From Dahmer to Mindhunter to those restrained but nonetheless uber-unsettling Nordic noirs, you slavishly watch every serial-killer series and have a theory on whodunnit, why, and even which underlying societal issues contributed to the crime – all within the first five minutes of pressing play. Sound like you? Then a career as a criminologist might be your next move.
But what does a criminologist do, exactly? Criminologists fall under the category of social professionals. Criminologists investigate crimes, gather statistics on crime rates, develop profiles of particular offences, and critically analyse the criminal justice system, its methods and effectiveness. As a criminologist, your purpose is to understand criminal behaviour so you can address and eliminate it.
It’s a profession that lets you think deeply and work in diverse settings and fields – from the police force to corrections, courts to victim support services, related government agencies, and even in the private sector profiling corporate criminals. And, it’s a growing field – with a projected national job growth of 18.9% over the next five years. 1
And, while a career as a criminologist can be time-consuming and has the potential for danger (or excitement, depending on how you choose to look at it), no matter which area you choose to work in, you can rest assured that you’ll be improving society.