Criminology Books and plants

Department of Criminology

Welcome to the Department of Criminology

The Department of Criminology is nationally and internationally recognized for its cutting-edge approach to a variety of criminal justice issues, including crime prevention, social justice, violence against women, drug policy, sex work, prisons, youth, media representations of crime, political violence, human rights, policing, victimology and cybercrime.

Our professors are interested in various research fields, including: abolitionism and alternatives to criminal justice, crimes of the powerful, criminological theory and socio-legal studies, First Nations, racism and (in)justice, gender, sexuality and (in)justice, policing, governance and (in)security, popular culture, media and technology, prevention and intervention, prison, punishment and social control, youth, age and (in)justice

Discover some of the research projects done at the Department of Criminology. Learn more about the Department

Why study in criminology?

Few issues attract more public attention and generate more public debate than those involving crime and victimization. Unfortunately, these debates are too often based on emotion rather that on the best available information.

Criminology is the study of crime, criminalization and processes of social control. Criminology is also an applied discipline. As such, it studies interventions that help resolve conflicts and problems in society.

Through your courses, you will become acquainted with:

  • the nature and dynamics of rule-breaking
  • how norms and the concept of crime are constructed socially
  • the criminalization of various acts by society
  • how the penal justice system operates and how its operation ultimately affects society
  • new intervention methods for individuals and communities

Our overall objective is to provide students with the concepts, theories and methods necessary for a better understanding of the realities of crime and control, and with the practical skills that will allow them to participate and to, hopefully, make a difference in these areas.

Interior shot of Faculty of Social Sciences
Nevena Aksin
Student voices

“The Public Criminology course [...] is not only fascinating, but extremely useful. It explains how to organize ideas in a way that’s concise, interesting and that can attract the attention of media.”

Nevena Aksin

— MA Program Graduate

Contact us

Department of Criminology

Faculty of Social Sciences
Social Sciences Building 
120 University Private, Room 14002
Ottawa, Ontario K1N 6N5
Canada (map)

Tel.: 613-562-5303
[email protected]

Office hours

September 1 to May 31:
Monday to Friday, 8:15 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

June 1 to August 31:
Monday to Friday, 8:15 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.


Please note our services and our personnel are available by MS Teams and by email.

The Social Sciences (FSS) and Vanier (VNR) buildings are open seven days a week from 6:30 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Indigenous Affirmation

We pay respect to the Algonquin people, who are the traditional guardians of this land. We acknowledge their longstanding relationship with this territory, which remains unceded. 

We pay respect to all Indigenous people in this region, from all nations across Canada, who call Ottawa home. 

We acknowledge the traditional knowledge keepers, both young and old. And we honour their courageous leaders: past, present, and future. 

Learn more about the Indigenous Affirmation.