module specification

SC5003 - Skills for Community Police Officers (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18
Module title Skills for Community Police Officers
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 30
School School of Social Sciences
Total study hours 300
219 hours Guided independent study
81 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 25%   Reflective log
Coursework 25%   Essay
Coursework 50%   Essay
Running in 2017/18
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Year North Tuesday Morning

Module summary

The module aims to provide participants with a basic understanding of the skills needed for community police officers. This includes covering the skills and knowledge needed to liaise successfully wit local authorities and diverse communities. Particular focus with be on the school policing concept and culture and the duties generally performed by school community officers in partnership with schools and other agencies. It will highlight areas of good practice in partnership work and provide frameworks which help to develop problem solving strategies and ultimately keep young people safe. It will review and analyse local tactics and tool kits employed by both statutory and on-statutory bodies and consider the wider implications of effective partnership working.

Module aims

The aim of this module is to provide school/community and law enforcement professionals with the knowledge of and philosophy behind safe schools policing. The history of community policing will be covered as well as reasons behind its implementation. The triad philosophy will be introduced; Enforcement, Education and Engagement. The unique culture of school police officers will be explored with an emphasis on implementing positive law enforcement/school relationships. Students will also be exposed to the basics of school crisis management and the legal aspects of information sharing, problem solving and links to current areas of concern within society such as gangs and exploitation.


The module begins with an overview of the major areas of study for the course, concepts and framework related to international perspectives and the history of community policing and school community safety worldwide. Other key areas include; Legal perspectives, introduction to case studies and landmark events related to school/community safety, resources, best practices and strategies for schools and communities related to safety. In addition the course will look at the key roles of a school based officer and neighbourhood based officer and some of the strategies employed to keep young people safe which are designed within the roles of Enforcement, Education and Engagement. It will review current evaluation work around police school programmes and critically review some of the evaluation techniques applied.

Learning and teaching

This is a blended learning module where all learning and teaching materials will be available on line and via Blackboard.  This includes lectures as well as talks from professionals in key areas such police, mediation and safeguarding.  Students will be able to study key texts and access journals and books which explore this area of work in depth.  In addition, they will view case studies and participate in online workshops and debates as well as online discussions where they critically analyse and assess their work. Students will be required to undertake 6-7 hours of private study each week in addition to the scheduled learning and teaching activities. The module leader will be available for individual tutorials and be accessible via email.   For those students who wish it, face-to-face tutorial support will also be available.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:
Understand the history and aims of the school based officer
Understand the history and aims of the school based officer
Reflect on the critical, historical, theoretical and legal perspectives related to school community safety
Compare and contrast key studies and landmark events related to school community safety
Understand the role of the School based police officer; Enforcement, Education and Engagement.
Review current legislation in relation to crime reporting, information sharing between partners with the school/community framework
Develop techniques to effective partnership work
Overview of research and evaluation strategies related to school community safety.
Overview of worldwide resources and best practice for schools and communities related to safety.
Synthesise, compare and contrast international and cross-cultural perspectives that influence school/community safety,
Review future developments and areas of research.

Assessment strategy

The reflective log requires students to demonstrate they understand how and why the skills they have learned are necessary for community police officers. The first essay of 2,500 words requires the student to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of community policing. The final essay of 2,500 words requires students to analyse and evaluate a specialist area of policing operations  such as policing in schools.


Briers, Andrew N. (2004) Safer School Communities, Middlesex University Press.
Briers, Andrew N. (2003) School-based police officers: What can the U.K. learn from the USA? 1461–3557. International Journal of Police Science & Management Volume 5 Number 2 pp. 129-142
Briers, Andrew N., Dickmann E (2008) International Comparative perspective of police in schools resulting from a Fulbright Police Alumni Award. International Journal of Police Science and Management Vol 11 No 2
Dickmann, E (1999) An Ethnographic Study of Police in Schools, Colorado State University. PhD Thesis, unpublished, © 2000
Hayden, C. & Martin, D. (eds) (2011) Crime, Anti-Social Behaviour and Schools Palgrave Macmillan
Kolb, D (1984). Experiential Learning.  London: Prentice Hall
Honey, P and Mumford, A (1992) The Manual of Learning Styles. Maidenhead: Peter Honey Publications
Myhill,A. (2012) Community engagement in policing  Lessons from the literature. National Policing Improvement Agency. 

Whitehead, C., Stockdale, J., Scanlon, K., Roberts, C., and West, K. (2002) Neighbourhood Wardens: a review of international experience. London School of Economics and Political Science. London: UK. 

Williams, E.J. (2003) Structuring in Community Policing: institutionalizing innovative change. Police Practice and Research, Vol.4, No.2, pp 119-129. Routledge.