Turn on the television, open a newspaper or web browser and you’re very likely to encounter images, reports and programmes about crime, justice and punishment. Crime saturates media and popular culture, suggesting an enduring public fascination with wrongdoing and its consequences as well as being an ongoing social problem. But what is the background story to these representations of crime? Criminology tells it through exploring causes, motivation and patterns of criminal conduct. In addition to improving our knowledge and understanding of crime, criminology also informs policies and practices of policing, law, criminal justice and punishment. Sociology is the study of societies, cultures, and groups. We live in complex societies with laws and informal rules that govern how we interact. Sociology helps you to understand more about yourself, others and the way society is organised.