LLM Criminology & Criminal Justice

Graduate Taught (level 9 nfq, credits 90)

Crime and punishment are issues of central importance to society. By bringing academic rigour to their examination the UCD Institute of Criminology and Criminal Justice contributes to the achievement of national priorities. Drawing together researchers from across UCD, the Institute has been the focus of debates in parliament, legislative and policy initiatives, and numerous reports in the media. Members of the Institute have engaged in major research projects including work on coercive confinement, recidivism and desistance, youth crime, policing, trial by jury, white collar crime, historical approaches to crime and punishment, restorative justice, victims, and penal policy.

  • To understand and think critically about the intersections between law, politics and social policy that come To the fore in the study of Criminology and Criminal Justice.
  • To apply their knowledge and understanding of Criminology and Criminal Justice to real and hypothetical factual situations.
  • To conduct independent research and write coherent, well-structured papers. 

CIEL Exchange Programme: 
The comparative International and European Law (CIEL) programme is an exchange programme for registered full-time LLM students. The programme includes joint thesis supervision with academic colleagues at both the home and host institution. Upon successful completion students are awarded the CIEL certificate in addition to their LLM award.

Maastricht University (Courses through English: English as first language or an overall score of score 6.5 in IELTS)

Universität Mannheim (Courses through German: German as first language, Leaving Certificate B2 or equivalent)

Universitat Pompeu Fabra (Courses through English: English as first language or an overall score of score 6.5 in IELTS)

Université Toulouse 1 Capitole (Courses through French: French as first language, Leaving Certificate B2 or equivalent)

University of Antwerp (Courses through English: English as first language or an overall score of score 6.5 in IELTS)

University of Zagreb (Courses through English: English as first language or an overall score of score 6.5 in IELTS)
Students admitted to LLM programmes holding a 2:1 in their undergraduate Law degree and relevant language results are eligible to apply in late September/Early October when they have begun their programme. Spaces are allocated on a competitive basis. Open to September start students only.​

LLM Exchange to the University of Melbourne

Sutherland School of Law will offer one full-time registered LLM, September start, student the opportunity to spend Semester Two of their full-time LLM programme in the University of Melbourne. This is open only to students admitted to an LLM programme holding a high 2:1 in their undergraduate Law degree. Allocation will be based on academic performance to date and interview. Application to this will open in October.

Additional Notes for Applicants:

Please note that the Part Time programme has the same timetable as the full-time programme but is held over 2 years rather than 1 year.

There will be dissertation seminars in weeks 1-4 on Tuesdays and Wednesdays 11-1pm (Jan-May term)

Double Degree Master’s in law with University Western Australia (Perth)

We are delighted to partner with the University of Western Australia to offer a Double Degree across this and many of our other master’s programmes. This 1+1 Double Degree consists of two separate awards: a UCD SSoL one-year taught master’s degree followed by a UWA Law School one-year taught Master’s Degree.

The UCD SSoL degree will be from one of the following programmes:

LLM General, LLM International Commercial Law, LLM in Criminology & Criminal Justice, LLM in IP and IT Law, LLM in International Human Rights, LLM European Law and Public Affairs, MSc Criminology and Criminal Justice and MSc International Law and Business. 

The UWA Law School one-year taught Master’s Degree can be taken in one of the following fields:

Master of International Commercial Law, Master of International Law, Master of Taxation Law, Master of Law, Policy and Government, Master of Commercial and Resources Law, and Master of Mining and Energy Law. 

More details on the UWA programmes available at: https://www.uwa.edu.au/able/schools/law-school#anchor-Courses-9D61DB9F-11D2-4ED0-AFA5-9AC77FF94CCB//

The academic calendar at UWA extends from February to June (Semester 1) and July to November (Semester 2). Students transferring from UCD will be required to meet normal overseas admission standards before being admitted to the UWA master’s programme i.e., the equivalent of a Weighted Average Mark of 60% overall in the first year of their UCD Masters study.

Each student shall pay the full annual fees for the programme to the institution they are studying at for the year of payment.

Each year, UWA may award full or partial tuition fee scholarships to the best qualified UCD candidates who commence the UWA master’s programme. The number of these full or partial scholarships and eligibility for them may be determined by UWA in accordance with the number of students entering the programme and/or their academic performance. It is expected that these will be as follows:

-    For Students with a UWA WAM equivalent of 70% (UCD GPA of 3.08) or greater a fee waiver of $A5,000 per annum.

-    For Students with a UWA WAM equivalent of 75% (UCD GPA of 3.38) or greater a fee waiver of $A8,000 per annum.

-    For Students with a UWA WAM equivalent of 80% (UCD GPA of 3.68) or greater a fee waiver of $A10,000 per annum.

Careers & Employability

This programme provides opportunities for those who wish to work or are already working in relevant areas, such as policing, youth justice, prisons, probation and the non-governmental sector to enhance their knowledge of the field. It also provides a good platform for doctoral studies and a possible academic career in what has become an area of substantial growth in universities around the world.

We have an excellent Careers Development Centre here at UCD, designed to help you with information regarding future employment or studies. UCD hold a number of graduate events throughout the year including a dedicated law fair at which at which many of the big law firms will be in attendance. The School of Law has a dedicated careers advisor on its academic staff, and a staff member from the careers office will be in attendance at the School of law on a number of occasions throughout the academic year. To see the full range of services offered by the careers office go to http://www.ucd.ie/careers/


Curricular information is subject to change

Full Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

Part Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. No

This programme is for students who hold an undergraduate law degree. It provides career-relevant knowledge, insight and skills to those working or aspiring to work in sectors such as policing, youth justice, prisons, probation and related voluntary organisations, as well as a good platform for doctoral studies and a possible academic career.

The programme nurtures learners who strive to understand and think critically about the intersections between law, politics and social policy, to apply this knowledge and understanding to real-life situations, and to conduct independent research.

We strive to create a learning environment that encourages students to work individually or as part of a team, so they can develop their own and others' teamwork and communication skills, as well as acquiring an understanding of quantitative and qualitative analyses.

To these ends, the programme makes intensive use of small group teaching, in-class presentations (individual and group) and academic writing. A 30 credit dissertation on a topic devised by the student is an integral part of the programme.

  • appreciate the strengths and limitations of key research methodologies.
  • demonstrate a detailed awareness of current controversies in criminology and criminal justice and knowledge of areas where the discipline is currently enjoying theoretical elaboration.
  • have the intellectual toolkit required to research and write a major dissertation.
  • integrate source material from a variety of disciplinary areas to reach reasoned decisions about the relative status of competing claims to knowledge.
  • unpack complex theoretical arguments and render  key disciplinary insights intelligible to a non-specialist audience.
  • use knowledge of debates within the discipline and different methodological approaches to interpret empirical research findings and to critique research designs.

LLM Criminology & Criminal Justice (B292) Full Time
EU          fee per year - € 11500
nonEU    fee per year - € 22600

LLM Criminology & Criminal Justice (B293) Part Time
EU          fee per year - € 5340
nonEU    fee per year - € 11300

***Fees are subject to change

Undergraduates who are eligible for government SUSI funding should note that their fees for graduate study may also be covered under the scheme. To check your eligibility please see the SUSI eligibility indicator tool available at this weblink.

Further information about SUSI grants and funding is available at this weblink.

Tuition fee information is available on the UCD Fees website. Please note that UCD offers a number of graduate scholarships for full-time, self-funding international students, holding an offer of a place on a UCD graduate degree programme. For further information please see International Scholarships. We also offer scholarships for EU applicants. All applicants who apply before May 31st will be included. Further details at http://www.ucd.ie/law/study/scholarships/

Degree Requirements

  • Applicants must hold a Law degree, or an inter-disciplinary degree in which law was a major component. Applicants must have achieved at least an upper second class honours or equivalent.
  • Applicants holding a Graduate Diploma in Law (60 ECTS Credits) may be considered but will normally be admitted only where they can show an exceptionally strong performance in both their undergraduate degree and diploma.
  • Exemption from these requirements may be given to those with significant, relevant, practical experience or those with a graduate qualification at Masters level or higher in a relevant discipline. Such applicants should state clearly in their application why they feel their qualifications/experiences are appropriate for admission to the programme.
  • In exceptional circumstances, substantial professional experience within a related field may be regarded by the selection panel as compensating for a lack of an undergraduate degree to the required standard. Such applicants should state clearly in their application why they feel their other qualifications/experience are appropriate for admission onto the programme.

 English Language Requirements

  • Applicants whose first language is not English must submit satisfactory evidence of competence in written and spoken English, i.e. overall IELTS 6.5 (including a minimum of 6.5 in the reading and writing parts and no part below 6.0) or 90 in the TOEFL iBT (with a minimum of 22 (reading) and 24 (writing) and no part below 20.) The test results must be less than 2 years old.
  • The School encourages all applicants whose first language is not English to attend the pre-sessional English programme offered by the UCD Applied Language Centre, details of which are available at www.ucd.ie/alc.
  • Students meeting the programme’s academic entry requirements but not the  English language requirements, may enter the programme upon  successful completion of UCD’s Pre-Sessional or International Pre-Master’s Pathway programmes. Please see the following link for further information http://www.ucd.ie/alc/programmes/pathways/ 
  •  International applicants should visit the UCD International Office website (www.ucd.ie/international) for information regarding our campus, location of UCD, visa information, registration and orientation.

These are the minimum entry requirements – additional criteria may be requested for some programmes 

Application Procedure

Applicants should indicate which programme they are applying for. All applicants should note:

  • Official transcripts must be submitted as proof of examination results by all applicants except UCD graduates.
  • The personal statement is an important component of the application. It should contain information demonstrating your capability to undertake the course successfully. You should detail any relevant research and practical experience including any publications and major essays/projects.
  • Applicants must nominate two academic referees (name, position, postal address, e-mail address and telephone number). If an applicant has been in employment for more than two years, one of the referees must be your employer.

Please note: If you are offered a place on the LLM programme, accepting that place is a two-part process. You must submit an on-line acceptance and you must also pay a non-refundable deposit (normally €500) within 15 working days of the date of your offer letter.

Letter Of Recommendation

Louise Tak Nem Leung,

I’ve always been interested in both disciplines of law and psychology, so for me the LLM in Criminology and Criminal Justice suited my interests perfectly. My year in UCD has greatly broadened my perspectives and horizons for my future, as the specialisation of this masters in criminology and criminal justice has provided a good platform for future career development opportunities or doctoral studies. Also, this programme is taught by academic faculty based on extensive expertise and is situated in the UCD Institute of Criminology, which is the only centre of its kind in the country. UCD has a very energetic and student friendly atmosphere and lecturers are extremely supportive and encouraging. I found it really easy to settle in during my studies for this year and I’m currently pursuing a career within the area of restorative justice and the probation services and aiming towards completing a PhD in Law.


If you would like further information/testimonals on all of our masters programmes please check out our playlist on youtube.

The following entry routes are available:

LLM Criminology & Criminal Justice FT (B292)
1 Years
Full Time
LLM Criminology & Criminal Justice PT (B293)
2 Years
Part Time

* Courses will remain open until such time as all places have been filled, therefore early application is advised