UCC Postgraduate courses


About This Course

Fact File

  • Title


  • Code


  • College

    Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences

  • Duration

    1 year Full-time

  • Teaching Mode


  • Qualifications


  • EU Fees 2021

    See Fees and Costs for full details.

  • Non-EU Fees 2021


  • Entry Requirements

    See Requirements for full details.

  • Closing Date

    Open for EU applications, check rounds closing dates under How to Apply

  • Non-EU Closing Date

    Extended until 31 July 2021

  • Start Date

    13 September 2021

Course Outline

The MA in Criminology examines a broad range of theoretical and applied approaches to understanding crime: social deviance, morality, anti-social behaviour, social regulation, legislation, criminal law, justice, prevention, rehabilitation and punishment as social phenomena and as objects of social policy, and delivers a basic competence to carry out research in the field. It is interdisciplinary in tone and character and organized by the Schools of Sociology & Philosophy, Law and Applied Social Studies.

There are three compulsory modules on this course plus four additional modules.

The core compulsory modules are

  • CR6012 Key issues in Criminology
  • CR6010 Research design and methods
  • CR6006 Dissertation on Criminology

Four modules from the following options. Students must take at least one Law (LW) module AND at least one Criminology (CR) module AND at least one Applied Social Studies (SS) module.

CR6019 Organised Crime and Illicit Enterprise (10 credits)
CR6020 Cybercrime Cybernetics (10 credits)
SC6639 Feminist Epistemologies: Feminisms, Sexuality and Society (10 credits)
SC6627 Social Pathology, Civic Health, New Technology (10 credits)
SC6638 Rethinking Borders: Global Challenges to Social Justice (10 credits)
LW6509 Crime and Justice in Ireland (10 credits)
LW6544 Criminology (10 credits)
LW6545 Penology (10 credits)
LW6546 Juvenile Justice (10 credits)
LW6560 Law of Cybercrime (10 credits)
SS6114 Migration, Mobilities and Social Policy (10 credits)
SS6315 Mental Health and Disability (10 credits)
SS6316 Children and Young People (10 credits)
SS6320 Conflict Transformation and Peace Building (10 credits)


Further details on the modules listed above can be found in our book of modules. Any modules listed above are indicative of the current set of modules for this course but are subject to change from year to year.

University Calendar

You can find the full academic content for the current year of any given course in our University Calendar.

Course Practicalities

Students are assessed on 6 taught modules and a dissertation module.

Full details of the current syllabus and timetable can be found at http://www.ucc.ie/en/criminology/

Students should take three modules (30 credits) in the first semester and three modules (30 credits) in the second semester.  Classes will be two hours long, often later in the day to accommodate practitioners, and usually take a lecture-seminar format. Learning is primarily student-centred and we expect students to make time to read and digest the literature for at least 4 hours a day. The degree is full-time, with no part-time provision.

Each module has an assessment method outlined in the book of modules  The dissertation is expected to be between 15-20,000 words.

Who teaches this course

Professor Maggie O’Neill
Dr Katarina Swirak
Dr. James Windle
Dr. James Cuffe
Dr. Orla Lynch
Dr. Theresa O'Keeffe
Dr. Tracey Skillington
Ms. Lauren O'Connell
Dr. Kieran Keohane
Dr. Catherine O'Sullivan
Dr. Fiona Donson
Professor Ursula Kilkelly
Dr. Feilim O'hAdhmaill
Dr. Caitriona Ni Laoire
Ms. Claire Dorrity

Why Choose This Course

This course is aimed at providing students with a multidisciplinary grounding in the study of crime. Students have the option to take modules on Law, psychology, sociology and applied social studies.

Skills and Careers Information

Criminology graduates from the MA in Criminology at UCC are attractive to employers both inside and outside the criminal justice sector. The MA programme encourages the development of key proficiencies such as critical thinking, analytical and communications skills; graduates with these capabilities have the option to work in many sectors associated with their degree and other related areas.

What can I do after I graduate with a Masters in Criminology?

Graduates from the MA in Criminology have a diverse range of roles both nationally and internationally. Some students come to UCC with a wealth of experience in the field, for example serving Gardai, eager to further their knowledge in the area. Other students come from an undergraduate programme or related areas such a youth work. To date our graduate students have found employment in the Gardai, the Prison Services, the community sector, further education and addiction services.

The jobs directly related to your Masters Degree include

  • Community Development Officer.
  • Garda
  • Prison officer
  • Youth worker
  • Victim liaison officer.
  • Researcher.
  • Civil Servant
  • Customs and excise officer
  • Fisheries officer

Other roles that are relevant include

  • Counselor
  • Social Worker
  • Solicitor
  • Addiction services employee
  • Adult intervention services
  • PhD researcher/Academic
  • Journalism/media
  • Teaching
  • UN field office employee
  • NGO – e.g. Amnesty International, Red Cross etc.


Applicants must normally have obtained a minimum of a Second Class Honours Grade I in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) or equivalent degree in sociology, law, politics, psychology, history, applied social studies, or another subject relevant to the study of crime. Candidates who hold a Second Class Honours Grade I in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) in an unrelated subject, or a Second Class Honours Grade II in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) in a related or unrelated subject, will also be considered under Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) subject to a written expression of interest and/or interview. Evidence of written ability on a criminological topic may also be required. 

In exceptional circumstances, substantial professional experience in a relevant and related field of criminal justice may be accepted as compensating for the absence of an undergraduate degree to the required standard, subject to an interview and evidence of written ability on a criminological topic.

English Language Requirements

Applicants that are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university approved English language requirements available here.

For applicants with qualifications completed outside of Ireland

Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements, please find our grades comparison by country here

International/non-EU applicants

For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students. In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.

Not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above.

For more information please contact the International Office.

Fees and Costs

The EU fee for this course is €6,130.

The Non-EU fee for this course is €16,080.


If your course required a deposit, that figure will be deducted from your second semester fee payment in January.

EU student fee payment:

Fees for EU students are payable in two equal instalments. First payment at registration in August and the second in January.

International student fee payment:

Fees for Non-EU Students are payable in one instalment in August.

How can I pay?

By Credit/Debit card online or by credit transfer.


If you have any questions on fee payment please email our Fees Office at fees@ucc.ie .

Additional Costs: Field trip to be confirmed - estimated cost 100-200 euros

Non-EU Fees

The fee schedule for 2019/2020 is available here.

How Do I Apply

1. Choose Course

Firstly choose your course. Applicants can apply for up to two courses under one application. Details of taught courses are available on our online prospectus.

2. Apply Online

Once you have chosen your course you can apply online at the online application portal. Applicants will need to apply before the course closing date. There is a non-refundable €50 application fee for all courses apart from the Education - Professional Master of Education - (Secondary School/Post-Primary Teacher Training) which has a €100 application fee.

Applicants for the Postgraduate Diploma in Public Health Nursing must apply on the PAC website when the programme opens for applications.

3. Gather Supporting Documents

Scanned copies of the following documents will need to be uploaded to the online application portal in support of your application. Applicants may need to produce the original documents if you are accepted onto a course and register at UCC.

  • Original qualification documents listed on your application including transcripts of results from institutions other than UCC
  • Any supplementary items requested for your course.

Please log into the online application portal for more details.

4. Application processing timeline

Our online application portal opens for applications for most courses in early November of each year. Check specific course details. 

5. Rounds

For courses that are in the rounds system (Irish and EU applicants), please check the rounds closing dates here.

Questions on how to apply?

Please use our web enquiry form to contact us.

Additional Requirements (All Applicants)

Please note you will be required to provide additional information as part of the online application process for this programme. This will include the following questions:

  • You may enter the details of professional or voluntary positions held. We strongly encourage you to complete this section with all relevant work experiences that will support your application.

  • Please describe your motivation and readiness for this programme.

  • Please enter the names and email addresses of 2 referees. 

The closing date for non-EU applications is Extended until 31 July 2021

Apply Now

For queries regarding course content or timetables please contact