Class Central is learner-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Online Course

Incarceration: Are prisons a suitable punishment?

University of Leeds via FutureLearn

(32)
124

Taken this course? Share your experience with other students. Write review

Overview

Explore the ethics of imprisonment and identify prison alternatives

England and Wales have the highest incarceration rate in Western Europe. Almost a quarter of these prisoners are held in overcrowded prisons. On this course, you will take a look inside the prisons of England and Wales.

You will consider the role of imprisonment as a form of punishment, and hear from ex-prisoners about their experience of being incarcerated. Through case studies, you will explore the challenges faced by the current prison system. You will identify alternative methods of punishment and rehabilitation, and learn about the debates that exist within the criminal justice system.

This course is for anyone looking to investigate whether prisons are a suitable punishment for offenders.

The course will be useful for professionals such as social workers, probation officers, and anyone that supports prisoners.

This course is also useful for learners interested in studying criminology or related disciplines at undergraduate or postgraduate level.

Taught by

Richard Peake

Help Center

Most commonly asked questions about FutureLearn

Reviews for FutureLearn's Incarceration: Are prisons a suitable punishment? Based on 32 reviews

  • 5 stars 66%
  • 4 stars 28%
  • 3 stars 6%
  • 2 star 0%
  • 1 star 0%

Did you take this course? Share your experience with other students.

Write a review
  • 1
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
Excellent course! extremely complete and easy to follow, even for a foreign student. I learn a lot and gave me the opportunity to reflect o these matters. Very enjoyable resources as well and lots of links and references to expand the knowledge provided by the course.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
The course has given me a better understanding of prison life. I have researched much more as a result of the coursework than I expected. It is an excellent learning experience.

Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous is taking this course right now.
I speak on prison and gang culture in schools so was already aware of some of this framework before starting, but it truly opened my eyes and taught me a lot. A really interesting and varied course. I particularly like the use of visuals and interactive exercises, instead of just remote reading. I've...
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
I have just finished this course and felt the need to review it to not only express my gratitude but also recommend it to anyone on the fence. Having studied and really enjoyed the topic of incarceration and punishment in an A-Level Sociology module, I decided to take this course to expand my knowledge....
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
I've completed a lot of Futurelearn courses but I'm afraid this one was not for me. I knew nothing about the subject and I was surprised to find so many 'Exercise' sections in the first few modules. Due to my lack of prior knowledge, I found it difficult to complete these in a satisfactory way and could do no more than give my 'opinion'. My preferred style of learning is to learn about a topic first and then complete an exercise to confirm/deepen my understanding. Nevertheless, I did complete the whole course except for the Assignment and related topics - I just didn't feel confident to complete this task. On a more positive note, I feel I have learned quite a lot. I found the videos particularly informative (and enlightening). Thank you to all those involved in creating the course and I'm sorry that I was not able to embrace it quite as enthusiastically as I have my previous Futurelearn course.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
I loved completing this course. I have a real interest in Criminology but also learning in general. I think this course I brilliant for absolutely anyone who has an interest in this topic. It also teaches you a great deal on the way the justice system works and on the benefits of non-custodial sentences (I didn’t know what that meant before starting the course :/!!) It was very interesting and my opinions have changed from when I started and to when I finished. The only reason I didn’t give it five stars was because I wanted to take part in the assessment but it wasn’t available because of the need to pay or upgrade and as I’m only a student I couldn’t afford it. But other than that it was brilliant, thank you.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
I am an Official Prison Visitor currently visiting an offender in the high security estate in the north of England. This has been an interesting overview of the criminal justice system, and I have enjoyed both the video interviews and supportive in-depth reading. There has been a huge amount of supplementary reading available making the task of covering everything in the two weeks a fair challenge. Just a shame now, that with the current coronavirus lockdown, and suspension of visiting, in at least my prison, I am unable to see my guy and "chew the fat" about it - which he is willing to do. Thanks to all for the preparation of this material for interested participants.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
In my time I have been a volunteer prison visitor for the Probation Service, a Jobcentre worker and a careers adviser. The first week unfortunately taught me that prison conditions have not really improved in the past 40 years and my original view that it should be avoided where possible still holds.

The second week was enjoyable because it focussed on alternatives to prison. Working in Jobcentres and careers offices have shown me just how hard it is for ex-offenders to get a break.

I thought the course was well-constructed and involved a good mix of videos, exercises and articles. I do have a bit of prior knowledge and I think this course added to my perspective,

Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
A really interesting course with lots of opportunities to get involved throughout including discussions with others on the course, multiple choices quizzes to assess your knowledge as well as the chance to write a short assignment and peer review someone else. All of which helped with my learning and understanding on the course. It is also organised really well and the information is presented in interesting ways including interactive activities and videos. I definitely learnt a lot and really enjoyed it. Highly recommend if you are interested in this area.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
I took this course out of personal interest as its so different to my training (Biology) and I do think its an important issue to discuss. I found the exercises were varied, informative ans really interesting. they made me question my views and I learnt so much, would definitely recommend. some of the quizzes were tricky as I think a lot of it wasn't definitively correct answers and a bit ope to interpretation. I would also say to allow 6 hours per week minimum not the 4 stated.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous is taking this course right now.
The course is very informative, challenges you to think objectively. I personally like to watch the interviews done with people who are having experience in the justice system, magistrates, lectures and the ex-offenders themselves who know first hand what it is like to be behind bars and find their path in life after serving their sentence. It was very inspirational to listen to their accounts. I will definitely research this topic more. It gave me food for thought.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous is taking this course right now.
Happened upon this course whilst exploring various documentaries on the subject of imprisonment. I’m half way through and the videos and content have reinforced my sense that prison usually exacerbates a sense of hopelessness in most of those involved. There are clearly exceptions - the ex-offender contributors being examples. I enjoyed the research we undertook into another country’s system, and seeing what others found out. I look forward to part 2.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous is taking this course right now.
I enjoyed the course a lot. The course was set up really lovely and you can feel the heavy work behind it. I really enjoyed learning through videos eventhough I wished for some more paper articles which I could print. I think it was a really nice move to put in two former prisoners so you could also hear their oppinion.

Thank you for everyone who worked on this course.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
The information provided in the course is very utile, especially for society who have to accept an ex-offender as a neighbour , co-worker, friend etc.

Also, it was effective listening to first-hand stories of David and Liam and understanding that prison can change someone's life in an absolute positive way, giving the possibility to understand and find one's meaning of life.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
A really good overview of prisons, custodial and non-custodial sentences, various official commissions looking into the purpose of the criminal justice system and key issues and challenges.

Looks also into the ethical questions surrounding imprisonment and provides insight from ex-prisoners into daily life in prison and thereafter as they look to desistance. Recommended.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous is taking this course right now.
An in-depth look at a difficult subject. Well-organised, with thought-provoking content and comments from other students. I had a wee bit of difficulty playing one of the videos, so reverted to the text version, which was fine. I think the course is quite demanding, and wish I had more time but am racing to complete! Thank you very much for the opportunity.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
I really enjoyed this course. Great ways to learn through videos, exercises, articles and peer review short assignment. Thank you for providing this. One downfall was not being able to really test the knowledge you've learnt due to having to pay for the rest at the end. That's understandable just a shame not everyone can afford it.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
I enjoyed the course, it gave a good overview of the process, the people involved and the effects of the different kinds of punishment and you were able to see the views of other students from around the world who took a different perspective and shared information they had found. It was very interesting and good learning.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
This is a well-structured course with multiple engaging exercises that keep the course feeling different and interesting. There is lots of opportunity for discussion where you can explore other's perceptions and do your own research should you want to. A very interesting and thought-provoking course!
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
Anonymous
Anonymous completed this course.
Overall I felt as though the course was very good.

It is a very detailed course and it does require you to not only pay attention but also to think, unlike some other online courses, which simply play you a video.

The course runs for two weeks and I do encourage you to consider taking it.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes
  • 1

Class Central

Get personalized course recommendations, track subjects and courses with reminders, and more.

Sign up for free

Never stop learning Never Stop Learning!

Get personalized course recommendations, track subjects and courses with reminders, and more.

Sign up for free