If you have always been interested in why crimes have been committed and what steps society can take to prevent them from happening, studying a criminology degree may be the perfect option for you. Mixing aspects from sociology and psychology, there are a wide range of questions that you will explore in your degree, such as why people offend, how offenders should be punished, as well as how the media shapes our understanding of crime.
A criminology degree can be taken on its own, or you may choose to do a joint honours degree instead. No matter what field you go down, it’s only natural that you will want to have a variety of options when it comes to seeking employment, so here are 7 jobs that you can embark on with a degree in criminology.
If you would like to become a criminologist, there are various roles and responsibilities that will be required of you, including:
- Collecting data on criminal activity
- Gathering quantitative and qualitative data
- Working with police forces and government policy
- Developing action plans for preventing crime
- Highlighting potential and existing criminals
Naturally, if your number one goal is to become a criminologist, studying for a degree in the exact field will teach you everything you need to know to prepare you for every aspect of the role.
Another position that you may be interested in is becoming a police officer. While you may think that your sole purpose will be to arrest individuals, this couldn’t be further from the truth. As a police officer, you will work closely with local communities to ensure people are kept safe and protected. Other duties include:
- Conducting investigations
- Interviewing suspects
- Gathering evidence
All three of these duties are crucial in helping solve a case, so if you enjoy a challenge and want to make a difference, becoming a police officer may be the perfect role for you. Undergoing a criminology degree will give you more of an understanding on who is more likely to commit an offense, helping you to identify criminals easier, and potentially stopping them in their tracks from the get-go.
The main duty of a probation officer is to work alongside ex-prisoners and offenders to help re-introduce them back into society, preventing them from offending again. You will also work closely with the police, prison services, the government, as well as community agencies. As some ex-prisoners and offenders will be dangerous and high-risk, the role of a probation officer isn’t for the faint hearted, so it’s important that you know how to communicate effectively with offenders.
Studying a criminology degree will give you a solid insight into why individuals commit crimes, and help you empathize with them to make sure they get the rehabilitation they need. If you’re passionate about making a positive impact on people’s lives, becoming a probation officer may be suitable for you.
If a police officer position isn’t your calling, and you would rather specialize in a field, becoming a detective may be perfect for you. Detectives work in a range of areas such as CID (criminal investigations department) which handles cases of robbery and suspicious death. There are various duties that you will need to carry out as a detective, including:
- Managing investigations
- Managing uniformed police offers in gathering evidence
- Interviewing witnesses and victims
- Preparing search and arrest warrants
Similar to a police officer, embarking on a criminology degree will provide you with the knowledge and understanding of why crimes are committed, helping to catch profile offenders.
Scene of Crime Officer
A scene of crime officer operates on the crime scene, collecting photographic proof and forensic evidence which is used for police investigations. It’s important to note that some of the work you do may be highly sensitive and difficult, especially if you’re in a tense environment, so this type of role isn’t best suited for everyone.
A scene of crime officer is a job that’s best suited to individuals who have completed a joint honours degree that incorporates Forensic Science, however, you are able to do further studies and job training if you only have a standalone Criminology degree to your name.
If you would like to work with vulnerable individuals and families who are going through challenging periods, becoming a support worker may be your calling. As a social worker, you will need to provide support and guidance for those who suffer from drug or alcohol abuse, mental health issues, as well as those who are homeless. Helping individuals get the financial, medical, and housing assistance they need can make a real difference to their lives and state of mind.
If you have decided to study for a criminology degree, you can utilize the psychological and social aspects of your degree, as well as build on your empathy and knowledge of people from different walks of life. For those who want to help those most in need, a social worker role can provide you with tons of benefits.
A corrections officer is responsible for supervising offenders during their stay in prison. As you will be in direct contact with prisoners from all different kinds of backgrounds, corrections officers need to be confident and in charge at all times. Key aspects of the role include:
- Providing prisoner rehabilitation and training
- Establishing positive relationships with prisoners
- Maintaining a balance between compassion and authority
Like with many of the other roles listed, studying for a criminology degree can give you a better insight into why individuals behave the way they do, helping you to come up with a rehabilitation program that suits the prisoner.
Choosing Your Degree
Now that you have a better idea of the sorts of roles you can go into, finding a criminology degree that’s right for you should be your next step. You can study an online bachelor’s degree in criminology and go into other positions too, such as:
- Criminal justice faculty
- Animal cruelty investigator
- Crime scene/Forensics analyst
Before you apply for any of the professions listed, it’s important that you have the credentials and skillset to help you stand out from the crowd. Studying for a criminology degree will take time, hard work, and effort, so make sure that you read the course specifications and entry requirements before applying to make sure you’re making the right decision. For those who have an interest in crime and why individuals commit offenses, a criminology degree may be the steppingstone you need to open more doors for employment.