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Professional Policing BSc(Hons)

2023-24 (also available for 2024-25)

Places available in clearing. Find out more.
Places available in clearing. Find out more.

Start date

18 September 2023


3 years full-time

About the course

Reasons to study

  1. Gain real-world experience through teaching by police officers and professionals from other organisations.
  2. A mix of theory and practice so the course will suite different learning styles. For example, you will take part in a range of practical policing exercises, such as interviewing, investigation, operational planning, report writing, statement taking, and giving evidence.
  3. Hear first-hand experiences and viewpoints from guest speakers such as senior police officers, and community organisations to enhance your learning.

Whilst this course does not guarantee you employment, it will prepare you for a career as a police officer, providing you with a strong theoretical, methodological, and ethical understanding of policing. We are working with West Yorkshire Police (WYP), our local force, in developing opportunities around the Special Constabulary and other volunteering roles in WYP, as well as working with departments across the university to provide opportunities for more practical-based exercises, for example involving students and staff from Paramedic studies, Nursing, Law, and Social Work. Understanding the importance of working in partnership with other professionals will assist in your application to become a police officer.

On successful completion of this course and successful application to a police force, you’ll be able to concentrate on your professional police training during your two years as a probationer without the need for further study. So, if you are interested in a career in policing then this course could be for you.

What does the study of the course involve?

Under the current PEQF routes there is a requirement in England and Wales for all new police officers to hold a degree level qualification prior to qualifying as a police officer. Our close links with local police services provides the opportunity for you to gain an insight into the role and first-hand experience.

The course has been designed for those who have an interest in learning about the law and working with people. There have been many situations, where harm has come to vulnerable people such as children, those with learning difficulties, physical or mental health issues, older adults and people involved in domestic violence. Maintaining the law is one aspect of policing and protecting the public, particularly the vulnerable is another. Some of the issues raised by these situations concern how individuals from different professions or disciplines work together, communicate with each other, and understand each other’s roles and responsibilities. This course will help you to understand the law, how to work with others and to protect the public.

How will you learn?

This course is campus-based, that means you will be expected to attend lectures, seminars, and tutorials at the university. All lectures and teaching materials will be posted on the university’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) This means that you will have access to learning materials throughout the course.

You’ll be taught by lecturers who have a wide range of research practice knowledge and specialisms as experts in their field. You will be given clear guidance on assessment/s with time to prepare your work and how assessments are marked will be clearly explained. You will be allocated a Personal Academic Tutor (PAT) who you can talk to (as well as other academic staff) for advice and support with assigned and other work. This course is interactive – you will engage (in different ways) in learning through written work, practical exercises and small group discussions. You’ll participate in debates about the latest issues to help you to think creatively about how, and when, to use the law and the criminal justice system.

Course detail

Criminal Justice

This module will introduce you to the Criminal Justice System (CJS) in England and Wales. You’ll learn about different court systems and processes, the range of punishments and sanctions. You’ll examine victims in the CJS and changes connected to the treatment of victims, witnesses and offenders. You’ll focus on the role of the police and its relationship with the Crown Prosecution Service. You’ll consider rehabilitation and partnership working to support offenders, victims and witnesses.

Criminology and Crime Prevention

This module develops your understanding of criminological approaches to crime. The professionalisation of policing in England and Wales are requiring police officers to be critical as well as reflective. The complexity and diversity of society requires officers who can handle situations which are rarely routine. An introduction to criminological perspectives on policing and crime reduction will foster an understanding of the initiatives and approaches that have been proposed and adopted to reducing crime.

Policing Communities and Problem Solving

This module will develop your understanding of ‘Community Policing’. You’ll look at the development of community policing, as a response to public criticism of reactive based policing and a move to a more proactive approach. It will highlight examples of real-world significance and explore the changing nature of community policing in a social and political context. It will introduce you to signal crimes and signal disorder and the development of problem-oriented policing (POP) and partnership working.

Policing: Core Functions and Standards

The module will introduce you to the purpose, responsibilities, and standards of the modern police service. Principles of policing in England and Wales; fairness and equality are part of the change towards professionalisation. Concepts in policing such as ‘policing by consent’ and ‘legitimacy’ rely on public cooperation for officers to carry out their role. This module encourages you to consider an evidenced-based approach.

Study and Employability Skills

In this module you'll be introduced to study skills within a Higher Education (HE) setting, focusing on academic writing, referencing and citations, basic library searches and research. Alongside this, you’ll also be introduced to the skills and competencies required to become a police officer and how to prepare for the recruitment process. The module aims to develop your abilities to achieve within a professional HE programme. It will also provide you with an understanding of the police recruitment process.

Valuing Difference and Inclusion

In this module you’ll consider how the police service in England and Wales develops and maintains positive relationships with all communities. You’ll look at how society has changed and the police service has responded. You’ll explore significant events such as the Brixton Riots (1981) and the murder of Stephen Lawrence (1993). You’ll examine how equality legislation has developed since the 1970s with a focus on confidence in the police.

Entry requirements

To find out if you’re eligible to start this course in September 2023 and get more information on how to apply, please see our Clearing pages or call our Clearing Helpline on 0333 987 900001484 472777.

If you’re interested in studying this course in September 2024, please view the 2024-25 course information.

Your Career

This qualification is recognised by the police service as preparing you for a career as a police officer in England and Wales.  You will not be required to undertake further academic study to become a qualified police officer, you’ll only be required to meet occupational competence, enabling you to concentrate on your professional training during your two years as a probationer.  

The Professional Policing Degree qualification will reduce the probation period from three years to two years, so you’ll be eligible for any pay rises after this period. Some forces will also give you a higher starting salary if you already have a degree. 

This course does not guarantee you employment in any police force. On graduating you’ll need to apply to the police force of your choice, meet their eligibility criteria and complete the national recruitment processes. Further information is available on the Join The Police website.

If you wish to use successful completion of this course as your entry route to the police service, you must apply to join a police force within five years of your graduation. However, your degree will still be valid for any other roles you may wish to apply for. 

On successful completion of the course, you may also wish to pursue a range of other occupations relating to investigation, security, and community-based roles, supporting vulnerable people, working with offenders, victims, criminal justice organisations, crime reduction roles, and many other exciting career paths. This could involve working with His Majesty’s Prison Service, His Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC), UK Border Agency (UKBA), National Crime Agency (NCA), Fraud Investigation and Security Services (MI5 and MI6).    
*Percentage of graduates from the School of Human and Health Sciences who were in work and/or further study within fifteen months after graduating (HESA Graduate Outcomes 2019/20, including both UK and non-UK domiciled, other activities excluded). 

91.5% Graduates employed*

Student support

At the University of Huddersfield, you'll find support networks and services to help you get ahead in your studies and social life. Whether you study at undergraduate or postgraduate level, you'll soon discover that you're never far away from our dedicated staff and resources to help you to navigate through your personal student journey. Find out more about all our support services.

A wide range of resources are also offered within the School of Human and Health Sciences, which provides you with support in a variety of areas. These include:

Student Hub: a one stop shop for students, studying within the School. Their services include offering advice on extenuating circumstances, extension requests, course progression, suspension and welfare support, organising appointments with academic staff and signposting to other support networks.

Academic Skills Development Team: support students to develop their academic skills and build their confidence in order to improve their grades. The team provide support with academic skills including essay writing, being critical, reflective writing, numeracy, research skills, presentations and group work skills; as well as personal development for example time management.

Learning Technology Support Unit: helps students with any problems they experience with the University’s Brightspace Learning System, including logging on or difficulties experienced when accessing and using modules, and with the PebblePad platform, which is used by students when they go out on placements.

Important information

We will always try to deliver your course as described on this web page. However, sometimes we may have to make changes as set out below.

Changes to a course you have applied for

If we propose to make a major change to a course that you are holding an offer for, then we will tell you as soon as possible so that you can decide whether to withdraw your application prior to enrolment.

Cancellation of a course you have applied for

Although we always try and run all of the course we offer, we may occasionally have to withdraw a course you have applied for or combine your programme with another programme if we consider this reasonably necessary to ensure a good student experience, for example if there are not enough applicants to ensure you have a good learning experience. Where this is the case we will notify you as soon as reasonably possible and we will contact you to discuss other suitable courses with us we can transfer your application to. If we notify you that the course you have applied to has been withdrawn or combined, and you do not wish to transfer to another course with us, you may cancel your application and we will refund you any deposits or fees you have paid to us.

Changes to your course after you enrol as a student

We will always try to deliver your course and other services as described. However, sometimes we may have to make changes as set out below:

Changes to option modules

Where your course allows you to choose modules from a range of options, we will review these each year and change them to reflect the expertise of our staff, current trends in research and as a result of student feedback or demand for certain modules. We will always ensure that you have a range of options to choose from and we will let you know in good time the options available for you to choose for the following year.

Major changes

We will only make major changes to the core curriculum of a course or to our services if it is necessary for us to do so and provided such changes are reasonable. A major change in this context is a change that materially changes the services available to you; or the outcomes, or a significant part, of your course, such as the nature of the award or a substantial change to module content, teaching days (part time provision), classes, type of delivery or assessment of the core curriculum.

For example, it may be necessary to make a major change to reflect changes in the law or the requirements of the University’s regulators; to meet the latest requirements of a commissioning or accrediting body; to improve the quality of educational provision; in response to student, examiners’ or other course evaluators’ feedback; and/or to reflect academic or professional changes within subject areas. Major changes may also be necessary because of circumstances outside our reasonable control, such as a key member of staff leaving the University or being unable to teach, where they have a particular specialism that can’t be adequately covered by other members of staff; or due to damage or interruption to buildings, facilities or equipment.

Major changes would usually be made with effect from the next academic year, but this may not always be the case. We will notify you as soon as possible should we need to make a major change and will carry out suitable consultation with affected students. If you reasonably believe that the proposed change will cause you detriment or hardship we will, if appropriate, work with you to try to reduce the adverse effect on you or find an appropriate solution. Where an appropriate solution cannot be found and you contact us in writing before the change takes effect you can cancel your registration and withdraw from the University without liability to the University for future tuition fees. We will provide reasonable support to assist you with transferring to another university if you wish to do so.

Termination of course

In exceptional circumstances, we may, for reasons outside of our control, be forced to discontinue or suspend your course. Where this is the case, a formal exit strategy will be followed and we will notify you as soon as possible about what your options are, which may include transferring to a suitable replacement course for which you are qualified, being provided with individual teaching to complete the award for which you were registered, or claiming an interim award and exiting the University. If you do not wish to take up any of the options that are made available to you, then you can cancel your registration and withdraw from the course without liability to the University for future tuition fees and you will be entitled to a refund of all course fees paid to date. We will provide reasonable support to assist you with transferring to another university if you wish to do so.

When you enrol as a student of the University, your study and time with us will be governed by a framework of regulations, policies and procedures, which form the basis of your agreement with us. These include regulations regarding the assessment of your course, academic integrity, your conduct (including attendance) and disciplinary procedure, fees and finance and compliance with visa requirements (where relevant). It is important that you familiarise yourself with these as you will be asked to agree to abide by them when you join us as a student. You will find a guide to the key terms here, along with the Student Protection Plan, where you will also find links to the full text of each of the regulations, policies and procedures referred to. You should read these carefully before you enrol. Please note that this information is subject to change and you are advised to check our website regularly for any changes before you enrol at the University. A person who is not party to this agreement shall not have any rights under or in connection with it. Only you and the University shall have any right to enforce or rely on the agreement.

Equal opportunities

The University of Huddersfield is an equal opportunities institution. We aim to create conditions where staff and students are treated solely on the basis of their merits, abilities and potential, regardless of gender, age, race, caste, class, colour, nationality, ethnic or national origins, marital status, disability, sexual orientation, family responsibility, trade union activity, political or religious belief, or age. Please visit our website to see our Equal Opportunities and Diversity Policy

Data protection

The University holds personal data on all enquirers, applicants and enrolled students. All such data is kept and processed in accordance with the provisions of the Data Protection Legislation. The University’s Data Protection Policy and Privacy Notices are available on the University website.

Students’ Union membership

Under the 1994 Education Act, students at all UK universities have the right to join, or not to join, the Students’ Union. There is no membership fee. If you choose not to join you have the right not to be disadvantaged; however, you are not entitled to vote, take part in elections, or hold any office. The following arrangements apply in order that non-Union members are not disadvantaged: Non-members are welcome to take part in the activities of Affiliated Clubs and Societies on payment of the appropriate subscription. However, they may not vote or hold office in the society or club. Union members may be offered a discounted subscription. Non-members are free to use Union facilities on the same basis as members. Welfare, catering and shops are available to non-members as well as members. Union members may be offered a discounted price.

The Office for Students (OfS) is the principal regulator for the University.

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