By the end of 1st year, and prior to registration for 2nd year, Criminology students must declare a concentration in Law, Psychology or Sociology.  Students can declare at the end of the academic year once they have received their final Winter term grades (late April). May 15th is the last day to submit requests to make changes to your program to guarantee it processes before Fall/Winter registration begins in June for the following academic year.

How do I declare my concentration?

  • Log in to Carleton Central. On the main menu, scroll down to the section heading “Student Online Applications”.
  • Select the online form “Change Program Elements” (COPE). This request form is for making changes to your program elements, such as adding a concentration, changing your program from the 20.0 credit program to the 15.0 credit program, adding a Minor, or changing Majors.
  • Make sure that you are changing or adding the right thing! It is easy to make mistakes. If you select only “Law” without seeing “Criminology” in front of it, you will change your major from Criminology to Law by mistake, instead of adding the law concentration to the Criminology major. Select one of the below options:
    • Criminology and Criminal Justice: Law
    • Criminology and Criminal Justice: Psychology
    • Criminology and Criminal Justice: Sociology

These requests usually take a few days to process. If you are approved for your COPE changes, you can view your new degree requirements by running an audit. You will not receive any written confirmation that this has processed, so ensure you check your Carleton Central account to view the status of your application.

What concentration should I choose?

The choice is up to you, but here are some questions to ask yourself:

  1. Which of those areas interests me the most?
    Typically students will do better in courses that interest them and in the end you want good grades.
  2. Do I want to go on to graduate studies in a particular field?
    If you hope to pursue a Master’s degree in a particular field, besides Criminology, it would help if you took more courses in that particular area. If you’re thinking of Law School, be aware that Law Schools are less concerned with your Major than they are with your grades and LSAT scores. So refer to Question #1. Take the courses that will result in good grades.
  3. What are my career goals?
    You may want to take courses in an area that will help you secure and succeed in a particular career. Psychology will tend to focus on individualized characteristics, sociology on interactional processes and systemic dimensions, and law on juridical rules, actors, and institutions. All three disciplines bring crucial, yet different, perspectives on crime, criminality, and criminalization. Consider choosing a concentration that will allow you to take more of the courses you think may be useful. If you can’t decide between two, maybe choose a concentration in one and a minor in the other!
  4. What if I choose the wrong one?
    You are not locked in. You can change your concentration later by completing the same form again. However, we recommend that you consult with us before doing this to ensure that you are still on track to graduate on time.

If you want to discuss this further, please contact us for an advising appointment at 613-520-2588 or