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

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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

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?

  • This course is designed to progress students who fall below normal entry requirement levels on to full Undergraduate degrees.
  • On all of our courses you will gain a professional focus and real world experience of sociology, ensuring you are equipped to make an immediate impact in your career. You have the opportunity to embark on a year-long professional placement as part of your degree course. During your second year, you also have the option to undertake a semester-long placement, allowing you to draw upon our many links with local voluntary, statutory and commercial organisations.
  • The School has launched a new internship programme with Birmingham City Council, which provides you with the chance to undertake an internship with the Council's Community Resilience, Housing Management or Organisational Development departments, working with senior staff on critical projects.
  • The course’s professional relevance is supported by our close links with local criminal justice agencies, including Birmingham Community Safety Partnership and West Midlands Police Force. We have also worked with local schools youth work, family support, housing and advice agencies.
  • We have links with local voluntary, statutory and commercial organisations such as SIFA Fireside and NACRO, Women’s Aid and Citizen’s Advice Bureau among others giving you the chance to undertake a placement and develop your practical skills.
  • All our courses have an international focus. This is embedded throughout the curriculum, giving you the opportunity to transform your experience with us into a global one. There are a variety of exciting possibilities open to you, including our many overseas study exchange programmes.
  • As a student on one of our undergraduate degrees, you will be able to benefit from our Graduate+ initiative. This three-year award course enables you to gain award levels for all the extra-curricular activities you undertake so that you can stand out from the crowd on graduation.
  • The department is recognised for being at the forefront of sociological research, specialising in areas such as Black Studies, human rights and social identities.
  • You will share a common first year with Sociology BA (Hons), allowing you the opportunity to transfers onto the course in your second year.
  • Gain an understanding of the contemporary social world by practising a form of sociological inquiry that is informed, knowledge-applied, evidence-based and interdisciplinary.
  • You will study in our state-of-the-art City Centre Campus, ideally located for you to take advantage of our links to industry in the UK’s second city.
  • Employability is interwoven into every aspect of our course. Areas of employment for Sociology graduates can include: local and central government roles; publishing; market research and marketing; fundraising; youth, community and housing work; and voluntary / not-for-profit sector management.
  • Birmingham City University has just launched the UK's first Centre for Brexit Studies, researching all aspects of the UK's vote to leave the EU, including the impact it has on cultural identities both in Britain and in Europe.

Find out more

Studying with us during the Covid-19 pandemic

The University has put in place measures in response to Covid-19 to allow us to safely deliver our courses. Should the impact of the pandemic continue in future years, any additional or alternative arrangements put in place by the University will be in accordance with the latest government public health advice, health and safety legislation, and the terms and conditions of the student contract.

Open Days

Join us for an on-campus Open Day where you'll be able to explore our campus and facilities in person. You'll be able to hear more about your chosen subject area in our course talks.

Next Open Day: Saturday 25 June

Book now

Entry Requirements

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

Essential Requirements

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

Level 2 Qualifications
UK Qualification Requirements 2022/23
GCSE
  • GCSE English language at grade C/4 or above

  • Equivalent level 2 qualifications can be accepted

  • Must have been achieved at the point of enrolment

Irish Leaving Certificate (Ordinary Level)
  • See level 3 entry under Irish Leaving Certificate for full details.
Scottish National 5
  • English language at grade C or above

  • Must have been achieved at the point of enrolment

Plus one of the following Level 3 (and above) Qualifications
UK Qualification Requirements 2022/23
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
    (until 2016)
  • 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
Essential

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.

English language requirements 2020/21
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 2022

  • 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 2022

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees
  • Full Time
  • 4 Years
  • £13,500 in 2022/23

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our PDF application form and equal opportunities PDF form instead.

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.

Free access to Rosetta Stone

All students can sign up to the online learning language platform for free through the Graduate+ scheme.

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

Year One

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

Sociology: The Foundations 20 credits

Criminology: The Foundations 20 credits

Skills for Social Scientists 20 credits

Criminality, Crime Control and Society 20 credits

Independent Research Project 20 credits

Year Two

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

Sociological Perspectives 20 credits

City, Community and Culture 20 credits

Crime, Punishment and Society 20 credits

Sociological Imagination 20 credits

States and Societies 20 credits

Becoming a Social Researcher 20 credits

Year Three

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

Crime in the City 20 credits

Applied Sociological Research 20 credits

Contemporary Social Theory 20 credits

Race and Crime 20 credits

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

Issues in Criminal Investigation 20 credits

Experiencing Harm 20 credits

Youth Crime and Justice 20 credits

Media and Popular Culture 20 credits

All core modules are guaranteed to run. Optional modules will vary from year to year and the published list is indicative only.

Final Year

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

Globalisation, Migration and Borders 20 credits

Gender and Crime 20 credits

Integrative Research Project 40 credits

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

Hate Crime 20 credits

Emotions in Crime & Criminal Justice 20 credits

Cybercrime 20 credits

Deviant Leisure 20 credits

Harms of the Powerful 20 credits

Local to Global Organised Crime 20 credits

Music & Society 20 credits

Activism, Social Movements & Social Change 20 credits

Black Arts Movement 20 credits

Global Cities 20 credits

Postcolionality 20 credits

Visual Cultures 20 credits

All core modules are guaranteed to run. Optional modules will vary from year to year and the published list is indicative only.

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 and Security Studies combines Criminology with the study of Security, allowing you to examine - in your introductory first year -a range of subjects such as intelligence, terrorism, nationalism, modern day conflict, weapons of mass destruction and the role of the United Nations in modern day international security. This will equip you with a wide range of knowledge about both national and international politics, and how politics can create both security and insecurity for citizens of the United Kingdom. 

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 new 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. 

OpportUNIty

OpportUNIty Student Ambassador

OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.

It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.

International

Welcome to the School of Social Sciences, home to students from all around the world!

All of our undergraduate and postgraduate social sciences courses are open to international students, and our courses have been tailored to take a global approach to learning. We frequently welcome international students through the Erasmus scheme, from countries including Germany, Italy, Belgium and the Netherlands.

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

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

Facilities & Staff

Curzon facilities eatery
Curzon facilities staircase
Curzon facilities student hub

Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £340 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, business and English 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 BA (Hons) 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.

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 new 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
  • Brand new, accessible IT facilities with full Office365 for all students for free

Our staff

Andrew Dixon

Senior Lecturer in Sociology

Andrew Dixon teaches at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels in the School of Social Sciences. He is presently the Erasmus (study abroad) tutor for the School. Full Profile

More about Andrew

Dr Gary Hazeldine

Senior Lecturer in 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. Full Profile

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. Full Profile

More about Imran

Dr Eugene Nulman

Senior Lecturer in Sociology

Dr Eugene Nulman is very passionate and interested in social movements and social change and teaches to inspire. His academic work is driven by an emphasis in public sociology, bringing the academic knowledge to the wider community.   Full Profile

More about Eugene