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Master of Social Sciences in Criminology

The Master of Social Sciences in Criminology [MSocSc(Crim)] has been running since 1986 and remains the only taught postgraduate criminology programme in Hong Kong. We offer a professional qualification for practitioners in criminal justice and related fields, and provide a foundation for advanced research degree studies in the discipline.

This programme is particularly ideal if you:

  • intend to start, or already have, a career in the police, law, corrections, non-governmental organisations and related agencies;
  • want to complement your skills through the academic study of crime and criminal justice;
  • work in government, commerce, security and risk management, journalism, teaching, and other areas where a knowledge of criminology would be professionally helpful;
  • wish to increase your technical and conceptual skills through an advanced university education;
  • wish to pursue research studies in criminology.

In this programme, we aim to provide you with:

  • advanced knowledge of research on criminological issues relevant to working in the field;
  • training to facilitate understanding of current developments in criminology, and assessment of policy proposals and implementation strategies;
  • skills for developing criminological analysis and research in Hong Kong, the region and beyond;
  • opportunities for students to understand the working of agencies other than their own and of the criminal justice system as a whole.

This programme is internationally recognised, and has links with the Global Criminal Justice Hub at the University of Oxford.

Mode of attendance

  • Full Time (usually one year, with classes on evenings and occasionally weekends)
  • Part Time (usually two years, with classes on evenings and occasionally weekends)

Medium of instruction


Entrance requirements

  • You should hold a Bachelor’s degree, or another qualification of equivalent standard, preferably with a major in the social sciences or humanities discipline, or preferably have working experience in the criminal-justice system, social-welfare agencies or in other work with offenders.
  • If you do not hold a Bachelor’s degree, but possess relevant working experiences, you may also be considered in exceptional cases, after sitting for a qualifying examination.
  • You may need to satisfy visa restrictions (for non-local applicants) and English language requirements.

Tuition fee

For study commencing in academic year 2018/19, the programme tuition fee is HK$105,000 (subject to University approval). Payments are split into two instalments over one year (full-time study), or four instalments over two years (part-time study).

Admissions advisor

Prof Laidler, Karen A Joe
Email: kjoe@hku.hk

General applications enquiry

Ms Ko, Connie H Y
Email: msscrim@hku.hk
Tel: 3917 2309
Fax: 2559 8044

Student experiences

I wanted to know more about crime, society and criminal justice. This programme provided the best way to understand these components.

— Tin Cheung, Alumnus of Criminology

This programme bridges multiple aspects of criminology, covering current challenges and knowledge, from local to global, and theory to practice.

— Mavis Yip, 1st year Criminology


Compulsory courses

Elective courses

Final year (compulsory)

Not all courses will necessarily be offered each year.

See full details of the programme structure and requirements.

Important dates

Applications period: normally November to February each year


Apply now for admission to this programme in September 2018.
The deadline for applications is 12 noon, 28 February 2018.

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