The details
Location: Online Mode of study: Part-time Qualification: LLB (Hons) Indicative duration: 4 years
Start date: Tuition fee: £18,500 For queries: Call +44 (0) 1206 489 358 Delivered by: Kaplan Open Learning

We’re the only 100% online provider offering an LLB Law with Criminology, with no requirement to travel to assessment centres or complete timed examinations.

Through our programme, you will be prepared in part for the new Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQE), or to progress onto a Bar Practice Course if you wish to become a barrister, whilst developing your criminological knowledge.

You’ll explore specialist topics including criminal law, criminology and criminal behaviour while also gaining a solid grounding in many essential legal topics such as:

  • legally enforceable contracts and the factors that render them unenforceable
  • tortious liability, negligence and duty of care
  • real property law, easements, covenants and mortgages
  • the establishment and management of trusts and complex property transactions

Towards the end of your study, you will complete a detailed research project on any topic of interest within the scope of your degree. Alternatively, you can select from a range of advanced modules in specialist topics. Participating in discussion forums and reflecting in your journal entries gives you plenty of opportunities to relate your course to your own experiences and use your new skills and knowledge in your existing role.

Why we’re great

  • Our programme is employability focused and will equip you with the skills required for careers in the legal sector as well as related fields.
  • Experienced academics and legal practitioners will deliver your modules. They will help you to develop legal knowledge and skills that are required for legal practice.
  • Gain a recognised qualification from the University of Essex, one of the top 40 universities in the UK (Complete University Guide 2023).

The LLB (Hons) Law with Criminology is made up of the following modules and, upon completion, is equal to a total of 360 credits.

Optional modules: choose one at Level 4; choose one at Level 5; choose modules equal to a total of 60 credits at Level 6.

This module is designed to give you an introduction to the English legal system, including case analysis and statutory interpretation. You'll gain a thorough understanding of the role of lawyers in society and the duties upon their conduct. You'll also develop interpretive and critical reading skills, as well as essential skills in legal writing, presentation and interviewing.  

Gain a thorough introduction to the role of substantive criminal law, including the classification of offences and modes of participation. You'll gain an understanding of the principles of criminal liability and elements of major offences, including homicide, theft and offences against the person. You'll also explore topics such as defences, sentencing and inchoate offences.  

Learn all about constitutional law, administrative law and human rights law. In this thought-provoking module, you'll examine key constitutional principles such as separation of powers, the rule of law and constitutional conventions. You'll also cover the legal framework that underpins the UK judiciary, executive and parliament, and explore the Human Rights Act and European Convention on Human Rights.   

What are the criminological issues of today? What are the types of crime and what causes criminal behaviour? This valuable module provides an introduction to the historical and contemporary theories of crime. Examine statistics; the role of media, TV and movies; and the factors that trigger criminal behaviour. 

In this fascinating module you’ll learn to identify the key issues associated with the social contexts of crime, and define the different types and categories. Through the lens of case studies, you’ll discover the influences of criminal behaviour, and the social and economic effects upon both communities and the state. 

Discover the key principles of prevention, intervention and rehabilitation of offenders within the criminal justice system. In this exciting module, you’ll learn to recognise the legalities of sentencing and how to identify methods of controlling offenders within the community. Upon completion, you’ll be able to explain the different approaches to dealing with offenders. 

What defines ‘justice’ and ‘punishment’? Delve into the historical development of the penal system, and explore the purpose of punishment, as well as different philosophical approaches to justice and punishment. You’ll also examine the impact of human rights legislation on sentencing and prison conditions, using modern-day examples. 

Discover the principles of contract law and application, on both an academic and practice basis. You'll explore key topics, including consideration, promissory estoppel, termination and remedies. You'll be equipped to critically evaluate the relationship between key contract law rules and to apply these to solve legal problems.  

Who's liable for causing psychiatric harm or economic loss? Explore key torts and principles including topics such as defamation, duty of care, negligence, trespass to the person and vicarious liability. You'll also cover defences and remedies for aggrieved parties.  

Ready to discover the key features of land law? On this valuable module, you’ll learn to distinguish between land and property, and cover topics such as co-ownership of homes, mortgage law, landlord and tenant law, the law of easements and restrictive covenants.  

Start thinking critically about the criminological, legal and statistical definitions of crime. In this comprehensive module, you'll be introduced to key historical and contemporary criminological perspectives of crime, as well as the function of punishment in the penal system. By the end, you’ll be able to identify between various methods of crime. 

What’s the importance of forensic psychology within the criminal justice system? What’s the difference between the disciplines of criminology, psychology and law? Gain knowledge about the options available for offenders under the Mental Health Act and the various roles psychology plays in the criminal justice system. 

Gain insight into the concept of criminal investigation and the models of investigation. In this fascinating module, you’ll have the opportunity to critically evaluate investigative skills, and identify the need for strategy within an investigationsuch as treatment of witnesses and suspects. By the end, you’ll have the skills to identify and assess a major investigation. 

Delve into the relationships between ‘youth’ and ‘crime’, and analyse both historical and contemporary criminological theories associated with youth crime. You’ll assess the culture and societal causations of youth crime, as well as how the media’s power of influence creates ‘moral panic’ on perception of ‘youths’. 

In this thought-provoking module, you’ll gain a deeper understanding of theories surrounding criminal rehabilitation, as well as insight into policy and legislation relating to prisons and the rehabilitation of offenders. Discover the meaning of ‘the penal crisis’ and define the roles of those working with offenders in the penal system. 

From probation history and development to sentencing and public protection, this thought-provoking module introduces you to every aspect of community justice. You’ll also learn about the punishment, sentencing and probation process – while considering the importance of public confidence when it comes to community safety.  

Have you considered the role of the European Union in business? Delve into the nature of EU law, and the roles and functions of its institutions, with this in-depth module. You’ll also gain insight on how EU law interacts with key decision-making procedures within organisations – while exploring the considerations that need to be taken with regards to different legal documentation. 

Explore the principles of the establishment and management of trusts and complex property transactions. This defining module provides an ideal starting point to undertake independent research, giving you the opportunity to identify key legal issues and apply solutions to solve the problem.  

Focus on the creation, alteration and revocation of wills and the administration of estates in this insightful module. You’ll learn to critically engage with relevant legal concepts, values, principles and rules of English Law by exploring the relationship between them, and appreciate the uncertainty, ambiguity and limits of knowledge. 

What drives someone to commit a crime? What influences can lead to them reoffending? Find out with this in-depth module. By the end, you’ll have developed a solid understanding of the role of psychology and sociology in studying crime – as well as strong knowledge of how various factors can influence violent behaviour.  

This defining module will expand and reinforce the knowledge you’ve gained from your study. Under the guidance of your supervisor, you’ll complete a written dissertation on a topic of interest – allowing you to demonstrate your research, analytical and critical thinking skills. 

Explore the history and theoretical perspectives of victimology in this comprehensive module. You’ll analyse victimisation in various contexts – including domestic violence, hate crimes and antisocial behaviour. And by the end, you’ll have developed strong knowledge of the victim’s role in the criminal justice process and the support available to them.  

This fascinating module allows you to gain a broad understanding of how the criminal justice system fits into the information age. You’ll investigate the economic and social impact of cybercrime and examine current approaches to policing the internet – allowing you to evaluate the way technology affects criminal and deviant behaviour.  

How does crime impact on economics? How can criminal behaviour be reduced through economical disincentives? Find out in this thought-provoking module. You’ll take an in-depth look at the relationship between economic and criminological theories – enabling you to critically assess the economic and social costs of crime, and evaluate prevention initiatives. 

Policing plays a huge role in society and this module introduces you to the social, historical and ethical aspects of the police force. You’ll explore current legislations and powers, investigate how human rights affect policing methods and analyse a range of investigatory practices – so that on completion, you can apply your knowledge to evaluate issues which may affect the future of policing. 

Teaching methods

Studying online gives you the freedom to study when and where it suits you – at home, during your lunch hour or anywhere else you have internet access.

Our courses are delivered through a virtual learning environment (VLE) instead of a traditional campus. This means you will have access to your study materials 24/7, including:

  • multimedia lecturecasts made up of written content, short videos, animation, audio recordings, infographics, short tests and mini-assignments
  • discussion forums for you to chat about the course content with fellow students
  • live seminars and Q&A sessions with your tutors
  • a comprehensive eLibrary of textbooks and academic journals
  • support from academic staff and your dedicated Student Support team

To ensure you receive the support you need from your tutor, we cap our class sizes at 20 students.


Assessment methods

Rather than fretting about exams, you will be assessed exclusively through assignments. This can be by engaging in discussion forums throughout your modules, completing reflective journal entries, delivering live presentations or by submitting longer written pieces.

We are committed to providing frequent and transparent feedback through the following ways:

  • Our assessment criteria are designed to be simple and transparent.
  • You will always be aware of your current provisional grade, right from the start of the programme.
  • You will be able to view your marks clearly in your gradebook whenever you log onto the learning platform.
  • There is a 7-day turnaround for marking and feedback of assessed work.
  • You will have regular contact with your Student Support team, with whom you can discuss any concerns as soon as they arise.


Study duration

Our LLB (Hons) Law with Criminology has an indicative study duration of 4 years, which is a guide to how long your course will take to complete. The actual duration may be longer or shorter depending on your speed of study, study options chosen and module availability.

It’s possible to complete your studies faster than the indicative course duration by doubling up on modules at certain times; however, minimum study durations do apply.

Our academic year is organised into modules, typically with a one- or two-week break between modules and a structured three-week break for the Christmas period. Students will receive a course timetable during the application process.

All of our courses have regular start dates throughout the year.

On successful completion of your degree, you will be invited to attend a graduation ceremony at the University of Essex, Colchester Campus.

Legal knowledge is a highly useful commodity in a range of roles, including management, finance, human resources, education, local and central government and the voluntary sector. Tying in your new criminology knowledge will benefit you when applying to roles within the police, prisons, probation and other criminal justice positions. If you would like to qualify as lawyer, read more about the path here.

We know that many people from non-traditional backgrounds would succeed on our courses! That’s why we offer two different entry routes, taking into account your prior work experience and relevant qualifications. You will also need to meet our English language requirements.

Additionally, you will need to pass your first assignment set within the first three weeks of the course in order to continue with your studies.


Academic entry route

In order to satisfy the academic entry route requirements for our LLB (Hons) Law with Criminology, you must have the following qualifications as a minimum:

  • three A-levels or equivalent


Work experience entry route

In order to satisfy the work experience entry route requirements for our LLB (Hons) Law with Criminology, you must meet the following criteria:

  • GCSE Maths and English at grade C or above, or equivalent
  • three years’ relevant work experience


English language requirements

As our courses are delivered in English, a high proficiency with English is required. If English is not your first language, your English ability should be equivalent to an IELTS (Academic) score of 6.0. Don’t worry if you don’t hold an IELTS or equivalent qualification – we offer a free online English test to assess your proficiency.

You don’t need to prove your English ability if you are a national of, or have completed a qualification equivalent to a UK degree in, any of these countries.

Full tuition fee: £18,500 (2022-23) Δ

Monthly tuition fee: £385 Δ

  • Designated for undergraduate student loans in England.
  • Simple monthly payment plan available, enabling you to spread the cost over the duration of your studies.
  • Full payment discount of 5% if you pay upfront.
  • Partial scholarship available for international students residing in specific regions outside of the UK.
  • 10% corporate discount available when three or more of your employees study with us.

Please note that a maximum of two discounts or scholarships can be applied. The corporate discount can only be used in combination with our upfront payment discount, but not in conjunction with any other discount or scholarship. Find out more information about our discounts and scholarships here.

Our course fees are fully inclusive – all teaching materials and required reading are included, and there are no hidden charges for assessments or resits. We also charge the same fee for domestic and international students.

Δ All tuition fees shown are net of any applicable sales tax payable by you in your country of residence. Where we are required to add sales tax at the local statutory rate, this will be added to the tuition fees shown and confirmed during the payment process.

Subject specialists, industry authorities and experienced academics: the tutors who teach modules on our LLB (Hons) Law with Criminology are experts in the fields of law and criminology.

What our students say


Adam Newman - LLB (Hons) Law with Business

It’s never too late to follow your passions. At my age I am considered a mature student and the first thing I want to say is it’s never too late to follow your passions. I have always had a keen interest in law, this is mostly because when you think about it, there isn’t much in life that isn’t affected by law in one way or another. I chose the University of Essex Online, purely by chance, I left secondary education in my first year of Sixth Form so my early grades weren’t as good most people who attend university. I am employed full time as the owner of my own company and really can’t afford to take time away to attend a university. The University of Essex Online has offered and delivered on flexible learning. The course structures are easy to follow, and I can fit my study around both work and family life. It is a struggle at times, but nothing worthwhile is ever...

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