BA (Hons)

Professional Policing

Policing pathway students
  • UCAS code(s): L436
  • Level(s) of study: Undergraduate
  • Study mode(s): Full-time
  • Location: City Campus
  • Starting: September 2020
  • Course duration: Three years full-time

The exciting new BA (Hons) Professional Policing degree provides you with a strong understanding of policing through a combination of theory and real-world policing practice experience as a Special Constable.

Throughout the course, you'll gain a unique and innovative insight into the world of policing while ensuring you develop your own significant body of knowledge and practice during your studies. The course will also allow you to consider crime and society from wider perspectives and analyse these within a national and international criminological and legal contexts.

Why choose this course?

  • Gain the essential skills, knowledge and values required for the College of Policing’s (CoP) ‘Policing Education Qualification Framework’ (PEQF). This serves as the benchmark for contemporary professional policing and thus determines pre/post join standards for policing.
  • A team of practice-based policing and criminology academics will deepen your understanding of the sector; keeping you up-to-date with contemporary policing issues and debates.
  • Strong links with Nottinghamshire Police.
  • Ideal starting point if you want a career in Policing or law enforcement

What you'll study

This course will provide you with the opportunity to train as Special Constable, or volunteer with the local force, undertake specialist modules in a wide range of contemporary policing issues, and build your practical policing experience throughout the degree.

A key feature of this course is practical development and will focus on developing the requisite skills and qualities necessary to commence a policing role, as stipulated by the College of Policing.

In your final year of study, you'll have the opportunity to undertake a substantial piece of self-directed work in a relevant emerging issue in local / national / international policing.

Studying this degree in Professional Policing does not GUARANTEE any such employment with the police service as an officer or staff member; the degree provides you with academic entry requirement via the pre-join degree route.

Every police force in England and Wales sets its own recruitment process and selection policy, and entry requirements vary from force to force. You will be advised to check their eligibility against the force website, this may assist them in deciding whether to undertake the pre-join Degree course and/or pursue a career in policing.

This is a knowledge only degree with sign posted options towards practice as a Special Constable, or Volunteer, with the local force. Every student undertaking this degree will have the opportunity to undertake voluntary practice. Where students undertake voluntary practice they will share these experience with the wider group to enhance all students experiential learning throughout the 3-year degree programme.

Student success will not solely be dependent on sign posted voluntary opportunities in order to be successful on the programme.

Please note that due to operational considerations, the number of available places on the police pathway will be capped each year. Places will be decided on condition of successful short listing by Nottinghamshire Constabulary, passing all legal police checks.

Modules on this course are delivered by NTU experts alongside active serving police staff.

  • Year One

    Core modules

    The Role of the Police 

    This module will provide you with the rationale for the development of the modern police officer, before examining the functions of the contemporary police service alongside other criminal justice agencies and its governance in England and Wales.

    Crime Investigations One

    An introduction to crime investigation techniques such as statement taking for victim and witnesses, evidence gathering at crime scenes the and subsequent management of evidence. The module also includes an introduction to investigative interviewing techniques for suspects utilising police models.

    Problem Solving and Decision Making

    An introduction to problem solving and decision-making techniques and models as utilised within the police service in order to make effective decisions at police incidents.

    The Criminal Justice System 

    An understanding of the structure and operation of the UK criminal justice system and the role of the police within it.

    Criminology and Crime Prevention 

    An overview of the evolution of crime reduction, criminological theory, and how such factors have developed into a central tenet of contemporary criminal justice policy. The module offers an understanding of community safety approaches, including multi-agency partnership working, and identifies criminological models.

    Police Powers One

    During this module you'll begin to develop your portfolio of practical work experiences while under the tutorship of Nottinghamshire Police. You'll also develop a foundation of legal knowledge and IT packages such as 'Niche' and 'NCALT'.

  • Year Two

    Core modules

    Public Protection

    You'll gain a critical evaluation of the theme of public protection, concentrating on specific areas of legislation. The module will cover areas such as domestic violence, the management of sexual and violent offenders, vulnerable victims, safeguarding of adults and children and the police approach.

    Evidence Based Policing 

    You'll explore the concept of evidence based policing and how EBP informs police decision-making, policy and practice.

    Crime Investigations Two

    This module provides students with additional development from Crime Investigation 1 and further seeks to develop knowledge and understanding of crime investigation techniques, crime scene management, forensic awareness and case file preparation.

    Police Intelligence and Community Policing 

    An introduction to the concepts of police intelligence, intelligence handling and interaction with the community, and partner agencies to effectively police by consent.

    Police Powers Two

    This module provides students with further enhancement of the students’ knowledge and understanding of key pieces of legislation required for the role of a police constable, and apply them to more complex and sensitive situations within policing following successful completion of Police Powers 1.

  • Final year

    Core modules

    Digital Policing and Counter Terrorism 

    You'll critically develop your understanding of digital policing concepts and counter terrorism issues. In this module you will learn specifically how to manipulate digital devices and extract evidence for a policing purpose.

    Front Line Policing 

    You'll further develop your existing knowledge from levels 4 and 5 and focus specifically on front line and road policing issues.

    Police Powers Three

    An understanding of key pieces of legislation required for the role of a police constable and apply them critically to more complex and sensitive situations within policing, whilst building upon knowledge gained from Police Powers 1 and 2.

    Research Project or Applied Research Project

    The ‘Research Project’ is worth 40 credits and provides you with the opportunity to apply your knowledge to a large-scale academic project on a specific area of policing which you select. For those who are special constables or police volunteers, the ‘Applied Research Project’ is the equivalent 40 credit module and the focus for this is decided in liaison with course staff and Nottinghamshire Police. This is to ensure the focus is relevant to emergent issues in local/national/international policing whilst also reflecting the College of Policing key thematic strands. Both versions of the module consolidate a large number of transferable skills and are the pinnacle of students attained research skills and abilities as an autonomous learner.

    You will get the option to choose one of these projects:

    Research Project

    You'll bring together the various skills developed through the BA (Hons) Professional Policing syllabus as well as their research methods skills and apply this to a theoretical policing issue.

    Applied Research Project

    You'll have the opportunity to bring together the various skills developed through the BA (Hons) Professional Policing syllabus as well as their research methods skills and apply this to a contemporary policing issue.

Course specification

View the full course specification
Please note that course specifications may be subject to change

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, seminars, workshops and police-delivered training sessions. The smaller group seminars and workshops provide opportunities to develop your problem-solving skills, group working and your analysis, debating and presentation skills. They also give you the chance to get involved in discussions about a wide range of views.

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 and raise any difficulties you are experiencing relating to your work, personal circumstances or your university experience.

Virtual learning environment

You'll 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. The course team have experience in police training, practice and research, providing you with a unique and innovative insight into the world of policing.

How will I be assessed?

During the course, you'll be assessed in a variety of ways, such as: in class mock exams, draft report plans, role-play or practice scenario simulations, individual / group presentations and individual / group case study or practice-based exercise. In your final year, you'll combine this with a dissertation / independent study project. In response to student feedback the University have introduced a policy ensuring marked work is returned to you electronically within three weeks of submission.

Assessment methods

  • Year 1 coursework (70%), written (15%) and practical (15%)
  • Year 2 coursework (50%), written (20%) and practical (30%)
  • Year 3 coursework (63%), written (12%) and practical (25%)

Contact hours

A full-time student on average can expect to spend 1200 hours a year learning which will typically be broken down as follows:

  • Year 1 lectures/seminars/workshops (35%), independent study (65%)
  • Year 2 lectures/seminars/workshops (30%), independent study (70%)
  • Year 3 lectures/seminars/workshops (25%), independent study (75%)

Careers and employability

Your career development

When you graduate, you'll be in the best position to embark on a successful career in the police, prison, probation services or in law enforcement. You'll have developed the essential skills and knowledge to commence a career in policing immediately upon graduation.

You'll have gained a range of knowledge specific and transferable skills including communication, presentation and problem solving skills. You'll be able to use a selection of forms of information technology to gather, analyse and present policing data.

Our Employability Team

Entry requirements

For September 2020 entry you will need:

  • A-levels – BBC; or
  • BTEC Extended Diploma – DMM; or
  • 112 UCAS Tariff points from three A-levels or equivalent qualifications; and
  • GCSEs – English and Maths or Science grade C / 4.

We also consider equivalent qualifications and combinations.

You'll also:

  • Undertake an interview, a written exercise, and group exercise.

Applications can only be accepted from nationals of certain countries. Click on International for details.

Interview dates

Interview dates for 2020 are TBC.

Interview dates may be subject to change and will be confirmed to successful applicants when they are invited to interview.

Becoming a Special Constable

In order to undertake either the special constable or police volunteer streams within the course, you will be subject to further eligibility checks which are separate from/additional to the course entry requirements. In particular, for those wishing to undertake the Special Constable role:

  • Candidates will need to satisfy a number of pre-employment checks such as security and financial vetting, biometric and drug testing, and a medical examination;
  • Candidates will be required to complete each stage of the recruitment policy such as competency-based questions, an interview and a physical fitness test.

The UCAS Tariff

We've created this calculator to help you work out how many UCAS points your qualifications relate to.

Getting in touch

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

We accept qualifications from schools, colleges and universities all over the world for entry onto our undergraduate degrees. If you’re not sure how your international qualification matches our course requirements please visit our international qualifications page.

For September 2020 entry you will need:

  • A-levels – BBC; or
  • BTEC Extended Diploma – DMM; or
  • 112 UCAS Tariff points from three A-levels or equivalent qualifications; and
  • GCSEs – English and Maths or Science grade C / 4.

We also consider equivalent qualifications and combinations.

You'll also:

  • undertake an interview, a written exercise, and group exercise.

There are restrictions on who can apply to be a Special Constable. Applications can only be accepted if you are a national of a country within the European Economic Area (EEA) or, if not, have leave to enter or remain in the UK for an indefinite period free of restrictions.

Countries included in the EEA are:

Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK.

Interview dates

Interview dates for 2020 entry are TBC.

Interview dates may be subject to change and will be confirmed to successful applicants when they are invited to interview.

Becoming a Special Constable

In order to undertake either the special constable or police volunteer streams within the course, you will be subject to further eligibility checks which are separate from/additional to the course entry requirements. In particular, for those wishing to undertake the Special Constable role:

  • Candidates will need to satisfy a number of pre-employment checks such as security and financial vetting, biometric and drug testing, and a medical examination;
  • Candidates will be required to complete each stage of the recruitment policy such as competency-based questions, an interview and a physical fitness test.

Foundation courses

If you need to do a foundation course to meet our course requirements please visit Nottingham Trent International College (NTIC). If you’re already studying in the UK at a school or college and would like to know if we can accept your qualification please visit our foundation courses page.

English language entry requirements

If English is not your first language you need to show us that your language skills are strong enough for intensive academic study. We usually ask for an IELTS test and we accept some alternative English language tests.

For a list of our language requirements please visit our English language page.

If you need to do a pre-sessional English language course to meet the English requirements please visit our pre-sessional English course page.

Help and support

If you have any questions about your qualifications or about making an application to the University please contact our international team for advice.

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, 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!

Please read our notes on the University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.

You can apply directly to NTU for an undergraduate course if you’re not applying to any other UK university in the same year. If you are applying to more than one UK university you must apply through UCAS.


Apply as early as you can so that you have time to prepare for your studies. If you need a visa to study here you need to plan this into your application.

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.

Good luck with your application!

Please read our notes on the University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.

Fees and funding

 Home / EU 
students
BA (Hons)  ProfessionallPolicing£9,250

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.

Getting in touch

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

Tel: +44 (0)115 848 2494

While we aim to keep any extra study costs to a minimum, please see our page on additional costs and optional extras to find out about any additional expenses you may incur on your course.

International fees and scholarships

For international and EU fees for all courses, together with advice on how to pay, please visit our international fees information.

 International
students
BA (Hons) Professional Policing£13,900

We offer prestigious scholarships to our international students holding offers to study here. For details and an application form please visit our international scholarships information.

While we aim to keep any extra study costs to a minimum, please see our page on additional costs and optional extras to find out about any additional expenses you may incur on your course.

Still need help?

School of Social Sciences Enquiries
+44 (0)115 848 4460