Criminology is the scientific study of social crimes, offenders, and criminal conduct, as well as methods of crime prevention. Criminology studies crime as a problem on both a person and a social basis. It looks at how society responds to crime and how to deter it. Evidence examination, genetic and psychological origins of crime, various means of prosecution and conviction, and the efficacy of various styles of punishment, rehabilitation, and corrections are all covered by criminology. Criminology is the study of all of these facets of crime in general. In other sense, it is evaluating the circumstances that provoked to do the crime and preventing/regulating future chances to do such crime. Criminology is an interdisciplinary subject, and derives its theory from the fields of sociology, psychology and law.

Although Forensic science and criminology both approach issues of crime and criminal behavior from a scientific viewpoint, the two disciplines are quite different. Criminology and forensic science differ in scope and application. Forensic science applies the tools and methods of the natural sciences, especially biology and chemistry, to issues of a legal nature. They collect evidence at crime scenes and analyze the materials in laboratories. Forensic science is thus an applied natural science. Criminology, in contrast, is a specialized social science that evolved from sociology. Criminology uses sociological theories and methods to study criminal behavior and how societies respond to crime.

A person professionally qualified in the subject of criminology is called a criminologist. Causes of crime and methods of preventing crime are the two most important aspects of the study of criminology. Other areas of interest in this field of study are – Crime Statistics, Criminal Behavior, Penology, Evaluation of criminal justice agencies, Sociology of Law, Criminal careers and desistance.

Scope of criminology

With the rise of crime and the rapid diversification of its origin, criminology is becoming more important in today’s world. So, whether you’re interested in criminology or criminal justice, you can pursue a career as a criminologist. Criminologists also concentrate on a certain form of crime. Some deal with killings, and others deal with armed robberies, destruction, and assault. They look at as many incidents as possible and use the information to develop hypotheses that can be used to deter further crimes. Crime detection, crime scene investigation, criminal litigation, corrections, recovery, or jail privatisation can all be areas of specialization for them.

Since criminologists are familiar with the social and personal facets of violence, victimisation, and approaches to crime and deviance, they have a wide range of career opportunities in Pakistan’s judicial system. Graduates of Criminology may also find work in mental health and drug rehabilitation facilities, insurance companies, and social service centres.

Nature of work

For most cases, criminologists in social service departments serve in offices. Criminal caseworkers can advise or interview offenders in jails, while criminalistics experts work in laboratories. Administrators with high-profile positions, such as police commissioners, must respond to public questions regarding crime. The job of a criminologist often includes:

  • Studying criminal behaviour
  • Compiling statistical data about the causes and nature of crime to determine criminal patterns and common traits among criminals.
  • Conducting surveys and research interviews
  • Prepare reports and statistics of research findings for future reference
  • Working with law enforcement and corrections personnel with developing crime prevention strategies and reform policies based on findings.
  • Devising strategies to help reduce crime and formulating policy recommendations
  • Examine crime scenes, evidence, and autopsies to determine what happened and which profile category the criminal falls into.
  • Assist law enforcement and the justice system

How to become a criminologist

People who want to work as criminologists normally need at least a master’s degree in the discipline. A bachelor’s degree in criminology, psychology, or sociology is a good place to begin with. There are a host of institutes and universities in Pakistan and abroad that deliver graduate and postgraduate courses. If you are planning for a Bachelors degree in Criminology, then you must have completed your higher secondary schooling in Arts or Science.  Eligibility norm for a Masters program is a graduate degree in Arts or Science with 50% marks aggregate.

Best universities

  • University Of Sindh
  • University Of Karachi
  • University Of The Punjab
  • Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan

For more details on institutes offering criminology, visit

Job opportunities

  • Prison officer
  • Criminal psychologist
  • Criminal profiler
  • College professor
  • Writer
  • Probation officer
  • Social worker
  • Consultant,
  • Detective

Requirements and personal attributes

The requirements for each role are vastly different. Organizational skills are needed for criminology administration positions, as are outstanding writing skills and knowledge of the justice system for court reporter jobs. Certain technical abilities, such as sharp intuition and critical reasoning, are required of criminologists and investigators. All criminology positions necessarily require total trust in the legal system, as well as honesty and dignity in the pursuit of truth and justice.

Personal attributes:

  • Interest in human nature and behavior.
  • Strong research and analysis skills are vital as so much of the job involves data collection and interpretation
  •  Must be critical thinker and detail-oriented
  • Problem solving ability, public speaking skill and ability to convince people.
  • Able to express ideas and concepts clearly, both in writing and verbally.
  • May need to address large groups of people and demonstrate good public speaking skills as well.
  • Must be computer literate and proficient in computer and Internet use, especially research related to criminology.


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