Welcome The courses detailed in this prospectus are offered by the School of Law and by the Division of Criminology, which is based in the School of Social Sciences. Both schools are part of the Faculty of Education, Law and Social Sciences.
We are one of the most highly-regarded institutions for our undergraduate and postgraduate criminal justice courses and our Centre for Applied Criminology is internationally-recognised for its world-leading research.
The School of Law has been providing high quality law teaching for more than 40 years. The School rapidly gained a reputation for its innovative approach to delivering course material â€“ and we are extremely proud of our vocational emphasis.
These strengths, coupled with our commitment to continuous improvement, mean we can offer you everything you need to fulfil your career ambitions.
Our graduates have made their mark in a variety of professions particularly, of course, in legal practice. Our strengths lie in our impressive teaching and learning facilities, which include two replica courtrooms, an outstanding team of professional staff with extensive legal practice experience and our links with professional practice and organisations. Our partnerships with outside bodies have enabled us to deliver a range of professionally-relevant legal courses that offer students extensive practical experience in preparation for careers in the legal sector. Our criminology programmes are delivered by leading experts in the fields of policing and criminal justice. The Division of Criminology offers students the opportunity to study the subject with a range of complementary fields of interest, including security studies, policing and psychology.
This prospectus will provide information on courses offered at Birmingham City University School of Law and also on criminology courses offered by the School of Social Sciences, both of which are based within the Faculty of Education, Law and Social Sciences. The information is organised so you can gain an insight into the courses we offer and how we can support your learning experience. You will also have received the Birmingham City University guide that provides an abundance of information about the University and studying in Birmingham. If after reading this prospectus you require further information please do not hesitate to contact us. There are many ways of getting in touch with us and open day events that you can register to attend.
Professor Roger Woods, Executive Dean
School of Law
The Faculty of Education, Law and Social Sciences Birmingham City University City North Campus Perry Barr BIRMINGHAM B42 2SU Tel: +44 (0)121 331 7300 Fax: +44 (0)121 331 6622 Email: email@example.com Web: www.bcu.ac.uk/law
Course Information and Guidance Studentsâ€™ Union Building Birmingham City University City North Campus Perry Barr Birmingham B42 2SU Tel: +44 (0)121 331 5595 Fax: +44 (0)121 331 7994 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.bcu.ac.uk/choices
School of Social Sciences, Division of Criminology The Faculty of Education, Law and Social Sciences Birmingham City University City North Campus Perry Barr BIRMINGHAM B42 2SU Tel: +44 (0)121 331 7300 Fax: +44 (0)121 331 6622 Email: email@example.com Web: www.bcu.ac.uk/socialsciences
Contents 06 About us 08 Discover us... 14 Alumni successes 16 Gaining experience through mooting 18 Gaining experience through ‘pro bono’ 20 Meet our staff 24 Your learning experience 28 Our facilities and resources 32 Student Services 34 Fees and funding 42 Applying for a course 48 International students 52 Postgraduate 56 Research excellence 124 How to find us
Law Courses 59 HND Legal Studies 63 LLB (Hons) Law / LLB (Hons) Law with named pathways 71 Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) 77 Postgraduate Diploma in Legal Practice (LPC) 83 PgCert / PgDip / LLM Corporate and Business Law 89 PgDip / LLM International Human Rights 95 MPhil / PhD Law
Criminology Courses 99 BA (Hons) Criminology programmes 107 BSc (Hons) Criminal Investigation 113 PgCert / PgDip / MA Criminology 119 PgCert / PgDip / MA Criminological Research
About Birmingham City University, the School of Law and the Division of Criminology Birmingham City University is a vibrant, multicultural university with around 23,000 students and more than 2,000 staff. Our six faculties are spread across eight city campuses. We have a long history of learning provision in Birmingham dating back to 1843. After gaining university status in 1992 we were known as the University of Central England (UCE) until changing to our current name in 2007. Our reputation for practical, professionally relevant courses and excellent teaching is making us a first choice for students. According to UCAS figures, last year Birmingham City University saw the biggest rise in student applications of any UK university. Our research work is attracting attention too, having been classed as ‘world-leading’ in the independent Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) 2008. We have built strong partnerships with industry and the professions to ensure that every aspect of our courses equips you with the skills and qualifications you need in today’s job market. In fact, many of our courses involve work placements, helping to make our graduates highly employable.
We’ve invested heavily in innovative technology to give our students the best possible preparation for their chosen careers. Facilities include two mock law courts, a virtual radiography suite, broadcast studios, fashion workshops, a mock operating theatre and many more. Our commitment to the future is underlined by the multi-million pound investment we’re making over the next five years. Plans include a new state-of-the-art city centre campus at Eastside, new student accommodation and a £7 million sports village with indoor sports halls and a multi-gym. For more information about Birmingham City University, visit www.bcu.ac.uk The School of Law and the Division of Criminology both sit within the Faculty of Education, Law and Social Sciences and are located in modern purpose-built accommodation on the main City North Campus. We provide a lively, supportive and challenging learning environment for our students and clients.
With excellent learning facilities including two replica court rooms, flexible course design and a team of committed and experienced academic staff, we have established an international reputation as a major centre for legal education and training. We are also very proud of our vocational focus and links with the profession. We were one of the first new universities to recognise the academic importance of criminology and have been offering courses at both undergraduate and postgraduate level since the 1980s. We have since expanded our range of programmes to combine with policing, security studies and psychology. The latest addition to our portfolio is a new undergraduate programme in criminal investigation.
Discover us... Discover a Law School dedicated to continuous improvement The School of Law works with legal practices to ensure our courses are professionally relevant for 21st-century legal practice. Midland-based Challinors Solicitors is playing an active role in developing a new-look Legal Practice Course (LPC), which is scheduled for introduction in 2010.
Discover outstanding professional development The Law School launched Birmingham Professional Legal Training (BPLT) in November 2008. Its aim is to actively engage with business, the professions and the community in the West Midlands by offering high quality training programmes. We are fully accredited by the Law Society as a law CPD centre.
Discover legal programmes that develop your practical skills We are proud of our vocational focus, which make our graduates stand out from the crowd. Many of our law students work on real life cases: they have the opportunity to work pro-bono in a Citizens Advice Bureau or by gaining experience with a firm of solicitors or a not-for-profit advice centre. They can even gain an international perspective by spending six to eight weeks working in the offices of an attorney in America. Our Legal Practice Course (LPC) achieved the highest grade of ‘Commendable Practice’ in all six areas of the Solicitors Regulation Authority quality criteria. The Authority particularly praised the quality of teaching on the course, saying: “Teaching is provided by an experienced and enthusiastic course team who have excellent rapport with students.” On the LPC we offer a range of electives for students who enter general and specialised practice in small and medium-sized firms. Our careers guidance and support, small class sizes and enthusiastic and committed staff aim to ensure that individual study needs are met and that you have every chance of maximising your potential.
Discover world-leading research into criminal justice Our Centre for Applied Criminology is internationally-recognised for its worldleading research, to the extent that in the recent UK Research Assessment Exercise, 90 per cent of our research in the subject unit of social work and social policy administration was evaluated as international or world-leading in its field. Headed by Professor David Wilson, one of Britainâ€™s leading criminologists, the Centre is designated as one of five University research centres of excellence.
Discover a groundbreaking Criminal Investigation degree We are one of the first UK universities to offer a Criminal Investigation degree. It has been designed specifically to meet both the National Occupational Standards developed by the Sector Skills Council for Criminal Justice and the Professionalising of the Investigative Process Standards designed by the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO). The degree is designed to offer in-depth practical and theoretical study of the criminal investigation process, which meets the requirements of the rapidly-changing justice sector, which includes the police, Customs and Revenue, probation, youth justice, securities industry, Prison Service and voluntary sector.
Discover courses that offer excellent career prospects We have an excellent track record for employability, with former students working in criminal justice at home and abroad.
Hayyan Bhabha, LLB (Hons) Law Third-year law student Hayyan Bhabha experienced life at the cutting-edge of the US justice system, when he took part in a 10week internship at the office of the Clark County Public Defender in Las Vegas. He is one of many Birmingham City University LLB Law students to have taken advantage of our American Internship programme – the only such programme in the UK that offers students academic credit. “It was different from any other work experience, more practical, more demanding,” says Hayyan. “Interns are given real legal work to do. I was in court every morning with the attorney. Initially it was just to observe, but soon I was at the bench with the public defender writing notes in the case files. It was my own work affecting a client’s liberty, which is a genuine responsibility.” Hayyan is now studying to become a barrister and believes the internship has boosted his career prospects. He is already a member of the Honourable Society of the Middle Temple and has a place on the Bar Vocational Course at City Law School, London.
Zeenat Moosa, Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) Zeenat joined the GDL programme after completing a degree in English Language and Literature. She says she was attracted to the course because it was vocational. “The course definitely has quite a practical feel,” she says. “We are encouraged to sit in the local magistrates’ court and to get involved with the Mooting Society, which is really beneficial, especially if you are from a non-legal background. I have also joined up to the American legal scheme, which should be a great experience.”
Gemma Lawrence, LLB (Hons) Law
Tim Talbot-Webb, Legal Practice Course (LPC)
Gemma was attracted to the LLB (Hons) Law at Birmingham City University because of the practical modules it offered that some other universities didn’t. She says this gave her a valuable early insight into what a career in law would be like.
Tim chose Birmingham City University because he wants to practise law in a small or medium-sized law firm and it offered an excellent range of relevant electives with this purpose in mind.
During the summer of her second year, she decided to participate in the American Internship scheme and had to overcome the challenge of working with clients, who were facing the death penalty for their crimes. An experience she feels has made her more confident when facing difficult situations in her working life. Of her time at the School of Law, she says: “I liked the opportunities the University offered students. I was part of a mentoring scheme where I had regular contact with a trainee solicitor at Wragge & Co. This enabled me to develop valuable employability skills specific to my career aspirations. It also allowed me to gain work experience at the firm. “The Legal Society and the Mooting Society was an excellent way to meet solicitors, barristers and mingle with those with similar interests and career aspirations.” Gemma has now secured a training contract with a law firm in Birmingham and hopes to qualify as a commercial lawyer.
He had already spent a year studying part-time for the Graduate Diploma in Law and says he was happy with the people, the teaching and the atmosphere, so felt the natural progression was to stay to complete his LPC: “The teaching and support staff get to know you as a person and as the LPC is a practical course, I liked the idea that I would be taught by people with real first-hand practical experience.” He singles out as a particular highlight the visiting speakers who gave valuable insights into many different aspects of the law; these included solicitors and trainees from practice, experts from the Government Legal Service, Criminal Defence Practice, Crown Prosecution Service and commercial law firms.
Dr Jackie Worrall, MA Criminology and PhD Dr Worrall was encouraged to do her MA and PhD at Birmingham City University by criminologist Professor David Wilson, Head of our Centre for Applied Criminology. She says: “I had the chance to interview young offenders in custody and to develop a real idea of what leads to offending and what might stop it. My thesis focused on prison education. The reading and research was fascinating; it gave me a fantastic sense of achievement.”
Martin Glynn, MA Criminology Mark is a senior researcher for the Birmingham Drugs Action Team (children and young people) and conducts independent research on restorative justice. He did his MA without a first degree but with relevant experience. He achieved a distinction and now even teaches on the course. He has worked on Banged Up for TV Channel Five and is involved with the Youth Justice Board, advising them about gang culture.
Gaining experience through mooting
Students can get involved with the Student Legal Society and Student Mooting Society. Mooting presents an opportunity to develop legal practice skills and networking opportunities with legal professionals. There are opportunities for taking part in mooting both within the University and externally against other universities. Birmingham City University organises its own LexisNexis-sponsored Internal Mooting Competition, which is held in our specially-built courtrooms. Previous debates have been judged by local solicitors and a High Court judge. There are also opportunities to be involved in international mooting competitions, such as those organised by the European Law Moot Court. “I am always asked if engaging in mooting will compromise a student’s chances of attaining the level of degree they aspire to and require to compete for jobs as lawyers. The evidence shows that putting all the extra effort into mooting will actually improve the chances of attaining a good degree. Every student who has been involved in mooting in my time as Director of Mooting has improved their grades.” Graham Wright, Director of Mooting. In the past six years, students from Birmingham City University’s Law School have reached five national mooting finals.
In 2007/8, we beat 10 other universities and became the most successful mooting university in England. We also reached the semifinal of the West of England Mooting Competition. In 2008/9, we reached a national final in the Oxford University Mooting Competition, which was held at Gray’s Inn in London, and again reached the semi-final of the West of England Mooting Competition. In April 2009, one of our student mooting teams reached the final of the prestigious Incorporated Council of Law Reporting WLR (Weekly Law Reports) Mooting Competition held at Gray’s Inn in London. It was judged by the Right Honourable Lord Justice Dyson and His Honour Judge Chambers QC. Kerrie Croxford successfully reached the final of the national Midlands Mooting Competition - she is now a qualified barrister. She recollects: “my participation in the mooting programme was undoubtedly one of the most rewarding experiences of my undergraduate years. While the moots in which I participated rarely lasted beyond an hour, what I gained from my experience will probably stay with me forever.”
Fraser Coxhill won the Balloon Debate and went on to win the Internal Mooting Competition before successfully representing the Law School in national competitions. He is now a barrister and says of mooting that it; “...provides personal challenges, which do not necessarily exist within the structure of a law course. Mooting provides the opportunity to work as a team, to meet people at various levels and to debate issues on an intellectual level with academics and practising lawyers.”
Gaining experience through ‘pro bono’
Seven law students from Birmingham City University have been working on a brief in support of the defence case of an American man who was sentenced to life imprisonment at the age of 13.
“The students on my team will gain invaluable experience by being involved in a real life case and this will help them when they leave university and enter the legal profession.”
The team, led by the School’s Professor of American Public Law, Julian Killingley, is working in conjunction with Professors Constance de la Vega and Michelle Leighton of the University of San Francisco School of Law, the Bar of England and Wales Human Rights Committee and the Law Society’s International Human Rights Committee.
Professor Killingley was named as a Pro Bono Hero for 2008 at a reception at the House of Commons in November 2008.
The defendant, Joe Sullivan, who is mentally and physically disabled, has spent the last 20 years behind bars after being convicted in the state of Florida of rape. Professor Killingley said: “The issue with this case is not whether he did it or not but whether life imprisonment without possibility of parole is an appropriate punishment for a 13-year-old child committing such a crime.
Meet our staff
Professor Roger Woods, Executive Dean, Faculty of Education, Law and Social Sciences
Dr Ewan Kirk, LLB Programme Director
Graham Wright, Director of Mooting
Professor Woods’ major professional interest is the development of policy and practice in teacher education and training. He has researched and written about issues of school partnership and the roles of school-based mentors in initial teacher training and contributed to the work of the Thematic Network on Teacher Education in Europe.
Ewan Kirk joined the Law School in 2001 after completing his PhD in intellectual property law. He became the LLB Programme Director in May 2008.
Roger graduated in Psychology before training to become a teacher. He spent his early teaching career working as a primary teacher in schools in the London region before becoming Principal of The British School in Kathmandu. Subsequently Roger worked as both a class and deputy head teacher, before entering higher education in 1985. He gained experience as primary school partnership co-ordinator and B.Ed Course Leader before becoming Dean of Professional Studies at Westhill College in Birmingham. In 1999 Roger moved to the Faculty of Education at Birmingham City University (then UCE) as Associate Dean. In 2001 he was appointed Dean and then Executive Dean of the Faculty of Education, Law and Social Sciences in 2008. Roger has vast experience of the world of teacher training and education and is Chair of the Universities Council for the Education of Teachers for the period 2008 – 2011.
Ewan teaches contract law, European law and intellectual property law at undergraduate level on the LLB course, and at postgraduate level on the GDL and LLM programmes. His research interests are in the field of intellectual property law.
Graham left the legal profession to pursue an academic career and has taught at the University for more than 20 years. As Director of Mooting for the School of Law, he specialises in criminal law and criminology at undergraduate level and corporate criminal liability at postgraduate level. Graham has recently been researching and publishing in the areas of community safety, victimology and, in particular, restorative justice.
Professor John Fairhurst, Head of the School of Law A specialist in EU Law, John has taught the subject at both undergraduate and postgraduate level. He is a Jean Monnet Tutor in EU Law and author of the textbook Law of the European Union published by Longman/Pearsons. He was previously the GDL/CPE course director at the University of Huddersfield and introduced the country’s first electronically-delivered CPE course in September 1998. From 2002 to 2004, he was Huddersfield University Business School’s Head of Collaborative Provision, where he was responsible for all domestic and international partnerships. In 2004, he joined the Faculty of Arts, Law and Social Sciences at Anglia Ruskin University as an Associate Dean. In 2007 he became Head of Anglia Law School, while continuing as an Associate Dean. In September 2009 he joined Birmingham City University as Head of the School of Law. He is also Chair of the Academic Board, Boston Business Management School, Singapore.
Valerie Humphreys, Deputy Head of the School of Law Val has been an academic all her working life, although she has maintained a keen interest in legal practice, including clinical and pro bono work. She has assisted with the Legal Practice Course for many years, but her main areas of interest are contract and equity and trusts, and she researches private/property law and theory.
Sonya Smith, Programme Director, Legal Practice Course Sonya qualified as a solicitor in 1996 when working in the family law department of Putsmans Solicitors. She also worked in its personal injury department. Sonya joined Birmingham City University in 2004 and became the Legal Practice Course Programme Director. She teaches civil litigation, advocacy and personal injury and clinical negligence at postgraduate level, as well as tort and constitutional law at undergraduate level.
Julian Killingley, Professor of American Public Law Julian qualified as a solicitor in 1973 and was a partner in West Yorkshire law firms for 13 years. He has specialist qualifications in information technology and has knowledge of expert and intelligent systems. Julian joined the University in 1990 and is Professor of American Public Law. He has taught British and American intellectual property law for more than 10 years and has also taught comparative intellectual property as a visiting professor at Washburn University, Topeka, Kansas.
Chipo Mwale, Programme Director, LLM International Human Rights Chipo joined the University in 2003. She holds a Master’s Degree in Law in Development and her research interests lie in global justice. Chipo’s main teaching responsibilities are on the LLM in International Human Rights, but she also teaches globalisation and justice as well as critical perspectives on human rights. She is also responsible for teaching legal theory on the LLB Programme.
Emma Flint, Programme Director, LLM Corporate and Business Law Emma qualified as a solicitor in 1999 and worked in the corporate departments of Wragge & Co Solicitors in Birmingham and Baker & McKenzie Solicitors in London. She worked with a range of corporate clients in practice, ranging from start-up companies and SMEs to large, international blue chip clients. She has also worked with venture capital providers and ‘business angels’ in Birmingham/London. Emma joined Birmingham City University in September 2008 and teaches business law and practice at postgraduate level, as well as company law and tort at undergraduate level.
Professor David Wilson, Head of the Centre for Applied Criminology
Dr Lyndsey Harris, Lecturer in Criminology and Security Studies
Former prison governor, Professor David Wilson, is one of the country’s leading criminologists. His research interests include penology, especially innocence after conviction, racism and prison education, policing, vigilantism and gun crime.
Before joining Birmingham City University Lyndsey Harris taught politics at the University of Ulster and criminology at the University of Chester. Her main research interests include strategic theory (particularly strategic terrorism); Northern Irish politics; conflict transformation; and gangs.
Professor Wilson, who was named top public criminologist of 2008 in the Times Higher Education Supplement, tackled juvenile crime in Channel Five TV series Banged Up. In what was billed as a “bold social experiment”, the series saw a team of experts, including Professor Wilson, working with 12 prolific young teenage offenders to discourage them from following a life of crime with a stint in a simulated prison. Professor Wilson played the Governor of the prison, which saw him draw on his experience of 14 years working with young offenders.
Nick Howe, Programme Director BSc (Hons) Criminal Investigation Nick joined the criminology team in January 2009 having completed over 30 years service as a police officer. He has a wealth of policing experience including as a detective, public order and police firearms commander. Before joining the University, he was a chief superintendent with Staffordshire Police and during 2008 he was seconded to Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary as a staff officer, inspecting police forces throughout England and Wales on a range of national policing agendas, including neighbourhood policing, citizen focus and preparedness for policing the 2012 Olympics. He has an interest in all policing matters, but particularly criminal investigation and broader issues of police reform, with a specialist expertise in policing public order and police use of firearms.
Lyndsey is the Chair of the Political Studies Association’s Postgraduate Network (PGN) and a member of the Political Studies Association’s Education and Teaching sub-committee; a member of the Centre for Sociology, Anthropology and Politics (C-SAP) Politics Reference Group; a council member of the Conflict Research Society; and a fellow of the IUS Armed Forces and Society.
Dr Jane Hill, Programme Director, BA (Hons) Criminology Jane has worked at Birmingham City University for 15 years and has taught on the criminology and sociology programmes and on Master’s programmes in criminology and research methods. Her teaching has covered most major areas of sociology, although she has special interests in research methodology, crime and the social construction of deviance. Jane has carried out research on young black people in the criminal justice system, while with Graham Wright, from the University’s School of Law, she has investigated the processes by which young people are marginalised by the discourses of community. She is also a research adviser to Action for Prisoners’ Families (APF).
Your learning experience
Birmingham City University School of Law has a distinguished history of legal education and has a reputation for delivering high quality teaching in a friendly and welcoming atmosphere. We have initiated and developed training programmes across a variety of learning and teaching methods, combining experience with innovation. Such pioneering work has meant our graduates have made their mark in a variety of professions particularly, of course, in legal practice. Our undergraduate, postgraduate and professional study programmes are renowned both nationally and internationally for their originality and innovative quality. They combine theoretical study, which is aimed at developing your critical independence of mind, with the legal practice, problem solving, research and transferable personal skills, such as written and oral communication. Critically, we nurture students to have self-confidence and a sense of personal responsibility. We seek to ensure all our students acquire a thorough understanding of the fundamental principles and methods of law. We offer a wide choice of study modules and offer exciting options such as American legal studies, business law and human rights. We are also extremely proud of our focus on vocational training. Our legal programmes are designed to enable students to gain practical experience because we emphasise practice-based learning. Many of our law students work on real-life cases if they opt for working pro bono in a Citizens Advice Bureau or take part in a US internship to work with an attorney in America. Dr Ewan Kirk, LLB Programme Director, says the practical approach has many benefits to both students and potential employers. “Our LLB and GDL courses fulfil the academic stage of training for solicitors or barristers, but we like to put a practical slant on things,” he says. “The study of law is not just about learning what the law is; it is also about learning how to apply that to real life situations.”
The School also runs ‘hands-on’ workshops, with a range of exercises, designed to develop students’ practical legal skills. The programme includes looking at advocacy, which deals with communication skills, confidence, verbal ability, use of persuasive language; and negotiation. In the area of criminology, we are the only university in the country to have an annual debate with a high security prison, HMP Grendon, which gives our criminology students a unique insight into how criminological theory and practice combine. We also have the first ever New Bridge student group, which trains and pays students to write to and visit prisoners. Modules are delivered in a variety of ways, including the use of virtual environments to develop case study analysis.
Links with industry/ professional practice Birmingham is home to about 3,500 solicitors and 500 barristers and we enjoy strong links with many of them, including large law firms such as Eversheds, Challinors, Hammonds and Irwin Mitchell. We also work closely with the local Law Society, which is the largest in the country. In addition, we have a close association with local Citizens Advice Bureaux and not-for-profit centres, such as BRADICAL and residents’ associations. There are well-established links between the criminology course team and external practitioners, allowing plenty of opportunities for you to become involved with external bodies such as the Howard Student League, HMP Grendon, New Bridge, and Prison Link. As a Criminal Investigation student, you can benefit from our partnerships with the Midland regional police forces, the National Police Improvement Agency (NPIA), Government Office of the West Midlands, as well as the Community Safety Partnerships and other criminal justice agencies.
The Law School regularly welcomes a range of visiting speakers. Among the eminent guests have been Michael Edwards, a US attorney well-known for his crusading work in legal reform and visiting professors from the academic and professional worlds, including Professor Francois Barker, Professor Michael Hibbs and Professor Robin Ellison. Local law firms, including Wragges and Hammonds, visit the School on a regular basis to talk to and advise students about career opportunities.
The School of Law has its own careers tutors, who can offer specialist advice and support to law students about to enter the job market.
Prestigious guest lecturers in criminology have included politicians, TV presenter Donal McIntyre and Jon Silverman, and ex-offenders such as Noel “Razor” Smith. Serving prison governors and police officers also visit criminology students, while Dr Michael Brookes of HMP Grendon is also a Visiting Professor. A wide variety of speakers also support the criminal investigation programme, including specialist police officers, members of police authorities, National Police Improvement Agency representatives and senior detectives.
Students wanting to work as a solicitor or barrister have a range of placement opportunities when they are working towards their LLB and Graduate Diploma in Law qualifications. Many students from Birmingham City University go on to become lawyers or barristers, but many others find work in the civil service, journalism, legal departments within large businesses or specialist enforcement agencies such as the Health and Safety Executive, the Probation Service, and the Police Service. “Approximately half of our students go onto become solicitors and barristers, half go onto pursue other careers, which is in line with the national average,” says Ewan Kirk, Programme Director of the LLB.
Our facilities and resources Our studies on law in practice are supported by the excellent resources within the School:
Courtrooms We have a replica Magistrates’ Courtroom and a mock Crown Courtroom, which enable students to experience realistic legal scenarios. Students are able to take advantage of these video-equipped courtrooms to develop their skills.
Mock legal office
Those on CAB placements receive training from experienced staff in the skills and substantive areas of practical legal knowledge. The CAB module-based training programme, called Competencies Training, covers all aspects of preparation to become a general adviser. Students handle real legal cases, such as employment issues, welfare benefit appeals, housing and consumer problems and criminal injuries compensation appeals, under supervision.
Our mock legal office is used principally by Legal Practice Course (LPC) students. This fully-equipped office, which has its own DVD recorder, is used to conduct LPC assessments.
We have found that many potential employers believe this placement to be extremely valuable because it shows students’ commitment to pro bono work and illustrates a sense of social responsibility.
Virtual solicitor’s office
Teaching resources to support students
Senior lecturers in the School have been working on a project to create a virtual solicitor’s office that will support learning and teaching on the postgraduate LPC. The virtual office has been designed, a wide range of case studies developed and interviews with clients filmed. It is a free, open-access resource, offering the opportunity to develop and share case studies and resources within a virtual environment.
Academics in the faculty are involved in a two-and-a-half year project funded by the Higher Education Academy National Teaching Fellowship Scheme, called Creating Future-Proof Graduates. The project aims to help you make the transition from higher education into the workplace by creating a range of critical incident teaching resources.
Legal Advice and Representation Unit (LARU) Birmingham City University founded the LARU in 1987, making it the longest continuously running facility of its type in any UK university. The Legal Advice and Representation Unit is an optional module in the final year of the LLB programme in which students work with local Citizens Advice Bureaux or other legal service providers. Students have to apply for a place and undergo a formal interview with LARU directors and the manager of the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB), or in the case of nonCAB placements, the supervisor, where the placement opportunity exists.
As part of this project, academics from the School of Law commissioned professional actors to create a DVD for students. In ‘Expecting the Unexpected’, the actors role-play a client/colleague in a range of challenging situations. The resource is used in class to analyse the sometimes difficult relationships between client and lawyer and to help build students’ confidence.
American internship programme The University is unique in that it offers students studying law at undergraduate level the opportunity to participate in a six to eight-week internship in the offices of American attorneys in the US, as part of the American Legal Practice module. The internship counts as a fully-accredited part of their LLB degree. Internships are available across the US in more than 10 different states, from New York to San Francisco and Nebraska to Louisiana. Students assist attorneys in their representation of ‘indigent’ clients (clients who cannot afford to pay for an attorney but who are reliant on free help). The majority of internships are in offices engaged in Death Row work, while others deal with general criminal matters or civil litigation. Participants may be involved in interviewing clients in prison, tracing and interviewing witnesses, analysing reports and evidence, researching law and procedure, drafting briefs and motions, and attending and assisting at trials and hearings.
The following resources support your studies in criminology: New Bridge
Howard League for Penal Reform
The School of Social Sciences launched the first New Bridge Student Volunteer group. New Bridge is a charity founded in 1956 by Lord Longford to create links between offenders and the community.
The School of Social Sciences also has a lively Howard League Student Society where members can get involved in raising issues and promoting the work of the penal reform charity. Criminology students at Birmingham City University are encouraged to join the Howard League.
Criminology students train, write to and visit prisoners. This initiative has had some very positive feedback. Students gain experience of working with offenders while prisoners say they value the friendship and support they have found through New Bridge: “Thank you so much for being there for me and not giving up on me.” “I want to take this opportunity to thank you from my heart for your persistence, your unfailing loyalty to what you do for us and your friendship. Not once have you looked down at or belittled me, but instead you ceaselessly encourage me which tells me of the strength of courage that you possess.” For more information on New Bridge, visit www.newbridgefoundation.org.uk
HMP Grendon We are the only university in the country to hold an annual debate with a high security prison, HMP Grendon. This opportunity, organised by Professor David Wilson, a former prison governor at HMP Grendon, enables students to see how criminological theory and practice can combine. Dr Michael Brookes, Director of Therapeutic Communities at HMP Grendon is a visiting professor to the department.
Making the transition to university can be a big step at any age. That’s why our ASK! Student Services team offers Advice, Support and Knowledge on a wide range of issues.
Child care Our competitively priced, Ofsted-inspected nurseries offer a welcoming and stimulating environment to children from six months of age. We hold both the SureStart Award and the Gold Award for the Quality Framework. Our nurseries at the City North and Edgbaston campuses are open 7.30am-5.45pm, Monday to Friday, for 50 weeks per year, and offer full-time and part-time places. We also provide holiday play schemes and breakfast and afterschool clubs for school age children.
Health and well being We can help you to find local doctors, dentists and other health care services, and provide support with registration if needed. Our mental health adviser can provide confidential advice and support, and act as a link to external organisations. Counsellors are available to talk over concerns such as relationship difficulties, exam anxiety and depression. If you have a disability, our disability advisers make sure that you get the support you need while studying with us. We hold a list of university-trained support workers who can assist with note-taking, photocopying, reading etc. We also provide professionally qualified British Sign Language interpreters and dyslexia support tutors. Our multi-faith chaplaincy team works with students from all faiths and is available 24 hours a day to offer welfare advice and support on spiritual and personal concerns. Active Students’ Union societies include Buddhist, Christian, Islamic, Jewish, Hindu and Sikh groups.
Visas and immigration
Our careers service is here to help both current students and graduates – you can continue to benefit from our support for up to five years after finishing your course. You can hone your CV or interview skills with us or use our virtual learning tool Moodle to research employment opportunities. We also offer access to employers through our recruitment fairs, lectures and expos.
Our International Student Advisors offer a wide range of services for both new and continuing international students.
If you’re looking to earn some extra cash while you study, we can help you to find part-time work that will fit in with your course timetable.
Money matters You may feel anxious about your finances and be wondering how you are going to manage to pay for your tuition fees, living expenses and other costs associated with going to university. We are here to provide information and advice on a range of financial concerns, including: • Debts (credit cards, loans, overdrafts) • Gas, electric, water bill issues • Contact with trusts and charities • Basic money management and budgeting skills • Tax We are also responsible for the allocation of money from a number of student hardship funds including the Access to Learning Fund, a discretionary fund subject to means testing and availability, which may help you with: • Course costs – books, travelling expenses, etc. • Living costs • Child care and nursery fees
We can provide advice and support on: • Visa extensions • Travel outside the UK while studying • Funding and finance issues • Applications for student finance • Working during your studies • Working after your studies • Personal matters such as homesickness and adjusting to life in the UK
For further information about any of the above services, please contact ASK! Student Services on +44 (0)121 331 5588 or visit: www.bcu.ac.uk/studentservices
Fees and funding
Undergraduates There are two main costs involved in going to university – tuition fees and living costs. For our 2010/2011 student intake, tuition fees can be up to £3,225 (or as set by UK Government) for full-time first degrees*. In addition, we estimate that you will require approximately £6,000-£7,000 per year to cover the cost of accommodation, heating, food, books, stationery, travel and other basic living expenses. * If you already have an equivalent level qualification, you may be charged a higher fee for your course. Visit www.bcu.ac.uk/prospective/finance#ELQ for further information.
Funding for full-time students The main sources are: • Student loans • Maintenance grants • Special support grants • Bursaries Additional grants include the Adult Dependant’s Grant, Childcare Grant, Parent’s Learning Allowance and Disabled Students’ Allowance.
These are from the Government and don’t have to be repaid. You may qualify for a Maintenance Grant to help with your accommodation and other living costs. Grants of up to £2,906 are available for 2010/2011 intake and depend on your income/ your household’s income.
We can award students bursaries which do not need to be repaid. In 2010/11, bursaries can be up to £525 per year and are available to anyone receiving Maintenance or Special Support grants from the Government.
This is an alternative grant of up to £2,906 for students who are eligible for, but not necessarily receiving, means-tested state benefits (for example, if you have a disability or you are a single parent).
These are Government loans – you repay them in instalments after completing your course once you’re earning over £15,000 a year. You could be eligible for: • Tuition fee loan (up to £3,225 for 2010/2011 intake) • Living expenses loan (up to £4,950 for 2010/2011 intake) The interest on these loans is linked to inflation, so in real terms what you repay is roughly the same as you borrow.
Special support grants
Eligibility is the same as for the Maintenance Grant. If you receive a Special Support Grant you will not have any amount deducted from your student loan entitlement.
How do I know if I qualify for a grant or loan? You will need to apply online via Student Finance England at www.studentfinanceengland.co.uk or contact them for an application form. They can also give you information about whether you qualify for any grants and how big a loan you’re entitled to. Any grants or loans for living costs will be paid directly into your bank or building society account, usually in three instalments. You do not need to wait until you receive an offer of a place before you apply for financial support.
If you’re an EU national, you can apply for a loan to cover your tuition fees. Unless you’ve been living in the UK for three years before the start of your course, you will not be eligible for support for living costs through student loans, grants or the Access to Learning Fund.
There are a number of scholarships and bursaries which may be available to students from countries outside the EU. You may also be exempted from the higher rate international fee by showing a ‘relevant connection’ with the UK or EU. For more information, see the International Students section on page 48.
Funding for part-time students Financial help is available towards your tuition fees and other course costs. The value depends on your personal circumstances and your course. The main sources are: • Fee Grant (to help with tuition fees) paid directly to your college or university • Course Grant (to help with study costs, eg books, materials and travel) paid directly to you You won’t have to repay Fee Grants or Course Grants. The maximum Fee Grant you can get is based on how ‘intensive’ your course is and how long it will take to complete compared with an equivalent full-time course. Your household income and whether you have a live-in partner or dependent children will influence the amount of grant you receive. If you’re receiving certain benefits, you will get the maximum Fee Grant and the maximum Course Grant available for your course. To apply for the Fee Grant and Course Grant, both you and your course must be ‘eligible’. Your course must last at least one year; be a higher education course leading to a qualification such as a Certificate or Diploma of Higher Education, an HNC, HND, BA or BSc; and must not take more than twice as long to complete as the equivalent full-time course. Postgraduate courses, part-time Initial Teacher Training courses and concurrent part-time courses aren’t eligible. You can also apply to the Access to Learning Fund. To find out more about funding sources, visit www.direct.gov.uk/en/educationandlearning
Postgraduates Fees for postgraduate courses vary depending on the course – please check with the Faculty. Generally there is no Government support for postgraduate study in the form of fee loans, maintenance loans and maintenance grants. There are a number of ways to help fund your study fees and living costs:
Trusts, charities and professional bodies
Disabled Students Allowance
Our Student Finance team has a dedicated financial adviser for each faculty to advise you on trusts, charities and professional bodies that may be able to offer you funding. They can also help you with applications to these bodies. For further information contact ASK! Student Services on +44 (0)121 331 5588.
Disabled Students Allowances are available to postgraduate students – please contact our Disability Services team on +44 (0)121 331 5588 for further information.
Access to Learning Fund Our Access to Learning Fund is provided by HEFCE, the Government funding body for higher education, and applications are assessed according to its guidelines. Awards are made to students with a financial need that remains once they have applied for all other funding options, provided they meet residency and other eligibility requirements. The fund cannot be used towards fees, only living expenses and course costs such as travel, materials, books and equipment. Full requirements and HEFCE guidelines are available on request.
Child Tax Credit Students with children are eligible to receive this if their annual family income is below £55,000.
International students We offer a number of bursaries and scholarships for international students. For details of these and other organisations which offer support to international students, see the International Students section on page 48.
Additional financial information For more information on financial assistance, visit www.direct.gov.uk/adultlearning or contact 0800 100 900. Useful information can also be found at: Research Council www.ukcge.ac.uk Prospects www.prospects.ac.uk
General information Before you start
To avoid delays in receiving your • Explore all the funding that you’re funding: eligible for • Apply for your funding in plenty of time • Prepare a budget plan • Research student bank accounts. Decide which is best for you in the long term – don’t be swayed by gifts • If you qualify for a Maintenance Grant or Special Support Grant, don’t opt out of sharing your financial information with the University on your PN1 form as this generates your bursary • Save as much money as possible before starting your course. The first year and particularly the first week can be expensive – new books, course materials, rent, deposits … not to mention socialising! • Prepare a budget – use our innovative online calculator at www.bcu.ac.uk/studentservices/ studentcalculator
Things to remember If you’re living in University accommodation, you will need to pay a deposit of £150 to hold your room. Costs of course books and materials vary, but average around £300 per academic year. Your faculty can advise you.
• Apply for the correct tuition fee for your course • Provide your National Insurance number • If you apply online, also print a copy of the form, sign it and post it – it can’t be processed without your signature • If you post your application form, get a receipt or use recorded delivery • Provide the correct bank account details – this is often where things go wrong! • If you’ve been waiting for four weeks or more, contact Student Finance England for progress on your application If you still haven’t received your funding, speak to our Student Services team. There are always solutions and we may even offer you an interest free short-term loan.
How we can help Once you’ve enrolled as a student with us, our Employment Zone can help you find part-time work to support yourself. Over the last year the Employment Zone has advertised over 900 vacancies directly to Birmingham City University students. Our services include an online vacancies board and the Student Job Shop Drop In for advice
on working while studying. We also operate a ‘One Stop Hire Scheme’ where employers visit our campus and interview only Birmingham City University students for part-time roles. Our Student Financial Service offers advice on budgeting, debt management and emergency loans, and also administers payments from the Access to Learning Fund. It can also help you find and apply to trusts and charities for financial assistance.
Where can I find out more? If you anticipate difficulties with funding or if you would like to discuss the financial implications, please call or email before you apply and we will be happy to help. Tel: +44 (0)121 331 6387 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Detailed information on fees and student financial support is also available from: • Aimhigher www.aimhigher.ac.uk • Directgov www.direct.gov.uk/en/ educationandlearning • Your local authority
Applying for a course
Step 1: Entry requirements Once you’ve found the course you’d like to apply for, it’s important that you make sure you have, or are aiming to achieve, the entry requirements for that course. We accept a wide variety of qualifications to meet the general entry requirements for our first (or undergraduate) degrees, foundation degrees and higher national courses. Some courses have specific entry requirements. For some, an interview, audition or portfolio review is an essential part of the selection process. Please check the relevant course page for details. You can contact our friendly advisers for guidance on +44 (0)121 331 5595. If you already have an advanced qualification or significant relevant experience, you may be eligible for admission with credit, enabling you to be admitted to a later stage of the course.
First degree courses Candidates will need one of the following as a minimum: • Two passes at GCE A Level/AVCE • Three Scottish Certificate of Education/Scottish Qualifications Authority passes at higher level • Four Irish Leaving Certificate passes at higher level • National Certificate or Diploma awarded by BTEC/ Edexcel • Higher National Certificate or Diploma awarded by BTEC/Edexcel • Advanced Diploma • Progression Diploma • Cambridge Pre-U Diploma • International Baccalaureate Diploma (24 points or above) • Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma • Diploma in Foundation Studies (Art and Design) • Successful completion of an Access to Higher Education course* *Successful completion is defined as modules/units worth at least 80 per cent of the available course credits passed, with at least 75 per cent of those credits achieved at Level 3 and the remaining credits at Level 2. Some
courses require more credits than this – please use the contact details on the relevant course page to get more information. Applicants holding an Access to Higher Education qualification will need a suitable range of experience appropriate to their course.
Foundation Degrees/Higher National Diplomas/ Certificates (HND/C) Normally, you should satisfy one of the criteria for first degree courses. However, for some foundation degrees and higher national courses, one GCE A Level/AVCE is acceptable.
National Diplomas/Certificates A minimum of four GCSE passes at grade C or above, including English.
Competence in English language Our courses are taught and assessed entirely in English. Therefore, if your first language is not English, you will need to demonstrate appropriate proficiency. See the International Students section on page 48 for further information.
We’re committed to an admissions policy that provides opportunities for people from all educational backgrounds and experience. We welcome applicants with a mix of academic and vocational qualifications and consider each application on its merits. For those without standard entry qualifications we may take account of alternative qualifications and/or relevant experience.
Step 2: Making your application Undergraduate Full-time Applications for full-time first degrees, foundation degrees or higher national courses should be made online through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) www.ucas.ac.uk Our institution code for UCAS applications is B25 BCITY.
Part-time Applications for part-time undergraduate courses should be made direct to the Faculty. Application forms are available from the Faculty office or can be downloaded from www.bcu.ac.uk/downloads/BCU_application_form.pdf
Postgraduate Law Applications for the Legal Practice Course (LPC) and the Common Professional Exam/Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) should be made through the Central Applications Board (CAB) at www.lawcabs.ac.uk Tel: +44 (0)1483 301292
Research degrees Application forms are available from the Facultyâ€™s Research Degrees Coordinator or from the Research Officer in the Academic Registry. To discuss your research interest, please contact the Faculty.
Other courses Applications for all other postgraduate courses should be made direct to the Faculty. Application forms are available from the Faculty office or can be downloaded from www.bcu.ac.uk/downloads/BCU_application_form.pdf
Faculty office Faculty of Education, Law and Social Sciences Tel: +44 (0)121 331 7300 Web: www.bcu.ac.uk/elss
Step 3: Processing your application On receipt, your application form will be forwarded to the Course Admissions Office for consideration. If you’re called for interview, you should send the department a copy of the most up-to-date student summary sheet in your Record of Achievement, quoting your UCAS applicant number if relevant. Do not send the original. Please bring along any specified items such as a portfolio, and be prepared to discuss them with the interviewer. After interview, if you’re considered suitable for the course, you will receive an offer of a place, which may be conditional upon your obtaining certain qualifications. The conditions will vary between courses and even within courses depending upon evidence of your motivation, commitment and previous academic record. Many of our offers will be expressed using the UCAS tariff point score, a system which assesses exam results. Visit www.ucas.com/students/ucas_tariff/ for the latest tariff information. If you applied through UCAS, you will receive an official offer from them, but we will also send you an offer letter plus an information booklet telling you more about us and outlining the next steps in the application procedure.
Step 4: After you’ve been made an offer If you accept a conditional offer, we will confirm your place on the course once you have met those conditions. Sometimes, even if you don’t achieve the required grades of the offer, it may still be possible to reserve a place on the course. If you receive an offer of a place without being invited for interview, you may wish to visit the University to discuss your application and see our facilities before deciding whether to accept the offer. Our Open Days (www.bcu. ac.uk/opendays) provide an opportunity for this, or you can arrange an individual visit through the relevant Faculty. If you’re not accepted on your chosen course, or your place is not confirmed after we’ve received your results, you may find an alternative place through Clearing. Please call the Clearing Helpline on (+44) (0)121 331 6777 from mid-August.
Deferred entry If you’re thinking about taking a year out before coming to the University, we will be happy to consider your application for deferred entry, particularly if you plan to use the time constructively.
Additional information All application forms are designed to provide admissions tutors with the information they need. However, at any stage in the application process, we might ask you for further information. Please make sure you supply all the information requested, as without it we might not be able to consider your application.
Applicants with disabilities If you have a disability, your application will be considered on the same basis as others. If we make you an offer, our Disability Services team will contact you to discuss any arrangements that may be necessary to allow you to undertake your studies.
People from all over the world choose to study at Birmingham City University. We currently have more than 1,500 undergraduate and postgraduate international students from over 80 countries.
We accept a wide range of overseas qualifications – to find out the entry requirements for students from your country, please visit:
Our most popular undergraduate courses with overseas students include the LLB Law degree. Many students come from China, India, Malaysia, Nigeria and Pakistan, and we’ve welcomed others from as far afield as the Central African Republic, the Maldives and Turkmenistan.
Each year the University provides a number of scholarships and bursaries to international students to cover a proportion of the tuition fee for the first year of study. There are also a number of alternative sources of funding for which international students may apply.
We’ve built up partnerships with institutions all over the world including Nanjing University of Science and Technology, and SUIC in Thailand to name a few. These partnerships have enhanced our international reputation and led to a number of new initiatives. We recently welcomed large numbers of teaching students from Egypt and technology students from India.
As an international student it’s highly likely that there will be other students from your home country, and there will be many opportunities to meet and make friends with people from different countries and cultures.
If you can show a relevant connection with the UK or the EU, you may be exempt from international fees. If you’re unsure whether you would be classified as a home or overseas student for fee-payment purposes and would like clarification before submitting an application, please complete our Fee Status Assessment Questionnaire, which can be downloaded from www.bcu.ac.uk/international
If you’re from overseas and considering taking up a place at Birmingham City University, we’re sure that you will feel right at home in this welcoming environment. You can also expect: • Competitive fees and a range of bursaries • Priority allocation of our accommodation • Free English language support • Help with settling in through our Meet and Greet Service and Orientation Programme • Social events running throughout the year
Please note that due to immigration regulations, non-European students are unable to enter the UK to undertake part-time courses.
Fees cover normal tuition and examination costs and membership of the Students’ Union. They can be paid in two equal instalments at the beginning of the first and second semesters. Fees vary between courses – please visit www.bcu.ac.uk/international for the full listing and the latest prices.
Living costs Birmingham has a relatively low cost of living and depending on your lifestyle, you will need around £6,000-£7,000 per year (around £600 per month) for accommodation and living expenses (excluding tuition fees). Your first few weeks here will be the most expensive, since as well as paying your fees, you may need books and equipment. Remember, you won’t be eligible for UK welfare benefits but most of you will be permitted to work. We have an Employment Zone that can help you find part-time and vacation work.
We offer a number of country-specific bursaries to students from Africa, South East Asia and South Asia. For further details please contact email@example.com A loyalty bursary of 15 per cent is available to international graduates continuing on to one of our courses after successfully completing an Undergraduate Degree, HND, National Diploma, Foundation Degree or Foundation Year with us. Other possible sources of funding include the European Commission, UNESCO and WHO, and voluntary organisations and charities. There is also a range of funding opportunities specifically for postgraduate students – these include the British Chevening Scholarships, which are funded by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and administered by the British Council, and the Commonwealth Scholarships & Fellowships Plan, which are available to students from Commonwealth countries and British dependencies. Visit www.bcu.ac.uk/international for more information.
Accommodation You will be given priority for self-catering bedrooms in University accommodation for the duration of your course, provided we receive your application before the start of term. Living in our halls of residence is an ideal way to meet people. For more information visit www.bcu.ac.uk/accommodation
As well as offering advice to international students, we organise a programme of social and cultural events, orientation programmes, fun social activities to meet other students, a mentoring scheme and a newsletter to keep you updated.
We have a large number of full-time students from EU countries, as well as students participating in a Socrates/ Erasmus exchange scheme. Those who are nationals or the children of nationals of EU member states and who have been an ordinarily resident in European Economic Area countries for three years prior to commencing their course are normally classed as home students for feepaying purposes.
English language requirements All tuition, examinations and subject material will be in English, so you will need a certain level of proficiency in the language. We may require you to have gained a recognised English qualification before commencing your studies. A full list of the minimum accepted qualifications is available at www.bcu.ac.uk/international, but please check with your faculty, as some courses may require a higher level of proficiency. If you fall below the minimum English language entry requirements we may make you a conditional offer subject to attendance at one of our English language courses prior to starting your main studies. These vary from a five-week or 10-week course to bring your language skills up to scratch to a full-time one-year programme, the Foundation Certificate in English for Academic Purposes (FCEAP). All international students are also welcome to attend our free English classes alongside their studies. You can find further information on our English language courses at: www.bcu.ac.uk/international/programmes-study/english
Contact us Completed applications can be forwarded to us at: Fax: +44 (0)121 331 6314 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org For all other enquiries and advice: Tel: +44 (0)121 331 6714 Email: email@example.com
Taught courses Becoming a postgraduate or postexperience student will enable you to pursue your interests and develop your skills in a specialised area. You will achieve an increased awareness of the latest trends in a particular discipline and enhance your career prospects considerably. The ability to structure your own workload, develop powers of analysis and critical enquiry, work independently and produce successful results will also be invaluable assets for the future. Postgraduate study generally falls into two main categories: taught courses and research courses.
Taught courses normally involve formal lectures and/or seminar programmes and written examinations. Often they will impart advanced knowledge or techniques in specialised aspects of the subjects you have previously studied more generally at undergraduate level. The subject area covered does not necessarily have to follow directly from your studies at undergraduate level, although your first degree, and often related work experience, should provide a sound foundation of understanding of the new specialism. Certain postgraduate programmes lead to exemptions from professional examinations and ultimately lead to membership of professional bodies. Some courses act as conversion programmes, enabling you to switch your area of specialism. Methods of assessment vary between programmes. Where practical work is involved reports may have to be submitted for evaluation. Long essays are common and formal examination papers are often set. Many programmes include a written dissertation, although at this level you will not be required to make an original contribution. You may need to demonstrate a thorough understanding of a topic by presenting a clear and coherent account based on material from various sources (such as research papers, articles and books). On some courses, incorporation of the results of your own practical work may be an important element of the dissertation. Taught courses include:
Postgraduate Certificate/Diploma (PgCert/PgDip) These qualifications usually require at least one year of full-time study or about two years of part-time study.
Master of Art or Master of Science (MA or MSc) These awards usually involve one year (a minimum of 48 weeks) full-time, or about three years’ part-time study. A Master’s qualification may involve producing a dissertation after completing a PgDip course. Sometimes the PgDip and Master’s are identical in length but the Master’s course project is more demanding. Some Master’s courses are modularised, allowing greater flexibility by offering a wide choice of options.
Master of Laws (LLM)/Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL)/Legal Practice Course (LPC) LLMs allow law graduates to undertake specialist study after graduation and typically require one year of full-time study or two years of part-time. The GDL is designed for non-law graduates wishing to enter the legal profession, and the LPC is a one-year full-time, two-year part-time vocational course for solicitors.
Professional qualifications Many of our postgraduate courses are accredited by professional bodies, providing you with a superb range of professional qualifications and courses combining academic study with professional awards, for example the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).
Research courses You can attain a postgraduate qualification by research through independent exploration, analysis and the preparation of a thesis under the supervision of a lecturer. We offer research awards which can be followed part-time, full-time or a combination of the two. Research at this level presents a considerable challenge, both intellectually and organisationally. You will need to be able to work independently and acquire skills which will be valuable whatever your career intentions. You should have a first-class or second-class honours UK degree in a relevant subject. To register for a PhD you will normally also need to hold a Master’s degree, or you may transfer from the MPhil. Other evidence of ability and relevant background knowledge, for example publications or academic references, will be considered. You may begin your programme of study at any time during the academic year. You will determine your area of study and the outline of the research programme and will prepare and submit a formal application in consultation with your supervisor. A supervisory team will provide assistance with the development and progress of your research programme and will ensure that you have appropriate training, while you will be responsible for the programme’s execution. Progress is monitored annually through the University’s Research Degree Committee. When the research is completed, you will prepare a thesis for examination. Your supervisor will advise on the preparation and submission of this. An oral examination (viva voce) follows. International students can study on a part-time basis in their own country, provided that there are sufficient facilities and that they attend the University usually for an average of at least six weeks per year. Research courses include:
Master of Philosophy (MPhil) An MPhil usually takes two years by full-time study or three years by part-time study. However, there is no minimum period for the completion of the degree. You will complete a thesis but the criteria used in its assessment are different from those applied at PhD level. No ‘original contribution’ is required, which will allow other aspects of the discipline to receive more weight. The maximum registration period is three years full-time and four years part-time.
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) A PhD usually takes three years by full-time study or four years by part-time study. However, there is no minimum period for the completion of the degree. Your thesis must contain an original contribution to the understanding of the subject which is sufficiently important to merit publication. The maximum registration period is five years full-time and six years part-time. Opportunities exist to transfer from MPhil to PhD if your progress demonstrates that development to this level can be achieved. You must submit a transfer report with your application, and undergo an oral examination.
Research excellence Birmingham City University has embarked on a new era of research after being officially recognised for its worldleading work by a national survey of research excellence across the UK. In March 2009, our research funding was more than doubled after an outstanding performance in the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) which revealed that we had world-leading research in all subject areas submitted for review. This success was followed up in August 2009 with the announcement that nine centres of research excellence would be created to build on our current research strengths and extend into key new areas. To support the initiative, we are investing an additional £3 million over three years on top of the £10 million already allocated. The extra cash will help to fund 36 PhD bursaries.
The centres of research excellence cover: • Business, innovation and enterprise • Criminology • Design and creative industries • Digital participation and technology • Education • Fine art • Health, social care and well being • Low carbon and sustainability • Music and performance
HND LEGAL STUDIES SCHOOL: APPLY: DURATION: LOCATION:
SCHOOL OF LAW FULL-TIME THROUGH UCAS (039M) FULL-TIME 2 YEARS CITY NORTH CAMPUS / SUTTON COLDFIELD COLLEGE
59 Tariff score: 120
Key facts If you intend to enter the legal profession as a solicitor or a barrister, this programme is recognised by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and the Bar Standards Board as providing, in conjunction with Levels 5 and 6 of the LLB (Hons) Law degree, exemption from the academic stage of training. The programme incorporates the whole of Level 4 of the LLB (Hons) Law degree at Birmingham City University. By successfully completing all modules on the programme you will achieve two qualifications: a Certificate in Higher Education (for completing Level 4 of the LLB) and a Higher National Diploma (HND) in Legal Studies. Successful completion of the Certificate in Higher Education entitles you to progress to Level 5 of the LLB (Hons) Law degree at Birmingham City University.
Entry requirements • 120 points, which must include one subject at A2 Level and GCSE English at Grade C or above (or equivalent). • Applicants with BTEC National or GNVQ Advanced qualifications will also be considered, as will mature students without formal entry qualifications and students with professional qualifications such as ILEX. • Mature applicants with non-standard or Access to Higher Education course qualifications are encouraged to apply. • Advanced Diplomas and Progression Diplomas in appropriate disciplines (such as Business) are acceptable as all or part of the required tariff points.
Course overview This programme attracts students from a range of backgrounds: • Those who have studied law at GCSE or A Level, or who have studied the subject as part of another course; • Those who have an interest in Law, but have not achieved the A Level grades to allow them to join the LLB degree; • Mature students who have acquired relevant work- based experience. You will have the opportunity to gain an HND qualification which is widely regarded by employers. If you wish to continue your legal studies, you may complete your LLB degree at Birmingham City University.
Course structure You will study all the core modules from Level 4 of the LLB degree at Birmingham City University. These modules are split between Year 1 and Year 2 of the HND Legal Studies programme, and successful completion of these LLB core modules will give students a Certificate in Higher Education and entitle them to progress to Year 2 of the LLB. YEAR 1 SKILLS, PROCESSES AND SCHOLARSHIP CRIMINAL LAW OPTION OPTION OPTION OPTION
Additionally, you will choose from a range of module options related to aspects of Law. These will enable you to further your interest in psychology, forensic science or litigation. Successful completion of the HND-specific modules, as well as the LLB core modules will give you an HND in Legal Studies. Assessment of HND-specific modules is varied; you will be writing reports, engaging in research and making oral presentations.
Placements, study visits available
Once enrolled at Birmingham City University you will attend both Sutton Coldfield College and the University for lectures, seminars, tutorials and workshops. You will enjoy the facilities of both institutions and have access to and borrowing rights from all university libraries and IT resources. This collaboration of teaching and learning arrangement enables you to experience educational and social activities alongside full-time LLB students.
The Curriculum Manager (and Programme Director) is Tim Turner at Sutton Coldfield College (Tel: 07779 997668). Faye Perryman is Team Leader – HE Administration and may be contacted on 0121 362 1176. The teaching team consists of around nine members of staff.
Many former HND students have completed their degrees and gone on to qualify as solicitors. Students must appreciate at the outset, however, that entry into the legal profession is very competitive and that the hard work necessary for success must begin on entry to the HND Legal Studies programme.
MODULE OPTIONS IN YEARS 1 AND 2 INCLUDE: CRIME AND DEVIANCE THE JUSTICE SYSTEM IN THE UK CIVIL LITIGATION CRIMINAL LITIGATION
YEAR 2 LAW OF TORT LAW OF CONTRACT WORK PLACEMENT OPTION OPTION
CREDITS 30 30 15 15 15
Assessment Assessment of core stage one LLB modules is identical to that of the LLB (Hons) Law programme at Birmingham City University. Option modules are assessed through a combination of examinations, coursework and oral and written presentations. Considerable emphasis is placed upon the achievement of common skills by all students.
Further study As a successful graduate of the HND you would be eligible to continue to stage two of any of the LLB degrees.
CREDITS 30 30 15 15 15 15
The Work Placement module in Year 2 of the HND Legal Studies programme enables you to gain valuable work experience, yet at the same time achieve academic credit. By finding suitable work experience in a legal environment, you will forge contacts with legal professionals which could prove invaluable at the end of your studies when you are seeking full-time positions.
SCENES OF CRIME FORENSIC PSYCHOLOGY AWARD: Cert HE (120 CREDITS)
The HND is a vocational qualification highly regarded by employers. This course will prepare you particularly, although not exclusively, for employment in the expanding field of paralegal work. If you wish to qualify as a solicitor or barrister, you will have the opportunity to complete an LLB degree at Birmingham City University. The core modules studied are recognised by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and the Bar Standards Board as forming part of a ‘qualifying’ Law degree if you complete your LLB with us.
More information Please contact the School of Law for more details (see page 3).
LLB (Hons) LAW / LLB (Hons) LAW WITH NAMED PATHWAYS SCHOOL: APPLY: DURATION: LOCATION:
SCHOOL OF LAW FULL-TIME THROUGH UCAS | PART-TIME DIRECT TO FACULTY FULL-TIME 3 YEARS | PART-TIME 4-6 YEARS CITY NORTH CAMPUS
Tariff score: 280
LLB (Hons) LAW
LLB (Hons) LAW WITH BUSINESS LAW
LLB (Hons) LAW WITH LEGAL PRACTICE
LLB (Hons) LAW WITH AMERICAN LEGAL STUDIES
LLB (Hons) LAW WITH CRIMINOLOGY
LLB (Hons) LAW WITH HUMAN RIGHTS
Key facts This course is unique in offering an American Internship programme where you can spend six to eight weeks working in the offices of an attorney working pro bono. Some students have worked on death row cases during their internship. The course also offers a pioneering Legal Advice and Representation Unit module, where you can gain practical experience assisting members of the public with their legal problems. Other attractions of the course include: • An active student-led Legal Society and a respected and very popular Mooting Society, with two in-house replica courtrooms. • An outstanding team of professional staff with extensive practice experience and a friendly, open door policy giving you all the support you need. • All compulsory subjects are studied in your first and second year, leaving your third year free for your optional modules.
Legal training starts with the LLB, the qualifying undergraduate course, compulsory if you want to progress into a career as either a solicitor or barrister. It is important for you to understand each of these career options as both involve a long qualification process and are highly competitive. A solicitor provides clients with legal advice often during times of extreme stress such as arrest, divorce, moving house or bereavement. Alternatively, you may represent clients in corporate or commercial transactions. You may work in a firm with other solicitors or set up your own practice, or you might work in central or local government, an in-house legal department, the Crown Prosecution Service or the magistrates’ courts. To become a solicitor you must complete both the academic stage of training - a qualifying law degree followed by the Legal Practice Course (LPC) - and the vocational stage, which is a training contract. More information about becoming a solicitor can be found at www.sra.org.uk and www.lawsociety.org.uk Barristers are specialists in advocacy; the act of presenting cases in court under instruction from a solicitor or another designated professional. Typically, the duties of a barrister may include preparing briefs (cases) for court, presenting arguments in court, examining and cross examining witnesses and preparing legal documents. Most barristers work on a self-employed basis, from chambers. An increasing number, however, now work in private and public organisations. Qualification consists of the academic stage (a qualifying law degree), vocational training (the Bar Vocational Course, BVC) and a period of pupillage. Places on the BVC are extremely competitive and are offered by only a few institutions. For more information visit www.barcouncil.org.uk Both solicitors and barristers need to have strong intellectual ability, be committed to the time and resources required to complete the necessary qualifications and have the versatility to cope with both the intricate details of the law and the challenges of dealing with clients. A desire to work with people is essential and a track record of relevant work experience is increasingly important.
• Minimum 280 UCAS tariff points or equivalent. • You will be expected to have successfully completed a minimum of two subjects at A2 Level, two 6 units or one 12 unit AVCE (any). Remaining points can be made up with AS qualifications but not General Studies or Key Skills. • Applicants with BTEC National level qualifications will be considered. • You should have a GCSE pass (grade C or above) or equivalent in English Language, or Key Skills Communication at Level 3 or above. • Mature applicants with non-standard or Access to Higher Education course qualifications are encouraged to apply. • Entry at an advanced stage of the course with credit for prior learning or experience may be considered on an individual basis (subject to Solicitors Regulation Authority and Bar Council guidelines). • Advanced Diplomas and Progression Diplomas are acceptable as all or part of the required tariff points.
Course overview This is a practical course, providing opportunities to work on ‘real’ cases with ‘real’ clients. The Legal Advice and Representation Unit is one example of practice based learning. In your final year you will have the opportunity to work in local Citizens Advice Bureaux (CAB) or with other providers of legal services where you can gain essential practical skills advising clients and negotiating on their behalf. You will also have the opportunity to participate in an internship in the US, gaining work experience in the offices of attorneys, as part of the ‘American Legal Practice’ module. The internship counts as a fully-accredited part of the LLB. The faculty has active student-led Legal and Mooting Societies. The course also incorporates the government’s employability criteria which aim to provide all students with the fundamental skills required in any profession.
Course structure All of the LLB (Hons) degrees cover the seven foundations of legal knowledge, required to qualify as a solicitor or barrister plus an additional module in Skills and Practice. These core subjects are taught during the first and second year of a full-time degree. All the LLB courses have a common first and second year giving you the flexibility to select your preferred pathway for the third year based on knowledge gained from the foundation subjects.
LLB (Hons) Law The general LLB programme gives you the flexibility to choose from any of the modules available in the various pathways, as well as a Research Dissertation. The following named pathways enable you to combine the study of the core areas of the LLB degree with more specialist modules.
LLB (Hons) Law with Business Law Enables you to specialise in subjects relevant to business and business management, including legal controls on company structure and behaviour and corporate social responsibility. Options include Commercial Law, Company Law and Employment Law and Practice.
Learning experience / Modules studied LEVEL 4
LAW OF TORT LAW OF CONTRACT
OPTIONAL MODULES DEPENDING ON WHICH PATHWAY YOU TAKE, WHICH INCLUDE:
SKILLS, PROCESSES AND SCHOLARSHIP
AMERICAN CRIMINAL PROCEDURE AND EVIDENCE
LLB (Hons) Law with Legal Practice Builds upon our reputation for providing clinical legal education, options are designed to provide you with an early introduction to legal practice. The course incorporates opportunities to work with real clients with real legal problems in the spheres of employment, welfare, consumer, finance, housing and asylum and immigration. Optional modules include Legal Advice and Representation Unit (practical based work), Employment Law, Evidence Proof and Argument.
LLB (Hons) Law with American Legal Studies The American Legal Studies minor is an extension of our successful and long-running American Legal module, through which you can spend a six to eight week internship working in the US on criminal cases, some of which may involve the death penalty. Modules include US Constitutional Law, US Supreme Court Decision-Making, American Legal Practice and American Criminal Procedure and Evidence.
AMERICAN LEGAL PRACTICE
US SUPREME COURT DECISION MAKING US CONSTITUTIONAL LAW
PUBLIC LAW AND CIVIL RIGHTS PROPERTY LAW EU LAW SKILLS AND PRACTICE
COMMERCIAL LAW COMPANY LAW EMPLOYMENT LAW AND PRACTICE HUMAN RIGHTS LAW PUBLIC INTERNATIONAL LAW
LLB (Hons) Law with Criminology
RIGHTS LAW AND THE HISTORY OF IDEAS
The Criminology minor enables you to take advantage of our expertise in Criminal Justice and Criminology by selecting modules from the faculty’s highly respected Criminal Justice provision. Optional modules include American Criminal Justice, Victimology and Victimisation, Understanding Serious Crime and Models of Justice.
EVIDENCE, PROOF AND ARGUMENT LEGAL ADVICE AND REPRESENTATION UNIT
LLB (Hons) Law with Human Rights The Human Rights minor draws upon our established Master’s degree in human rights and the School of Law’s long experience of death penalty cases in the US and, more recently, in other jurisdictions such as Japan. The course will include rights theory and practice and public international law. Optional modules include Human Rights Law, Public International Law, Rights, Law and the History of Ideas.
Please note: optional modules offered may change slightly from year to year, and some options may not run every year. Please check on application.
You can exit the programme with a non-honours degree on completion of 300 credits (25 modules), which must include all compulsory modules. All named modules are compulsory. Modules from this course can be taken as fully-accredited freestanding short courses. The LLB may be studied through daytime or evening attendance. You may extend your period of study but must complete in six years (part-time) to obtain a qualifying law degree.
Assessment Assessment is through a combination of examinations, coursework and oral and written presentations. Emphasis is placed upon the development of a broad range of relevant skills. Assessment methods will vary according to the particular skills being assessed.
Further study As a graduate you will obtain a qualification that enables you to progress to the Legal Practice Course (LPC) or the Bar Vocational Course (BVC). Options for further study at the University include: • Postgraduate Diploma in Legal Practice (LPC) • LLM Corporate and Business Law • LLM International Human Rights • MPhil or PhD research degrees
Employability A degree in law not only prepares you for a career in law, but equips you with a range of transferable skills that you could take into a number of professions. Many of our graduates go on to become solicitors, barristers (on completion of postgraduate vocational courses) as well as pursuing other law related careers both in private practice or in public sector organisations such as the Crown Prosecution Service, local government, watchdog organisations etc. Others use the skills they have developed to go into areas such as the civil service, journalism, commerce and industry or teaching.
More information Please contact the School of Law for more details (see page 3).
GRADUATE DIPLOMA IN LAW (GDL) SCHOOL: APPLY: DURATION: LOCATION:
SCHOOL OF LAW FULL-TIME THROUGH CENTRAL APPLICATIONS BOARD (CAB) AT WWW.LAWCABS.AC.UK PART-TIME DIRECT TO FACULTY FULL-TIME 1 YEAR | PART-TIME 2 YEARS CITY NORTH CAMPUS
Key facts The Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL), also known as the Common Professional Examination (CPE), is designed for non-law graduates wishing to enter the legal profession. The course satisfies the professional requirements of the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) for intending solicitors and the General Council of the Bar for intending barristers as completion of the academic stage of training. To become a solicitor you must complete both the academic stage of training (a qualifying law degree or a GDL course) followed by the vocational stage of training known as the Legal Practice Course (LPC). This must then be followed by a two year training contract in legal practice. More information about becoming a solicitor can be found at www.sra.org.uk and www.lawsociety.org.uk To become a barrister you must complete the academic stage of training (which is the same as for a solicitor, above) followed by the vocational stage of training known as the Bar Vocational Course (BVC). Places on the BVC are extremely competitive and are offered by only a few institutions. This course must then be followed by a year’s period of pupillage, normally in barristers’ chambers. For more information visit www.barcouncil.org.uk. For information about pupillages visit www.pupillages.com
Why study with us? The Law School at Birmingham City University has an established record of providing the GDL and its equivalent and boasts excellent links with practice, as evidenced by our programme of guest speakers. We also have a long running mentoring scheme, supported by the Birmingham Law Society, the Birmingham Trainee Solicitor Society and leading firms in the region. You will be offered a local trainee solicitor to act as a mentor who will help with any questions or concerns you may have about the course and future careers. In addition, a personal tutor at the University will help you with academic and career related issues. The LPC in the Law School recently achieved the highest grade of ‘Commendable Practice’ from the SRA, meaning the quality of facilities, teaching and support is second to none. Should you complete your GDL and LPC with us you will qualify for the LLB Legal Practice award and will be offered a reduction in the LPC fee.
We normally require a good result in a non-law degree but special provision may be made for legal executives and other mature applicants. If you are in doubt about your eligibility, please contact the relevant professional body.
The GDL course is based on the seven foundation subjects laid down by the Law Society and the General Council of the Bar:
Full-time: 12 hours per week class contact time.
• Law of Contract • Law of Tort • Criminal Law • Constitutional and Administrative Law • European Law • Land Law • Law of Equity and Trusts You will be trained in Legal Skills, Legal Research and the English Legal System as part of the Legal Method module. You will also be required to study an eighth area of law in addition to the foundation subjects, which will involve completion of an essay. The focus of the course is upon combining academic study with practical skills, which can then feed into further study on the LPC or BVC course.
The GDL/CPE prepares you for a career in law and equips you with transferable skills to take into the legal profession. Students completing their GDL and LPC at the University will also graduate with a LLB Legal Practice.
Mature applicants with non-standard or Access to Higher Education course qualifications are also encouraged to apply.
Course overview The GDL course is based on the seven foundation subjects laid down by the Law Society and the General Council of the Bar. These include subjects such as Criminal Law and the Law of Contract, amongst others [for more detail see ‘Course structure’]. You will also be trained in Legal Skills, Legal Research, Legal Writing and the English Legal System. You will have the opportunity to participate in Legal Mooting/ Debating, which will develop the confidence required to present the results of research in a courtroom setting. The purpose of the GDL is to provide legal training, which although largely academic in nature, also reflects the demands that legal practice will place on that academic knowledge. You may also have the opportunity to participate in a placement in the USA and may even assist with cases on Death Row.
Our teaching emphasises participation and studentcentred learning. Small class sizes and an ‘open door’ policy ensure your individual study needs should be met. A variety of teaching methods are employed including lectures and workshops. You are also able to take advantage of our video-equipped courtrooms to develop your skills in a realistic setting.
Part-time: 6 hours per week class contact time.
Full-time: reading and preparation in your own time will be expected of around 12-18 hours per week. Part-time: reading and preparation in your own time will be expected of around 6-9 hours per week.
Start dates Early September
Assessment Assessment is through a combination of examinations (for all the seven foundation subjects) and some in-course written assessments.
Further study As this course fulfils the academic stage of training to be a solicitor or barrister, graduates will usually progress to either the LPC course (for solicitors) or BVC course (for barristers). The LPC course - in both full and part-time modes - is also offered by the University. Qualified candidates may also apply for LLM programmes, MPhil or PhD research degrees.
Many of our graduates go on to become solicitors, barristers or other law related careers both in private practice or in public sector organisations such as the Crown Prosecution Service, local government, watchdog organisations and others. Many legal sector employers encourage applications from GDL students as, often, they have had more life and work experience than the average law degree graduate and can bring with them knowledge and skills from a different sector.
More information Please contact the School of Law for more details (see page 3).
â€œI am currently a Crown Court Caseworker at the CPS. The primary role of the job is to build a fair, robust and successful case. I came to Birmingham City University partly due to the convenient location and being so close to all the amenities of the city, but more importantly to help me fulfil my ambition to become a Crown Prosecutor, and a successful one at that! The people on the course were helpful and understanding which has helped give me the confidence to take the first step on a long journey to qualification. The GDL at Birmingham City University has a great choice of subjects with a mixture of workshops and lectures. The facilities are great and the support the students get is excellent but there is still a relaxed approach to go along with it. I would recommend Birmingham City University as an excellent choice for furthering your education and fulfilling your ambition.â€? Baldev Atwal, GDL student
POSTGRADUATE DIPLOMA IN LEGAL PRACTICE (LPC) SCHOOL: APPLY: DURATION: LOCATION:
SCHOOL OF LAW FULL-TIME THROUGH CENTRAL APPLICATIONS BOARD (CAB) AT WWW.LAWCABS.AC.UK PART-TIME DIRECT TO FACULTY FULL-TIME 1 YEAR | PART-TIME 2 YEARS CITY NORTH CAMPUS
Key facts The School of Law has an established record of providing the Legal Practice Course and its predecessors since the 1960s. Our LPC has been awarded the highest grade of ‘Commendable Practice’ in all six Solicitor Regulation Authority (SRA) criteria, putting the University amongst the best providers in the country. You will benefit from the extensive and varied practice experience of the teaching team as well as excellent links with the profession. In addition, we have small teaching groups with an excellent staff to student ratio and pride ourselves on providing proactive support to all our students. We have a long running mentoring scheme, supported by the Birmingham Law Society, the Birmingham Trainee Solicitor Society and leading firms in the region. As part of the scheme, you will be offered a local trainee solicitor to act as a mentor who will help with any questions or concerns you may have about your future career development. In addition, a designated personal tutor at the University will provide Training Contract Support to help you with further advice on career development. LPC Providers have been required by the SRA to implement changes to their LPC courses in order to ensure that the course prepares you for work-based learning and provides a general foundation for practice. These changes, due for implementation in 2010 are subject to approval by the SRA. For more information about the changes to our LPC please contact our admissions tutor and refer to our website for regular updates.
A good qualifying law degree or an undergraduate degree and a pass at first attempt at the Graduate Diploma in Law/Common Professional Examination. Fellows of the Institute of Legal Executives (ILEX) are entitled to apply for direct entry to the course.
The LPC is a demanding course and is a leap forward from your undergraduate study. The emphasis is much more on the practical aspects of law and the aim of the course is to ensure you can enter practice with the skills and knowledge required to hit the ground running. You will be expected to keep up with background reading and class preparation and should expect to treat the course as if you were already handling a client’s case.
Before applying you must enrol as a student member of the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) and obtain a certificate of completion of the academic stage of training.
Course overview The Legal Practice Course (LPC) is the final academic stage of qualification before becoming a solicitor. The course bridges the gap between the academic study of law and the vocational stages of training. Following successful completion of the LPC you will need to undertake a 2 year vocational training contract to be able to practice as a solicitor. A solicitor provides clients with legal advice, often during times of extreme stress such as arrest, divorce, moving house or bereavement. You may work in a firm with other solicitors or set up your own practice, or you may work in central or local government, an in-house legal department, the Crown Prosecution Service or the magistrates’ courts. More information about becoming a solicitor can be found at www.sra.org.uk and www.lawsociety.org.uk All LPCs in England are regulated and graded by the SRA to ensure quality of teaching and to ensure the programmes meets the needs of practice.
The compulsory subjects and skills taught on the LPC are prescribed by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, ensuring you cover all necessary material. Each subject is introduced with a summary lecture providing guidance on difficult topics relating law to practice. The focus of learning is on small group teaching sessions, in the form of interactive workshops that enable you to explore key areas of law and practice in detail. Small group sessions are also used to involve you in typical transactions encountered in practice. You can expect to carry through tasks as if you were in practice, working in teams, using electronic and other information sources.
Learning experience / Modules studied The course will be delivered in two stages:
Stage one Professional Conduct and Regulation including Solicitors’ Accounts, Wills and Administration of Estates and Taxation.
Core Practice Areas Litigation (including Civil and Criminal Litigation), Business Law and Practice and Property Law and Practice.
Course Skills Areas Five separate areas of assessment in: Practical Legal Research, Drafting, Writing, Interviewing and Advising and Advocacy.
Stage two Vocational Electives* You will choose three electives, which are available subject to demand: • Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence • Commercial Property • Commercial Law and Practice • Employment Law • Family Law • Private Client • Immigration and Welfare Law • Advanced Criminal Litigation • Business Transfers • Housing Law * Our range of electives is currently under review and subject to validation and other areas may be added. Please visit the website for more details.
Start dates Mid September.
Study commitment Full-time: 3 days per week Part-time: 2 evenings per week Private study, reading and preparation in your own time will be expected.
Assessment Assessment of the Core Practice Areas, Vocational Electives and Solicitors’ Accounts is by examination. You must achieve competence in each of the Course Skills Areas. There are discrete assessments in Professional Conduct and Regulation, Wills and Administration of Estates, and Taxation.
Further study • LLM Corporate and Business Law • LLM International Human Rights • MPhil or PhD research degrees
Employability Graduates will normally proceed to a training contract to complete their qualification as a solicitor. The vast majority of LPC graduates go on to become qualified solicitors in a range of organisations across many specialist areas.
More information Please contact the School of Law for more details (see page 3).
“The efficiency of teaching and quality of the materials were superb. It is a very practical course, many lecturers are practising solicitors, and workshops are used to give realistic case studies giving a credible idea of cases solicitors may encounter in practice. Combine this with small classes compared to most other LPC courses, great facilities including a purpose built LPC resource room – my expectations have been thoroughly exceeded.” Gemma Atherton, LPC student
PgCert / PgDip / LLM CORPORATE AND BUSINESS LAW SCHOOL: APPLY: DURATION: LOCATION:
SCHOOL OF LAW DIRECT TO THE FACULTY PgCert: FULL-TIME 1 SEMESTER (3 - 4 MONTHS) | PART-TIME 2 SEMESTERS (6 - 8 MONTHS) PgDip: FULL-TIME 2 SEMESTERS (6 - 8 MONTHS) | PART-TIME 3 SEMESTERS (12 - 16 MONTHS) LLM: FULL-TIME 3 SEMESTERS (1 YEAR) | PART-TIME 5 SEMESTERS (2 YEARS) CITY NORTH CAMPUS
Key facts LLMs are an increasingly common and important feature of Legal Education around the world. They typically require one year of full-time study or two years of part-time study. If you have studied law, have a degree with law as a major component or have extensive experience of working in the legal sector, a Masters in Law (LLM) will give you additional expertise in a specific area of the law. It is not only the increased complexity of legal practice that may make you choose to complete an LLM, you may also want to strengthen your core skills â€“ e.g. in writing and research - or simply to be a better lawyer. You may be considering an LLM to jump start your career, change employer, change the field in which you work, earn more money or to move into teaching law. There is no set point within your career when you should study for an LLM. Some people do so immediately after completing their first law degree, others wait until they have been in practice for many years.
Why study with us? You can study modules on the LLM as short CPD credits for professional bodies. The flexibility of the study options available enables you to fit your studies in with your other commitments. The PgCert stage can be completed in as little as three to six months, the PgDip stage in around nine months and the LLM in around 12 months. The qualification is accredited for the compulsory requirements for Continuing Professional Development by the Law Society and the General Council of the Bar. As a reflection of the innovation and research associated with the school, we were the first provider of Corporate Social Responsibility and Pensions Law at LLM level.
Normally a good Honours degree in law or degree that includes law as a substantial component. For standard entry requirements see page 42.
This module explores in both a national and global context the issues around the concept of ‘white collar’ or corporate crime. Various corporate crimes are examined but there is particular focus on corporate responsibility for deaths, corporate crime liability and the problems of prosecuting corporate criminality.
Candidates without a first degree, or who have a good degree in another subject, will be considered but they will be required to demonstrate some relevant legal knowledge and may be called for interview. Applicants with relevant employment and/or professional qualifications will be considered. Suitable applicants may be admitted directly to the Master’s (LLM) stage.
Course overview This programme is designed to meet the current demand for specialist knowledge and skills in the rapidly expanding field of corporate and business law and practice within the UK and Europe. It will provide you with the opportunity to explore in depth some important and topical areas within these fields. It will principally be of interest to those contemplating higher level study and research in this field. In addition, it provides an invaluable foundation for further doctoral studies. The opportunity to explore in-depth topical issues relating to the corporate and business world is not only interesting and relevant, but may also have advantages in your career progression.
Course structure National government and the industrial community have, in recent years, placed great emphasis on entrepreneurship and success in business. At the same time, businesses have been expected to look beyond mere economic success to wider issues such as responsibility for the environment, corporate crime and so on. This programme has been designed to address issues such as corporate responsibility for the environment, directors’ remuneration, intellectual property rights, trusts and pensions, competition and free trade, corporate governance, corporate crime and the wider effects of corporate insolvency, together with the very topical subject of pensions law. In addition, study will focus on the political, economic and social factors essential to an understanding of these issues. Many of these issues may be touched on at undergraduate level, but study at postgraduate level will allow you to undertake a deeper exploration of them.
Corporate social responsibility This module is designed to explore the conceptual and legal framework of corporate governance and responsibility. It will address specific issues in areas of management accountability, the role of directors, the Cadbury code and Cadbury committee, the Hampel and Greenbury reports, auditors, institutional investors, economic and extra-legal control on management and corporate governance in the wider stakeholding community.
Attendance Full-time attendance is one/two days per week for the PgCert and PgDip stages. Part-time attendance is one morning or one afternoon per week depending on timetable requirements. You are expected to attend all seminars and workshops in the modules for which you register.
Learning experience / Modules studied The programme comprises core studies in: • Advanced Company Law* • International Commercial Law* • Corporate Social Responsibility • Advanced Research Methods • Dissertation of 15,000-20,000 words (for LLM students) *If you wish to study for the Postgraduate Certificate (PgCert) only, you will study these modules plus any two others in the first semester. You also have the opportunity to choose from a number of module options, including: • Corporate Employment Law • Intellectual Property Law • European Competition Law • Corporate Crime • Corporate Environmental Law • Corporate Trusts and Pensions Law • Finance and Insolvency Law Some module options may be taken as stand-alone short courses. If you accumulate individual modules, you may apply for accreditation towards the award of PgCert or Postgraduate Diploma (PgDip). The PgCert is based upon the successful completion of four modules, whilst the PgDip requires completion of eight modules in total. For the LLM award, you will also have to complete a research dissertation.
Assessment Assessment is primarily through coursework presentations and journals. There are no examinations. The LLM stage is assessed solely by dissertation.
Further study • Legal Practice Course (LPC) • LLM International Human Rights • Qualified candidates may apply for MPhil or PhD research degrees.
Employability Once you graduate, you may progress to a career in the legal profession as well as in journalism, the civil service, local government, human resources and business management or further doctoral studies. The LLM will enhance your knowledge in a growing sector of legal advice. You would likely be working in or aspiring to work as a solicitor or barrister specialising in this area, or as part of a legal team within an organisation, or a business manager requiring significant legal knowledge. Public sector organisations such as local government or the civil service increasingly require ‘private sector’ skills and understanding. Alternatively, you may want to be a journalist or teacher in this specific area and to build your credentials and knowledge.
More information Please contact the School of Law for more details (see page 3).
“The level of commitment and enthusiasm from the lecturers has been excellent – it’s been great that the teaching is so engaging. It was definitely worth talking to prospective universities first, as it gave me a good idea of whether I would get on with the lecturers and enjoy the course. Because I am working and sponsored by my company I sat down with the LLM programme director and went through the different options to see how they could fit with the needs of my employer and my personal development, before deciding that the course was a good fit. I felt confident that the knowledge and qualifications gained from an LLM would help me to develop my career.” Keith Clarke, LLM graduate
PgDip / LLM INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS SCHOOL: APPLY: DURATION: LOCATION:
SCHOOL OF LAW DIRECT TO THE FACULTY PgDip: FULL-TIME 2 SEMESTERS (6 - 8 MONTHS) | PART-TIME 3 SEMESTERS (12 - 16 MONTHS) LLM: FULL-TIME 3 SEMESTERS (1 YEAR) | PART-TIME 5 SEMESTERS (2 YEARS) CITY NORTH CAMPUS
Key facts LLMs are an increasingly common and important feature of legal education around the world. They typically require one year of full-time study or two years of part-time study. If you have studied law, have a degree with law as a major component or have extensive experience of working in the legal sector, a Masters in Law (LLM) will give you additional expertise in a specific area of the law. It is not only the increased complexity of legal practice that may make you choose to complete an LLM, you may also want to strengthen your core skills – e.g. in writing and research - or simply to be a better lawyer. You may be considering an LLM to jump start your career, change employer, change the field in which you work, earn more money or to move into teaching law. There is no set point within your career when you should study for an LLM. Some people do so immediately after completing their first law degree, others wait until they have been in practice for many years.
Why study with us? There are two start dates, in September and January, in order to provide you with flexibility over when you join the course. Other attractions of the course include a three month internship in America - working in an American legal firm or Public Defender’s Office – as well as the possibility of working directly with human rights organisations around the world. In addition, you will have the opportunity to be creative in choosing your own human rights project.
Entry requirements Normally a good Honours law degree or a degree which includes law as a substantial component is required. Candidates who have a good undergraduate degree in another subject will be considered but will be required to demonstrate some relevant legal knowledge.
Course overview This course examines the impact of international human rights standards on national constitutions and laws, with particular focus given to the conflict between international standards and national provision. The course can be completed with or without an international placement through two distinctive pathways – USA and International.
Course structure What makes this course different is that you will be required to put your knowledge and skills into practice on at least one real-life project. If you do not go on placement or contribute to an Amicus brief, you will take Human Rights and Social Change. This is your own project, where you will develop a human rights activity in a community setting. We have been able to take interested students to events in Europe, including the Annual Sessions of the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva and the World Congress Against the Death Penalty in Paris. The Postgraduate Diploma (PgDip) is completed with eight modules and the Master’s (LLM) stage by completion of a dissertation or a placement equivalent to four modules. Each single module is equivalent to 150 hours of study. The taught modules are delivered across one full day per week throughout the academic year. For individual research modules, you will arrange supervision times directly with your supervisors.
Learning experience / Modules studied We offer the course in two pathways, US and International. The compulsory modules will give you a base level of understanding in a complex area of the law.
US pathway This pathway focuses on the conflict between the American constitution, American law and international human rights standards. Opportunity exists to undertake an internship of between three and six months in America, working in a legal firm or campaign group assisting on death row trials, appeals or prisoners’ rights and related issues. Most students on this pathway undertake the US placement. If you do not travel to the US you will be involved in the preparation of an ‘Amicus’ brief, arguing a point of human rights law for submission to the US Supreme Court.
International pathway The International pathway examines human rights from both a global and local perspective. You will work as an intern with lawyers, organisations, institutions or tribunals - either overseas or in the UK - to contribute to the research and preparation of cases or projects relating to human rights or social justice. If you do not undertake an internship you will design and execute your own practical human rights project locally. Projects may include community education in schools and prisons, awareness raising campaigns, or website development. The project can be as creative as you wish to make it. Whichever pathway you follow, you will take modules in Public International Law, Critical Perspectives on Rights, Globalisation and Justice, and Advanced Legal Research Methods. You will also take a module in either International Human Rights Standards in the US or Rights, Liberties and the European Convention on Human Rights. Optional modules include International Children’s Rights, International Criminal Justice and Social Transition, Human Rights and the Environment, and Refugees and the Law.
Examples of modules studied:
The LLM will enable you to specialise and hone your legal skills in the subject area. Many students are already working in or have experience of the voluntary sector where they have dealt with issues relating to refugees and human rights breaches. The course will help you gain experience in this sector of legal work enabling you to build a career in areas such as United Nations Agencies, Civilian Peacekeeping, Foreign Office/ Dept for International Development, Specialist Human Rights Law practice, International Tribunals and the International Criminal Court. Many graduates progress to professional training as solicitors or barristers.
• Advanced Legal Research Methods • Critical Perspectives on Rights • Globalisation and Justice • Human Rights Standards in the USA • Public International Law • Rights Liberties and the European Convention on Human Rights
Optional modules • Amicus Briefs • Human Rights and the Environment • International Children’s Rights • Refugees and the Law • Dissertation (for Master’s stage) • Human Rights Internship (for Master’s stage) • US Placement (for Master’s stage)
Assessment The PgDip modules comprise principally seminars and workshops and interactive learning. Assessment is by coursework and presentations. The Master’s degree is assessed by dissertation (for dissertation students) or by written reflective analysis and competence assessments appropriate to the nature of the placement (for placement students).
Further study • Legal Practice Course (LPC) • LLM Corporate and Business Law • Qualified candidates may apply for MPhil or PhD research degrees.
More information Please contact the School of Law for more details (see page 3).
“As an international student, originally from Argentina, I liked the diversity of a big city like Birmingham and was impressed with the experienced and friendly staff here. For my dissertation I wanted to analyse how the ‘best interest of the child principle’ was taken into consideration in a refugee context, particularly with unaccompanied minors (UAMs). I had the opportunity to go to refugee camps in Nzerekore, Guinea, where hundreds of UAMs sought refuge after the atrocities committed by Charles Taylor during his tenure in Liberia from 1997 to 2003. The LLM in International Human Rights has helped to give me the tools I need to make a difference, part of the reason I have gained so much from the unforgettable experience at Birmingham City University.” Justo Casal, LLM graduate
MPhil / PhD LAW SCHOOL: APPLY: DURATION: LOCATION:
SCHOOL OF LAW DIRECT TO THE FACULTY FULL-TIME 3-5 YEARS | PART-TIME UP TO 6 YEARS CITY NORTH CAMPUS
Key facts You will be joining a thriving research community and be part of one of the University’s research centres of excellence. The Centre for Applied Criminology is led by one of the UK’s leading criminologists, Professor David Wilson. In addition, you will be encouraged to publish in collaboration with your supervisors and to take part in research conferences.
Entry requirements To register for PhD (Doctor of Philosophy) you will normally be expected to hold a Master’s award in a relevant area. To apply for an MPhil (Master of Philosophy) you will normally be required to have a first or second class honours degree. Should you be accepted for registration for an MPhil, you may be allowed to apply for transfer to PhD registration at a later date, subject to satisfactory research progress.
Course overview The School of Law provides you with supervision as you pursue a research programme for the award of an MPhil or PhD degree. You may undertake research either full-time or part-time. Once accepted for an MPhil/PhD programme you will be assigned to a Director of Studies. At least one second supervisor will also be appointed.
Course structure The faculty welcomes enquiries relating to the fields of law and criminology. Areas of research in which staff are active include American Criminal Justice System; Death Penalty Studies; US Constitutional Law; Comparative Constitutional Law; Environment Law; Intellectual Property Law; Medical Law and Ethics; International Human Rights and Conflict Resolution; EU Competition Law; Corporate Insolvency and Corporate Accountability; Corporate Trusts and Pensions and Investment Regulations; Child Law and Sports Law; Corporate Crime and Criminal Justice Process; Jurisprudence of Natural Rights, Legal Theory and Ethics; Employment Law and Labour Relations. Financial bursaries may be available in suitable cases for Death Penalty Studies and Criminal Justice related research.
Assessment MPhil and PhD thesis and oral (viva voce) examination.
Employability The majority of students who enrol for a research degree are part-time and are employed. The MPhil and PhD awards are well established and valued professional qualifications within the legal sector and will enhance your career prospects. Should you want to follow a career in teaching and researching academic law in higher education, a PhD is highly desirable.
More information Please contact the School of Law for more details (see page 3).
BA (Hons) CRIMINOLOGY PROGRAMMES SCHOOL: APPLY: DURATION: LOCATION:
SCHOOL OF SOCIAL SCIENCES FULL-TIME THROUGH UCAS | PART-TIME DIRECT TO FACULTY FULL-TIME 3 YEARS | PART-TIME 5 YEARS CITY NORTH CAMPUS
Tariff score: 240
BA (Hons) CRIMINOLOGY
BA (Hons) CRIMINOLOGY AND PSYCHOLOGY
BA (Hons) CRIMINOLOGY AND SECURITY STUDIES
BA (Hons) CRIMINOLOGY AND POLICING
Key facts The degree will develop your critical appreciation of the relationship between the individual and social aspects of crime and victimisation. The course will use a variety of teaching and learning techniques in order to develop a range of transferable academic and practical skills that will be attractive to employers in both the public and private sectors. As part of your studies, there will be opportunities to liaise and work with external organisations such as The Howard Student League, New Bridge and Prison Link. A broadly based first year will introduce you to the range of subjects offered through the joint programmes. This will enable you to confirm or change your original choice of degree from within our suite of criminology programmes in a more informed way at the end of year one.
Why study Criminology with us? • Experienced, approachable and expert staff in the fields of policing, crime and criminology. • Strong links with local police forces, the probation service, prisons and criminal rehabilitation charities. • Mock court room facilities are used to familiarise you with investigator, interviewer/interviewee and court proceedings. • A specialist Centre for Applied Criminology, internationally recognised for its world leading research and designated as one of five University research ‘centres of excellence’.
Entry requirements • You will be expected to have successfully completed a minimum of two subjects at A2 Level, two 6 units or one 12 unit AVCE. • Remaining points can be made up with AS qualifications. • Applicants with BTEC National/Higher National level qualifications or from Access courses will be considered. • Mature applicants with non-standard or Access to Higher Education qualifications are encouraged to apply. • Entry at an advanced stage of the course with credit for prior learning or experience may be considered on an individual basis. • Advanced Diplomas and Progression Diplomas are acceptable as all or part of the required tariff points.
Course overview These degrees are designed to offer in-depth study of crime, punishment and victimisation. They aim to develop knowledge and understanding of the core schools of criminological thought, their history, contemporary relevance and application as well as their relationship to other key social science disciplines. Students will gain an appreciation of the social, historical, cultural and political contexts in which crimes are committed and constructed and in which policy responses to offenders and victims are produced. The courses are designed to equip you with a range of academic and analytical skills that will be valuable in a wide range of careers. They will also be of direct relevance if you wish to establish a career within the criminal justice system (CJS) or pursue further academic study at postgraduate level.
Course structure From organised crime, terrorism and corporate crime through to local infringements of the law, crime is constantly in the public eye. Concerns for public safety, increases in identity theft, fraud and a need for national and international cooperation in tackling crime have made the study of criminology a popular choice. Your role as a criminologist is to study the behavioural deviations that result in criminal behaviour and give a theoretical analysis of the causes. You could also be involved in profiling crime or criminals or analysing the CJS. As a criminologist you could be working for or with a law enforcement agency, the CJS or a government agency or a non-governmental organisation. Many criminologists specialise in certain fields of work; for instance, you might focus on a specific age group, a specific type of crime, crime prevention, the process of crime scene investigation, the process of criminal litigation or the process of criminal corrections.
To be a good criminologist you should be able to demonstrate responsibility, creativity, analytical thinking and problem-solving. You will also need to be interested in people and their behaviour. Criminology focuses your study on crime, causes of crime and forms of punishment and rehabilitation. As part of the family of social sciences you will draw from expertise in disciplines such as sociology, psychology and law. You will look for answers to questions such as why people commit crime, how society responds to crime and how agencies like the police, the probation service and the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) prevent and investigate crime. All the courses have a common first year. So - regardless of which specific course you apply for - your first year will be the same. This approach means that you have the chance to taste different areas of the subject before finally committing to a specific degree choice.
BA (Hons) Criminology This programme provides an opportunity for you to gain a broad understanding of the operation of the CJS in England and Wales. You may select modules to suit your particular interests from any of the other criminology degree programmes offered.
Examples of Level Five/Second Year Modules are: • • • • • •
Core Issues in Crime and Punishment Criminological Research Criminal and Forensic Psychology Addiction and Criminality Crime and the Media Optional Modules
Examples of Level Six/Third Year Modules are: • • • • • •
Theories of Rights Crime Prevention Applied Criminology Victimology and Restorative Justice Youth Justice Optional Modules
BA (Hons) Criminology and Psychology
BA (Hons) Criminology and Security Studies
The course is aimed at anyone who is working, or wants to pursue a career, within the socio-legal field of work. This ranges from probation to the community and voluntary sectors as well as social work and the legal system. Emphasis is placed upon putting theory into practice, equipping you with the skills and abilities to prepare you for your professional career.
The issue of security is a key theme of life in contemporary Britain and further afield. In 1989, with the end of the Cold War and its ideological battles between Communism and Capitalism, there was a broad expectation that the world would be a safer place and that future generations would experience a New World Order of peace, stability and development. The reality has been somewhat different. The period since 1989 has not only witnessed numerous bloody conflicts, but also the 9/11 attacks on mainland America, a subsequent ‘War on Terror’, the identification of ‘an axis of evil’ and wars in Afghanistan and Iraq which have affected Britain not least through terrorist attacks and a heightened level of threat.
If you have a special interest in psychology it can be studied as a Joint Honours degree. This means that you will take an equal number of criminology and psychology modules. These subjects share a common interest in the study of criminality and crime. This degree will examine the thought factors involved in distinguishing crime committed by those who choose to simply break the law and those who do so on the basis of specific circumstances such as deprivation, isolation or other socio-economic factors. Concepts and theories are shared, as are methods of enquiry. Because the boundaries between criminology and psychology are so inter-related, the two subjects offer a high degree of harmony in their study. You may have the opportunity to study overseas for the second semester of the second year.
Examples of Level Five/Second Year Modules are: • • • • • •
Core Issues in Crime and Punishment Criminological Research Abnormal Psychology Psychological Research Crime and the Media Issues in Social Psychology
Examples of Level Six/Third Year Modules are: • • • • • • •
Developmental Psychology Identity and Subjectivity Cognitive Psychology Victimology and Restorative Justice Applied Criminology Crime Prevention Youth Justice
The security studies aspect of the degree aims to examine these key elements of insecurity in the contemporary world, be it from visible, radical, religious groups and terrorist campaigns through to longer term issues of insecurity created by declining resources or a changing environment. The focus is not solely on Britain and the security threats it faces but includes wider study of the underlying causes of insecurity and various governmental and group responses to it.
Examples of Level Five/Second Year Modules are: • • • • • • •
Core Issues in Crime and Punishment Criminological Research Crime and the Media Intelligence and Security since 1945 Terrorism Theory Global Security in Post-Cold War World The New Super Powers
Examples of Level Six/Third Year Modules are: • Britain and Terrorism • The War on Terror: American Security Policy since 2001 • Islam and the Modern World • Environmental Security • Victimology and Restorative Justice • Applied Criminology • Crime Prevention • Youth Justice
BA (Hons) Criminology and Policing This single honours degree examines the way in which the police in England and Wales operate and considers some of the practical and theoretical issues faced by modern police forces. Developed by ex-police officers, this course is particularly valuable to you if you are thinking of joining the police or are already working for a police force.
Examples of Level Five/Second Year Modules are: • • • • • •
Core Issues in Crime and Punishment Criminological Research Policing the State Contemporary Issues in Policing Managing Criminal Justice Optional Modules
Examples of Level Six/Third Year Modules are: • • • • • •
Managing the Police Crime Prevention Applied Criminology Victimology and Restorative Justice Comparative Policing Optional Modules
Employability These courses are suitable if you wish to embark on a criminal justice-related career, including jobs in the Police, Customs and Excise, probation, youth justice, community safety and the Prison Service as well as the voluntary sector. These courses are especially suitable for serving police officers and civilian support staff, customs officers, prison officers and those working in the Immigration and Nationality service. Part-time study in Criminology is often followed by people who are already employed within the CJS and who are intending to improve their career prospects. Applied Social Science degrees also develop skills that are appropriate to a range of careers from teaching to retail management.
Placements, study visits available
You will have the opportunity to gain practical insight through visits to prisons, courts and police establishments.
Assessment is through a variety of methods including coursework and examinations with the option of completing a dissertation in the final stage. All assessments will require you to use your communication and research skills to solve problems.
You are encouraged to take an active interest in the work of the various criminology agencies. We encourage those without relevant experience in the sector to get involved with some voluntary work whilst undertaking this undergraduate programme. Opportunities exist for visits and voluntary work and, in certain circumstances, academic credit can be gained for voluntary work undertaken. Current students are working in a number of areas including the Special Constabulary, prison visiting, drug treatment schemes, victim support and bail/youth hostels for young offenders.
Further study • MA Criminology • MA Criminological Research Qualified candidates may apply for MPhil or PhD research degrees.
More information Please contact the School of Social Sciences for more details (see page 3).
BSc (Hons) CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION SCHOOL: APPLY: DURATION: LOCATION:
SCHOOL OF SOCIAL SCIENCES FULL-TIME THROUGH UCAS (F410) | PART-TIME DIRECT TO FACULTY FULL-TIME 3 YEARS | PART-TIME 5 YEARS CITY NORTH CAMPUS
Tariff score: 240
Key facts From organised crime, terrorism and corporate crime through to local infringements of the law, crime is constantly in the public eye. Concerns for public safety, increases in identity theft, fraud and a need for national and international cooperation in tackling crime have made the study of Criminology - and in particular Criminal Investigation - a popular choice. Criminal Investigation is a specialist area which can involve forensic analysis of crime scenes but also includes the less obvious role of records investigation to uncover information from data sources. Knowledge of the legal basis of investigations and how and what constitutes evidence is key. Criminal Investigation needs to be a dynamic and evolving process that has to be responsive and to be able to predict emerging criminal trends. To be a good criminal investigator you should be able to demonstrate responsibility, creativity, analytical thinking and problem-solving. You will also need to be interested in people and their behaviour. • We are one of the first UK universities to offer a Criminal Investigation degree • We have experienced, approachable and expert staff in the fields of policing, crime and criminology • We have strong links with local police forces, probation service, prisons and criminal rehabilitation charities • Our mock court room facilities are used to familiarise you with investigator, interviewer/interviewee and court proceedings • Our specialist Centre for Appled Criminology is designated as one of five University research ‘centres of excellence’. This University has a long established history of providing undergraduate and postgraduate education in policing, criminal justice and criminology. The BSc (Hons) Criminal Investigation continues that tradition by providing a degree with an applied focus.
Entry requirements • You are expected to have successfully completed a minimum of two subjects at A2 Level, two 6 units or one 12 unit AVCE. Remaining points can be made up with AS qualifications. • Applicants with BTEC National level qualifications or from Access courses will be considered. • Advanced Diplomas and Progression Diplomas are acceptable as all or part of the required tariff points. • Mature applicants with non-standard or Access to Higher Education qualifications are encouraged to apply. • Entry at an advanced stage of the course with credit for prior learning or experience may be considered on an individual basis.
Learning experience / Modules studied YEAR 1 (LEVEL 4)
Term two/ three
Introduction to Criminology (30 credits)
Introduction to Psychology (15 credits)
Crime, History and Politics (15 credits)
Introduction to Security Studies (15 credits)
Crime Analysis (15 credits)
Legal Processes with Criminal Law (30 credits)
Award: Cert HE (120 credits)
Course overview This degree offers in depth practical and theoretical study of the criminal investigation process. It will equip you with a range of academic and analytical skills that will be valuable in a wide range of careers including those in which investigation plays a significant part. Consequently, the degree will be of direct relevance if you wish to establish a career within the criminal justice system (CJS), private security industries or, alternatively, to pursue further academic study at postgraduate level.
YEAR 2 (LEVEL 5)
Term one Term two/ three
Option (15 credits) Contemporary Issues in Policing (30 credits)
Principled Policing (30 credits)
Course structure The first stage of study offers a foundation in core areas such as criminal law, theoretical perspectives and the workings of the CJS. The second year of study focuses on the context and guidelines that frame criminal investigations. The third year draws theory and practice together by introducing you to more specialist and practical skills, such as interviewing and interpreting forensic evidence. You will also have the option to undertake a voluntary placement with a criminal justice agency. Part-time students may take core modules over one day a week, as the timetable has been constructed specifically to accommodate the needs of those with other commitments. In particular, mature students, those working full-time and/or those with childcare responsibilities may find this arrangement attractive and are strongly encouraged to apply.
Criminal and Forensic Psychology (15 credits)
Principles of Investigation (30 credits)
Award: Dip HE (240 credits)
YEAR 3 (LEVEL 6)
Issues in Criminal Investigation Forensic Science (30 credits)
Term two/ three
Issues in Criminal Investigation Interviewing (30 credits)
Option: Advanced Crime Extended Research Analysis (15 credits) Project (30 credits) or Managing the Police (30 credits) Comparative or Policing (15 credits) Working in Criminal Justice (30 credits) Award: BSc (Hons) (360 credits)
Placements, study visits available Throughout the course visits are made to a range of criminal justice agencies including local prisons, courts and police establishments. In addition, an optional module is offered in the final year of study, entitled `Working in Criminal Justice,’ in which students undertake a placement with – for example - the Youth Offending Service, Police Special Constabulary or Local Community Safety Partnerships.
Assessment Modules are assessed through a combination of coursework and examinations in all years. In addition, in Year Three you will produce a file of evidence that you will present in a mock courtroom.
Further study • MA Criminology • MA Criminological Research Qualified candidates may apply for MPhil or PhD research degrees.
Employability This course is suitable if you wish to embark on a criminal justice-related career, including jobs in the Police, Customs and Revenue, probation, youth justice, community safety and the Prison Service as well as the growing private and voluntary sectors. Part-time study in Criminal Investigation is especially suitable for people who are already employed within the CJS including serving police officers, police staff, customs officers, prison officers and those working in the Immigration and Nationality Service. It is also suitable for people in a range of occupations where investigative skills play a significant part in their role and who want to improve their career prospects. Applied social science degrees also develop skills that are appropriate to a range of careers from teaching to retail management.
More information Please contact the School of Social Sciences for more details (see page 3).
PgCert / PgDip / MA CRIMINOLOGY SCHOOL: APPLY: DURATION: LOCATION:
SCHOOL OF SOCIAL SCIENCES DIRECT TO FACULTY FULL-TIME 1 YEAR | PART-TIME 2 YEARS CITY NORTH CAMPUS
Key facts This course explores both the theoretical and practice based aspects of crime and the criminal justice system and is suitable for both individuals who have just completed an undergraduate degree or individuals with substantial practical experience. Learning can be combined and integrated with employment. Attendance is required on one day or one afternoon and evening per week during term-time. Individual research for the dissertation and proposal modules may be based on an individual’s vocational or voluntary interests. Individual modules can also be taken on a stand-alone basis. We’re interested in you if you have either relevant undergraduate qualifications or suitable professional experience in the criminal justice, legal and media sectors. There are opportunities for onward progression to MPhil and PhD research degrees. The faculty has a long history of providing both undergraduate and postgraduate education in criminology and criminal justice and has developed a vibrant research culture centred on its Centre for Applied Criminology. The committed course team includes staff with international reputations in criminal justice, some of whom have had senior level experience of working in criminal justice agencies.
Entry requirements You would usually be expected to have a good undergraduate degree but admission will also be made on the basis of experience of a suitable quality and length. Suitably qualified candidates may also be admitted directly to the Master’s Stage. You may be given credit for individual modules based on prior knowledge and / or experience. Some modules may be taken as stand-alone short courses. As you accumulate individual modules, you may apply for accreditation towards the award of the Certificate, Diploma or Master’s.
Course overview This course offers an exciting opportunity to study both theoretical criminology and the more applied aspects of criminal justice with an experienced teaching team that has been delivering postgraduate teaching since 1997. The course is intended for both recent graduates and practitioners who wish to develop their understanding of the debates surrounding crime and the criminal justice system. Within the course structure there are opportunities to concentrate on the more theoretical aspects of criminology or centre your studies on applied or practicebased aspects of criminal justice. There are also choices between full and part-time and between full and half-day attendance.
Course structure The course is designed to enable you to: • Explore key debates from both criminological theory and criminal justice practice. • Critically assess the contributions of research to understanding crime and criminal justice. • Understand the principles and practice of research. • Form judgements on the relative merits of, and relationships between, different research tools. • Develop the capability to design, manage and disseminate a research project to a professional standard. • Develop key skills in computing, researching and communication. The level of study commitment you need to make to the course is: Full-time - between 1 full day and ½ day attendance Part-time - between 1 full day and ½ day attendance in the first year You will also be expected to conduct private study, reading and preparation in your own time.
Learning experience / Modules studied The Certificate and Diploma stages are taught principally in seminars, tutorials and workshops, which encourage and demand substantial student participation. The partial exceptions to this teaching and learning regime are the modules, The Criminal Justice Context and The Proposal which are delivered by a variety of means, including seminars, group and individual tutorials and the use of the University’s Virtual Learning Environment. The Master’s stage is delivered and assessed through a dissertation primarily supervised on a one-to-one basis. The course has three formal stages: • The Certificate is the first taught stage of this postgraduate programme and comprises three or four compulsory taught modules. • The Diploma stage consists of two further taught modules and a double proposal module that is delivered flexibly through group tuition. • Those proceeding to the Master’s stage will be required to complete a dissertation of 20,000 words. It is possible to complete your studies at any of these stages. Most full-time students will complete all stages in one year from September to September. Most part-time students will complete all stages in two years.
ADVANCED RESEARCH METHODS
PENAL THEORY & COMPARATIVE POLICING
THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE CONTEXT (DOUBLE MODULE)
RESEARCH PROPOSAL (DEVELOPMENT AND WRITING)
In its Certificate and Diploma stages, this course has four compulsory modules. The Advanced Criminology and Applying Criminology modules provide an important core of theoretical criminology. At the same time the Advanced Research Methods module provides experience of key research methodologies relevant to both the Master’s dissertation and to criminal justice practice. The Community Justice module seeks to develop a critical understanding of the increasing involvement of other institutions beyond the traditional law and order agencies and of communities themselves in the delivery of crime prevention and community safety. At the Certificate stage there is a choice between the Penal Theory and Comparative Policing modules, or The Criminal Justice Context double module. Penal Theory and Comparative Policing are delivered in the first semester using relatively conventional teaching and learning methods. They make for a full day of attendance during the first semester. Penal Theory aims to examine theoretical and historical perspectives on the use of imprisonment. Comparative Policing seeks to examine different national policing practices and consider alternative theoretical understandings of these variations, which are frequently rooted in understandings of wider national social, economic, cultural and political contexts. The alternative double module, The Criminal Justice Context: Policy, Management and Practice considers the changing policy and managerial context of the criminal justice system (CJS). It evaluates the reasons for the changes and their implications for practice, requiring you to reflect on your own experience. Importantly, this module is taught through a blend of a limited number of evening sessions and the use of the University’s internet-based learning environment.
Placements, study visits available Previous students have visited high security prison HMP Grendon.
Assessment Assessment will be through coursework in various forms including essays, mini research projects, student presentations and group work. The Masterâ€™s degree is delivered through individual supervision and assessed via a dissertation.
Further study Having completed this course, you may choose to proceed with further study, for example at doctoral level.
Employability It is expected that those enrolling on this course will either want to progress further in criminal justice, or wish to enter the profession. The Masterâ€™s teaching team, combined with the expertise of The Centre for Applied Criminology give you excellent access to experienced practitioners and CJS organisations with some of the teaching sessions being led by existing practitioners. The access to professionals, together with the presence of practitioners among fellow students, means that the course provides excellent opportunities for building contacts and networking. Former students on the course have included prison governors, police and probation personnel, magistrates, media commentators and employees of charities and bodies including the National Association for the Care and Resettlement of Offenders (NACRO), the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) and the New Bridge.
More information Please contact the School of Social Sciences for more details (see page 3).
PgCert / PgDip / MA CRIMINOLOGICAL RESEARCH SCHOOL: APPLY: DURATION: LOCATION:
SCHOOL OF SOCIAL SCIENCES DIRECT TO FACULTY FULL-TIME 1 YEAR | PART-TIME 2 YEARS CITY NORTH CAMPUS
Key facts Learn more about criminological research from academics who are experts in their fields and who have senior level experience of working in and researching criminal justice and related agencies. Develop expertise in writing research proposals to advance your own future research efforts and enjoy the opportunity to pursue independent research on a topic of interest to you within Criminology.
Entry requirements You will normally need a good Honours degree or equivalent in a related social science discipline. Professional qualifications and/or substantial professional experience in an appropriate environment will also be considered on an individual basis.
Course overview The MA in Criminological Research is intended to provide advanced training in generic and specialist research skills for graduates in an appropriate social science discipline. Its aim is to meet the needs of research practitioners and students intending to register to pursue further study at doctoral level. The primary learning outcomes for the programme have been developed in line with the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Postgraduate Training Guidelines.
The faculty has a long history of providing both undergraduate and postgraduate education in the fields of crime and criminal justice. It has developed a vibrant research culture centred around its Centre for Applied Criminology. This course is suitable for you if you are a graduate from a criminology or another social science discipline and want to develop your research skills in order to proceed either to doctoral level studies in criminology or to take up a range of posts in criminal justice agencies, related government offices or non-governmental organisations (NGOs), particularly in research-focused areas of these organisations. The course provides opportunities to study in the exciting research environment of the Centre for Applied Criminology, where highly experienced academic staff will provide supervision and support.
The course is designed to enable you to:
The emphasis is on a student-centred approach to teaching and learning, using a variety of assessment methods that depend both on the learning outcomes and the teaching environment for each individual module.
• Explore key theoretical concepts and empirical debates in contemporary social sciences and their implications for criminological research and practice. • Understand the principles of research design and strategy. • Critically assess the contribution of research to the understanding of crime and criminal justice. • Understand the relative merits and relationships of both quantitative and qualitative research tools. • Develop detailed knowledge and experience of quantitative data collection and analysis. • Attain a clear understanding of ethical and legal issues, including Intellectual Property Rights, when researching sensitive topics. • Establish an area of research expertise in a relevant topic area. • Develop key skills in computing, word-processing, transcription, bibliographic searches and referencing. • Confidently disseminate research findings and proceed to further academic study at doctoral level or to employment in an appropriate environment. It is expected that full-time students will be committed to two full days of study per week and part-time students to one full day of study per week in addition to one day per week spent attending the course at the university.
Learning experience / Modules studied CERTIFICATE (PgCert)
FOUNDATIONS OF SOCIAL RESEARCH
DOING QUANTITATIVE RESEARCH
RESEARCH PROPOSAL (DEVELOPMENT AND WRITING)
DOING QUALITATIVE RESEARCH
MASTER’S (MA) DISSERTATION
Assessment methods include traditional essays, reports, individual and group presentations and computer-based exercises. The MA stage is assessed by dissertation.
Further study Qualified candidates may apply to enrol on research degree programmes leading to the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
Employability Graduates with a postgraduate qualification in Criminological Research will be eligible for employment in a range of research posts within government or the various agencies of criminal justice, charities, NGOs and elsewhere. Those who go on to doctoral study will be qualified to work in Higher Education and in senior research posts.
More information Please contact the School of Social Sciences for more details (see page 3).
This information is intended as a general guide to the University’s courses and facilities and forms no part of any contract between you and the University. Although reasonable steps are taken to provide the courses as described, the University cannot guarantee the provision of any course or facility. Any course may be altered or withdrawn owing to circumstances beyond the University’s control. It is strongly recommended that prospective students contact the faculty to obtain the most up-to-date course information. For full terms and conditions please log on to www.bcu.ac.uk/web2/misc/legal.html
Disability Birmingham City University’s Disability Service aims to enable students with disabilities or learning support needs to make the most of their time at university, whether they have a physical, sensory or hidden disability, mental health difficulties or specific learning difficulties. In order to help you plan and prepare for university life, we have a range of services and equipment which can be made available to you. At Birmingham City University we think it is important that you feel you can tell us about any disability you may have. We regard disclosure of a disability as a positive step, because once we are aware of your disability we can then try to support your individual needs. If you have not made us aware of your disability or you feel you may have a disability please contact the Disability Service. Tel: +44 (0)121 331 5128 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Equal opportunities Birmingham City University promotes equality of opportunity in respect of every aspect of its provision. University policy and practice will seek to provide an environment that is free from discrimination against students, staff and others. The University and its staff will ensure that all prospective students are treated solely on the basis of their merits, abilities and potential. The University will seek to prevent discrimination on the grounds of race, colour, ethnic origin, nationality, religious belief, gender, sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, family circumstances, citizenship, social and economic status, or any other irrelevant individual differences. For full details of the University’s Equal Opportunities Policy please log on to www.bcu.ac.uk
How to find us
By road From the North and South via M6 Leave M6 at junction 7, taking the A34 (Birmingham City Centre). Keeping in the left hand lane continue along the dual-carriageway for approximately 2.05 miles. Birmingham City University will now be ahead of you. On approaching Perry Barr Greyhound Stadium (left-hand side), turn left onto Aldridge Road (A453), immediately moving into right-hand filter lane for Wellhead Lane (signposted). Follow the lane, turning right into the student car park of the main University entrance in Franchise Street.
From Bristol and the South West via M5 The M5 joins the M6 at West Bromwich. Take the M6 (south) to Junction 7, alight via the A34 (Birmingham City Centre) and continue as above to Birmingham City University City North Campus.
From Coventry and the East (via Spaghetti Junction) Heading towards Birmingham City Centre on the A38(M), follow signs for Aston and Waterlinks, turning left off the A38(M) at Park Circus. Turn right into Victoria Road (signposted to Birchfield and Perry Barr – Birmingham City University is approximately 2 miles from this point). At the next traffic island turn right onto the A34 to Walsall and Perry Barr. Join the dual-carriageway and filter off at the next available exit signposted “One Stop Shopping Centre.” Turn right at the traffic island (along Aston Lane) to the first set of traffic lights. Turn left onto Wellhead Lane, over the humped back bridge to the University main entrance and car parks.
From Birmingham City Centre (approximately 3 miles from Perry Barr) Take the A34 towards Birchfield, Perry Barr and Walsall (signposted). After approximately 2.5 miles, passing through traffic lights and an underpass, keep in the lefthand lane and filter off the dual-carriageway signposted
to “One Stop Shopping Centre.” Turn right at the traffic island (along Aston Lane) to the first set of traffic lights. Turn left onto Wellhead Lane, over the humped back bridge to the University main entrance and car parks.
By bus from Birmingham Quickest buses are the limited stop services 996 from Priory Queensway (Argos/Living Well) and the 997 from Carrs Lane. Additionally, services 51, 52 and 52A travel from Priory Queensway (Argos/Living Well) and Carrs Lane, services 33 and 34 travel from Dale End, services 91 and 107 travel from Bull Street. When travelling by bus from Birmingham City Centre alight at the “One Stop Shopping Centre.” Birmingham City University City North Campus is opposite and easily reached by foot via the crossings. Further information can be obtained from Centro.
Taxi from Birmingham There are taxi ranks at New Street Station and throughout the City Centre. The journey time from the City Centre to Perry Barr is approximately 10 minutes.
By train All Inter-City services to Birmingham arrive at Birmingham New Street Station. At least two trains an hour leave New Street for Perry Barr Station (journey time approximately 13 minutes) on the Cross City (Walsall) line.
By air Birmingham International Airport is directly linked to the rail Inter-City network by Birmingham International Station. Birmingham New Street Station, located in the City Centre, is 10 minutes away by Inter-City or local services, which run every 15 minutes at peak times. Birmingham International Airport and Birmingham International Station are linked by a complimentary bus service, journey time approximately 90 seconds.
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