Entry requirements

There are no formal entry requirements to study this qualification.

This qualification begins with the module Investigating the social world (DD103) which builds a solid foundation for further study. Although it’s an introductory module, to get the best from it you’ll need some basic study skills at higher education level. You can use our online diagnostic quiz Are you ready for DD103? to help you decide if you’re ready, or if you need some extra preparation.

How much time do I need?

  • Most of our students study part time, completing 60 credits a year.
  • This will usually mean studying for 16–18 hours a week.
Find out if you have enough time to study with our time planner

Counting previous study

You could save time and money by reducing the number of modules you need to study towards this qualification, if you have:

  • already studied at university level (even if you didn't finish your studies)
  • other professional or vocational qualifications such as HNCs and HNDs

Find out more about credit transfer

Preparing for study with an Access module

If your study skills are a bit rusty or you want to try out Open University study before committing yourself, don’t worry! The OU offers Access modules designed to introduce the subject area, build your confidence and prepare you for further study, and you may be eligible to study an Access module for free! You'll get:

  • a personal tutor providing regular feedback with one to one telephone tutorials
  • support from a dedicated team throughout your study
  • detailed written feedback.
For this qualification we recommend:

People, work and society Access module

What you will study

This is a multidisciplinary module that allows you to develop your subject knowledge and your general study skills. It provides an excellent introduction to a wide range of subject areas, including children and young people, health, law, management, psychology and social sciences.

View full details of People, work and society Access module

Your next step

Call us on +44 (0)1908 659253 or book a call back. Our friendly team of advisers will discuss your study options with you, and help you decide on the best starting point for you.

In this section:
How much will it cost?
Ways to pay for your qualification and other support

How much will it cost in England?

We believe cost shouldn’t be a barrier to achieving your potential. That’s why we work hard to keep the cost of study as low as possible and have a wide range of flexible ways to pay to help spread, or even reduce, the cost.

  • Fees are paid on a module-by-module basis – you won't have to pay for the whole of your qualification up front.
  • A qualification comprises a series of modules, each with an individual fee. Added together, they give you the total cost.
  • If, like most OU students, you study part time at a rate of 60 credits a year, you'll take six years to complete an honours degree.
  • Our current fee for 60 credits is £2,864*.
  • Our current fee for 120 credits – which is equivalent to a year's full-time study – is £5,728*.
  • At current prices, the total cost of your qualification would be £17,184*.
  • .

*The fee information provided here is valid for modules starting before 31 July 2018. Fees normally increase annually in line with inflation and the University's strategic approach to fees.

Additional costs

Study costs

There may be extra costs on top of the tuition fee, such as a laptop, travel to tutorials, set books and internet access.

If you're on a low income you might be eligible for help with some of these costs after you start studying.


Skills for career development

You’ll be introduced to skills that will enable you to critically analyse everyday understandings of crime and the criminal justice system. You will also develop the skills needed to critically analyse aspects of human behaviour, and some of the principles of forensic psychology and counselling. Alongside these you will build on a wide range of transferable general skills which may further help your work or career prospects, including:
  • identifying and understanding data and information
  • analysing and assessing evidence
  • applying your learning to practical problems and issues
  • working independently
  • reflecting on your own learning
  • developing strategies to update your knowledge
  • communicating and presenting coherent arguments.

Career relevance

This degree is relevant to a wide range of career paths, some of which are listed below. Some relate directly to criminology and psychology, others draw upon the graduate skills that you’ll acquire. Successful graduates may also progress to specialist masters courses. This degree does not provide direct entry to the career fields listed, but it may ease access and increase your employability in relation to them, and it enhances prospects for progression once you are qualified to enter them. Successful completion does not make you eligible for Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC) conferred by the British Psychological Society.

Exploring your options

Once you register with us (and for up to three years after you finish your studies), you’ll have full access to our careers service for a wide range of information and advice – including online forums, website, interview simulation, vacancy service as well as the option to email or speak to a careers adviser. Some areas of the careers service website are available for you to see now, including help with looking for and applying for jobs. You can also read more general information about how OU study enhances your career.

In the meantime if you want to do some research around this qualification and where it might take you, we’ve put together a list of relevant job titles as a starting point (note that most careers will require further study, training and/or work experience beyond your degree):

  • civil servant
  • crime analyst
  • crime prevention worker
  • community development worker
  • local government officer
  • police officer
  • prison officer
  • probation officer
  • public sector/third sector advice worker
  • social researcher
  • social services worker
  • social worker
  • victim support worker
  • youth justice worker
  • youth worker.

Want to see more jobs? Use the career explorer for job ideas from the National Careers Service, PlanIT Plus in Scotland and Prospects across all nations. You can also visit GradIreland for the Republic of Ireland.


Register for this course

Start dates
Credit transfer: apply by 07/12/2017

Request your Social Sciences prospectus

Our prospectuses help you choose your course, understand what it's like to be an OU student and register for study.

Request prospectus

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