own research.

What is the difference between UK and Norwegian prisons?

Prisons in Norway

Prisons in the UK

Read this article: Prisons in Norway
Read this article: Prisons in the UK

Records: Prison Statistics in Norway
Records: Prison Statistics in the UK

Within the UK, there are five aims of punishment: protection, retribution, deterrence, rehabilitation and reparation. Research these aims and record a definition for each.

Create a presentation that examines whether UK prisons are meeting the aims of punishment. To begin with, you may wish to examine how many prisoners re-offend in relation to deterrence.

BBC True Crime Podcast

Crime podcasts are some of the most downloaded and highest-recommended podcasts that the BBC have; combining mystery, and cold hard facts. Here is a selection of five – be sure to read the synopsis first, as some cases contain forensic gory details!

BBC Crime UK and/or The Guardian Crime UK

You can use the following sites to check the most up to date crime news:

Police UK

You can use this site to search for crime in your area, by entering your postcode: police.uk

Prospects UK

Thinking about studying criminology, but not sure what jobs relate to the subject? Take a look at this website.

WJEC Level 3 Applied Certificate and Diploma Textbook

Buy the WJEC Level 3 Applied Certificate and Diploma textbook to take a look at what you will be studying; there are four units (two studied per academic year) which include changing awareness of crime, criminological theories, crime scene to courtroom, and crime and punishment.

*This is a representation of your learning space and may not be the exact room you will be using

Did you know?

One of the earliest modern theories of criminality stated that criminals could be ‘born bad’. This course examines a range of theories which could explain why people commit crime.

In the UK, 75% of prisoners reoffend within nine years of release. This course examines why.

There were 5.8 million criminal offences recorded by the police in 2020 - but what about the ones which weren’t recorded? This course examines those crimes.

The definition of crime changes over time and over place. What does this say about the definition of crime? This course examines this question.

DNA was first used in the UK as evidence in 1987 - it is hard to imagine criminal cases without DNA evidence now, but DNA isn’t perfect. This course examines the strengths and weaknesses of forensic methods.


The teaching and support was really great, the quality was really great, all the teachers really care about your education as well as your wellbeing, they take everything into consideration and they’re great.

Katie Whittingham, A Level student

I overcame a couple of barriers by working really hard to get the top grades. My experience was really good, with the course and the lecturers, the residentials and activities, together it was all really good. I had really great teaching support, I could always go to the lecturers and speak to them if I needed to.

David Stenning, Public Services student

There are great teachers here. This college has felt more like a university than a school, and it’s definitely lived up to that more grown-up feel.

Vicky Lipscombe, A Level student