site map | 17 October 2018

“CILEx Law School staff are efficient, friendly and sympathetic.”

CILEx Law School Student Survey


Certificate in Criminal Prosecution

This is a course developed especially for caseworkers in the Crown Prosecution Service.

The course is set at roughly 'A' level in standard. Successful candidates will receive a Certificate in Criminal Prosecution awarded by CILEx Law School. 

The syllabus

The syllabus provides a good working knowledge of both criminal law and procedure, and has been developed and updated in consultation with Learning and Development Managers and students within the CPS. The course is practical in nature and procedurally orientated. The syllabus includes procedures such as the statutory charging scheme and the Criminal Case Management Framework, as well as covering recent legislation such as the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008, and SOCPA 2005. It also maps against the new National Occupational Standards for caseworkers - Unit 331.

Course structure

There is a face-to-face induction day with an experienced Criminal Justice tutor, and after that the course is delivered by distance learning.

The induction day introduces students to distance learning, and gives them detailed guidance on preparing for, and writing, an assignment. Most importantly, the induction day gives students the motivation and confidence to tackle the work.

The assignments are designed to help students work through and understand the topics. Students are referred to relevant chapters from their course manual and are set assignment questions based on their reading. Four of the assignments test knowledge by multiple choice and similar questioning. Line managers will need to agree a mutually convenient time for students to complete these four assignments at work during four one-hour sessions. The remaining three assignments require students to submit written answers.

Course duration

Tutor marking is available for a period of one year from the date of enrolment. The course is intended to be very flexible so that students can work at their own pace. However, there are final submission dates for each assignment, to ensure that students make steady progress with their studies and are not faced with unrealistic workloads towards the end of the year. We recommend that training managers help students to set a realistic timetable and provide some study leave to prepare for each assignment. Our research shows that students who receive support for their studies from their managers are most likely to complete the course.

Course materials

The study pack includes a specially commissioned CILEx Law School course manual for the course,  three written assignments, three on-line assignments and a student handbook including administrative information and a comprehensive study guide.

Students are also given a password to the course-specific Student Area on the website, where they can pose academic queries to the on-line tutor, as well as gain access to the LexisNexis legal database. Telephone support is also available during office hours from CILEx Law School's academic team.

Course assessment

CILEx Law School will award a Certificate in Criminal Prosecution to those students who pass all six assignments. Students can re-submit up to two on-line assignments and one written assignment if they fail on first submission.

This picture shows a group of successful Certificate in Criminal Prosecution students who were presented with their Certificates by Keir Starmer, Director of Public Prosecutions, in January 2010. 

Course fee

Please contact us for current course fees. If you are applying for the course as part of the Advanced Apprenticeship for Criminal Prosecution Paralegals, please note that a CILEx qualification entry fee is also applicable.

Further study

Certificate holders are exempt from Unit 1 Introduction to Law and Practice, Unit 3 Criminal Law and Unit 11 Criminal Litigation in the new CILEx Level 3 Professional Diploma in Law and Practice, which is the first stage of Chartered Legal executive training. Successful students may alternatively consider enrolling on a course leading to an CILEx Level 6 Single Subject Certificate in Criminal Law or Criminal Litigation. The Certificate in Criminal Prosecution is also recognised by a number of universities to provide access to their part-time law degree.


This course is open to employees of the Crown Prosecution Service in England and Wales only. If you are a CPS line manager you may wish to download the webcast that we have recorded to give you more information on the course.

Get in touch

If you would like to discuss your organisation’s learning needs with us, please contact our Managing Director, Noel Inge, on 01234 844325 or or Jenny Pelling, Director of Business and Apprenticeships, on 01234 844326 or

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A picture of Michelle Grogan

Michelle Grogan

I've been delighted with what I've received so far and particularly being able to download the introductory lecture as a podcast ... ... read full