Teacher trainee discusses subject with student

UCAS code


Mode of Study

Full-time, Full-time sandwich with work placement


3 years full-time, 4 years sandwich with work placement

Start date

September 2023


Our experiences in childhood and adolescence can have a huge influence on the choices we make and how society sees us.

On this Childhood and Youth Studies with Criminology degree, you'll explore the issues affecting children and young people aged 8–18, and the role of the criminal justice system and the causes of crime – as well as how these subject areas interconnect.

Learning from academic researchers and staff with experience as practitioners in the field, you'll focus on young people’s development, learning and relationships, and delve into the complex policies, practices and societal pressures that impact them.

You'll gain the skills and knowledge for a rewarding career working with children and young people in a variety of settings, including youth intervention, youth justice and social work.

Course highlights 

  • Spend two-thirds of your time at the School of Education and Sociology, examining topics around child development, education, psychology, health and social work
  • Spend your remaining time studying at the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice, learning about crime, punishment and rehabilitation
  • Practise real-world scenarios in our Family Assessment Room, where you'll examine how parents and children feel during family meetings, and explore your responsibilities as a practitioner
  • Tailor your studies to your career goals and interests, and have the option to complete pre-entry qualifications for a career in probation work or community justice
  • Enrich your learning and build relationships with potential employers by volunteering, studying abroad or doing a work placement alongside your studies
  • Develop a set of key transferable life and career skills, including critical thinking, team working, empathy and problem solving
This course gives students a specialist perspective when looking at the knowledge and skills associated with working with children and young people. Combining two subject areas offers the opportunity to build valuable transferable skills and enjoy a degree from a wide range of lecturer's professional expertise.
Jodie Pinnell, Course Leader, BA (Hons) Childhood and Youth Studies with Criminology

Entry requirements

BA (Hons) Childhood and Youth Studies with Criminology degree entry requirements

Typical offers
  • A levels – ABB–BBC
  • UCAS points – 112–128 points to include a minimum of 2 A levels, or equivalent (calculate your UCAS points)
  • T levels – Merit
  • BTECs (Extended Diplomas) – DDM–DMM

You may need to have studied specific subjects – see full entry requirements and other qualifications we accept

Selection process
  • Applicants must complete an Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) application before starting their professional placement working with children and young people. 
English language requirements
  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.

See alternative English language qualifications

We also accept other standard English tests and qualifications, as long as they meet the minimum requirements of your course.

If you don't meet the English language requirements yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

Your facilities

Childhood play and development

Explore how a child’s environment can be adapted to suit their needs and those of their family in these facilities, which include a play room, sensory room, family suite and therapeutic play suite.

Read more

Crime scene simulation spaces

Use the latest forensic advances and immersive learning technologies, including virtual and augmented reality, to delve into crime scene investigation in our realistic simulation areas.

Explore the simulation spaces

Careers and opportunities

Understanding the factors that shape the early years helps us support young people as they move through life, especially at times of difficulty.

With its two distinct yet interrelated subject areas, this Childhood and Youth Studies with Criminology degree will prepare you for a range of careers working on behalf of children and young people.

You'll graduate with the knowledge and insight to advocate for young people's futures in relation to the challenges they face, including those connected to crime and the law.

There's significant demand for graduates who have the expert skills and knowledge to work with young people and children in the community in this way, particularly since the pandemic and its impact on education.

Careers and employment

Our graduate employment rates are among the UK's best, with 94% of our students in work and/or further study (HESA Graduate Outcomes Survey, 2019/20). We're also a Top 10 University for Career Prospects (WhatUni Student Choice Award, 2022) and we're in the top 20% of all universities in England for graduate start-up activities (Knowledge Exchange Framework 2022).

Find out more

What can you do with a childhood and youth studies with criminology degree?

After the course, you could work in areas such as:

  • youth work
  • law enforcement and the police
  • social work
  • social justice
  • children's rights
  • social policy
  • probation
  • educational welfare
  • health promotion
  • teaching

Placement year and work experience

After your second year, you can do a paid placement year in a youth work setting. You'll have the opportunity to make a positive difference to young people while applying your knowledge and boosting your employability.

Previous students have put their skills to work at organisations such as:

  • Portsmouth in the Community (PitC)
  • KidsOut
  • Victim Support

We’ll help you secure a placement that fits your ambitions. You’ll get mentoring and support to get the most out of your placement year. 

This course also allows you to take the Learning From Experience (LiFE) option. This means you can earn credits towards your degree for work, volunteer and research placements that you do alongside your study.

We can also help you identify additional work experience, internship and voluntary opportunities that complement your studies.

What you'll study on this BA (Hons) Childhood and Youth Studies with Criminology degree


Core modules in this year include:

  • Becoming a Researcher – 20 credits
  • Child and Youth Development – 20 credits
  • Criminal Justice – 20 credits
  • Enrichment – 0 credits
  • Understanding Childhoods – 40 credits
  • Understanding Criminology – 20 credits

There are no optional modules in this year.

Core modules in this year include:

  • Enrichment (L5) – 0 credits
  • Penology and Prison – 20 credits
  • Professional Practice With Children and Young People – 20 credits
  • Questioning Criminology – 20 credits
  • Research With Children and Young People – 20 credits
  • Youth Culture – 20 credits

Optional modules in this year include:

  • Children's Social Minds – 20 credits
  • Development of Learning – 20 credits
  • Digital Natives – 20 credits
  • Engaged Citizenship in Humanities and Social Sciences – 20 credits
  • Global Childhoods – 20 credits

Core modules in this year include:

  • Enrichment (L6) – 0 credits
  • Issues Relating to Children and Young People's Mental Health – 20 credits
  • Young People's Relationships and Aspirations – 20 credits

Optional modules in this year include:

  • Black Criminology, Race and the Criminal Justice System – 20 credits
  • Critical Penal Studies – 20 credits
  • Dangerous Offenders and Public Protection – 20 credits
  • Dissertation (Childhood Studies) – 40 credits
  • Forensic Psychology and Mental Health – 20 credits
  • Gender and Crime – 20 credits
  • Green Crime and Environmental Justice – 20 credits
  • Major Project – 40 credits
  • Policing: Communities, Intelligence and Information – 20 credits
  • Policing: Law, Policy and Practice – 20 credits
  • Treatment and Rehabilitation of Offenders – 20 credits
  • True Crime - The Making of a Genre – 20 credits

We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.

Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry and some optional modules may not run every year. If a module doesn’t run, we’ll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.

How you're assessed

You’ll be assessed through:

  • essays
  • group and individual presentations and projects
  • creative assessments, such as storyboards or video
  • practical assessments, such as lesson plans and delivery
  • exams
  • a dissertation

You’ll be able to test your skills and knowledge informally before you do assessments that count towards your final mark.

You can get feedback on all practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future.


Teaching methods on this course include:

  • group-based activities
  • seminars
  • tutorials
  • individual and group presentations
  • projects
  • e-learning
  • lectures

How you'll spend your time

One of the main differences between school or college and university is how much control you have over your learning.

We use a blended learning approach to teaching, which means you’ll take part in both face-to-face and online activities during your studies.  As well as attending your timetabled classes you'll study independently in your free time, supported by staff and our virtual learning environment, Moodle.

A typical week

We recommend you spend at least 35 hours a week studying for your BA Hons Childhood and Youth Studies with Criminology degree. In your first year, you’ll be in timetabled teaching activities such as lectures, seminars and workshops for about 10 hours a week. The rest of the time you’ll do independent study such as research, reading, coursework and project work, alone or in a group with others from your course. You'll probably do more independent study and have less scheduled teaching in years 2 and 3, but this depends on which modules you choose.

Term dates

The academic year runs from September to June. There are breaks at Christmas and Easter.

See term dates

Types of support

Your personal tutor helps you make the transition to postgraduate study and gives you academic and personal support throughout your Master's.

As well as regular scheduled meetings with your personal tutor, they're also available at set times during the week if you want to chat with them about anything that can't wait until your next meeting.

You'll have help from a team of faculty learning development tutors. They can help you improve and develop your academic skills and support you in any area of your study.

They can help with:

  • Improving your academic writing (for example, essays, reports, dissertations)
  • Delivering presentations (including observing and filming presentations)
  • Understanding and using assignment feedback
  • Managing your time and workload
  • Revision and exam techniques

As well as support from faculty staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University's Academic Skills Unit (ASK).

ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:

  • Academic writing
  • Note taking
  • Time management
  • Critical thinking
  • Presentation skills
  • Referencing
  • Working in groups
  • Revision, memory and exam techniques

If you have a disability or need extra support, the Additional Support and Disability Centre (ASDAC) will give you help, support and advice.

Our online Learning Well mini-course will help you plan for managing the challenges of learning and student life, so you can fulfil your potential and have a great student experience.

You can get personal, emotional and mental health support from our Student Wellbeing Service, in person and online. This includes 1–2–1 support as well as courses and workshops that help you better manage stress, anxiety or depression.

If you require extra support because of a disability or additional learning need our specialist team can help you.

They'll help you to

  • discuss and agree on reasonable adjustments
  • liaise with other University services and facilities, such as the library
  • access specialist study skills and strategies tutors, and assistive technology tutors, on a 1-to-1 basis or in groups
  • liaise with external services

Library staff are available in person or by email, phone, or online chat to help you make the most of the University’s library resources. You can also request one-to-one appointments and get support from a librarian who specialises in your subject area.

The library is open 24 hours a day, every day, in term time.

If English isn't your first language, you can do one of our English language courses to improve your written and spoken English language skills before starting your degree. Once you're here, you can take part in our free In-Sessional English (ISE) programme to improve your English further.

Course costs and funding

Tuition fees

  • UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £9,250 a year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • EU students – £9,250 a year, including our Transition Scholarship (may be subject to annual increase)
  • International students – £17,200 a year (subject to annual increase)

You won't pay any extra tuition fees to another university for taking part in a study/work abroad activity if you choose to do it for the whole academic year. During a year abroad you'll only have to pay a reduced fee to the University of Portsmouth.

Funding your studies

Find out how to fund your studies, including the scholarships and bursaries you could get. You can also find more about tuition fees and living costs, including what your tuition fees cover.

Applying from outside the UK? Find out about funding options for international students.

Additional course costs

These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending.

Additional costs

Our accommodation section show your accommodation options and highlight how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.

You’ll study up to 6 modules a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each module.

You can borrow most of these from the Library. If you buy these, they may cost up to £60 each.

We recommend that you budget £75 a year for photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.


If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.

You’ll need to cover additional costs, such as travel costs, if you take an optional placement or placement abroad.

These costs will vary depending on the location and duration of the placement, and can range from £50–£1000.

During your placement year or study abroad year, you’ll be eligible for a discounted rate on your tuition fees. Currently, this discount amounts to 90% of the year’s fees.

Tuition fees for that year are:

  • UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £925 a year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • EU students – £925 a year, including Transition Scholarship (may be subject to annual increase)
  • International students – £1,800 a year (subject to annual increase)

The costs associated with your specific destination will be discussed during your second year, as well as possible sources of additional funding.


How to apply

To start this course in 2023, apply through UCAS. You'll need:

  • the UCAS course code – L5L3
  • our institution code – P80

If you'd prefer to apply directly, use our online application form.

You can also sign up to an Open Day to:

  • Tour our campus, facilities and halls of residence
  • Speak with lecturers and chat with our students 
  • Get information about where to live, how to fund your studies and which clubs and societies to join

If you're new to the application process, read our guide on applying for an undergraduate course.

How to apply from outside the UK

See the 'How to apply' section above for details of how to apply. You can also get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region.

To find out what to include in your application, head to the how to apply page of our international students section. 

If you don't meet the English language requirements for this course yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

Admissions terms and conditions

When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to abide by our Student Contract (which includes the University's relevant policies, rules and regulations). You should read and consider these before you apply.

Preparing for this degree

Informative blogs and publications to follow include:

  • The Times Educational Supplement (TES) – one of the most widely accessed resources for teachers, TES includes up-to-date news and resources and free membership for students
  • Teacher Toolkit Blog – an excellent resource for prospective and current teachers including up-to-date news from the teaching sector and the latest innovations in education and teaching practices
  • Institute for Outdoor Learning Blog – this resource from the Institute for Outdoor Learning refers to outdoor education practices, youth work and informal education for all ages
  • The Social Worker Blog – social work is a potential career path for Childhood and Youth Studies graduates and this blog is great for existing and aspiring social workers, giving insight into this area of work

When you start the course, you'll have access to the latest journal articles and research. Useful journals and journal articles you can access for free before you join us include:

We don't usually recommend referencing videos in your assignments. But they're often a useful way to get an understanding of an idea or concept. Informative Youtube channels to follow include:

  • UK Youth – a leading youth charity gives insight into Youth Work and impacts on young people
  • Sprouts – this channel clearly explains theories of learning and foundational knowledge in this area
  • The Princes Trust – a charity that helps young people build the self-esteem and skills they need to move into work and stabilise their lives
  • Active Communities Network – a youth and community development charity