Taught course

International Criminal Justice (Distance Learning)

University of Portsmouth · School of Criminology and Criminal Justice

Entry requirements

A minimum of a second-class honours degree in a relevant subject (Social Science, Humanities, Law, Psychology, or Management subject). Information Technology or science related subjects will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Applicants with equivalent professional experience in a relevant organisation will also be considered on a case-by-case basis.

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

Months of entry


Course content


Get the expertise you need in criminal justice and intelligence from an international perspective on this MSc International Criminal Justice degree. Study your way, with full-time or part-time options on campus, or part-time by distance learning.

You'll view crime control from a global stance, assessing models of justice and philosophies of punishment from around the world. With a focus on the development of international criminal law and human rights, you'll evaluate the workings of international courts and tribunals, the operation of the UN, and regional and national structures of international justice.

You’ll also apply your research, analysis and management skills to the growing field of criminal intelligence. Explore security and intelligence in the public and private sectors, broaden your understanding of open and closed sources, and evaluate existing models and principles, such as the intelligence cycle. You’ll probe the limitations of analytical services available to intelligence professionals, and study the research seeking to overcome these limitations.

Alongside international criminal justice, you'll have the chance to unpack topics such as missing persons investigations, economic crime, wildlife crime investigation, offender behaviour and rehabilitation.

When you graduate, you'll be ready to bring in-depth international criminal justice and intelligence expertise to your career in the justice system. You’ll be equipped to pursue roles in the UK Civil Service or police force, the Metropolitan Police’s Counter Terrorism Centres, private sector intelligence services, or international organisations such as Interpol, Europol or Frontex.

Course highlights

  • Put yourself at the heart of criminal justice work in relation to international norms and standards, including human rights issues, and study the development and challenges of transnational offending from criminological, legal and political perspectives
  • Master the principles, processes and practice of intelligence work, and understand the challenges of managing intelligence in the evidence chain
  • Learn from a research-active team of international criminal justice specialists in our School of Criminology and Criminal Justice, and hear from industry expert guest speakers from around the world
  • Enrich your research studies by using our lab equipment, such as our eye-tracking and VR technology, and operational simulation spaces
  • Be part of our community of researchers by getting involved with our criminology research groups, such as the Policing research group, the Centre for Cybercrime and Economic Crime and the Probation, Prison and Penology research group
  • Complete a major project based on your chosen area of research, with the support of qualified and enthusiastic experts in the field

Career planning

During your course you'll have expert career support from our Careers and Employability Centre, your tutors and our Business and Law Career-Ready Programme. This support will continue for 5 years after you graduate.

Career support

You'll benefit from:

- Networking events

- Regular emails from the Career Ready Programme sharing job opportunities, application tips and events

- Applied projects with companies such as IBM, Boeing and Hampshire County Council

- Workshops to enhance your employability skills

- Recruitment events including the Student and Graduate Opportunities Fair

- 1-to-1 appointments

- CV and cover letter advice

- Interview preparation and practice

- Support starting your own business

Careers and opportunities

Careers this Master's prepares you for

International systems of justice must continuously evolve in order to stand against the increasingly complex world of transnational crime.

The skills and expertise you'll gain on this Master’s in International Criminal Justice will prepare you for roles with international policing and justice organisations, and for any criminal justice career that relies on information, intelligence or security.

You’ll graduate with knowledge of practice and theory in the field, and the research and analytical skills needed for private or public sector careers in the UK or abroad.

If you already work in the field of criminal justice, you'll be ready to pursue higher-level roles, or to break into a different area of the discipline. If you're yet to embark on your career in criminal justice, you'll gain the knowledge and advanced research problem-solving skills you need to stand out to employers and contribute positively to justice system reform on an international level.

You could also go on to further study, or progress on to a graduate scheme such as PoliceNow or the Civil Service Fast Track Apprenticeship Scheme.

Graduates of this course can go on to roles such as:
  • police or law enforcement officer
  • probation or prison officer
  • data analyst
  • intelligence analyst
  • cybersecurity
Graduates of this course can go on to work for organisations such as:
  • the Civil Service
  • national and International Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs)
  • Government agencies and departments internationally
  • probation and prison service
  • the Courts
  • local administration / authorities
  • private security companies
  • charities

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MSc
    part time
    24 months
    • Online learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

University Admissions Centre
+44 (0)23 9284 5566