Social Sciences Dissertation Topics: Criminology and Crime

| October 17, 2011 | 24 Comments

WritePass: Social Sciences Dissertation Topics

1. Introduction to Criminology Dissertations

This guide gives you some ideas for dissertation titles. Criminology covers many areas, so there should be plenty to whet your appetite here.   Social Sciences Dissertation Topics including Criminology dissertations typically take one of two forms, focusing either upon collecting and analyzing primary data or upon appraising secondary data only. Either type can be appropriate to your area of study.  You will also find an overview of how to structure your dissertation in section three below.

2. Categories and List of Dissertation Titles

2.1 Domestic Violence and Child Abuse

2.1.1 A study of the impact of partner violence on women’s mental health: a quantitative study comparing the UK with Nigeria.

2.1.2  Beaten men: to what extent do men suffer from violence against them carried out by their female partners? A review of current literature.

2.1.3 To what extent can concept analysis help in the management of cases of domestic violence? A qualitative study in the UK.

2.1.4 Understanding why women stay with violent and abusive partners: a literature review.

2.1.5  Victimology and domestic abuse: is there a personality type more associated with domestic violence?  A qualitative study amongst UK therapists specializing in domestic violence cases.

2.1.6  Persuading domestic violence victims to testify against their abusive partners: difficulties and possible solutions. A literature review.

2.1.7  Child abuse: perpetuating a cycle of violence. How do abusers who were themselves abused as children  conceptualise their crimes? A qualitative study amongst convicted abusers.

2.1.8 To what extent does suffering abuse impact upon victim’s memory and cognitive functioning: a review of the literature.


2.2. Deviant Behaviour and its Explanations

2.2.1 Suicide pacts and the internet: to what extent have new internet technologies led to an increase in suicide pacts, and what explanatory model best accounts for this phenomenon?  A literature review.

2.2.2 Is there a relationship between housing type (flats, high rise blocks, traditional housing, estates) and patterns of crime? A critical analysis of statistics from the UK

2.2.3 To what extent can self-control be used as a predictor of murder and violent crime? A review of literature.

2.2.4 Timing or number? An investigation of whether intergenerational transmission of criminal behaviour is best predicted by static or dynamic theories.  A literature review.

2.2.5 To what extent is sibling influence a factor in explaining adolescent criminal behaviour?  A quantitative study amongst UK adolescents.

2.2.6 False confessions: which theoretical model provides the best explanation of this phenomenon. A review of current literature.

2.2.7 Copycat violence and new media: what role did the internet and mobile technology play in the recent UK riots?  A qualitative study amongst UK crime experts.

2.2.8  To what extent can home environment, peer relationships and parental role in childhood predict the development of serial killers in later life? A literature review.


2.3 Crime and Control: Punishment and Prevention

2.3.1 To what extent do fictional TV programmes about the police influence public perceptions of policing: A qualitative study amongst UK residents.

2.3.2 Is there evidence to suggest that  ‘proactive policing’ (proactively enforcing laws prohibiting minor offences) can provide a way of reducing crime?  A review of literature from the UK and USA.

2.3.3 What is the most effective way of policing social disorder?  A review of literature comparing, contrasting and analyzing approaches from Europe, the UK and USA.

2.3.4  How effective is community policing in dealing with and preventing crime? A case study of a UK town.

2.3.5  What strategies are most effective in building trust between police and communities in areas of high ethnic diversity?  A qualitative study of residents and police in Tower Hamlets, London.

2.3.6 To what extent is police brutality and the use of torture a feature of policing in developing nations?  A literature review.

2.3.7 Policing the internet: What approaches are best to investigate and contain cyber-crime? A qualitative study amongst academics working in the field.

2.3.8 A soft option? The experiences of those undergoing community-based punishments as an alternative to a custodial sentence. A qualitative study in the UK.


2.4 The Sociology of Crime

2.4.1 To what extent is there a link between illegally occupied (squatted) properties and crime?  A quantitative study comparing three countries.

2.4.2 Have marginalized white populations been criminalized? A review of recent literature from the UK and USA.

2.4.3 Is there a link between poverty, location and crime? A comparative, quantitative study of one urban and one rural location with high levels of poverty in the UK, investigating links with levels of reported crime.

2.4.4 How can theoretical models of social control inform policing in the 21st century? A review of current literature.

2.4.5  Is poverty a crime? The extent to which people on low income are marginalized and criminalized. A qualitative study amongst UK academics and people living in urban poverty.

2.4.6 How did New Labour’s interest in tackling the problem of social exclusion translate into policies for crime and policing? A critical analysis of recent policy.

2.4.7 Does the classical model of crime have any relevance to contemporary understandings of criminality?  A review of the literature.

2.4.8  Can the decriminalization of prostitution be effective? A meta-review of literature from around the world.


2.5 Forensic Psychology

2.5.1 Madness and the family: is there a link between patricide or matricide and severe mental disorders such as schizophrenia. A review of recent literature.

2.5.2 What is the best way to understand objects left behind and objects taken away from crime scenes in cases of serial murder? A comparison of theoretical models.

2.5.3 Interviewing the preadolescent child suspect: what are the most effective techniques to enhance communication and maximize accuracy? A quantitative study.

2.5.4 Which is the most adequate typology of serial murder? A comparative and analytic review.

2.5.5 Towards an integrated model for training in forensic psychology: what is current practice in the UK and how might it be improved? A qualitative study amongst professionals working in the field.

2.5.6  Firestarter – twisted fire starter: how can psychological models contribute to our understanding of arson and arsonists, and can more be done to prevent deliberate fire-setting?  A literature review.

2.5.7  Do current models of forensic psychology make adequate provision for differences between ethnic groups, genders and class differences: a critical analysis of the literature.

2.5.8 Can theories of evolution make a contribution to forensic psychology theory and practice? An overview of the literature.

3. How to Structure a Criminology Dissertation, Tips

For details on how to structure Crime and Criminology dissertations, kindly check out the following posts:

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Category: Free Dissertation Topics and Ideas, Social Sciences Essay Examples

Comments (24)

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  1. sakura says:

    …please more examples of tittles in thesis in criminology thank you

    • Ty says:

      Hi Sakura,

      Thank you for your comments.

      Are there any specific titles or area you’d like to work on?

      We can have our writers come up with something for you.


  2. arlyn says:

    nice, very helpful..

  3. mik says:

    Very interesting post..what about cybercrime? (not fraud, but something with social networking). Is there anything that happened recently that is worth investigating?
    I do hope you can help me out, thank you

  4. Carly says:

    Great ideas, really helped me decide on an are. I’m still a bit stuck looking into Domestic Violence possibly within different ethnic communities or how police response and prosecution has changed but still can’t make a final decision on a hypothesis

  5. Carly says:

    Great ideas, really helped me decide on an area. I’m still a bit stuck looking into Domestic Violence possibly within different ethnic communities or how police response and prosecution has changed but still can’t make a final decision on a hypothesis

    • Ty says:

      Hi Carly,

      I’m no expert on criminology, but I believe it could be useful to look into The extent, if any, police response and prosecution differ in terms of domestic violence amongst different ethnic communities.

      This could assess whether there are any sort of differences in how police authorities or prosecution handle domestic violence amongst different ethnicities.

      You could also in this light, assess whether DV rates differ amongst different ethnic groups.

      Hope this helps.


  6. it says:

    im doing mine of researching riot: understanding the cause of the 20ll august riots what do u think

    • Ty says:

      Hello It,

      I’m sure you would find tons of literature online about the causes of the 2011 August Riots in London. Your main concern here should be to narrow it down specifically to one particular aspect: Inequality, Lack of social amenities etc, and focus on that.

      An ideal topic could be: Investigating whether and to what extent, recent political, economical and sociocultural factors within the UK, influenced the proliferation of the 2011 riots.

      This way you’d be assessing if the riots were caused by wider sociological factors, and recommending policy changes that could help avoid such in the future.

      Hope this helps.

  7. it says:

    Thanks so much for the advice it really helped , i intend now say that the recent political, economical and social cultural factor were a reason why the riot was a exterme as it was , i also intend to base this study on 16-24 year old since it was mainly them who rioted, moreover i want to look at for lack of a social amenties rather than inequality becuase that would mean i have to compare to something or someone and that sound very condusing what do u think?

  8. Ty says:

    Hello It,

    This would be ideal, but remember to keep it straightforward and simple.

    Good luck in having it written.

  9. AS says:

    Great suggestions,
    Do you have anyhting on knife crime?….I really want to do mine on knife crime possibly examining the causes or something. i’m really confused 🙁 do you have any suggestions please?? Thank you

    • Ty says:

      Hello AS,

      Sorry about the late response.

      I see we do not currently have anything on Knife Crime, but how about:

      “An examination into the causes and impact of Knife Crime and their trends over the past decades”.

      With this, you’d be evaluating what caused its rise, how it has risen / declined recently and what other trends you could attribute to it.

      We’ve written a similar dissertation and if you contact us, we would be happy to assist you further on this.


  10. it says:

    i have decided to change research question To what extent were the London riots an political act by the youth? What do u think?

    • Ty says:

      Hello It,

      Sorry for the late response. I am concerned about the research objectives and focus of your work.

      What aim would your dissertation (with this question) be looking to achieve?


  11. Kay says:


    I want to do something in forensic psychology and was thinking of doing something connected with hybristophilia. Do you think it’s worth looking into it? I’ve tried a quick search and there isn’t an awful lot literature on it. Maybe something in forensic psychology connected with mental illness?

    • julian says:

      Hi Kay,

      I wouldn’t necessarily recommend writing a dissertation on a topic which although you have an interest in, is hard to find empirical data to include in your literature review.

      Mental illness is a well researched field in forensic psychology so you would make the job much easier for yourself if you followed previous literature on the topic and developed a topic branching out from that. Of course, your topic must be original, but it is also important to follow previous work so you don’t get hampered by lack of research material.

      Perhaps, : “An exploratory study on the sexually dysfunctional tendencies of mentally ill patients incarcerated for sexual assault” would be a good starting point to your study.

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