CR6018 - Crime, Animals and the Environment

What will I learn on this module?

Is there a relationship between violence against animals and violence against humans? Why is it okay to kill certain animals, but a crime to kill others? How do large corporations get away with polluting the planet? How can we address crimes against animals and the environment? These are all questions we will attempt to address on this module. As part of your studies you will learn about the emerging and competing perspectives and frameworks regarding the neglected topic of crimes and harms against animals and the environment. In a module offered at very few universities, you are introduced to the philosophies and perspectives of Green Criminology and Critical Animal Studies. You will develop skills that enable you to critically analyse notions of crime and harm, and social and ecological justice in relation to animal abuse, deforestation, wildlife, pollution and many other areas that pertain to green and environmental crime and victimisation. While honing verbal and written skills, this module will give you the working knowledge to discuss the type, scope, and impacts of green and animal-related crimes and harms and how this is different from street and ‘traditional’ volume crimes. This module provides a fresh new area of criminological scholarship which you will contribute to in discussion and debate with the module tutors and fellow students - examining crime from new and cutting edge perspectives.

How will I learn on this module?

Crime, Animals and the Environment is a workshop-based Level 6 option module that will consolidate your skills in areas such as team work and critical evaluation of research. In weekly seminars you will discuss and critique this research based material and you will make appropriate use of other resources that you will be both directed towards and will seek out for yourself. These seminars will follow a student-led, workshop format. Seminar groups will work together to evaluate and critique theories of green crime and critical animal studies. Group tasks will also involve you in applying these theoretical approaches to real world animal/environmental issues and problems.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

This is a team taught module with two or three staff members available to support you via email, in seminars, and during scheduled office hours. There is also substantial support from your fellow students during seminars and outside of class. Your academic development will be facilitated through engagement with the newly emerging academic literature and by debating with your peers and academic tutors about your understanding of the literature. You can expect to have your perceptions of what counts as crime and who and what victims are challenged in this module.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at:
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team –

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
1. Assess the ability of the range of criminological and sociological perspectives on animals and the environment.
2. Understand why green crime and crimes/harms against animals can be understood as being important alongside other more traditional forms of crime.
3. Understand the linkages between green crime, crimes/harms against animals and traditional criminology.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
4. Conduct a literature review and create a conference style poster.

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
5. To have confidence in your own thinking and assessment of theories and perspectives, but also to be open to challenge and debate too.

How will I be assessed?

Formative assessment is given continually during class and in preparations for the assessments to encourage participation and critical thinking. Oral formative feedback regarding the poster and participation in seminars.

The summative assessment comprises two components:

• One 3,000-word essay (70%) to hone writing skills as well as their ability to defend their opinions.

• Academic Poster (30%) – students will produce a conference style poster on an environmental or animal related crime/harm issue.

These three assessments will address MLOs 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5. Written summative feedback is provided on the essay.





Module abstract

Please find details of this module in the other sections provided.

Course info

UCAS Code C8M9

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years Full Time or 4 years with optional study abroad year

Department Psychology

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024 or September 2025

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


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