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Youth Justice BA (Hons)

  • Level(s) of Study: Undergraduate
  • UCAS Code(s): L611
  • Start Date(s): September 2023
  • Duration: Three years full-time
  • Study Mode(s): Full-time
  • Campus: City Campus
  • Entry Requirements:
    More information

Introduction:

You’ll be joining a course with great employability!

Youth Justice is all about working with young people who offend or are at risk of offending. This course links academic theory to contemporary practice through placements, visits and guest speakers.

Our Youth Justice degree is multidisciplinary, involving the study of social policy, sociological, psychological and criminological perspectives. You'll explore why young people offend, and the impact their families and communities have upon their personal development and criminal behaviour. Throughout the course you'll consider comparative international practices of managing offending behaviours, and initiatives for reducing offending.

Why choose this course?

  • While this course does explore a number of criminological perspectives, it is mapped against the Skills for Justice National Occupational Standards for Youth Justice. This makes the course ideal for those interested in the study of Criminology but who are keen to work within the Youth Justice sector.
  • You'll be taught by a teaching team who are highly accomplished and experienced in the Youth Justice sector. Their expertise in the subject informs the course and ensures you have an up-to-date and relevant learning experience.
  • Experienced Youth Justice Practitioners are involved in various teaching sessions to share their specialist knowledge and experiences of working with young people.
  • This course could open up a range of rewarding careers in secure estates, prisons, youth offending teams and the probation service.

What you’ll study

The aim of the course is to focus on the core skills that practitioners working within youth justice need so they can work effectively with young people, their families, and other professionals. We aim to equip you with knowledge and understanding of how to communicate effectively with others; how to accurately assess the needs and risks of young people; and how to use reflection and the skills of critical analysis to develop an understanding of the legislation, policies and frameworks within which youth justice practitioners operate.

In addition, you'll explore the history of youth justice and the relationship of offending to child and adolescent development. There is also a clear practical focus upon contemporary issues facing future practitioners. For example:

  • young people and gangs
  • substance misuse and offending
  • victims
  • restorative justice and effective practice.

Each of these topics are examined critically and debated.

Core modules

Research and Study Skills for Youth Justice

Develop sound understandings in the study of youth justice, along with the necessary skills to meet the academic challenges of studying as an undergraduate.

Youth Crime and Social Inclusion

You will be introduced to some of the wider societal issues that can impact upon the life journeys of young people. Young offenders in particular often experience multiple inequalities, and this module explores what these are, the theories behind them, and solutions to overcome these issues.

Child and Adolescent Development

Examine the crucial theoretical underpinning as to what it is in a young person’s upbringing and background that may contribute to their offending behaviour, equipping you with vital knowledge and understanding for future youth justice practice.

Values, Ethics and Children's Rights in a Youth Justice Context

Gain an understanding of the rights, responsibilities and the legal framework of the youth justice system, as well as the values and ethics that inform youth justice practice.

Evolution of the Youth Justice System

Gain an understanding of the rights, responsibilities and legal framework of the youth justice system, as well as the values and ethics that inform youth justice practice.

Managing Transitions

Study the theoretical approaches to the concept of managing transitions (movements, passages or changes) that children and young people may experience and / or are affected by.

Core modules

Assessment and Report Writing in Youth Justice Practice

You will explore in detail the range of reports and assessments a youth practitioner would need to complete, and how these link to the National Occupational Standards for the youth justice system.

The Secure Estate and Resettlement

As well as examining the experience of custody, related transitions, and resettlement for young people, this module considers the history of custody for young people and the lessons to be learnt from that history.

Research Methods in Youth Justice

Study the main approaches in qualitative and quantitative social research, and explore the relative strengths and weaknesses of particular research methods.

Effective Practice in Youth Justice

Utilising your learning from Year One, you will develop your learning in relation to the overarching subject of effective practice in youth justice. Focusing on the relationship between young people and youth justice practitioners, this module explores the link between evidence-based and effective practice, the principles of effective youth justice practice, and the importance of reflection for effective practitioners.

Important information

The Secure Estate and Resettlement module, the Research Methods in Youth Justice module and the Effective Practice in Youth Justice module are the Youth Justice Board's entry-level qualification for working in the youth justice sector.

A crucial component of the work of a youth justice practitioner is carrying out assessments, writing reports for various professional bodies, and making recommendations to courts. These skills are addressed in the Assessment and Report Writing in Youth Justice Practice module, which covers in detail the range of reports and assessments a youth practitioner would need to complete, as well as the National Occupational Standards for the youth justice system.

Developing effective communication and relationship-building skills are fundamental when working with young people. The Effective Practice in Youth Justice module will explore the importance of effective communication, networking, advocacy and conflict resolution.

Core modules

Dissertation

Building upon a number of developing concepts gained in Year One and Two, you will apply them to a sustained piece of self-directed study on a specific area of interest in youth justice. You will work with your individual supervisor to formulate a research question and produce a critical commentary around your subject choice.

Restorative Justice, Victims and Victimology

You will consider competing perspectives on victimology, victims’ rights and restorative justice, and examine the implications of involving victims in the criminal justice process, particularly with regard to restorative justice approaches.

Delivering Interventions in Youth Justice Practice

Critically appraise and reflect upon the core competencies and skills required to be a youth justice practitioner and deliver effective practice. You'll develop a personal development plan, utilising reflection and your understanding of effective practice principles in youth justice.

Law, Sentencing and the Role of the Courts

Building upon your current knowledge of the legal system in relation to youth justice, this module will look at other areas of the law, including mental health legislation, housing law, the law relating to education, and welfare benefit legislation.

Safeguarding in Youth Justice Practice

Pulling together key themes and ideas that have been developed during Year One and Year Two, including children’s needs and rights; the exclusions young people face and how they develop; and how to assess young people’s vulnerability, how to protect them, and how to promote their wellbeing.

Don’t just take our word for it, hear from our students themselves

Student Profiles

Simone Hawley

Youth Justice

As a mature student and parent, I had many apprehensions regarding my return to education. I had not written academically since my A ‘levels many years ago. I should not have worried; my peers were fantastic.

Selena Phillips

Youth Justice

My experience as an NTU student has been very rewarding. I have been challenged by my lecturers to push my learning to achieve above what I thought I was capable of.

Gemma Francis

Youth Justice

Employability has put on number of events during year 3 that has and will support me leading up to finishing my degree and support can still be offered after graduation which has been reassuring.

Isabelle Conway

In Year Two we get to do a two-week observational placement. I chose to go into a Youth Offending Team and I got to work with real-life cases.

How you’re taught

To provide you with a first-class learning experience and to guarantee you have an opportunity to make the most of your time at university, you'll receive contact time through a diverse range of delivery methods.

Structured teaching will be delivered through a combination of traditional lectures and seminars. The smaller group seminars provide opportunities to develop skills in problem-solving, group working, analysis, debating and presentation, and to discuss a wide range of views.

You'll also learn from audiovisual presentations, information technology-based exercises, and practical experience.

Tutorials with staff

As the relationship between students and tutors is an important one, you can expect to have lots of direct contact and support through seminars and one-to-one tutorials. At these sessions you'll have the opportunity to:

  • discuss and gain feedback about your work
  • ask questions about the projects you're working on
  • raise any difficulties you are experiencing relating to your work, personal circumstances, or your university experience.

Independent study

This is an important part of this course. Throughout your three years of study, the scheduled contact hours you receive will gradually decrease as you develop the skills required to undertake an independent study or dissertation in your final year. You'll still have regular contact with your tutors and, if necessary, ad hoc tutorials can be arranged.

Virtual learning environment

You'll also use our virtual learning environment NOW, which is a flexible web-based system that allows you to have 24-hour access to module learning materials and reading lists. It allows you to discuss work with tutors and other students, and submit coursework electronically from anywhere in the world.

Learning from experts

You'll be taught by enthusiastic, engaged and expert staff who are highly accomplished and experienced in the youth justice sector. They ensure our courses will train you to the requirements that are necessary to work within the youth justice system. Current staff have developed an Acquisitive Crime Project that aims to reduce the number of young people offending in Derby. Additionally, your lecturers will be engaged in current research into areas of youth justice practice and will share emerging findings in their teaching.

In addition to the traditional lectures, tutorials, and independent study, you'll also hear and learn from experienced youth justice practitioners. They are invited to come and share their specialised knowledge and make you aware of the realities of their work with young people. In the past these have included representatives visiting from the secure estate, talking about the experience of young people in prison, and charities such as the YMCA.

Learn a new language


Alongside your study, you also have the opportunity to learn a new language. The University Language Programme (ULP) is available to all students and gives you the option of learning a totally new language or improving the skills you already have.

Learning a new language can:

  • enhance your communication skills
  • enrich your experience when travelling abroad
  • boost your career prospects.

Find out more about the University Language Programme.

How will I be assessed?

The course's assessment methods are varied. We use a wide range of approaches that acknowledge that different students have varied learning styles, capabilities and preferences. The assessment methods used replicate the work environment as far as possible, and you'll therefore be required to carry out your own investigation case study work, analysis and appraisal.

The majority of your work will be assessed through coursework-based essays, reflective journals, worksheets, critical reviews, case studies, and a final year research-based independent study.

The practical focus in the second year will be reflected in the assessment methods used for the modules. Practical assessment methods include task-orientated group work, presentations, interviews, participant observations, role play exercises, and IT tasks.

In response to student feedback, the University have introduced a policy ensuring marked work is returned to you electronically within three weeks of submission.

Contact hours

  • Year 1 lectures/seminars/workshops (25%) and independent study (75%)
  • Year 2 lectures/seminars/workshops (25%), independent study (70%) and placements (5%)
  • Year 3 lectures/seminars/workshops (19%) and independent study (81%)

Staff Profiles

Dr Shantey Francis

Senior Lecturer

School of Social Sciences

Dr Shantey Francis is a Lecturer/ Senior Lecturer in the Department of Sociology at Nottingham Trent University. She teaches on the Youth Justice and Criminology courses.

How you’re assessed

  • Year 1 coursework (100%)
  • Year 2 coursework (100%)
  • Year 3 coursework (83%) and written (17%)

Careers and employability

Our Youth Justice graduates gets jobs:

The job titles below give an indication of the careers our recent Youth Justice graduates are following:*

  • Youth Justice Service Officer
  • Residential Social Worker in a Children's Home
  • Child Sexual Exploitation Support Worker
  • Custody Officer
  • Youth Worker
  • Fraud Investigation and Prevention Officer
  • Mental Health Worker
  • Youth Support Worker
  • Residential Support Worker
  • Behavioural Mentor
  • Case Worker
  • Support Living Coordinator
  • Children and Young Persons Designated Key Worker
  • Housing and Welfare Officer
  • Housing Support Coordinator

You may also consider studying a postgraduate course in areas such as social work or criminological justice.

Excellent work experience opportunities

Work-based learning is a valued feature of this degree and there are four unique components.

  • You may have the opportunity to do an observational experience with a youth justice agency in Year Two. This is part of the Effective Practice in Youth Justice module, which is focused on the skills required to develop effective relationships with young people. The Effective Practice in Youth Justice module is closely aligned to the Youth Justice Effective Practice Certificate (formerly Professional Certificate in Effective Practice), the Youth Justice Board's entry-level qualification for working in the youth justice sector.
  • Teaching sessions delivered by youth offending team practitioners and other youth justice personnel on their specific roles and agencies.
  • Course visits to various institutions within the justice system, following an arrest-to-sentence process (incorporating police, courts and young offenders' institutes).
  • Mock cases and simulated case files will be used to give you valuable experience in a safe environment.

You'll benefit from the well-established relationships the course team have developed with youth justice agencies in our region, and other bodies such as:

  • the secure estate
  • Skills for Justice
  • Nottingham Council for Voluntary Service
  • the YMCA.

The course team work closely with the NTU Volunteers Service and Employability team to make you aware of the significant number of voluntary and sessional paid opportunities that are available.

Throughout the course there will be opportunities for you to understand the work of practitioners in a number of different specialist areas, such as Youth Offending Team Case Managers and secure children's homes.

Your career development

Local youth offending team employers have been involved with the design of the course and will be regularly consulted throughout. This will clearly enhance your employability within the youth justice sector, which includes youth offending teams, children’s services, and the secure estate.

Upon completion, you'll have gained the confidence, experience and specialised knowledge and skills to embark on a career in the growing youth justice sector and its associated support services. These areas are always developing innovative ways to engage young people and prevent criminal behaviour and re-offending.

Your ability to carry out independent research, evaluate interventions, reflect on practice and work in multi-agency settings will also be greatly valued by future employers.

Career opportunities that interest you may include:

  • youth offending teams
  • preventions projects
  • mentoring services for young people
  • restorative justice services
  • the secure estate
  • prisons and the probation service.

Our Employability team

We have a dedicated Employability team located on the City Campus. The team are well placed to give you specialist guidance and practical help that will really make a difference to your prospects once you do graduate.

Campus and facilities

As a Social Sciences student you will have easy access to the fantastic facilities in the Chaucer and Taylor buildings, including:

  • lecture theatres and teaching classrooms
  • open access PCs and secure wireless points
  • study areas and social spaces
  • Chaucer café, serving drinks and light snacks
  • our School of Social Sciences reception, providing you with easy access to our helpful and friendly support staff.

IT resources

Our IT resource rooms and PC clusters are distributed across the City Campus, with PCs providing access to:

  • Microsoft Office
  • email
  • web browsing
  • networked file storage
  • high-speed online printing services

The University’s main resource room in the library is available 24 hours a day.

Book and library resources

In our library you will have access to an extensive and diverse range of books and periodicals that focus on specialist areas within Criminology. The library's OneSearch system provides access to all our:

  • electronic resources
  • journals
  • books.

We have a liaison librarian who is available to give you detailed help in finding and using print and electronic resources. They can also help you with things such as Harvard referencing and research skills.

City location

The location of the City Campus also means that you have easy access to:

  • sports facilities
  • shops
  • student accommodation
  • music venues
  • cafés.

Entry requirements

  • A-levels – BCC; or
  • BTEC Extended Diploma – DMM; or
  • 104 UCAS Tariff points from three A-levels or equivalent qualifications; and
  • GCSEs – English and Maths or Science grade C / 4
  • to complete a Disclosure and Barring Service check (formerly known as a Criminal Records Bureau disclosure).
  • All applicants should be able to demonstrate an interest in, and an aptitude for, engaging young people. Although it is not essential, we positively encourage applicants who have experience of working within a youth justice setting or can evidence relevant voluntary work, particularly with young people. Specifically, mature applicants are encouraged to apply as, alongside academic qualifications, relevant practical experience and achievements are seen as an asset. Non-standard applicants may be interviewed.

    As with all vocational courses related to working with children and young people, all students are required to provide full details of any previous criminal convictions on admission and confirm the nature of these upon course commencement. Students are required to disclose any subsequent criminal convictions while on the course; failure to provide full disclosure of previous or new convictions can lead to termination of a student’s studies. Students eligible for the work-based learning observation may be required to complete an enhanced Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) Disclosure. If this highlights a potential risk to a child, this could lead to termination being considered.

    Other qualifications and experience

    We consider equivalent qualifications and combinations, please see UCAS course search for details and use our calculator to help you work out how many UCAS points your qualifications relate to.

    We may also consider credits achieved at other universities and your work/life experience through an assessment of prior learning. This may be for year one entry, or beyond the beginning of a course where applicable, for example, into year 2. Our Recognition of Prior Learning and Credit Transfer Policy outlines the process and options available for this route.

    Contextual offers

    As well as assessing your application and qualifications, we use contextual data and information to make offers for this course. Depending on your circumstances, we may make you an offer up to two grades below the standard entry criteria. Find out how we assess your application.

    Getting in touch

    If you need any more help or information, please email our Admissions and Enquiries Team or call on +44 (0)115 848 4200.

For this course, you need one of the following:

  • A-levels – BCC; or
  • BTEC Extended Diploma – DMM; or
  • 104 UCAS Tariff points from three A-levels or equivalent qualifications; and
  • GCSEs – English and Maths or Science grade C / 4
  • to complete a Disclosure and Barring Service check (formerly known as a Criminal Records Bureau disclosure).

We also consider equivalent qualifications and combinations. All applicants should be able to demonstrate an interest in, and an aptitude for, engaging young people. Although it is not essential, we positively encourage applicants who have experience of working within a youth justice setting or can evidence relevant voluntary work, particularly with young people. Specifically, mature applicants are encouraged to apply as, alongside academic qualifications, relevant practical experience and achievements are seen as an asset. Non-standard applicants may be interviewed.

As with all vocational courses related to working with children and young people, all students are required to provide full details of any previous criminal convictions on admission and confirm the nature of these upon course commencement. Students are required to disclose any subsequent criminal convictions while on the course; failure to provide full disclosure of previous or new convictions can lead to termination of a student’s studies. Students eligible for the work-based learning observation may be required to complete an enhanced Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) Disclosure. If this highlights a potential risk to a child this could lead to termination being considered.

International qualifications

We accept qualifications from all over the world – check yours here:

Undergraduate preparation courses (Foundation)

If you don’t yet meet our entry requirements, we offer Foundation courses through our partner Nottingham Trent International College (NTIC), based on our City Campus:

English language entry requirements

You can meet our language requirements by successfully completing our pre-sessional English course for an agreed length of time, or by submitting the required grade in one of our accepted English language tests, such as IELTS:

Advanced standing (starting your undergraduate degree in year 2 or 3)

You may be able to start your undergraduate course in year 2 or 3 based on what you have studied before.  This decision would be made in accordance with our Recognition of Prior Learning and Credit Transfer Policy.

Would you like some advice on your study plans?

Our international teams are highly experienced in answering queries from students all over the world. We also have members of staff based in Vietnam, China, India and Nigeria and work with a worldwide network of education counsellors.

Fees and funding

Preparing for the financial side of student life is important, but there’s no need to feel anxious and confused about it. We hope that our fees and funding pages will answer all your questions.

Additional Costs

Your course fees cover the cost of studies, and include loads of great benefits, such as the use of our library, support from our expert Employability team, and free use of the IT equipment across our campuses.

Library books

Most study modules will recommend one or more core text books, which most students choose to purchase. Book costs vary and further information is available in the University’s bookshop. Our libraries provide a good supply of essential text books, journals and materials (many of which you can access online) – meaning you may not need to purchase as many books as you might think! There may also be a supply of second-hand books available for purchase from previous year students.

Field trips

All essential field trip costs will be included in your course fees. There may be the opportunity to take part in optional field trips, which do incur additional costs.

Placements

If you're undertaking a placement year, you'll need to budget for accommodation and any travel costs you may incur whilst on placement. Many of our placement students do earn a salary whilst on placement which can help to cover these living costs.

Print and copy costs

The University allocates an annual printing and copying allowance of £20 depending on the course you are studying. For more details about costs for additional print and copying required over and above the annual allowance please see the Printing, photocopying and scanning information on the Library website.

Getting in touch

For more advice and guidance, you can contact our Student Financial Support Service.

Tel: +44 (0)115 848 2494

Tuition fees

Mode of study

International tuition fee

Full-time

£15,600

Please note the fees shown are for 2022 entry.

Tuition fees are payable for each year that you are at the University. The level of tuition fees for the second and subsequent years of your undergraduate course may increase in line with inflation and as specified by the UK government.

Scholarships

We offer scholarships of up to 50% of your tuition fee. You can apply for your scholarship when you have an offer to study at NTU.

Living costs

Get advice on the cost of living as an international student in Nottingham and how to budget:

Paying fees

Find out about advanced payments, instalment plan options and how to make payments securely to the University:

Would you like some advice on your study plans?

Our international teams are highly experienced in answering queries from students all over the world. We also have members of staff based in Vietnam, China, India and Nigeria and work with a worldwide network of education counsellors.

How to apply

Ready to join us? Then apply as soon as you can. Just click the Apply button at the top of the page and follow the instructions for applying. Make sure you check the entry requirements above carefully before you do.

Writing your application and personal statement

Be honest, thorough and persuasive in your application. Remember that we can only make a decision based on what you tell us, so include all of your qualifications and grades, including resits or predicted grades.

Your personal statement is a really important part of your application – it’s your chance to convince us why we should offer you a place. You’ve got 4,000 characters to impress us. Make sure you use them to show how your skills and qualities are relevant to the course(s) you’re applying for. For more hints and tips, take a look at our page on how to write a good personal statement.

Keeping up to date

After you’ve applied, we’ll be sending you important emails throughout the application process – so check your emails regularly, including your junk mail folder.

You can get more information and advice about applying to NTU on our Your Application page. Good luck with your application!

You can apply for this course through UCAS. If you are not applying to any other UK universities, you can apply directly to us on our NTU applicant portal.

Application advice

Apply early so that you have enough time to prepare – processing times for Student visas can vary, for example.  After you've applied, we'll be sending you important emails throughout the application process – so check your emails regularly, including your junk mail folder.

Writing your personal statement

Be honest, thorough, and persuasive – we can only make a decision about your application based on what you tell us:

Would you like some advice on your study plans?

Our international teams are highly experienced in answering queries from students all over the world. We also have members of staff based in Vietnam, China, India and Nigeria and work with a worldwide network of education counsellors.

The University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.