Cambridge University – Institute of Criminology

The Institute of Criminology was founded by the University of Cambridge in 1959 with a generous donation from the Wolfson Foundation, and has developed a strong international reputation for academic excellence.

Although the Institute is part of the Faculty of Law, it has a multi-disciplinary teaching and research staff recruited from sociology, psychiatry, psychology, history and other disciplines as well as from law. Approximately 35 people work at the Institute, including 18 senior academic staff, and there are about 50 M.Phil. and 30 Ph.D. students. Institute staff, and Visiting Fellows from Britain and around the world, contribute to our teaching programmes. The Institute of Criminology has been awarded the highest grades for its teaching and research programmes in the most recent ESRC, UFC and HEFCE evaluations.

The Institute’s Radzinowicz Library of Criminology (interior, right) is named after Sir Leon Radzinowicz, the first Director of the Institute and Wolfson Professor of Criminology (1959-73). The library has one of the world’s largest collections of criminological publications, including a wide selection of books, papers, periodicals and historical materials. It holds over 36,000 books and 15,000 pamphlets, and receives 250 periodicals annually. The library’s catalogue can be searched from anywhere in the world by ‘Telnet’ – connection details can be found on the Radzinowicz Library’s web pages.

The Institute offers a number of different courses, including a nine-month taught course in Criminology for the M.Phil. Degree (the largest full-time post-graduate Criminology course in the UK); a Ph.D. programme’ various courses for undergraduate degrees; the Cropwood Fellowship Programme (for practitioners in the criminal justice system); a M.St./Diploma in Applied Criminology and Police Studies (part-time) open to potential chief police officers and personnel working in senior positions within police forces; and a M.St./Diploma in Applied Criminology and Management (Prison Studies) (part-time) open to senior prison governors (3/SEO).

In addition to the above courses, the Institute runs a regular series of Seminars given by Guest Speakers, open to all staff and students

Students and staff at the Institute of Criminology are able to use various facilities in the University of Cambridge. The Institute is situated next to the new Law Faculty (left), designed by Norman Foster. The Institute is also just one minute’s walk from the main University Library, which holds one of the largest collections of books and periodicals in Britain. There are also numerous College and Departmental Libraries around the University, most of which can be accessed by Institute staff and students.

All students, and most academic staff, are also members of one of the Cambridge Colleges. The Colleges vary in size, age and style, but share the same central task of bringing people together from a wide range of intellectual disciplines. Most Colleges offer accommodation, dining facilities, and a bar (all at reasonable cost), as well as common rooms, a library, computing facilities, social events, and sporting facilities. Many Cambridge Colleges now have their own web site.

The Institute of Criminology, University of Cambridge, offers various post-graduate courses:

Master’s Degree in Criminology and the new Master’s Degree in Criminological Research.

The one-year M.Phil. Degree in Criminology at the Institute of Criminology, University of Cambridge, is one of the largest full-time postgraduate course in Criminology in the United Kingdom, and regularly recruits around 40 students each year from a range of countries and disciplinary backgrounds. The course has a high national and international standing and has been awarded recognition by the ESRC. The Institute had four ESRC quota studentships to award each year until 2000 when the allocation will be reviewed. Studying in Cambridge provides an opportunity to learn from internationally established academics, and to experience postgraduate study at one of the world’s leading universities.

The formally stated aims of the M.Phil. course are: to offer an up-to-date and high quality course which introduces students to some of the most important theory and research in criminology; to offer a sound foundation for more advanced work relevant to research and teaching careers in criminology; and to provide those who do not wish to proceed to academic or research careers in the subject with a sound framework which can be used effectively in relation to work in criminal justice agencies, the legal profession, or other professional or voluntary organisations.

Doctorate in Criminology

The Institute of Criminology, University of Cambridge, has a well-established programme for those wishing to study for a Doctorate. Each year, a small number of students is admitted to the doctoral programme. Candidates for the Ph.D. must normally pursue supervised research in residence in Cambridge for at least 9 consecutive terms (3 years). Completion of the doctoral programme involves, among other requirements, the writing of a dissertation of up to 80,000 words in length.
The Institute of Criminology encourages applications from suitably qualified applicants of all nationalities. Proposals for doctoral research on any criminological topic will be considered. (See the page elsewhere on this server for an indication of the wide range of topics currently being researched by our doctoral students.) However, proposals for doctoral research are unlikely to be successful if there is no suitable supervisor available within the Institute. Applicants are therefore urged to review the staff pages on this server before formally applying and to contact a possible supervisor in order to discuss with them their proposed doctoral research (via the Director of the PhD programme – see below).

All doctoral students are able to enjoy the facilities of the College to which they have been admitted, as well as the considerable facilities which the Institute of Criminology and the University more generally are able to provide. Among the resources likely to be of particular use are the Radzinowicz Library of criminology (one of the world’s leading collections of criminological materials), the University Library (one of Britain’s few ‘copyright’ libraries, entitled to copies of all books published in Britain), the various computer labs around the University, and the numerous other departmental libraries in the University.

Diploma/M.St. in Applied Criminology and Police Studies

The part-time Diploma/Master of Studies (M.St.) Degree in Applied Criminology and Police Studies is the result of a partnership between the University of Cambridge and National Police Training. The course, which is supported by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary, is seen by the National Directorate of Police Training as the apex of a series of partnership arrangements which have been developed to meet overall police training needs.

Diploma/M.St. in Applied Criminology and Management (Prison Studies)

The Applied Criminology and Management (Prison Studies) programme aims to:
offer a high-quality course which introduces senior prison managers to some of the most important theory and research in management, penology and criminology
enhance the capacity of senior managers in the prison service to apply up-to-date research in management, penology and criminology to aspects of their work in prisons
provide high-quality instruction enabling senior managers in the prison service to gain a University of Cambridge Diploma or Master’s degree in Applied Criminology and Management (Prison Studies).

Cropwood Fellowship Programme for criminal justice practitioners

The Cropwood Programme of Fellowship awards was set up in 1968 as a means of enabling practitioners in the criminal justice field to make a contribution to knowledge in their area of interest by undertaking a small piece of research or intensive study of a particular topic.There are no restrictions on the topics for study which may be proposed; applications are judged entirely on their merits. However, the Selection Committee will welcome especially studies which address, directly or indirectly, the issues of race relations policy and equal opportunities, within the criminal justice system.

For further information contact the Univeresity of Cambridge Institute of Criminology.

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