PSY211 Psychology of Crime (8)

This subject examines psychological explanations of criminal behaviour, and the implications of these explanations for the criminal justice system. In addition to general theories of crime, specific problems such as drug abuse, and psychological disorder are examined from a psychological perspective. Attempts to alter criminal behaviour through deterrence and rehabilitation are also covered.
Students should note that this subject does not contribute to an Australian Psychological Society accredited major in psychology.


Session 1 (30)
Bathurst Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: PSY211. Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


School of Psychology

Assumed Knowledge
PSY111 or PSY101

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to demonstrate understanding of psychology's contribution to the explanation of criminal behaviour
  • be able to describe the relationship between the law and drug abuse, sexual deviance, violence and psychological disorder
  • be able to apply a psychological understanding of criminal behaviour to the problem of crime prevention and correction


This subject will cover the following topics:

- Biological bases of crime - Learning bases of crime - Drugs and crime - Sexual deviance and crime - Human violence and crime - Psychological disorder and the law - Correcting criminal behaviour

Indicative Assessment

The following table summarises the assessment tasks for the online offering of PSY211 in Session 1 2020. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated and can also differ to suit the mode of study (online or on campus).

Item Number
Value %
Annotated bibliography
Psychological analysis of crime report
Final exam

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: May 2021. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.