University of Portsmouth, Criminology & Forensic Studies Personal Statement
Lewis F. Korns simply stated, ‘Crime is as much a condition as an intention’. This quote resonates with me as everyone is influenced by oversimplified perspectives of crime. The complexity of crime and the criminals who commit them is what draws me to Criminology. In my opinion, crime is something which is constantly influenced by many factors such as the law, socio-economics, socialisation and geographical location. Each of these being one piece of a complex puzzle.
The A-Levels I am studying are Anthropology, Philosophy & Ethics and ICT. These subjects complement this field of study and enable me to have an eclectic and diverse understanding of crime from various perspectives. Anthropology consists of the study of humans and cultures and has allowed me to identify both differences and similarities between different cultures, for example, polygamy is viewed as a crime in western culture but is the norm in some cultures. Conversely, Philosophy & Ethics has enabled me to identify and differentiate between what is considered to be moral and immoral. It has also enabled me to gain an understanding of religious beliefs, theories and their approach as well as their different perspectives on crime.
Studying ethics in particular has allowed me to explore moral dilemmas and the ethical implications that lead people to commit criminal offences. This suggests that the law and criminality are not black and white and I find this reality interesting. Good people have potential to do bad things when put in particular situations. Also, studying ICT has allowed me to enhance my skills in statistical analysis and information formatting which will prove useful when undertaking research as part of a Criminology degree. Moreover, it gives me insight into internet crime which is rising rapidly in a society that is currently undergoing a technological revolution.
From a young age, I have had a keen interest in reading crime novels by authors such as James Patterson. To gain more insight into the legalities of criminal justice system, I have spent some time at The Old Bailey Court, where I sat through hearings and legal proceedings. This encouraged me to try and understand how this process operates, and this is how I discovered my interest in criminology. Furthermore, through sitting in a public trial I managed to identify the various job roles that influenced the final verdict. This was interesting as it highlighted potential career paths I could follow.
Outside of academic learning, I am an active member in the school community. As a Prefect, I am responsible for organising events. This has given me the opportunity to listen to other people’s opinions. This has also helped me to become a more conscientious worker. My part-time job has allowed me to gain confidence in myself whilst working as an individual and also as a crucial team member. From this I have developed skills such as decision making, critical thinking and working under pressure. These are all skills I believe to be necessary for successfully completing a degree.
Recently in my local area, there has been an increase in the crime rate. I attended a talk held by the Metropolitan Police about how crime can be prevented through the use of devices such as CCTV; this has aided my Extended Project where I am assessing how the development of technology has impacted on the human right of privacy. This has been helpful in developing my written communication skills while also linking it to my personal interest in human rights. To do this research, I made contact with my local MP Boris Johnson who discussed with me via letter his views of CCTV and human rights. In addition, my chosen topic will be relevant to my future career plans as I want to become a crime scene investigator in the police force
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