Research course

Criminal Justice Studies

University of Portsmouth · Institute of Criminal Justice Studies

Entry requirements

A good honours degree or equivalent in a relevant subject or a master's degree in an appropriate subject. Exceptionally, equivalent professional experience and/or qualifications will be considered. All applicants are subject to face-to-face or telephone interview.

English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.0.

Months of entry

October, February

Course content

Why take this course?

Research encompasses a wide range of theoretical, methodological and doctrinal approaches in law and the Criminal Justice System. Research strengths converge in several areas, including business law, discrimination law and legal education, with productive interdisciplinary collaborations such as with criminal justice and economics.

The Institute of Criminal Justice Studies (ICJS) is a multi-disciplinary department with an extensive range of research activity, pure and applied. A number of our staff are leading figures in their fields of scholarship. Our researchers work to enhance and develop knowledge and understanding in the broad field of criminal justice and criminological studies, including research into criminology and criminal justice studies, counter fraud, community justice, police, forensics and investigation, security and risk management, and criminal psychology. Research within the field of Law and Criminology may also be closely linked to research within the department of Psychology.


Corporate Governance Research Group
We seek to inform public policy in the national context (at home and abroad), to affect corporate behaviour, and to explore how governance styles can impact upon the wider economic and socio-economic agenda.

The Centre for Counter Fraud Studies (CCFS)
The Centre was founded in 2009 to accommodate the growing interest in counter fraud that has occurred within the Institute over the last ten years, providing a clear focus for research, knowledge transfer and educational provision to the counter fraud community.

Centre for European Studies and International Research (CEISR)
CEISR is a major interdisciplinary centre for research on Europe, its diasporas and its relations with the wider world. CEISR was established in 1997 and is now the largest centre of its kind in the UK. It brings together over 70 researchers from across the University including linguists, historians, sociologists, political scientists, criminologists, security experts, anthropologists and specialists in area studies.

Centre for Forensic Interviewing
The Centre provides teaching to students of criminology-related subjects in conjunction with research opportunities for those wishing to examine any topic within the field of interviewing and investigation, alongside training and knowledge transfer initiatives for professionals working in investigative interviewing.

Centre for the Study of Missing Persons
The Centre, founded to accommodate the growing interest in the field of missing persons, provides a clear focus for research, knowledge transfer and educational provision to academics, professionals in this community and relatives of missing people.

Module Details


The Policing, Crime and Investigation Cluster is a multi-disciplinary umbrella for research on policing, probation, crime scene methods, and criminal and forensic investigation. As well as staff from ICJS, the Cluster includes staff from the School of Law, the Portsmouth Business School (forensic accounting) and the Department of Psychology. Research areas include:

  • Investigative interviewing and evidence
  • Masculinities and offending behaviour
  • Miscarriages of justice
  • Police accountability, governance and police reform
  • Police management and police leadership
  • Public protection and MAPPA
  • Professional culture in inter-professional contexts
  • Development of forensic and crime scene investigation

We are working and supervising in research areas such as:

  • Societal and organisational risk
  • Delivery of security from public and private sector perspectives
  • The challenge of fraud and its effective control

Our research focuses on young people and families in trouble as well as the youth justice system. Research areas include:

  • Anti-social behaviour
  • Child abuse, safeguarding and children in care
  • Comparative research on young people in trouble
  • Crime prevention and interventions with young people in trouble
  • Crime prevention and safer schools
  • Researching youth and social justice – methodological issues
  • Restorative Justice & Social Justice

Student Destinations

Doctoral graduates are highly-skilled researchers that make an impact in a range of sectors. They benefit from high employment rates and, on average, earn more than holders of undergraduate and Masters degrees. A doctorate demonstrates to employers that you are intelligent, capable and motivated, and that you have advanced technical and research skills.

In addition to supervision from experts in the field, you will be supported to become an internationally employable doctoral graduate. You will also develop skills that are desirable to employers including critical thinking, problem-solving, project management, communication, leadership and creativity.

Fees and funding

UK students
Home/EU/CI full-time students: £TBC p/a* Home/EU/CI part-time students: £TBC p/a* *All fees are subject to annual increase
International students
International full-time students: £13,200 p/a* International part-time students: £6,600 p/a* * Fees are subject to annual increase.

Qualification and course duration


part time
48 months
full time
24 months


part time
72 months
full time
36 months

Course contact details

Admissions Team
023 9284 5566