This is a fantastic course that was both challenging and rewarding. I would highly recommend it for anyone within policing looking to deepen and develop their understanding.

Dan Card, MPS Officer

How do you want to study?


2 years


TEF Silver


This course will develop your knowledge, leadership and management skills critical to the success of any police reform and local organisational change programme.

The demand on the police service is becoming increasingly more complex and the issues involved require a wider knowledge base and new skill sets to address them effectively. The MSc in Applied Policing Practice is suitable for police officers and staff of all ranks and roles in related occupation.

It incorporates new postgraduate ‘policing themes’ that can be adapted to deliver the most contemporaneous issues in crime, policing and the criminal justice system and responds to new reforms or challenges that may confront the police/criminal justice system in the future.

The MSc in Applied Policing Practice is offered to police officers and staff of all ranks and roles in related occupations.The demand on the police service is becoming increasingly more complex and the issues involved require a wider knowledge base and new skill sets to address them effectively. This programme supports students in developing their knowledge and their research interests.

Entry requirements

BA/BSc degree in a relevant subject at 2:2 or above.

If English is not your first language you require an IELTS overall score of 6.0 with no element below 5.5 for most standard undergraduate and postgraduate courses. There are some exceptions and if the IELTS requirement differs it will be specified on the course page.

Honours degree

All about the course

We are determined to make the programme for and about the student's own place work / area of interest and the occupational challenges they face within their own local context. Therefore, much of the study experience will be about reflective practice supported by theory and relevant academic input from us. We expect, then, that a significant amount of the study programme will be through the delivery of four modules (dependant on which post graduate option the student chooses to take):

  1. Organisation, development and leadership: Leadership, management, decision making and reform.
  2. Evidence based Interventions: Evidence based policing, evaluation and the use of research in problem solving.
  3. Action research and research methodology. These two modules will provide the opportunity to learn about different research approaches and the issues around applying them in the workplace.
  4. Year two will focus on the completion of a dissertation with one to one support from a supervisor. This will utilise the skills students glean from the research methods module and provide some useful local research for the force area.

How you’ll learn

Much of this programme is based on applied learning and the lectures/seminars are delivered within the virtual learning environment to enable distance learning. Some of these will be live lectures but there will always be an option to view the content in your own time. There are 4 study weekends a year held in Canterbury which allows for the delivery of the research methods module. Being on site facilitates access to the necessary IT equipment for practical workshops etc. However we understand that professional students might not be able to attend all of the weekends and they will also be delivered on line. You also need to recognise that studying for a degree requires considerable work in-between the sessions.

Studying at Masters Level requires a deep level of engagement with the subject area studied and a good level of individual preparation for seminars and assessed tasks. You will be given support and guidance but much of this is about being an independent learner.

'We have an active research environment at CCCU should you decide to complete the full MSc programme. The programme is within the Canterbury Centre for Policing Research (CCPR) which hosts the annual CCPR conference, regular lecture series, round table events and more.

Current police student projects include; policing and mental health, police training and education, police use of social media, schools officers, community policing, reform, firearms, policing public order, policing and rape investigation and much more.

We are also linked closely with the College of Policing and have worked with them on the development of the PEQF nationally.

The school has a number of active supervisors with various expertise in policing. The areas of interest include but are not exhaustive to: professionalism, police investigation, police education, police and technology, counter terrorism, neighbourhood policing, sexual violence, firearms, police legitimacy, criminal investigation, vulnerability, evidence based policing and organisational justice.

Lectures and seminars will be offered on line to enable distance learning options. The team prefer students to attend the four study weekends in Canterbury across year one of the programme. These are held across Friday afternoon/evening and Saturday afternoon. There will be options for face to face tutorials depending on location and availability. The team do understand that being full time workers might make it difficult to attend all weekends.

  • Postgraduate Certificate Applied Policing Practice (Organisation, Leadership & Development)
  • Postgraduate Certificate Applied Policing Practice (Evidenced Based Police Interventions)
  • Postgraduate Diploma Applied Policing Practice 

This programme is aimed at people employed in a policing capacity including police officers, police staff, volunteers, commercial and private security and the wider policing family. The MSc has a contemporary curriculum allowing students to explore a wide range of policing issues. We have a large policing Team at Canterbury Christ Church University and the Canterbury Center for Policing Research that hosts webinars and conferences. We are keen to hear from anyone with a passion for policing and criminal justice.

Stephen TongProfessor of Policing & Criminal Justice

How you’ll be assessed

The assessment pattern will vary from module to module. However, in general terms you may be required for example, to submit written assignments, do presentations, conduct a small piece of local research, write reflexive pieces on current practice and so on. If you complete the full MSc programme you will also be expected to complete a final dissertation at the end of year two.

If you chose to complete the other Postgraduate Certificate option you will be required to complete one module plus the research module depending on which pathway you prefer and all three first year modules for the Postgraduate Diploma option.


2021/22 tuition fees for this course

  UK Overseas
Full-time N/A N/A
Part-time £4,080 N/A

20% Alumni Discount

We offer alumni discounts on CCCU Postgraduate Taught, PGCE Primary and Secondary, and Masters by Research courses for eligible students.

Find out if you're eligible for the discount.


Important Information on Tuition Fees

Tuition fees for all courses which last more than one academic year are payable on an annual basis, except where stated.

There will be an annual inflationary increase in tuition fees for this course where the course lasts more than one academic year. For further information read the 2021/22 Tuition fee statements and continuing fee information.


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2 years