Master of Social Sciences in Criminology

The Master of Social Sciences in Criminology [MSocSc(Crim)] is the first and long established postgraduate criminology programme in Hong Kong. It offers a professional qualification for practitioners in criminal justice and related fields, and provides a foundation for advanced research degree studies in the  discipline. Offered since 1986, the programme is designed for people:

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

On completion of the programme, students should:

  • Be able to apply a social-sciences approach to the study of crime and deviance;
  • Be able to understand a variety of contemporary developments in criminology and related social-policy issues;
  • Have possessed professional knowledge of the role of social sciences, including law and psychiatry, in understanding crime and criminal justice;
  • Be equipped with the theoretical and practical skills to investigate these core areas within criminology.

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

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. You may need to satisfy visa restrictions (for non-local applicants) and English language requirements.

Tuition fee

For study commencing in academic year 2021/22, the programme tuition fee is HK$143,000. Payments are split into two instalments over one year (full-time study), or four instalments over two years (part-time study).

Programme director

Prof Laidler, Karen A Joe

Tel: 3917 2059
Fax: 2559 8044

General enquiries

Ms Ko, Connie H Y

Tel: 3917 2309
Fax: 2559 8044

Student experiences

This programme has opened my mind in achieving a greater understanding of morality, justice, truth, and meaning.

— Felicity, Alumna of Criminology

This Masters programme was an eye opening experience that provided me with detailed theoretical knowledge in understanding crime and criminal justice.

— Deborah, Alumna of Criminology


Compulsory courses

Elective courses

Final year (compulsory)

Courses offered vary each year based on availability of teachers and student demand. Please see the MSocSc regulations and syllabus for definitive course options and requirements.

See full details of the programme structure and requirements.

Important dates

Applications period: normally November to February each year
Programme commencement date: early September following close of application period


Click here for online application

Closing Date for Applications:

Full Time: 12:00 noon (GMT +8), March 12, 2021
Part Time: 12:00 noon (GMT +8), March 12, 2021

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