This MSc provides students with a thorough understanding of how science and scientifically based techniques can deliver immediate and sustainable reductions in crime. The programme focuses on how to better apply science to understand crime problems, develop strategies for preventing them, and increase the probability of detecting and arresting offenders.
Modes and duration
Modular-flexible students will usually attend one day a week.
Tuition fees (2021/22)
Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees. Fees for flexible, modular study are charged pro-rata to the appropriate full-time Master's fee taken in an academic session.
Normally a minimum of a second-class Bachelor's degree in a relevant discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Relevant disciplines include science subjects, for example engineering or computer science; or social science subjects, for example, psychology, criminology or geography. Alternatively candidates may qualify for entry if they can offer five or more years of relevant professional experience (for example in the police service, or as a crime prevention worker).
English language requirements
If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.
The English language level for this programme is: Good
UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses
Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.
Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.
International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.
Select your country:
About this degree
Students develop the ability to apply scientific principles to crime control, think more strategically in developing and implementing crime control policies, appreciate the complexity of implementation issues, critically assess the likely impact of planned crime reduction initiatives and generate more innovative proposals for reducing particular crime problems.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
The programme consists of four core modules (60 credits), four optional modules (60 credits) and a research dissertation (60 credits).
Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MSc in Crime Science.
Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.
- Designing and Doing Research
- Foundations of Security and Crime Science
- Preventing Crimes
- Quantitative Methods
Students choose four of the following:
- Applied Data Science
- Crime Mapping and Spatial Analysis
- Horizon Scanning and the Changing Nature of Crime
- Introduction to Cybersecurity
- Intelligence Gathering and Analysis
- Investigation and Detection
- Perspectives on Organised Crime
- Simulation for Research
- Qualitative Research Methods
- Risk and Contingency Planning
NB: places for optional modules are awarded on a first-come first-served basis.
- Further information about these modules is available on the department website.
All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of approximately 10,000 words.
Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through lectures, seminars, tutorials, projects, laboratory classes, and practical exercises. Practical work will involve the analysis and interpretation of datasets, and the development of new ideas for solving problems. Assessment is through lab and project reports, unseen written examination, coursework, presentations, and the dissertation.
For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.
UCL Security & Crime Science is offering up to 14 bursary scholarships of between £2,500 and £10,000 to outstanding applicants who have been offered places on one of our MSc programmes.
For further information, please visit our departmental website.
Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below.
- £2,500 - £10,000 (Duration of programme)
- UK, Overseas
- Based on both academic merit and financial need
For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.
Many graduates now work in the field of crime prevention and detection for public sector employers such as the Home Office, police and Ministry of Defence, or private sector companies with a crime prevention and community safety focus. Other graduates go on to further doctoral research.
Graduates from this programme gain skills in data analysis, both numerical and qualitative. They also have the opportunity to study crime prevention methods in depth, and acquire knowledge of different types of crime such as cybercrime, or organised crime. They will develop a broad knowledge of the field of security and crime science and a familiarity with the latest academic research through studying with world-leading experts.
Why study this degree at UCL?
The UCL Security & Crime Science is a world-first, devoted specifically to reducing crime through teaching, research, public policy analysis and by the dissemination of evidence-based information on crime reduction.
The Crime Science MSc is a multidisciplinary degree, drawing on expertise in psychology, social science, statistics, mathematics, architecture, forensic sciences, design, geography and computing.
Our graduate students come from varied backgrounds; many are practitioners and are encouraged to contribute their experience in and out of the classroom.
Department: Security & Crime Science
Application and next steps
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.
This programme does not require references to be submitted in support of your application.
There is an application processing fee for this programme of £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.
Who can apply?
The programme is particularly suitable for students with a background in science subjects such as engineering or computer science, or social science subjects such as psychology, criminology or geography, who wish to develop the skills necessary for a career or further doctoral research in this field.
- All applicants
- 31 May 2021
For more information see our Applications page.Apply now
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
- what particularly attracts you to this particular programme
- why you want to study this subject in the Faculty of Engineering Sciences at UCL, rather than elsewhere
- how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this programme
- if you are aware and comfortable with the fact that the programme includes courses on statistics and quantitative analysis, as well as a general emphasis on the scientific method and empirical research
- where you would like to go professionally with your degree
- if you are aware and comfortable with the fact that the programme differs from a traditional criminology programme, and instead focuses practically on how to prevent and detect crimes by treating the crime rather than the offender as the subject of analysis
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.
It is important to note that statistical analysis of crime data is an integral component of all of our postgraduate courses. While we do not require students to have a background in mathematics or statistics, in order to get the best out of studying with our department it is vital for our students to show an understanding and willingness to learn the concepts of statistics and quantitative research methods.
UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.