M.A. in Criminology

Information for Prospective Students

Master of Arts in Criminology

Saint Mary’s University offers a two-year Master of Arts degree program in criminology for students wanting to develop advanced knowledge, acquire specialized skills, and conduct independent research in criminology. The interdisciplinary faculty members in SMU’s Department of Criminology have strong research programs and expertise that span the discipline of criminology allowing them to supervise and support students undertaking diverse research projects.

The strengths of studying in the Master of Arts program in criminology at SMU include:

  • Small cohorts. Faculty members devote time and energy to support students, nurture their skills and knowledge, and ensure the success of each graduate student.
  • Student-focused. The program responds to the needs and interests of each students.
  • Generous funding. Students receive financial support from fellowships, awards, and teaching assistantships offered by the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research.
  • Applied learning. Students acquire transferrable skills and valuable experience through their participation in applied learning opportunities, such as fieldwork, research and teaching assistantships, and volunteer placements in government and non-government agencies, that enhance their future career prospects.
  • Community-engaged. Faculty members’ strong linkages with local, national, and international groups and organizations help students expand their network and broaden their perspectives.
  • Halifax! SMU is located in the heart of Atlantic Canada. Our program is embedded within an intellectually rich and culturally vibrant urban community that is ideal for criminological studies. Students are inspired by its coastal beauty and attracted to the easy-going East Coast vibe.



Admission Requirements and Other Information for Applicants

Admission Requirements

  1. Minimum overall GPA of 3.3 (B+) on a 4.3 scale. Students not meeting this requirement but satisfying all other requirements will be considered in exceptional cases.
  2. Honours undergraduate degree or equivalent from a recognized institution. Students without an honours undergraduate degree will be considered in exceptional cases.
  3. Demonstrated knowledge in criminology as is evidenced by the completion of an honours undergraduate degree in criminology. Students completing an honours undergraduate degree in disciplines contributing to criminology (e.g., sociology, political science, psychology) will be considered.
  4. English language proficiency for applicants whose first language is not English.


Key Dates

  • January 15 – Application deadline
  • April 1 – Decision rendered and communicated
  • September 1 – Program start date
  • Minimum time to completion: 2 years


Application Package

Apply to the Master of Arts program in Criminology by submitting the following materials. Click on the "Apply Now" button above to access the Online Admission Application Centre.

  1. Online application form plus $110 application fee 
  2. Two Recommendations (must be academic references)
  3. Research statement (around 1,000 words) describing your criminological interests, a proposed area of research for your thesis, and how your academic and non-academic experiences have prepared you to pursue graduate studies and research. Ensure your statement identifies at least one full-time faculty member in the Department of Criminology whose expertise aligns with your proposed thesis research
  4. Sample of academic or other written work (10 to 25 pages).
  5. Current curriculum vitae or resume.
  6. Official transcripts from all universities and colleges attended.
  7. Official proof of English language proficiency (if applicable).


Program Structure

Year 1: Coursework and research proposal development

  • CRIM 6600 – Advanced Seminar (6 credit hours)
  • CRIM 6601 – Advanced Theory (3 credit hours)
  • CRIM 6602 – Advanced Research Methodology (3 credit hours)
  • CRIM 6XXX – Elective (3 credit hours)
  • CRIM 6XXX – Elective (3 credit hours)


Year 2: Independent research and thesis writing

  • CRIM 6615 Thesis Research (6 credit hours)



 For Further Information


Dr. Jamie Livingston
Graduate Program Coordinator
Department of Criminology
Saint Mary’s University


Contact Us

Faculty of Graduate Studies & Research

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