Drugs, Crime and Society

Module code: CR3020 (double module)

There are many key debates surrounding illicit substances and their impact on contemporary society. You’ll be focusing on both demand reduction and supply reduction, particularly drug trafficking and the policing of drug markets.

Throughout the module you’ll deconstruct the stereotypical perceptions people have regarding drugs and their users, and explore the physical and psychological effects of drugs while looking at current legislation and policy. Some of the topics you’ll discuss include drug legalisation and the harms arising from prohibition, the demonisation of drugs and their users in the media. This includes the growth of Psychoactive Substances, Performance and Image Enhancing Drugs, as well as drug use in prison.

Within the module you'll develop a critical understanding of drugs and drug use in contemporary society, and you'll develop the skills required to analyse and discuss the key debates surrounding illicit substances and their impact on society.

Applying key criminological theories to understanding drugs and crime in society will be central to the module, and you’ll explore the fundamental issues surrounding drugs and crime.


  • 40 hours of lectures
  • 15 hours of seminars
  • 3 hours of practical classes or workshops
  • 3 hours of tutorials
  • 239 hours of guided independent study


  • Essay, 2,000 words (60%)
  • Essay, 2,000 words (40%)