Skip to content

Police Studies

The Police Studies degree builds on a strong social sciences foundation and provides specific knowledge and skills of policing. The program provides you with the specific knowledge, critical understanding and skills of policing and how these apply to real-world, real-life scenarios.

Police Studies brings together a range of disciplines that relate to human experience and behaviour, such as policing, criminology, risk management, law, sociology and psychology, politics, and public policy through two study options.

Whether you wish to work in policing, forensics, intelligence, risk analysis, justice, legal or correctional services, the Bachelor of Social Science (Police Studies) is the perfect degree to provide you with the knowledge and expertise for policing solutions in the real world.

Why study Police Studies?

Your studies will cover police practice in a contemporary society and the changing roles and expectations of policing in our globalised society.

Zero tolerance, policing protests, transnational crime, police culture, forensic psychology, community policing and social deviance are just a small sample of the topics examined in the Police Studies program, delivered by academics who work close collaboration with police organisations thought the world.

Read more about our Study Options

Career Options

Graduates of our Police Studies program gain a quality academic base for careers in policing, including risk management, law, sociology and psychology, policing, criminology, politics and public policy, security and order.

  • Police Officer
  • Correctional officer
  • Case Coordinator
  • Peace Monitor
  • Therapeutics and Counselling
  • Policy Officer
  • Case Manager
  • Emergency relief officer/co-ordinator
  • Community Corrections
  • Tasmanian Prison Service
  • Probation Officer
  • Parole Officer
  • Public sector organisations (commonwealth, state and local government)
  • Community and non-government organisations
  • Private companies, including policy-oriented think tanks
  • Human Resource Management
  • Tasmanian Police
  • Australian Federal Police
  • Australian Security Intelligence Organisation
    Australian Customs Service
  • Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service
  • Australian Department of Defence
  • Australian Crime Commission
  • Interpol
  • Child Protection
  • Forensic Psychology
  • Correctional Health Service
  • Youth Justice
  • Local Government


Nikayla Roach | Police Officer, Tasmania
Bachelor of Social Sciences (Police Studies)

Nikayla Roach, YouTube video

Nikayla began at the University of Tasmania by studying our Introduction to Policing unit. She liked that it informed her about how policing helped people within the community.

Nikayla applied and was selected to become a member of the Tasmanian Police Force. She then enrolled in and has since graduated from the Bachelor of Social Sciences (Police Studies).

Study Options

Students undertake two majors and minor in the degree, in one of two pathways dependent on professional experience:

  • The 'In-service pathway' is an opportunity for serving police officers to build on their training and experience with a recognised University qualification, or
  • The 'Conventional pathway' offers a comprehensive social sciences education with a specific focus on policing studies.

Interested in studying with us? Explore our course and research opportunities below.

Each course and unit is linked to its own page with more detailed information on the Courses & Units website.



Our Honours program provides students with an advanced exploration of Police Studies. Comprised of specialised core units and a research thesis or project, study at the honours level introduces skills and methods involved in independent research.

The Professional Honours course allows students to develop a body of knowledge in Public Sector Leadership and Management for personal, career or professional development. Students complete core units from their area of interest, and a selection of complementary units. This course is intended for students who wish to further enhance their studies in a discipline, without progressing into higher research degrees.


With our Postgraduate Coursework programs you can develop your professional knowledge and expertise into a qualification. Study options are available both online and on campus, and part-time.

Our Postgraduate offerings are currently being updated. Please Contact us to find out more.

Your learning experience in Police Studies goes beyond the lecture and tutorials.

You will be taught by experts, and gain perspective from guest lecturers and forums; gain a competitive advantage with real-world experience prior to graduation; study abroad for a fortnight, a month, a semester or a year, as part of your degree; have options to complete your studies your way, whether on-campus, online, part-time or full-time;  pursue your passion or specialisation with a range of scholarships, bursaries and financial assistance programs, or meet your career goals with our pathway options.

The College of Arts, Law and Education, including the School of Social Sciences, and Police Studies (postgraduate) offers a growing collection of units that are available to be completed either wholly or partially online to enable flexible study.

* The online availability for each unit is indicated on each individual unit page under ‘Availability’, then ‘Attendance options’ by the ‘Off-Campus’ icon .

Online Study options in Arts

Online Study options in Justice

Tertiary Education Assistance Scheme

The Department of Police, Fire and Emergency Management in Tasmania endorses these professional programs. The Tertiary Education Assistance Scheme (which involves Commissioner's scholarships and interest-free loans) is an incentive for eligible Tasmania Police officers to undertake study at the University of Tasmania.

Other scholarships

As a student of Social Sciences both the University and the School provide access to a variety of scholarships and bursaries at a University, College of Arts, Law and Education and Discipline level. The main application period begins in August, and closes on the 31st October the year prior to study commencing.

Browse Scholarships

The College also offers a financial assistance program for students wishing to undertake Short Term Overseas Study Programs.

Short Term Overseas Study Program assistance and mobility grants

Don't meet the traditional entry requirements? The School of Social Sciences offers an alternative entry pathway into our undergraduate programs. The Arts pathway is a great introduction into university study, and can assist you in gaining the qualifications and experience you need for your chosen career. This foundation year of study provides students with the skills and knowledge related to studying the arts and social sciences, with additional support and guidance to help you succeed.

If you want to study a Bachelor of Social Science (Police Studies), completing this year of foundation study in Diploma of University Studies (Arts Specialisation) (21A) will assist you in achieving your goals.

Pathway Programs at the University

An overseas study program gives you the opportunity to experience different cultures, study languages, undertake work placement or internships, make new friends and explore the world while receiving credit toward your degree. It provides a 'total immersion' experience in a variety of study areas and locations. You can choose a program length that suits you, from a 2-week fieldtrip, a short-term summer program to a full semester (or two).

Overseas Study opportunities at the College of Arts, Law and Education

Take your passion for ideas further than you ever imagined.

We offer a collegial, supportive environment, with experienced supervision, regular seminar series, research skills training, and many opportunities to work with peers and academics on your areas of interest. We supervise across a range of methodologies and conceptual/theoretical approaches, and encourage scholarship that draws on ideas from across diverse fields.

Choose a research topic that reflects your interests and identify a supervisor with the expertise to guide you in your research. Search for a discipline staff member via our staff profiles, or by their area or expertise through the University Research page.

The School of Social Sciences welcomes qualified applicants to undertake a research degree with us in any of our areas of research strengths and interests.

Masters by Research
Doctorates (PhD)

To find out about application procedures, entry requirements, and scholarships, please visit the Research Degrees web page.


Our research in Police Studies focuses on law enforcement, policing partnerships and governance, policing criminal justice and vulnerable people, and community engagement.

Our work is published in leading journals and by top-tier academic presses, we have access to an international network of top-flight researchers, and members of our team have received prestigious research grants and fellowships.

We welcome proposals from qualified applicants to undertake research degrees in PhDs and Masters, and are pleased to discuss research proposals that cross disciplines, including law, science, business, economics, journalism, geography and environmental studies, education and health sciences.

Read more about our research

Dr Isabelle Bartkowiak-Theron

Featured Researcher | Dr Isabelle Bartkowiak-Theron

Isabelle is Discipline Coordinator of Police Studies. She specialises in the qualitative and quantitative study of policing and policing services targeting vulnerable populations (e.g., young people, refugees, Aboriginal community members) and is in regular contact with representatives of these vulnerable populations.

View Isabelle's full researcher profile Browse our academic staff profiles