Crime Science, Investigation and Intelligence

Use and manage the latest scientific and technological techniques, and resulting evidence.

Star Course Overview

Why take this course?

This course will enable you to develop holistic approaches to investigations that embrace the investigative strategies, tools and techniques which advances in the fields of science and technology provide, enhancing your ability to critically evaluate and manage investigations. You will enhance your ability to critically evaluate and manage investigations by embracing the latest developments in investigative strategies, tools and techniques in a proven distance learning model. 

You can study this as campus based course or through distance learning.

What will I experience?

On this course you can:

  • Take up advanced study of issues of interest from your first degree in a related subject, or recent experience in investigation, intelligence or security
  • Develop professional expertise in criminal investigation to support specialisation in this field
  • Follow a distance learning programme with experts in this method of teaching

What opportunities might it lead to?

You will be encouraged to develop your own links with the Institute's connections to police forces in Hampshire, Surrey and London. The programme also covers a range of criminal justice issues while developing the skills to produce a portfolio of knowledge and abilities that supports career development opportunities in a wider range of careers.

How do I apply?

Complete the University's online application form (not a UCAS form)

All DL applicants should apply as soon as possible to reserve a place and ensure adequate preparations are made for the start of your studies. The latest we can receive an 'on time' application (with all associated documentation) is 5 September 2016. Applications received after this date may be processed, but your course induction and start to studies may well be disrupted.

Distance Learning Brochure

Marvin Adim Nwaefulu, MSc Counter Fraud and Counter Corruption Studies student 2013

The various workshops and seminars I attend in line with my course have awakened my knowledge much more than I ever imagined.

Marvin Adim Nwaefulu, law and criminology student 2013

Key Facts

1 year full time (campus-based), 2 years part time (campus-based or distance learning), 3 years part time (distance learning)
A good honours degree or equivalent in a relevant subject or a master's degree in an appropriate subject. Exceptionally, equivalent professional experience and/or qualifications will be considered. English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5. Campus-based applicants require a minimum score of 6.0 in all individual components. Distance learning applicants require a minimum score of 6.0 in Reading and Writing components.

UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students (campus-based)
2016/17 entry: full time: £4,700 p/a part time: £2,350 p/a*
2017/18 entry: full time: £4,700 p/a part time: £2,350 p/a*

International students (campus-based) 
2016/17 entry: full time: £12,000 p/a part time: £6,000 p/a*
2017/18 entry: full time: £12,600 p/a part time: £6,300 p/a*

Distance learning students
2016/17 entry: part-time: year 1 £2,100 p/a, year 2 £2,100 * (fees for the first two years of study only).
2017/18 entry: part-time: year 1 £2,100 p/a, year 2 £2,100 * (fees for the first two years of study only).

Full-time course is eligible for Government Postgraduate Loan
Part-time course is eligible for Government Postgraduate Loan
Part-time distancy learning course is eligible for Government Postgraduate Loan

*Tuition fee is subject to annual increase.

View tuition fee terms and conditions
View additional course costs

+44 (0)23 9284 3066
Institute of Criminal Justice Studies
Programme specification
Programme specification (PT, DL)

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Light bulb Structure & Teaching

You will study four 30-credit units and complete a 60-credit dissertation:

  • Research Methods and Research Management: You will study with students on other postgraduate pathways and attend additional specialist seminars where relevant, to learn key methods and skills that ensure your research activities are credible, efficient and ethical.
  • Managing Investigations: You will examine theories and models of investigation, plus formulate a range of investigative strategies that recognise the importance of accurately assessing risk and human rights compliance.
  • Tools and Techniques of Crime Science: You will learn about the applied use of scientific techniques such as crime analysis and mapping, investigative interviewing and debriefing, forensic computing, crime prevention technologies and digital imagery.
  • Managing Intelligence: This unit covers national community safety and security strategies, strategic drivers (PESTELO), the importance of operational security and anti-corruption strategies, issues of governance and compliance, performance management, inter-agency operability and partnership working, amongst other things.

Teaching and Assessment

You will be taught through a range of lectures, seminars and interactive sessions, delivered at the University for campus-based students, or through our distance learning model (watch the video below for more details on distance learning). There are likely to be a number of field trips in the programme. You'll largely be taught by ICJS staff with extensive backgrounds in policing and intelligence.  

Professional learning

Throughout the course there is explicit emphasis on professional knowledge and practice, as well as learning from and networking with others on the course. We have extensive and strong links with Hampshire Constabulary, Surrey Police and the Metropolitan Police, and staff take every opportunity to exploit those links for your benefit.

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Monitor Facilities & Features


The Institute of Criminal Justice Studies was founded in 1992 and has since grown to comprise 50 academic staff and more than 1,800 students. Now an internationally-renowned focal point for the study of crime and criminal justice processes, it draws together expertise in criminological analysis, applied psychology, police governance and management, victimology, penology, risk and security.

Professional Links

Our extensive experience and close professional relationships with the police service and criminal justice agencies ensure that our courses reflect the changing needs of the profession. You may benefit from these links by hearing guest speakers, listening to leading-edge research and being helped to find professional work placements.

University Library

Modern, comfortable and a great learning environment, our library offers a wealth of information including 400,000 books, DVDs, maps and thousands of online ejournals and newspapers. Many electronic resources are available anywhere, 24/7 and our friendly staff are always on hand to help.

Budgeting for your studies

There may be extra costs arising from your studies which you will need to consider when planning your expenditure.

Some are common costs to all courses of study. These may include the cost of study texts, reference books, photocopying and computer supplies. Others relate to specific courses and may include field trips, materials and specialist equipment.

Other costs to consider

There may be travel costs for internships/placements. These will vary depending on the nature of internship/placement and can range from £50 - £1000.

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Mortarboard Careers & Opportunities

Career prospects

The course will enhance your employability and career prospects in an area where there is a wide range of careers in investigation or intelligence work. That includes employment in a broad range of public and private sector bodies where, amongst other things, the search for best value and the need to manage risk effectively, have created many more openings for financial investigators, compliance officers and analysts.

Career planning

One of the benefits of studying at Portsmouth is the support that we provide to our Master's and Research Degree students in career planning. Our careers and recruitment service can assist you in career research and finding employment opportunities. Help is also available if you wish to find a part-time job while studying your degree.

We offer our postgraduate students and alumni one-to-one appointments with a careers adviser, or an online service for those not able to travel back to the University. Our alumni can call on our career services for five years after graduation.

In addition, regular employability events offer you the chance to meet employers, find out about different career sectors and improve your applications or CV. The Graduate Summer Programme provides a range of guidance and employability seminars and workshops.

Benefits of Postgraduate Study

Regardless of whether you are seeking to build on your studies, further your career or pursue a career change, a postgraduate qualification adds to your achievement record.

  • Postgraduate study may greatly improve your chances of getting that first break.
  • Many graduate employers prefer the higher intellectual rigour displayed in postgraduate students.
  • Recruiters for roles requiring specialist knowledge or research particularly target those with higher level qualifications.
  • Postgraduate study shows you can take the challenge of in-depth study; acquiring transferable skills in team working and problem solving techniques.
  • If you have a passion for a particular subject, postgraduate study can also be something undertaken as part of your own development at an appropriate time in your life.

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Apply now

Online application form

Apply direct using our online form

Your application will be received by the University Admissions Centre for consideration.

Postgraduate Information Days

Our Postgraduate Information Days for 2016 entry have now finished.

If you would like to visit the campus you can download our free walking tour for a self-guided tour of the University. You can visit Monday - Friday between 8.30am and 4.00pm. We have an open-door policy so you will be able to take a look into our buildings, speak to some of our support services and get a feel for the campus. Find out more information about our self-guided walking tours.

If you are unable to visit us, why not contact the admissions team for your course of interest via our course pages.

If you have any further enquiries about postgraduate study at Portsmouth, including advice on the Postgraduate Loan for 2016 entry plus scholarships and bursaries available visit our postgraduate pages.

International Students

Staff from our international Office regularly attend overseas exhibitions. To find out more about these and our visits to your region see our International Office exhibitions page.

Fees and Funding

Find out more about fees and funding available to you at Portsmouth.