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  • Writer's pictureΔεσπω Κυρμιτση


Criminology is the study of crime and criminal behavior, drawing on principles from sociology and other non-legal fields, including psychology, economics, statistics and anthropology.

Criminology or Criminal Law: What's the Difference?

The main differentiation of criminology from criminal law is the former's emphasis on the study of crime and the latter's focus on society's response to crime. Criminal law applies principles and concepts developed by criminologists to the enforcement of laws and the investigation of crimes, and to the trial, punishment, and rehabilitation of criminals.

Definition of criminal law

The law dictionary defines criminal law as a set of procedures: • Investigating criminal behavior • Gathering evidence of the crime • Making arrests • Charges in court • Application of punishments

Criminal justice includes the work of: • Police • Criminal courts • Prisons and other correctional institutions

Criminology and criminal justice work together to fight crime.

Career in Criminology Typical employers of criminologists are law enforcement and other government agencies, university research laboratories, and other research institutions. Criminologists can be characterized as the sociologists who specialize in the study of crime and investigate the social influences of crime on individuals, groups and organizations.

The science of criminology is considered more academic than that of criminal justice, although there is a great deal of overlap between the two fields. For example, people usually get a bachelor's degree in criminology followed by a master's degree in criminal justice, or vice versa.

Among the daily tasks of criminologists are collecting and examining evidence, visiting the scene of a crime, attending autopsies, and investigating the psychological aspects of a crime from investigation to conviction and rehabilitation. These jobs require the ability to organize data and evidence, perform statistical analysis, and write reports.

The range of positions available to criminologists includes jobs in government and local law enforcement, as well as in public and private research organizations, think tanks, legislative and public policy agencies. Criminologists are trying to improve police operations through innovative programs such as community-oriented policing and predictive policing.

Finally, criminal law regulates the imprisonment, charge and trial of suspected persons and determines the penalties and treatment applicable to convicted offenders.

Criminal law is only one of the mechanisms by which organized societies protect the security of individual interests and ensure the survival of the population. There are, in addition, the standards of behavior inculcated by family, school, and religion, the rules of operation of an office or factory, the regulations of political life enforced by ordinary police powers, and the sanctions available through delinquent actions. Despo Kirmitsi, Bsc, MA

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