SHE Level 3
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code M3L324383
Module Leader Annette Robertson
School Glasgow School for Business and Society
Subject Sociology
  • A (September start)
  • B (January start)
  • C (May start)

Pre-Requisite Knowledge

Normally a level 1 (e.g. Criminology and Criminal Justice) and Level 2 criminology module (e.g. Crime and Society) or equivalent

Summary of Content

This module aims to increase students' awareness and critical understanding of the key concepts and theoretical approaches that have been developed in relation to crime and punishment. It covers 3 main areas of study: -360 1. Theories of Crime (including classical and positivist approaches; interactionism and labelling; Marxist and Feminist perspectives; left and right realism) 2. Theories of Punishment (including utilitarian and consequentialist approaches; deterrence and rehabilitation; retributivism; the sociology of punishment) 3. Contemporary Issues in Crime and Punishment (the new penology; mass incarceration; the punitive turn; alternatives to prison; inequalities in justice; public attitudes towards punishment) This module incorporates aspects of PRME-related issues such as individual and social responsibility, ethics, values, accountability and human rights.


Week Lecture Topic Classical Criminology and its Legacy Introduction to Positivism: Biological Positivism Psychological Positivism Sociological Positivism 1 Sociological Positivism 2 New Deviancy Theory, Interactionism and Labelling Critical Criminology: Marxist Perspectives Critical Criminology: Feminist Perspectives The Politics of Law and Order: Left Realism The Politics of Law and Order 2: Right Realism Recap on Theories of Social Control The New Culture of Control and the Rise of Surveillance Introduction to Penology The Social and Historical Development of Punishment Theories of Punishment The New Penology Prisons and imprisonment Punishment in the Community Inequalities and Justice: Inequalities and Justice/Youth Issues Public Attitudes Towards Punishment

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this module, students should be able to:1 Demonstrate a critical understanding of the key concepts and theoretical approaches to crime and punishment2 Recognise that crime and punishment are contested and contentious subjects and that they are likely to reflect contemporary social, political and public concerns and ideas 3 Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of conflicting theoretical approaches4 Critically apply their knowledge to put the theories into practice

Teaching / Learning Strategy

Teaching will consist of a mixture of lectures and seminars. Lectures will introduce students to the key issues and theories under investigation. Seminars will be based around student reading and discussion of key original readings, both historical and contemporary. For the seminars students are given a guide on critical reading to help them prepare individual contributions and to participate in groups discussions. GCULearn plays a vital part in the GSBS learning and teaching strategy as a blended learning tool. The School will ensure that all modules are not only GCULearn-enabled, but also at the cutting edge in developing online learning materials. Academic staff and the Learning Technologists will continue to work together to develop and operate all modules on GCULearn, ensuring effective student support and information sharing. Students are provided with formative and summative feedback via a variety of mechanisms. Feedback on coursework is normally provided within 3 working weeks of submission.

Indicative Reading

-720 Barton, A., Corteen, K., Scott D., Whyte, D. (eds) (2006) Expanding the Criminological Imagination: Critical readings in criminology Cullompton: Willan Publishing. Carrabine, E., Cox, P., Lee, M. Plummer, K. and South, N. (2009) Criminology, A sociological introduction (2 nd Edition) , London: Routledge. Cavadino, M. and Dignan, J. (2007) The Penal System: An Introduction . London: Sage. Cote, S. (ed) (2002) Criminological Theories: Bridging the Past to the Future, London: Sage. Duff, R. A. and Garland, D. (1994) A Reader on Punishment . Oxford: Oxford University Press -720 Downes, D. and Rock, P. (2007) Understanding Deviance (5 th Edition) Oxford: OUP. Garland, D. (1995) Punishment and Modern Society: A Study in Social Theory . Oxford: Clarendon. Garland, D. (20010 The Culture of Control , Oxford: OUP. Hogg, R. and Carrington. K. (eds) (2002) Critical Criminology: Issues, debates, challenges, Cullompton: Willan Publishing. Hopkins Burke, R. (2009) An Introduction to Criminological Theory (Third Edition), Cullompton: Willan Publishing. Hucklesby, A. and Wahidin, A. (eds.) (2009) Criminal Justice , Oxford: OUP. Kelly, D. and Clarke, E. (2002) Deviant Behaviour: A Text-Reader in the Sociology of Deviance, London: Palgrave McMillan. -181 Maguire, M., Morgan, R. and Reiner, R. (eds.) (2007) The Oxford Handbook of Criminology , (4 th Edition) Clarendon: Oxford (see also other editions in the library). -720 Marsh, I. (Ed.) (2006) Theories of Crime, London: Routledge. -181 McLaughlin, E., Muncie, J. and Hughes, G. (2013) Criminological Perspectives (3 nd Edition), London: Sage. McLaughlin, E. and Muncie, J. (eds) (2006) The Sage Dictionary of Criminology (2 nd Edition), London: Sage. -720 Muncie, J. and Wilson, D. (2004) S tudent Handbook of Criminal Justice and Criminology, London; Cavendish Publishing. Lilly, J.R., Cullen, F. and Ball, R. (2002) Criminological Theory: Context and Consequences London: Sage (3 rd edition). -181 Peelo, M. and Soothill, K. (eds) (2005) Questioning Crime and Criminology, Cullompton: Willan. -720 Rafter, N. (ed.) (2009) The Origins of Criminology: A Reader . London: Routledge. Tierney, J. (2006) Criminology: Theory and Context, London: Pearson. Valier, C. (2002) Theories of Crime and Punishment, London: Pearson/Longman. Vold, G., Bernard, T. and Snipes, J. (2002) Theoretical Criminology, (5 th Edition), Oxford: Oxford University Press. Williams, K.S. (2004) Textbook on Criminology (5 th Edition), London: Sage. Walker, N. (1991) Why Punish? Oxford: Oxford University Press. -181 Walklate, S. (2007) Understanding Criminology (3 rd Edition) , Milton Keynes: Open University Press.

Transferrable Skills

By the end of this module students will have gained competence in the following key areas: -360b7 Written and verbal communication skills b7 Time management and planning skills b7 The ability to work productively as part of a group b7 The capacity to collate and present evidence in an appropriate format b7 Competence to evaluate evidence and draw appropriate conclusions b7 The ability to apply knowledge to relevant case studies b7 Critical thinking

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Lectures 20.00
Seminars 18.00
independent learning hours 126.00
Assessment 36.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Coursework 2 n/a 50.00 35% Essay (2,000 words)
Coursework 1 n/a 50.00 35% Case Study (2,000 words)