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Sociology and Criminology with a Foundation Year - BA (Hons)

Currently viewing course to start in 2024/25 Entry.

Looking for a foundation course in sociology or criminology in Birmingham? Our BA (Hons) Sociology and Criminology with a Foundation Year degree has lower entry requirements and can lead to a full undergraduate qualification....

  • Level Foundation
  • Study mode Full Time
  • Location City Centre
  • School School of Social Sciences
  • Faculty Faculty of Business, Law and Social Sciences

This course is:

Open to International Students

Overview

Looking for a foundation course in sociology or criminology in Birmingham? Our BA (Hons) Sociology and Criminology with a Foundation Year degree has lower entry requirements and can lead to a full undergraduate qualification.

This course has been specifically designed to allow home and EU students, who do not initially meet the Birmingham City University entry requirements for our standard Sociology or Criminology degrees, to undertake additional level 3 study designed to ensure they are successful on their chosen degree course.

The foundation year itself will equip you with the required knowledge and skills to proceed on to any of our undergraduate Sociology or Criminology degree courses offered within the School of Social Sciences.

This course is open to International students.

What's covered in this course?

Our BA (Hons) Sociology and Criminology degree is a radical and practical course; theoretically driven and empirically informed, as well as locally situated and globally focused.

Studying Sociology at Birmingham City University is about not reading sociology but doing sociology, allowing you to explore and question social norms and discover the complex issues behind your everyday routines and social practices in a range of spatial contexts, applying what you learn to your own lived experiences.

The inclusion of Criminology into the degree affords you the opportunity to understanding how society makes sense of crime, criminality and its control as well as the relationship between crime and wider society. You will examine patterns and processes of inequality, crime, the structure and dynamics of social hierarchies and power relations and ask why and how people shape their identities and the tensions and conflicts that these processes create.

Through the School of Social Sciences’ Birmingham 2029 project, you will have the chance to explore such themes of sociology and criminology within the city of Birmingham, an urban context that hosts diverse communities perfect for sociological and criminological examination.

The School of Social Sciences has links with local public and third sector organisations that will help you make professional contacts and be able to apply your studies to future career prospects when taking part in voluntary work or on placement.

Employability is at the heart of our BA(Hons) Sociology and Criminology programme, with placement opportunities embedded throughout the course of the degree. Coming to study Sociology and Criminology at Birmingham City University affords you with a wealth of academic and employability opportunities, locally and globally aligned, to develop the skills needed to not only achieve successful graduate employment but also to contribute, as an agent of change, to thinking through and tackling some of the pressing social issues of contemporary society.

Why Choose Us?

  • We aim to infuse learning with exposure to real-world experiences. Through participation in the Social Impact Hub, we give students the chance to work on real-life projects. These offer a unique opportunity for students to gain this invaluable experience while they study.
  • We pride ourselves on being the University for Birmingham and our commitment to contribute to the city and local community. As part of this commitment, we have forged strong links with local organisations across the city and many graduates end up playing valuable roles in the local community.
  • We have strong links with West Midlands Police and regularly welcome serving officers and experts to give guest lectures and provide opportunities for exposure to real-world activities.
  • We have a strong focus on employability and through placement opportunities and our links with local businesses, we aim to ensure you graduate not only with your degree but also with the skills and knowledge needed to embark on your chosen career.
  • The STEAMhouse offers amazing opportunities for entrepreneurial students to kick start and build a business or organisation. Services available include the Incubator which helps focus and solidify business ideas and the Hatchery which offers support in getting your business or organisation off the ground.

Open Days

Join us for an on-campus Open Day where you'll be able to meet us in person, hear from our trailblazing academics and explore our innovative £340m facilities.

Next Open Day: 23 March 2024

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Entry Requirements

These entry requirements apply for entry in 2024/25.

All required qualifications/grades must have been achieved and evidenced at the earliest opportunity after accepting an offer to help confirm admission and allow for on-time enrolment. This can also include other requirements, like a fee status form and relevant documents. Applicants can track their application and outstanding information requests through their BCU mySRS account.

We accept a range of qualifications, the most popular of which are detailed below.

Essential

80 UCAS tariff points from A/AS Level with a minimum of 3 A Levels.

Level 2 qualifications

GCSE

GCSE English Language or English Literature and GCSE Maths at grade C/4 or above. If you do not have these or are not undertaking them, we accept other Level 2 equivalents, or we may ask you to pass BCU's GCSE equivalency tests.

Irish Leaving Certificate (Ordinary Level)

See level 3 entry under Irish Leaving Certificate for full details.

Scottish National 5

English Language or English Literature and Maths at grade C or above. If you do not have these or are not undertaking them, we accept other Level 2 equivalents, or we may ask you to pass BCU's GCSE equivalency tests.

Plus one of the following Level 3 (and above) qualifications

A level and Advanced VCE

  • 80 UCAS points

  • A maximum of 3 subjects are considered. These can be other A-levels or level 3 equivalents.

Access to HE Diploma

  • Pass with 60 credits overall. At least 45 credits at level 3.
  • Pearson BTEC National Extended Diploma
    (2016 – present)
  • Pearson BTEC Extended Diploma (QCF)
    (2010 - 2016)
  • BTEC Level 3 National Diploma
    (2002 – 2010)
  • MMP
  • Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma
    (2016 – present)
  • Pearson BTEC Diploma (QCF)
    (2010 – 2016)
  • BTEC Level 3 National Certificate
    (2002 – 2010)
  • 80 UCAS points.
  • Considered with one A-level or an equivalent level 3 qualification
  • Pearson BTEC National Foundation Diploma (2016 to present)
  • Pearson BTEC 90-Credit Diploma (QCF) (2010 - 2016)
  • 80 UCAS points.
  • Considered with one A-level or an equivalent level 3 qualification
  • Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate
    (2016 – present)
  • Pearson BTEC Subsidiary Diploma (QCF)
    (2010 - 2016)
  • BTEC Level 3 National Award
    (2002 - 2010)
  • 80 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)

IBO Certificate in Higher Level

  • Students who do not complete the IB Diploma will be considered on the basis of their IB Certificates if they obtain a total of 11 points or above from three Higher Level Subjects
  • Considered with other acceptable level 3 qualifications to meet 80 UCAS Tariff Points
  • For students who do not already hold a GCSE in English Language at Grade C/4 or above Standard Level English Language (not literature) English A - Grade 4 or above or English B - Grade 5 from the IB will be accepted.

International Baccalaureate Diploma

  • Obtain a minimum of 24 points overall
  • For students who do not already hold a GCSE in English Language at Grade C/4 or above Standard Level English Language (not literature) English A - Grade 4 or above or English B - Grade 5 from the IB will be accepted.

Irish Leaving Certificate (Highers)

  • Pass the Irish Leaving Certificate with a minimum of 80 tariff points, achieved in four Higher level subjects. This must include English Language taken at either Ordinary level (minimum grade O1-O4 (or A-C/A1-C3)) or Higher level (minimum grade H5/D1)

NCFE CACHE Level 3 Applied General Certificate in Health and Social Care

  • 80 UCAS points.
  • Can be considered along with A-levels or a combination of equivalent level 3 qualifications

OCR Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma

  • MMP

OCR Cambridge Technical Diploma

  • 80 UCAS points
  • Considered with one A-level or an equivalent level 3 qualification
  • OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical Extended Certificate
    (2016 – present)
  • OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma
  • 80 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-level or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)

Scottish Advanced Higher

  • Achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points achieved in either three Advanced Highers or from a combination of two Advanced Highers plus two Highers.
  • Where three Advanced Highers have been taken achieve a minimum of grades DDD.
  • Where a combination of Highers and Advanced Highers have been taken you must achieve (grades of DD in two Advanced Highers plus grades of DD in two Highers).

Scottish Higher

  • Achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points achieved in either five Highers or from a combination of two Advanced Highers plus two Highers.
  • Where only Highers have been taken a minimum of grades CDDDD is required. Where a combination of Highers and Advanced Highers have been taken you must achieve grades of DD in two Advanced Highers plus grades of DD in two Highers.

T-Levels

  • 80 UCAS points (Merit overall)

Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate - Skills Challenge Certificate (first teaching September 2015)

  • 80 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)

Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma – Core (awarded until 2016)

ESW/KS Combined component

  • 80 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)

WJEC Level 3 Diploma in Criminology (QCF)

  • 80 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)
Other qualifications

If you have a qualification that is not listed in the table please refer to our full entry requirements on UCAS.

Further guidance on tariff points can be found on the UCAS website.

Additional information for EU/International students

Applications from international applicants with equivalent qualifications to 80 points are welcome. Please see your country page for further details on the equivalent qualifications we accept.

In additional to the academic entry requirements listed above, international and EU students will also require the qualifications detailed in this table.

IELTS

6.0 overall with 5.5 minimum in all bands

If you do not meet the required IELTS score, you may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English courses.

Please note that you must have a Secure English Language Test (SELT) to study on the pre-sessional English course. More information.

Other accepted qualifications

Visit our English language page

Fees & How to Apply

Please select your student status to view fees and apply
  • UK Student
  • International Student

UK students

Annual and modular tuition fees shown are applicable to the first year of study. The University reserves the right to increase fees for subsequent years of study in line with increases in inflation (capped at 5%) or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament. View fees for continuing students.

Award: BA (Hons)

Starting: Sep 2024

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees

International students

Annual and modular tuition fees shown are applicable to the first year of study. The University reserves the right to increase fees for subsequent years of study in line with increases in inflation (capped at 5%) or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament. View fees for continuing students.

Award: BA (Hons)

Starting: Sep 2024

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees
  • Full Time
  • 4 Years
  • £16,085 in 2024/25

Access to computer equipment

You will require use of a laptop, and most students do prefer to have their own. However, you can borrow a laptop from the university or use one of our shared computer rooms.

Printing

You will receive £5 print credit in each year of your course, available after enrolment.

Field trips

All essential field trips and associated travel costs will be included in your course fees.

Access to Microsoft Office 365

Every student at the University can download a free copy of Microsoft Office 365 to use whilst at university and for 18 months after graduation.

Key software

You will be able to download SPSS and Nvivo to your home computer to support with your studies and research.

Key subscriptions

Subscriptions to key journals and websites and available through our library.

Excess printing (optional)

Once you have spent your £5 credit, additional printing on campus costs from 5p per sheet.

Books (optional)

Some modules may suggest that you purchase a key textbook. All module key texts will be in the University library, but in limited numbers. Many students choose to purchase a copy.

Guidance for UK/EU students

UCAS

UK and EU students applying for most undergraduate degree courses in the UK will need to apply through UCAS.

The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) is a UK organisation responsible for managing applications to university and college.

Applying through UCAS
 Register with UCAS
 Login to UCAS
 Complete your details
 Select your course
 Write a personal statement
 Get a reference
 Pay your application fee
 Send UCAS your application

Course in Depth

Foundation Year

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 120 credits).

First Year

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 120 credits).

Second Year

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 80 credits).

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete at least 40 credits from the following indicative list of OPTIONAL modules.

Final Year

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 80 credits).

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete at least 40 credits from the following indicative list of OPTIONAL modules.

Download course specification

Download now

You have the flexibility to transfer to any standard undergraduate Sociology or Criminology course offered within the School of Social Sciences after successful completion of your foundation year, including the option to transfer to the specialist Sociology or Criminology pathways when you successfully complete your second year if you choose to stay on this course.  

The specialist pathways offered as part of the Sociology suite of courses are:

BA (Hons) Sociology / BA (Hons) Sociology and Criminology will explore patterns and processes of inequality, examine the structure and dynamics of social hierarchies and power relations and ask why and how people shape their identities and practice their lives. We encourage you to explore how sociological knowledge can connect individuals and how it can provide you with the skills needed to participate in debates not just about what society is but how it could be. 

BA (Hons) Black Studies / BA (Hons) Black Studies (Criminal Justice) will help you recognise and appreciate the achievements and movements of Black scholars, activists and communities. If you are interested in the history, popular cultures, artistic and social movements of people in the African diaspora, our new Black Studies course will provide you with the big picture perspective on this emerging discipline.

And the specialist pathways offered as part of the Criminology suite of courses are:  

BA (Hons) Criminology aims to develop knowledge and understanding of the core schools of criminological thought, their historical and political foundations and practical application. Our curriculum offers you a variety of subjects, through which you will be able to develop your interests before focusing on specialised fields within Criminology that appeal to you as a student.

BA (Hons) Criminology, Policing and Investigation offers an in-depth study of policing and investigation, helping you develop knowledge and understanding of the core schools of criminological thought, their historical and political foundations and practical application. This new curriculum offers a varied yet focused choice of subjects through which you will be able to develop your interests within the specialised field of criminology.

BSc (Hons) Professional Policing is a national pre-join degree course licensed by the Policing Professional Body, the College of Policing and will be delivered by subject matter experts and experienced practitioners (including retired police officers) with a wealth of subject expertise to prepare you with key transferable skills required for the role of Police Constable.

Employability

Enhancing employability skills

We recommend you get involved in the research seminars held by our research centres (such as the Centre for Critical Social Research and the Centre for Applied Criminology and the Centre for Critical Social Research), as well as encourage you to participate in the research these centres carry out.

Our Graduate+ scheme will not only develop your broader employability skills, but will also enhance your work opportunities, your lifelong learning skills and a sense of belonging. 

International

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

Facilities & Staff

Curzon facilities eatery
Curzon facilities staircase
Curzon facilities student hub

Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and have spent over £400 million on new learning facilities.

The Curzon Building

This course is based at our City Centre Campus – and specifically The Curzon Building, alongside other social sciences, law and business students.

The £63m building offers students a unique social learning space, including a dedicated student hub incorporating student support services, in the heart of Birmingham’s Eastside development.

Realistic, simulated environments include two mock court rooms, a Magistrates' and Crown Court, and an interviewing suite. We’re also exploring the use of virtual environments as a way to develop case study analysis.

For those studying on the BSc (Hons) Professional Policing or BA (Hons) Criminology, Policing and Investigation degrees, you’ll experience simulations of police interviewing environments for both suspects and witnesses, with access to tape recording and video playback analysis. You’ll also be able to utilise our unique mobile crime scene to simulate true-to-life and interactive situational simulations.

Crime investigation files are prepared using computer-based technology, and the crime data analysis requirements of the degree are supported by appropriate statistical and analytical software.

Psychology students can look forward to using state-of-the-art equipment as well, including the latest in eye-tracking software, and our new EEG machine, all geared towards giving you true hands-on experience with tools you’ll be using in your later career. You will also benefit from facilities across the wider campus including the Parkside and Millennium Point buildings.

The Curzon Building also features:

  • An impressive library with access to over 65 million full text items and stunning views of Eastside City Park
  • Your Students’ Union which is located in a beautifully restored 19th century pub, The Eagle and Ball
  • A modern 300-seat food court with space to study and socialise
  • Accessible IT facilities with full Office365 for all students for free
  • Shared facilities with the wider campus including the Parkside Building and Millennium Point

Our staff

Andrew Dixon

Senior Lecturer/Course Director in Sociology

Andrew Dixon has worked as a social-housing practitioner and as an academic researcher. Andrew has past course development and management experience in the field of Housing Studies. Andrew has been course director with responsibility for the undergraduate Sociology degrees at BCU.

More about Andrew

Dr Gary Hazeldine

Associate Professor of Sociology

Dr Gary Hazeldine has taught Sociology at Birmingham City University since 2007. Prior to this he taught at the University of Brighton, the University of Sussex, and Manchester Metropolitan University.

More about Gary

Professor Imran Awan

Professor of Criminology

Professor Imran Awan is one of the country’s leading criminologists and experts on Islamophobia and countering extremism.

More about Imran