The Online Encyclopedia and Dictionary







Criminology is a sub-field of sociology dealing with matters related to crime and criminal behavior. It includes fields such as crime statistics, criminal psychology, forensic science, law enforcement, and detective methods.

Naturally, criminology must take into account that the definition of crime varies according to the cultural mores and, especially, laws of a given area. This is an area where caution is warranted; if one is comparing, e.g., violent crimes between nations, one must be careful that the actions counted in that category are similar for each nation; otherwise the comparison is meaningless.

Criminology has, over time, been developed by several schools of thought, including:

The number of undergraduates studying Criminology in some capacity is currently increasing, especially in the UK. This may be in part due to criminal and police television dramas that capture students imaginations, but could just as likely be due to an increase in universities offering such courses to a more socially aware body of students.

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Last updated: 05-14-2005 14:16:30