Study Policing at Salford

Professional Policing

Explore modern policing

The recruitment process for police officers has changed significantly. From 2020, to be confirmed in post as a police constable, officers will require a professional educational qualification from a course of study validated by the College of Policing.

One recognised pathway into the police service will be the completion of the pre-join degree in Professional Policing. This programme is offered by the University of Salford and covers the curriculum content designed by the College of Policing.

Course starting September 2021. Submit your application now via UCAS. Deadline 29th January. 
Professional Policing at Salford

Gain first-hand experience

As a student on this course, you will undertake exercises using our state-of-the-art simulation suites which can imitate real-world experiences. We'll provide opportunities to put theory into practice and you'll be able to work alongside students on other courses, for example, Social Work and Nursing, just as you would in practice. 

In your third year, you will undertake a placement which will provide you with the opportunity to gain first-hand experience working in a community setting of your choice.

Investigate real-world issues

Throughout, you will undertake case studies and research projects which will allow you to put what you've learnt into practice. You will study modules that will look at current affairs and issues related to policing and the criminal justice system.

In your third year, you will undertake a module in which you will follow an investigation into a serious incident from the first report to the police to a court hearing. This will enable you to develop the practical skills that are crucial to an investigation including interviewing witnesses and preparing a court file.

Learn from professionals

The course team includes ex-professionals including police and probation officers, who have many years of professional knowledge and experiences in a wide variety of policing disciplines. You will also be taught by leading academics from criminology, sociology, social policy and social work.

Gain insider knowledge

Our experienced course team have excellent connections across Greater Manchester with law enforcement organisations, local government, social care providers, prisons, courts, charities, community development organisations and youth organisations. We focus on providing you with industry experience and will ensure you benefit from these links, whether that be through placement opportunities, field trips, conference opportunities, surgeries, guest speakers and workshops. 

Make a real difference

The Professional Policing degree will provide you with the knowledge required prior to joining the police service. However, this is not the only career option open to graduates. You will develop a range of interpersonal, professional and academic skills over the course of the programme. This combination alongside the fact that the degree is validated by the College of Policing* will ensure that graduates are outstanding candidates for not only policing posts but also key societal roles such as civilian investigation, crime reduction, probation, security and criminal justice policy development. 

*confirmation of validation expected at the end of 2020


Your questions answered

For full details about our Professional Policing programme, please go to the course page.
Frequently Asked Questions

Do you need a degree to join the police?

There are three new ways to prepare for the role of police constable. You can either join with an existing degree and undertake a work-based programme, complete an apprenticeship in Professional Policing Pracitce or apply for the pre-join degree, which is the option we currently offer at Salford. 

Find out more about the new entry routes here.

Can I join the police when I graduate?

The successful completion of the degree in Professional Policing does not guarantee that you will be offered a post as a trainee police constable. Each police force within England and Wales has its own recruitment and selection process. Once you have graduated, you can apply to a force of your choice and if successful, you will follow a short on-the-job training programme. 

You can find out more about the eligibility requirements for new police constables here

Is this different to studying a Criminology degree?

Yes. The course content is of course focused on criminological theories, however it is to provide you will the skills to progress a career in policing or the criminal justice system. 

Is this course accredited by the College of Policing?

Our Professional Policing degree is a qualification designed by the College of Policing to meet new policing requirement and demands. Official validation of this programme by the College of Policing is expected at the end of 2020.

What qualifications do I need to study Professional Policing?

To apply for the pre-join Professional Policing degree, you need to have GCSEs in English and Maths at Grade C / 4 or above, and 112 UCAS points. You do not need to have studied any specific level 3 qualifications to apply for this degree. 

Where do I go for more information?

You can visit the course page here, book on to one of our upcoming Open Days using the forms above, or if you have a specific question you can contact the team on


What happens at an Open Day?

For more information about what to expect at an Open Day, please see here.