Singapore University of Social Sciences

Sociology of Law and Order

Sociology of Law and Order (SOC355)


Sociology of Law and Order examines the issues of social order and social control in society. Models of social control are examined and the role of law is examined as one of a number of mechanisms for maintaining law enforcement and social control. Within society, the concept of how deviance and criminality is defined is explored, as well as systems of law enforcement and public surveillance.

Level: 3
Credit Units: 10
Presentation Pattern: Every semester


  • Introduction: the origins and development of criminology and the study of law and order; Singapore criminal justice system: the prosecution and punishment process; theories of punishment
  • The statistics on crime and their meaning; The media and ""law and order""
  • Classical and positivist explanations of crime
  • Contemporary sociological theories of crime
  • The state and criminality; Conservative criminology
  • Crime prevention; Police methods, structures and organisation
  • ECA revision

Learning Outcome

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the key facets of the various criminological theories, crime prevention strategies as well as criminal justice institutions and practices;
  • Analyze the development of these concepts, theories, strategies institutions and practices in light of political, historical, social and cultural factors and events;
  • Compare the strengths and weaknesses of these concepts, theories, strategies, institutions and practices in light of credible empirical research and prevailing social norms;
  • Appraise how these criminological concepts and theories influence modern criminal justice systems and associated government social policies; and
  • Appraise these concepts, theories, strategies, institutions and practices using his/her own personal and professional experiences in order to determine the validity and/or efficacy of the same in Singapore.
  • Develop research skills to consider theories in light of evidence of practices in the local or other contexts
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