SC6051 - Serious and Serial Offenders (2023/24)
|Module approved to run in 2023/24
|Serious and Serial Offenders
|Credit rating for module
|School of Social Sciences and Professions
|Total study hours
|Running in 2023/24(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
ou will explore the definition, characteristics and offending behaviour of serious and serial offenders, with a particular focus on mass, spree and serial murderers, sexual offenders and arsonists. You will also consider how such offenders are investigated, their behaviour and characteristics analysed. Key explanatory theories used to explain serious and serial offending will be examined and the efficacy of these in relation to methodological concerns critically evaluated. Finally, the module explores the identification and apprehension of serious and serial offenders.
The module aims to:
1. discuss and give examples of some of the most disturbing and controversial forms of offending behaviour;
2. identify the prevalence of serial and serious offending within the broader population of criminal offences, questioning common assumptions about, and contemporary popular focus on, these categories of offences;
3. evaluate and debate the definition and measurement of serious and serial offending, particularly in relation to methodological concerns;
4. describe and critically discuss a range of key theories and concepts employed in the explanation and understanding of serious and serial offenders;
5. critically evaluate the investigation and detection of such offenders and offences.
Prior learning requirements
Available for Study Abroad? YES
The syllabus considers and evaluates the definition and measurement of categories of serious and serial offending as well as the nature and characteristics of serious and serial offenders. (LO1, LO5)
Key theoretical approaches, concepts and theories employed in the explication of such offending behaviour are outlined and critically discussed. (LO2)
Methodological concerns regarding definitions, measurement and analysis of serious and serial offending and offenders are critically evaluated in relation to a range of case studies. (LO3)
Law enforcement and clinical investigative techniques are outlined, evaluated and discussed in relation to the detection and apprehension of serious and serial offenders. (LO4)
Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity
You will learn through a variety of methods including weekly lecture workshops focused on indicative reading. Tutorial support will be offered throughout the module by way of tutor availability during office hours, seminar/workshop discussions and via email. Lectures deliver core material providing a framework for further reading and independent study. Seminars provide an opportunity for you to seek clarification of material covered in the lectures and a forum for you to further your knowledge and understanding of these concepts and processes through discussion of key journal articles and case studies. Blackboard will be used to provide information and teaching/learning materials to support the learning process.
The module requires approximately 7 hours per week of independent reading, research and writing.
On successful completion of this module you will be able to:
1. discuss, and give examples of, some of the most disturbing and controversial forms of offending behaviour
2. identify and discuss the prevalence of particular serious and serial offences and question common assumptions, and contemporary concerns, regarding the nature and characteristics of serious and serial offenders as well as the particular offence categories to which they relate
3. describe and critically evaluate definitions and measurement techniques of serious and serial offenders and their offending behaviour and evaluate key theories and concepts employed to explain serious and serial offending
4. critically evaluate law enforcement and clinical investigative techniques used to detect and apprehend serious and serial offenders
5. synthesise information and data obtained from a number of sources and present arguments and research findings coherently as they pertain to serious and serial offending.
This module is assessed by one assessment, an essay.
The assessment requires you to demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of theoretical approaches to serious and serial offenders, offender typologies, the prevalence of serious and serial offending.
There is no core text for this module as the subject matter is too diverse to be captured in one resource.