Cardiff School of Education & Social Policy>Courses>Professional Policing - BA (Hons) Degree

Professional Policing - BA (Hons) Degree

The BA (Hons) Professional Policing degree at Cardiff Met will help prepare you for a career as a police officer. 

From 2020, policing will become a graduate profession in England and Wales. This police course is designed to meet all the core requirements of the National Police Curriculum for the College of Policing's pre-join degree in Professional Policing.

​Modern policing is facing new professional challenges and the communities served by the police are increasingly diverse and complex, with differing needs and priorities. The nature of crime is also evolving. The constable role sits at the heart of effective professional policing. 

This pre-join degree aims to equip you with the knowledge, skills and experience required for the police constable role. It aims to develop high levels of professional knowledge and skills across a range of complex and challenging situations and contexts, as well as demonstration of appropriate behaviours congruent with effective and appropriate front-line policing. 

This BA (Hons) Professional Policing degree is an academic knowledge-based degree based upon the National Policing Curriculum for the police constable role; licensed by the College of Policing

Course information on this page relates to 2022 entry.

Course Content

Year One / Level 4

  • Understanding the role of the police: This module aims to develop students' knowledge of historical developments within law and policy.  In addition, it will facilitate their understanding of the role of a professional police constable and the principles that should underpin-personal interaction in that role. 
  • Ethics, equality and inclusion: This module aims to introduce and explore professional approaches to policing, demonstrating fairness, ethics and integrity. In addition, it will support students as they develop a learning and assessment-based portfolio, that evidences an understanding of ethical considerations within contemporary policing.
  • Introduction to research and employability: This module aims to support students for learning and on-going personal and professional development in higher education.  Facilitate students' understanding of evidence-based policing and evidence-based research. In addition, it will provide students with a platform for disseminating information via a range of media.
  • Criminal justice: This module aims to develop students' knowledge of the criminal justice system, whilst facilitating their understanding of the making of criminal justice policy.  Students will identify and explore the relationships between Police law, policy and procedure.  
  • Policing communities: This module aims to develop students' knowledge and understanding of the need for effective communication to foster partnerships.  Students will expand their understanding of the role of a professional police constable from the perspective of the wider community.  Students will identify and explore the relationships between police and society.
  • Criminology and crime prevention: This module aims to develop students' understanding of criminological theory.  Students will apply this knowledge and understanding to 'live' scenarios.  Sessions will facilitate an opportunity to contextualise theoretical understanding of POP (Problem-Oriented Policing).

Year Two / Level 5

  • Evidence-based Policing: This module aims to develop students' understanding of the nature of and importance of evidence-based policing and evidence-based research. Students will identify the possibilities of problem-orientated policing, whilst developing an understanding of research methods and data analysis.
  • Response Policing: This module aims to develop students' understanding of the response policing role and of legislation/powers used in response policing encounters.  Students will examine specific challenges faced by response officers and response encounters (street gang/crowd, joint services, weapons and citizen encounter).
  • Vulnerability and risk: This module aims to develop students' knowledge of the complexity and presentation of vulnerability in the context of policing.  Sessions will facilitate students' understanding of the diverse nature, experience and causes of victimization.
  • Policing the roads: This module aims to develop students' knowledge of historical developments within law/policy.  Sessions will facilitate students' understanding of the role of professional practice within the context of policing the roads.  Students will continue to Identify and explore the relationships between police law, policy and procedure.
  • Information and intelligence: This module aims to develop students' understanding of the processes for gathering and using information for the purposes of investigating crime.  Sessions will facilitate students' understanding of the multi-agency networks within the context of information and intelligence, both national and international.  The module will provide students with an opportunity to disseminate information via a range of media, to a range of stakeholders.
  • Conducting investigations: This module aims to develop students' knowledge and understanding of the interview process.  Sessions will facilitate students' understanding of the role of a professional police constable when applying a range of interview methods.  This module will provide students with an opportunity to apply theoretical understanding of methods to a live scenario.

Year Three / Level 6

  • Evidence-based Policing dissertation: This module aims to develop students' ability to undertake evidence-based research independently in an area of specific interest to them.  Students' will independently select, rationalise and implement an extended written project.  The module will also develop students' ability to coherently and fully present the project in an academic style.
  • Public protection: This module aims to develop students' knowledge of public protection within law/policy.  Students will explore ethical practice in a policing role and identify the relationships between police law, policy and procedure within a diverse community.
  • Decision making and discretion: This module aims to identify the effect of bias on the decision-making process.  The module will provide students with the opportunity to apply the National Decision Model (NDM) in a role play situation. Whilst developing students' understanding of how discretion might be applied where policing decisions have to be made.
  • Counter terrorism: This module aims to develop students' knowledge of contemporary developments within counter terrorism.  Sessions will facilitate students' understanding of the organisational structures and inter-relationships that exist in counter-terrorism policing.  Students will identify and explore the relationships between police law, policy and procedure both nationally and internationally.
  • Digital Policing: This module aims to develop students' ability to disseminate contemporary ideas in digital policing.  Affording students the opportunity to demonstrate independent thinking and research within the context of contemporary policing.  Sessions will develop students' understanding of the ethical implications within the context of digital policing and digital-facilitated crimes.
Key specialist subject areas will be in line with the Policing Education Qualifications Framework (PEQF) and College of Policing requirements and will include: 

  • Communication, ethics and integrity, evidence-based policing, leadership and management
  • Ensuring public safety
  • Supporting victims
  • Conducting investigations
  • Maximising information and intelligence
  • Preventing and reducing crime
  • Protecting vulnerable people

Learning & Teaching

We use a variety of teaching approaches designed to accommodate a range of learning needs. This includes workshops, seminars, lectures and virtual learning environments. Students will also be presented with simulated complex policing problems that they are required to analyse and synthesise an appropriate response for. These simulated exercises are designed to develop problem solving and decision making skills.

Each 20 credit module has approximately 200 hours of study attached to it. Typically, 48 of these hours will be delivered in taught sessions such as lectures, seminars and workshops, usually scheduled as 4 hours per week. Approximately 52 hours are assigned for directed study and preparation tasks which are set weekly as part of the taught sessions and the remaining 100 hours are self-directed study where students undertake the reading required for the module and complete their required assessment.

Every student is assigned a personal tutor when they begin the course and this tutor supports them for the entirety of their degree. There are scheduled tutorial meetings that students attend, but tutors also operate an open-door policy which allows students to access them outside the scheduled meetings. The university has well-established student support provision for students who have additional learning needs and also is equipped to deal with any issues that arise during the course of a student's studies. 

The modules are supported through the use of the University's Virtual Learning Environment, Moodle, which is web based and so is accessible anywhere via the internet. All course based material is held here, including lecture and seminar presentations, assessment information and additional reading or resources. Tutors also use Moodle to email students with information and updates. 

Modules will be delivered in four-week blocks that allow students to deeply engage with each subject. Students study one module at a time and therefore focus on only one assessment. This concentrated focus enables students to explore topics in greater depth, developing a level of rational criticality appropriate with University study. With a particular emphasis on collaborative enquiry, allowing for greater integration and synthesis of learning. 

Modules will be delivered across campuses to integrate the use of not only specialist staff but also specialist spaces. 


The staff on this programme are from a variety of backgrounds, with both national and international experience within their specialisms. They are committed to providing a high quality, supportive learning environment. A range of contemporary pedagogical approaches will be incorporated in the delivery of each module.  Policing specialists and academics from disciplines spanning across all Schools within the university (law, digital technology, education, social policy, and youth and community work) will provide multiple contemporary perspectives, engaging students in communities of enquiry.  


The Professional Policing course will be taught across both the Cyncoed and Llandaff campuses, where students will benefit from a range of facilities.

Cyncoed is a busy campus that offers on-site accommodation, excellent sporting facilities and a purpose-built Campus Centre including an on-site shop, coffee bars and refectory. We also have a psychology laboratory, drama studio, and plenty of outdoor space.

Llandaff is a busy and bustling campus. With millions of pounds of recent investment, it offers state-of-the art learning facilities for our students. At the Llandaff Campus students will be able to learn in our new Moot Court room, simulating elements of a criminal trial alongside Cardiff Met LLB (Hons) Law students.

Throughout this policing degree, students will take part in policing related scenarios and simulated exercises designed to develop problem solving and decision making skills. All of these facilities provide our students with excellent opportunities for immersive learning. 


Assessments are interesting and varied and are closely mapped to the requirements of the College of Policing. Assessments are designed to maximise learning and provide realistic opportunities to demonstrate knowledge and understanding.

The assessments are completed on either an individual or group basis. Modules have integrated b assessments: critical essays, exhibitions, portfolios and live scenarios. These all focus on developing students' knowledge, understanding and skills in relation to the Evidence-Based Policing dissertation that students undertake in their final year of study.

Students are given the submission dates for assessments at the start of each module, as well as an assessment overview grid for the whole of the academic year to help them plan and manage their time effectively. Students receive individual feedback on their work that identifies strengths and areas for improvement. 

Employability & Careers

The Cardiff Met BA (Hons) Professional Policing will help prepare you for a career as a police officer.

The Professional Policing degree is one of the recognised routes to becoming a police constable. While successful completion of the degree will not guarantee you entry into the police force, if you are subsequently accepted by the police (during a five year period after graduation) you will benefit from a shorter on-the-job training programme. Graduates will also need to meet the specified fitness, medical and other recruitment requirements of your chosen police force. A successful recruit to the police service via this entry route is subject to a two-year probationary period as specified in Police Regulations.

Graduates can also pursue careers in other organisations, for example: GCHQ, National Crime Agency, probation service, military police, private security industry. 

At Cardiff Met, we pride ourselves on our record with employment and further opportunities for our students.

On completion of the degree, students may choose to apply to study at Cardiff Met at postgraduate level on our MA, MPhil and PhD courses.

Entry Requirements & How to Apply

Five GCSE passes including English Language and Mathematics* at grade C or above (grade 4 or above for applicants holding newly reformed GCSEs in England) , plus 104 points from at least two A levels (or equivalent).

Typical offers may include:

  • 104 points from at least 2 A levels to include grades C; Welsh Baccalaureate – Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate considered as the third subject
  • RQF BTEC National Extended Diploma/Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma MMM

  • 104 points from the Irish Leaving Certificate at Highers to include 2 x H2 grades. Higher level subjects only considered with a minimum grade H4

  • 104 points from at least two Scottish Advanced Highers to include grades D. Scottish Highers are also considered, either on their own or in combination with Advanced Highers.

  • 102 points from the Access to Higher Education Diploma     

*For Welsh applicants sitting the reformed Mathematics GCSE, we will accept either GCSE Mathematics or Mathematics – Numeracy. 

If you are studying combinations of the above, or if your qualification isn't listed, please either contact Admissions or refer to the UCAS Course Search for entry requirements. Further information on our entry requirements, including qualifications from the EU can be found by clicking here

Candidates who do not possess normal minimum entry qualification are interviewed and considered individually on the basis of their prior learning or working background. For applicants who are only undertaking 2 A levels or equivalent, this will be considered along with the rest of the academic profile and we may issue a graded offer in lieu of an offer using the UCAS Tariff. 

International Applicants
Students whose first language is not English will need to provide evidence of fluency to at least an IELTS 6.0 standard or equivalent. For full details about how to apply and English Language qualifications please visit the International pages on the website. 

Selection Procedure:
Selection is usually on the basis of a completed UCAS application and where relevant an interview. 

How to Apply:
Applications for this course should be made online to UCAS at For further information please visit our How to Apply pages at

Recognised Prior Learning (RPL) and Credit Transfer into year 2 & 3
If you are interested in transferring credit from another institution to study at Cardiff met for a course which accepts entry for year 2 and/or 3, you can find further information on this and information on how to apply on the RPL page. Please contact Admissions for any queries that you have on RPL. 

Mature students
A mature applicant is anyone over the ago of 21 who didn't go to university after school or college. Cardiff Met welcomes applications from mature applicants and further advice and information can be found here.

Contact Us

For general enquiries please contact the Admissions Team on 029 2041 6044 or email

For course specific enquiries, please contact Lewis Ambler:

Key Course Information

Licensed by: College of Policing

UCAS Code: L900

Place of Study: 
Cyncoed Campus

Cardiff School of Education and Social Policy

Course Length:
Three years full-time.

Degree Highlights

In this short introduction video, Lewis Ambler tells us more about the degree in Professional Policing.

Meet the Team: Lewis Ambler

Meet Lewis Ambler, Professional Policing lecturer who shares his passion for policing and his experiences working as a detective.

Take the Moot Court tour

Take a virtual walkthrough of our Moot Court room at our Llandaff Campus.

My first year studying Professional Policing at Cardiff Met

Hear from first year student Sofi who talks about her studies and experiences so far on the Professional Policing degree.
Read more.


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