Applied Diploma in Criminology

The level 3 Diploma in Criminology is an exciting program that is aimed at school leavers. 

You will learn about organic, inorganic and physical chemistry, and how these three branches fit together in the world around us.

You will also develop many skills which are highly valued by a wide range of employers, including problem solving, data analysis, numeracy and communications.

Learners will complete the diploma in one year and then progress onto the forensic science course for year 2. Alongside the main programme of study, learners will also complete a mentoring qualification which will enhance learner’s skills in a work based setting. In addition, an extended project will also be completed where learners will be able to study an area of personal interest.

Trips and visits, as well as guest speakers will be used in the teaching of these modules to support understanding of the subject area.


The main purpose of the WJEC Level 3 Applied Diploma in Criminology is mainly to use the qualification to support access to higher education degree courses, such as:

• BSc Criminology

• BA Criminology

• BA Criminology and Criminal Justice

• BSc (Hons) Criminology and Psychology

• LLB (Hons) Law with Criminology

• BA (Hons) Criminology and Sociology

• BA (Hons) Criminology

• BSc (Hons) Psychology and Sociology

• BSc Criminology with Law


Alternatively, the qualification allows learners to gain the required understanding and skills to be able to consider employment within some aspects of the criminal justice system, e.g. the National Probation Service, the Courts and Tribunals Service or the National Offender Management Service.

How to apply

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Course detail

Start date: September 2021

Entry requirements

5 GCSE grades 9 to 4, including Maths and English. GCSE grade 3 (D) or above in Science.

Study units

Within the diploma in criminology learners will study four units:

  • Unit 1: Changing Awareness of Crime – this will demonstrate understanding of the different types of crime, influences on perceptions of crime and why some crimes are unreported
  • Unit 2: Criminological Theories – this unit will allow learners to gain an understanding of why people commit crime, drawing on what they have learnt from unit 1
  • Unit 3: Crime Scene to Courtroom – this unit will provide an understanding of the criminal justice system from the moment a crime has been identified to the verdict
  • Unit 4: Crime and Punishment – learners will apply their understanding of the awareness of criminality, criminological theories and the process of bringing an accused to court


There are two externally set exams and two externally set assignments for criminology.

The extended project is achieved through the production of a portfolio.