Criminal is usually a poor choice for a beginner. It requires certain mindset to play (aggresive, high risk, high reward, control boardstate) which most people don't feel comfortable with, at least at the beginning.
Agreed. Shaper is a much better choice because they have a good toolset for just about any ICE in the early set of cards and also the ability to fetch them, which feels like a good safety net for someone learning the game. It’s uncomfortable as a new player faceplanting into ICE just to force the Corp to spend money to rez which would be a hallmark of the aggressive style of Criminal.