Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice From University of Limerick

Program Overview

Become an expert in Criminal Justice. The BA (Criminal Justice) is administered by the School of Law which boasts considerable expertise in the criminal justice area. The Centre for Crime, Justice and Victim Studies was established at the School of Law in 1997 and is a national centre of excellence for criminal justice research. Students of criminal justice in the University of Limerick will thus be taught by experts in the area who have published widely both nationally and internationally on criminal justice topics. The expertise of these staff is complemented by the first class credentials of the teaching faculty from the other disciplines (i.e. Sociology, Politics, Public Administration, Psychology and Management) which contribute to the programme.

As a result of its strong research profile in criminal justice areas, the School of Law has developed important links with key criminal justice stakeholders. The School of Law provides accreditation and quality assurance for the national Garda training programme (BA in Applied Policing) in Templemore. Researchers from the Centre for Crime, Justice and Victim Studies have also been involved in research with the Inspector of Prisons, the Irish Prison Service and the Department of Justice. These links ensure that the School of Law is always at the cutting edge of developments in the criminal justice system.



  Course Duration

48 Months

  Tuition Fee



IELTS: 6.5 TOEFL: 90


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The BA (Criminal Justice) is a four-year, inter-disciplinary degree programme. In each semester, you will study a combination of modules from Law, Sociology, Politics and Public Administration. An exposure to each of these disciplines ensures that you will develop a comprehensive understanding of the criminal justice system and how it reacts to and regulates the society within which it operates. To further enhance your learning during the programme, you will study some Psychology modules which will aid in understanding human behaviour and the motivations of those who commit crime along with the behaviours of other actors in the criminal justice system such as police, judges and juries. Modules in Management will also give you core skills which are essential for future administrative roles within the criminal justice sector.

A key learning experience within the programme is the eight-month co-operative work placement which you will undertake at the end of Year 2. Co-op will give you a unique and invaluable opportunity to gain practical experience working in social impact and community work placements. Through these placements, you will put your learning to practical use and build networks with potential future employers. It is also possible to spend some of this work placement period abroad.

In your final year of studies, you will have an option to complete a final year project under the supervision of one of the members of faculty within the School of Law on a criminal justice issue of your choice. This will provide you with an opportunity to work independently on a criminal justice topic which is of particular personal interest to you, under the supervision of an expert in that specific area.

Semester 1

  • Legal System and Method
  • Criminal Law 1
  • Intro to Sociology I
  • Introduction to Public Administration I    
  • Introduction to Politics and International Relations I    

Semester 2

  • Criminal Law 2
  • Intro to Sociology II
  • Criminal Law 2
  • Introduction to Public Administration II
  • Introduction to Politics and International Relations II

Semester 3    

  • Constitutional Law 1
  • Crime and Criminal Justice    
  • Classic Sociological Theory    
  • Para-governmental Organisations    
  • Government and Politics of Ireland    

Semester 4

  • Constitutional Law 2
  • Administrative Law
  • Contemporary Sociological Theory
  • Principles of Organisational Behaviour
  • Government and Politics of the EU

Semester 5    

  • Co-operative Work Placement    

Semester 6

  • Law of Evidence
  • Human Rights
  • Inequality and Social Exclusion
  • Sociology of Deviance and Social Control
  • Public Policy Processes

Year 4

Semester 7

  • Child Law    
  • Advanced Lawyering 1 (Alternative Dispute Resolution)    
  • Psychology and Everyday Life    
  • Change Management    


  • Media Law    

  • Law of the European Union 1    

Semester 8

  • Jurisprudence
  • Law and Criminology
  • Public Administration in Democratic States
  • Psychology and Social Issues


  • Final Year Project OR
  • Law of the European Union 2

Applicants are required to hold at the time of enrolment the established Leaving Certificate (or an approved equivalent) with a minimum of six subjects which must include: Two H5 (Higher level) grades and Four O6 (Ordinary level) grades or four H7 (Higher Level) grades. Subjects must include Mathematics, Irish or another language, and English.

Note: Grade F6 in Foundation Mathematics also satisfies the minimum entry requirements. Foundation Maths is not reckonable for scoring purposes. For certain electives, additional special qualifications specific to individual subjects or disciplines may be determined by the respective departments in accordance with Academic Council regulations.



Tuition Fees

These are based on ResidencyCitizenship.

Review the three groups of criteria to determine your fee status as follows

  1. Residency
    • You must have been living in an EU/EEA member state or Switzerland for at least 3 of the 5 years before starting your course
  2. Citizenship
    • You must be a citizen of an EU/EEA member state or Switzerland or have official refugee status
  3. Course Requirements (all must be met)
    • You must be a first time full-time undergraduate (Exceptions are provided for students who hold a Level 6 or Level 7 qualification and are progressing to a Level 8 course in the same general area of study).
    • You must be undertaking a full-time undergraduate course of at least 2 year’s duration
    • You cannot be undertaking a repeat year of study at the same level unless evidence of exceptional circumstances eg serious illness is provided (in which case this condition may be waived)

The BA (Criminal Justice) prepares students for a wide variety of careers within the criminal justice sector and beyond. Graduates may opt for careers in policing, the legal profession, the private security industry, courts administration or the prison service, as well as within organisations which work in the prevention of crime and/or the support of victims and communities affected by criminal activity. You may also decide to pursue careers in related areas such as the civil service, research or journalism.


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