Page Navigation

Module Descriptors

This page displays the selected Module Descriptor.

Printer friendly version Printer friendly version

Session: 2022/23

Last modified: 29/03/2022 12:02:50

Title of Module: Criminal Behaviour & Deviance

Code: CRIM07005 SCQF Level: 7
(Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework)
Credit Points: 20 ECTS: 10
(European Credit Transfer Scheme)
School:School of Education & Social Sciences
Module Co-ordinator: G  O'Donnell

Summary of Module

The purpose of this module is to introduce students to the disciplines of sociology and psychology and their contribution to our understanding of criminal and deviant behaviour. The module looks at the process of socialisation and how social norms and values are formed and internalised and what causes groups and individuals to deviate from these and the extent to which this deviation becomes criminal. The module will introduce students to the conceptual frameworks of Structural-Functionalism and Conflict Theories. The module will also introduce students to the basic principles of Eysenck’s Personality Theory, Bandura’s Social Learning and Rational Choice theory. The aim of this module is to provide students with basic knowledge and understanding that can be developed in greater depth through subsequent levels of the Programme.

Module Delivery Method
Face-To-FaceBlendedFully OnlineHybridCHybridOWork-based Learning
check mark

Term used to describe the traditional classroom environment where the students and the lecturer meet synchronously in the same room for the whole provision.

A mode of delivery of a module or a programme that involves online and face-to-face delivery of learning, teaching and assessment activities, student support and feedback. A programme may be considered “blended” if it includes a combination of face-to-face, online and blended modules. If an online programme has any compulsory face-to-face and campus elements it must be described as blended with clearly articulated delivery information to manage student expectations

Fully Online
Instruction that is solely delivered by web-based or internet-based technologies. This term is used to describe the previously used terms distance learning and e learning.

Online with mandatory face-to-face learning on Campus

Online with optional face-to-face learning on Campus

Work-based Learning
Learning activities where the main location for the learning experience is in the workplace.

Campus(es) for Module Delivery
The module will normally be offered on the following campuses / or by Distance/Online Learning: (Provided viable student numbers permit)
Paisley:Ayr:Dumfries:Lanarkshire:London:Distance/Online Learning:Other:
check mark







Term(s) for Module Delivery
(Provided viable student numbers permit).
Term 1check markTerm 2


Term 3


[Top of Page]

Learning Outcomes: (maximum of 5 statements)

On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:

L1. Describe the process of socialisation, including key societal agencies and their role in determining our perceptions and attitudes towards deviance and criminal behaviour.

L2. Explain the key features of Structural Functionalism and Conflict Theory in relation to the process of socialisation.

L3. Outline the key features of two theories from the disciplines of sociology and psychology (one from each discipline) that examine the violation of social norms

L4. Demonstrate a practical knowledge of academic conventions

Employability Skills and Personal Development Planning (PDP) Skills
SCQF Headings During completion of this module, there will be an opportunity to achieve core skills in:
Knowledge and Understanding (K and U) SCQF Level 7.

Achieve a broad understanding of the approaches taken by the disciplines of sociology and psychology to the study of criminal and deviant behaviour.

Practice: Applied Knowledge and Understanding SCQF Level 7.

Make use of case material, observational studies and examples of criminal and deviant behaviour from sociological and psychological sources.

Generic Cognitive skills SCQF Level 7.

Make use of case material, observational studies and examples of criminal and deviant behaviour from sociological and psychological sources.

Communication, ICT and Numeracy Skills SCQF Level 7.

Show an ability to read and understand data presented in various formats from research relevant to the study of crime and deviance in society.

Autonomy, Accountability and Working with others SCQF Level 7.

Students will take responsibility for own work and contribute to the collective learning activities of the group.

Pre-requisites: Before undertaking this module the student should have undertaken the following:
Module Code:
Module Title:
Co-requisitesModule Code:
Module Title:

* Indicates that module descriptor is not published.

[Top of Page]

Learning and Teaching
Students will engage in a variety of teaching activities – lectures, seminars, group work and online formative activities – that are designed to introduce them to key aspects of Sociology and Psychology. At all times, learning and teaching will encourage students to look at the ways in which these disciplines contribute to an understanding criminal and deviant behaviour. This will be done through lectures/presentations with ‘stop off’ points for questions and discussion and students are encouraged to evaluate theories and concepts. Seminar discussion and exercises will allow for formative assessment that is designed to give students instant feedback on their understanding and grasp of material. The VLE, Moodle, is at the heart of the teaching and learning approach to this module and students will find a range of resources to support their learning.
Learning Activities
During completion of this module, the learning activities undertaken to achieve the module learning outcomes are stated below:
Student Learning Hours
(Normally totalling 200 hours):
(Note: Learning hours include both contact hours and hours spent on other learning activities)
Lecture/Core Content Delivery24
Tutorial/Synchronous Support Activity10
Personal Development Plan2
Asynchronous Class Activity36
Independent Study128
200 Hours Total

**Indicative Resources: (eg. Core text, journals, internet access)

The following materials form essential underpinning for the module content and ultimately for the learning outcomes:

Holdaway, S. (2003) Issues in Sociology: Crime and Deviance. OUP

Lawson, T and Heaton, T. (1999) Crime and Deviance (Skills –Based Sociology). Palgrave

Putwain, D. (2002) Psychology and Crime Routledge

(**N.B. Although reading lists should include current publications, students are advised (particularly for material marked with an asterisk*) to wait until the start of session for confirmation of the most up-to-date material)

Engagement Requirements

In line with the Academic Engagement Procedure, Students are defined as academically engaged if they are regularly engaged with timetabled teaching sessions, course-related learning resources including those in the Library and on the relevant learning platform, and complete assessments and submit these on time. Please refer to the Academic Engagement Procedure at the following link: Academic engagement procedure

Where a module has Professional, Statutory or Regulatory Body requirements these will be listed here:
All fulltime students (part-time and distant learning students should check with their programme leader for any queries) are required to attend all scheduled classes and participate with all delivered elements of the module as part of their engagement with their programme of study. Consideration will be given to students who have protection under the appropriate equality law. Please refer to UWS Regulations, Chapter 1, 1.64 – 1.67, available at the following link:

[Top of Page]

Supplemental Information

Programme BoardSocial Sciences
Assessment Results (Pass/Fail) No
Subject PanelUG Criminal Justice
ModeratorLiz Frondigoun
External ExaminerDuncan Parker
Accreditation Details
Version Number


[Top of Page]

Assessment: (also refer to Assessment Outcomes Grids below)

Class Test: weighting 40%

Essay: weighting 60%

(N.B. (i) Assessment Outcomes Grids for the module (one for each component) can be found below which clearly demonstrate how the learning outcomes of the module will be assessed.
(ii) An indicative schedule listing approximate times within the academic calendar when assessment is likely to feature will be provided within the Student Handbook.)

Assessment Outcome Grids (Footnote A.)

Component 1
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Learning Outcome (4) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Class test (written)check markcheck mark  401

Component 2
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Learning Outcome (4) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Essay  check markcheck mark600
Combined Total For All Components100% 1 hours

A. Referred to within Assessment Section above
B. Identified in the Learning Outcome Section above

[Top of Page]

  1. More than one assessment method can be used to assess individual learning outcomes.
  2. Schools are responsible for determining student contact hours. Please refer to University Policy on contact hours (extract contained within section 10 of the Module Descriptor guidance note).
    This will normally be variable across Schools, dependent on Programmes &/or Professional requirements.

Equality and Diversity
Aligned with the overall commitment to equality and diversity stated in the Programme Specifications, the module supports equality of opportunity for students from all backgrounds and with different learning needs. Using Moodle, learning materials will be presented electronically in formats that allow flexible access and manipulation of content. The module complies with University regulations and guidance on inclusive learning and teaching practice. Specialist assistive equipment, support provision and adjustment to assessment practice will be made in accordance with UWS policy and regulations. The University’s Equality, Diversity and Human Rights Policy can be accessed at the following link:

Our partners are fully committed to the principles and practice of inclusiveness and our modules are designed to be accessible to all. Where this module is delivered overseas, local equivalent support for students and appropriate legislation applies.

UWS Equality and Diversity Policy
(N.B. Every effort will be made by the University to accommodate any equality and diversity issues brought to the attention of the School)

2014 University of the West of Scotland

University of the West of Scotland is a Registered Scottish Charity.

Charity number SC002520.