Course details

Study options

Full-time: 4 years

UK/EU fee

£9,250 per year* (2020/21)

International fee

£14,045 per year (2020/21)

UCAS points

72 (September 2020 entry)

UCAS code


Course level



BA (Hons)

Start date



One Friar Gate Square, Derby Campus

Course description

Studying on our BA (Hons) Professional Policing, you will study a wide range of theoretical and legislative subjects and gain the knowledge you need for a rewarding career in the police service.

Please note that completion of this degree does not guarantee employment as a police officer or police staff.

The highlights

Both Molly and I chose to study this course because we wanted to be police officers. Derby seemed to be the only course to offer the best route into the career, it seemed serious about policing.

Tom Sharpe and Molly Teasdale
BA (Hons) Professional Policing

Foundation Year - helping you to achieve more

Including a foundation year as part of your four-year study programme will give you a head start in your academic and professional life. The foundation year offers the chance to strengthen your skills, knowledge and confidence – with extensive support from our expert staff – before you advance to stage one of your honours degree. It could also be beneficial if you are planning a career change and want to get to grips with aspects of subjects which are new to you.

Our degrees with a foundation year are continuous, meaning that you won’t need to apply again once you have successfully completed the first year.

Why this course?

Our BA (Hons) Professional Policing provides the ideal preparation for one of the most challenging professions of all. It equips you with an in-depth understanding of the role of a police officer today, including a thorough grasp of criminal justice systems and the powers and laws used by the police throughout England and Wales. You will graduate with a highly regarded and valuable qualification to stand you in good stead for a policing career.


You will be encouraged to seek work-based opportunities through membership of the Special Constabulary, as well as other volunteer opportunities. In the past, some of our students have been commended for their actions in the role of Special Constable by the forces they represent – including one student who helped to save someone's life. 

Expert teaching

We have a team of academics with years of policing experience, and at all levels. You can also draw on our excellent network of contacts ranging from chief constables and crime commissioners to representatives of national and international policing organisations.

Our outstanding visiting speaker and events programme captures topical issues and debates. Recent guests have included policing experts from the USA – a retired police Captain, a retired Chief of Police and a current SWAT commander – who provided a unique insight into their policing models. In addition, the former Chief Constable of Derbyshire shared experiences from his career, the changes which have transformed the profession and the challenges for policing in the 21st Century.

Your studies will be underpinned by our leading-edge research into the explanations and motivations for criminal behaviour and how criminal activity can be detected and prevented. This includes a focus on the notion of policing itself, ethical codes, human rights and police governance.

Through our International Policing and Justice Institute, we have built a reputation as a world-leading provider of police, security and justice training and are regularly commissioned to provide educational solutions for policing organisations in other countries.

Equipment and resources 

As a BA (Hons) Professional Policing student, you will be based on the Derby Campus at One Friar Gate Square, affectionately known as ‘the copper box’. Offering the perfect environment for innovative and engaging teaching, it includes a replica crown court and interview rooms alongside well-resourced lecture theatres, seminar rooms and social learning spaces. Students have also been able to make use of other specialist facilities at the University such as our forensic crime scene house.

Because you’ll be working alongside students taking courses in subjects such as law, criminology and sociology, there are many opportunities to share knowledge, expertise and experience.

What you will study

You will study modules such as:

  • Study skills
  • Law
  • Sociology
  • Psychology
  • Philosophy
  • Political Studies

If you don’t have either English or Maths GCSE, you will need to substitute one or two of the above for a module in English and/or Maths.

  • Understanding the Police Constable Role (20 credits)
  • Policing Communities (20 credits)
  • Research Methods and Academic Skills for Policing (20 credits)
  • Criminal Justice (20 credits)
  • Criminology and Crime Prevention (20 credits)
  • Criminal Investigation (20 credits)
  • Information and Intelligence (20 credits)
  • Policing the Roads (20 credits)
  • Police Response and Major Incidents (20 credits)
  • Police Accountability, Decision-making and Discretion (20 credits)
  • Police Problem-solving Models and Theories (20 credits)
  • Research Project - Dissertation (40 credits)
  • Serious and Organised Crime (20 credits)
  • Policing Mental Health, Vulnerability and Risk (20 credits)
  • Policing Abuse and Public Protections (20 credits)

You will then choose one of the following optional modules:

  • Advanced Investigative Interviewing (20 credits)
  • Murder: Dynamics, Pathologies and Investigation (20 credits)
  • Working with Young Offenders (20 credits)
  • Crime, Media and Culture (20 credits)

Please note: these modules are subject to availability, and may change to suit the needs of the profession.

Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.

University of Derby student drinking coffee

How you will learn

You will learn through a stimulating mix of:

How you are assessed

You will be assessed in a range of way including:

Who you'll meet

You will be taught by a team of experts with extensive experience of policing and who are dedicated to supporting your academic success and career progress.

Sharon Gander

Tony Blockley

Angie Neville

Mark Flint-Freel

Shaun Ostle

PC Darren MacDonald

Richard Stones

Dr Phil Hodgson

John De-Hayes


Entry requirements

September 2020 typical entry requirements

RequirementWhat we're looking for
UCAS points72
Specific requirements at A-level

No specific subject requirements

Specific requirements at GCSEGCSE Maths and English Grade C/Grade 4 (or above) or equivalent qualification
IELTS6.0 (with 5.5 in each skills area)
Interview / AuditionN/A

 Alternative entry qualifications:

We usually consider an A-level in General Studies as a supplementary qualification. A good application/performance will be taken into account if you do not meet the criteria/offer conditions.

Our entry requirements for this course should be read together with the University's general entry requirements, which details subjects we accept, alternative qualifications and what we're looking for at Derby.

Fees and funding

2020/21 Fees


£9,250 per year*



£14,045 per year


* The fees stated above are for the 2019/20 academic year; fees for 2020/21 have not yet been confirmed by the UK government. We will update this information as soon as it is available.

Further information about our fees and support you may be entitled to.

Additional costs and optional extras

How to apply

UK/EU students

Full-time students applying to start in September should apply for this course through UCAS or you can apply directly to the University for an undergraduate course if you’re not applying to any other UK university in the same year.

Apply through UCASApply directly to the University

Guidance for EU students post-Brexit

International students

Full-time students applying to start in September should apply for this course through UCAS or you can apply directly to the University for an undergraduate course if you’re not applying to any other UK university in the same year.

Apply through UCASApply directly to the University

Guidance for international applicants applying for an undergraduate degree


Because it is designed in close partnership with constabularies, this course is aimed mainly at ambitious individuals who want to pursue a career in policing. It paves the way for you to join a hugely rewarding profession which brings new challenges every day, demanding high levels of responsibility, dedication and integrity.

Although the BA (Hons) Professional Policing qualification will not guarantee you a position within the police service, it will set you apart as an attractive candidate to secure a role.

The skills you develop on the course could also prove invaluable for a career within the broader criminal justice system. You could, for instance, consider roles in areas such as civilian investigation, crime reduction partnerships, probation, security and loss prevention.

Our Careers and Employment Service will provide you with support from day one of your course to ensure you leave Derby as a 'work-ready' graduate - industry aware, motivated and enterprising.

Throughout your studies, you will also benefit from our Personal Development Planning (PDP) scheme which enables you to reflect on your learning and develop your career ambitions. The support continues once you have completed your course too: you are entitled to further help and guidance from the Careers and Employment Service for up to three years after leaving the University.

Further study

You can go on to postgraduate study at Derby, with MSc qualifications in subjects such as Criminal Investigation and Police Leadership, Strategy and Organisation. These expand your knowledge into specialist areas and accelerate your progression to more senior and leadership roles.

As a graduate of the University of Derby, you may benefit from an alumni discount on your postgraduate course fees if you continue to study with us. Further information can be found here


Contact us

If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.

Contact us Contact us

Additional information about your studies

Download programme specification

Teaching hours

Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.

Additional costs and optional extras

We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, excellent facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.

Included in your fees

Mandatory costs not included in your fees

Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.

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