Best Canadian University for Criminology Part 1: University of Toronto

Best Canadian University for Criminology – Part 1

Currently the 20th best university in the world according to Times Higher Education, the University of Toronto (U of T) enjoys the reputation of being the top Canadian institution in the list. Established in the year 1827, it is at par with many international institutions that excel in six major areas of study.

Known for its strong programs and stellar research background, it comes as no surprise why the U of T is a popular

choice amongst budding professionals. This is especially the case for wannabe felony solvers, as the university plays home to one of the best Criminology schools in Canada: the Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal Studies.


Founded in 1963 by the respected professor and legal scholar John Edwards, the Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal Studies (then the Centre for Criminology) is a teaching and research unit dedicated to the study of crime, security and order.

Unlike most schools, U of T utilizes a wide array of theoretical constructs and ideological perspectives. As such, it draws concepts from the studies of law, history, sociology, psychology, philosophy and other social sciences.

After being stationed in the Spadina House and the John Robarts Research Library, the Centre finally moved to its new home – the Canadiana Gallery – in 2007.

Courses Offered

The U of T, through Woodsworth College, offers an undergraduate course in Criminology. Students who take this degree are educated with the fundamentals of crime, the progression of social order and disorder, as well as the execution of the Canadian justice system. The degree program was constructed in coordination with theory and studies stemming from philosophical, economical, psychological, sociological and historical points of view.

Those who want to advance their knowledge of Criminology, on the other hand, can pursue post-graduate courses at

the Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal Research. The Master of Arts program was first introduced in 1971, followed by a Doctorate in Degree in Philosophy, which was finally offered in 1989.

Apart from standalone Crimonology post-graduate courses, U of T also offers combined and collaborative programs, such as:

  • Combined JD/MA in Criminology
  • Collaborative Program in Women and Gender Studies
  • Collaborative Program in Addiction Studies

Why Study Criminology at U of T?

The question should be, why not? Here are some factors that make the U of T one of the best Canadian university for Criminology.

U of T has a strong research background.

Apart from molding the future bright minds of Criminology, the expert faculty members of the Centre always engage themselves – and their students as well – in criminological researches that further improve not only the Canadian justice system, but the law constructs of other nations as well.

This opportunity, in fact, is one of the best advantages of the university – especially to students who wish to make the world a better place.

The Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal Studies features faculty members who are experts in practice, education and resource.

How U of T continues to be one of the best is no surprise. After all, its students are molded by the finest criminologists – both on a local and international scale. At U of T, budding criminologists are taken under the helm of the Centre director and Gender Punishment expert, Dr.  Kelly Hannah-Moffat and Penology instructor and graduate coordinator Dr. Scot Worley, to name a few.

U of T has a rich repository of Criminology resources.

At the Criminology Information Service, you can get hold of the country’s best collection of criminological resources and materials. At the school’s library, you can parse from more than 25,000 journals, books, statistics, government reports and other pertinent documents.  This is especially beneficial for academic pursuits, as well as for thesis completion prior to graduation.

U of T enhances its general education with its “Criminal Highlights” program.

Criminal Highlights is a student’s access to the newest researches that relate to Crime and associated disciplines. With thousands of new documents scanned by expert professors and academicians, it serves as a comprehensive review of several policy areas. Unique to the U of T, Criminal Highlights helps improve the knowledge of students by bringing new findings that can enhance one’s knowledge of criminology.

U of T offers scholarship programs to deserving students.

If you are giving up hope on your dreams of becoming a world-class criminologist, don’t! At the U of T, you can actualize your aspirations by applying for the Centre’s scholarship programs. Presently, the university offers two scholarships for Criminology students, and they are the Tony Doob Scholarship Fund and the Richard Ericson Scholarship. By showing your worth, you can  take any one of them!

U of T paves the way for real-life Criminology experiences through its Career Centre Online.

Criminology experience is key not only in school, but after graduation as well. In order to get you ahead of the pack, the U of T offers volunteer openings, as well as summer and part-time jobs through its Career Centre Online program. Through this portal, you can access job openings, search for related employment opportunities and learn from career guides, to name a few.

U of T offers lunchtime seminars, symposia and workshops.

Open not only to Criminology students, but to the public as well – the Centre’s seminars serve as pathways for associated disciplines. In fact, it even serves as an interactive ground between the academe and Criminology practitioners.

Apart from fostering discussions about policy and theory-related issues, the seminars pave the way for informed debates on the most pressing Criminological questions.

U of T hosts annual Edwards Lectures.

Dedicated in the memory of the Centre’s founder, Prof. J. Edwards, the Edwards Lectures is a yearly affair that attracts the world’s leaders in Criminological education, practice and research. Through this portal, students can learn from experts in the different fields of Criminology.

What Students Have to Say

“U of T is known for its academic challenges and its reputation – so you need to keep up,” says one student. True to this statement, nothing compares to the status and educational quality of the U of T Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal Research. While this remark might intimidate some, it shows that to live up to the university’s world-class reputation, you need to persevere.


Whether you are thinking of working for the criminal justice system, or enhancing the delivery of justice through policy and research analysis, a degree in Criminology is perfect for you. And with the sheer competition within the circle, it is best if you studied at one of the best Criminology schools in Canada: the U of T. With its long-standing tradition of educational and research excellence, coupled with expert professors and a comprehensive library, U of T proves to be one of the top choices for budding criminals who want to effect change on the justice system.

Relevant Links:

1. Best Canadian University for Criminology – Part 2


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