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Masters Degrees (Biological Weapons)

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We have designed our Science & Security MA to provide you with a detailed understanding of science and its relationship to international politics. Read more

We have designed our Science & Security MA to provide you with a detailed understanding of science and its relationship to international politics. Developments in technology are central to all aspects of international conflict and you will need a multidisciplinary understanding of these developments to fully comprehend their policy implications. Through this programme you will gain a deep understanding of topics such as nuclear weapons, arms control verification, cyber security, and terrorism.

Key benefits

  • We have designed this unique programme to develop your ability to understand and analyse the security implications of scientific and technological developments, while utilising knowledge and tools of analysis from the hard sciences, political science, history, philosophy and sociology.
  • Our Centre for Science and Security Studies, based in the Department of War Studies, provides a vibrant home for our MA programme. It has a growing team of PhD students and researchers, and sponsors its own speaker series.
  • You are encouraged to apply for internships (on our research projects and/or with other relevant institutions in London such as the Verification Research, Training and Information Centre (VERTIC) and IISS).
  • You will have access to visiting academics, serving officers, government ministers and other experts who give regular public lectures and seminars.
  • The Department of War Studies is unique in the UK and one of the very few university departments in the world devoted exclusively to the study of war as a human phenomenon.
  • Our Department has an excellent reputation as a graduate-training institution and is recognised as such by the British Academy, the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the Economic and Social Research council.
  • Taught by leading experts who bring an extensive and continually growing network of links with other departments, think-tanks, organisations, policymaking bodies and institutions.

Description

It is increasingly important to understand the security implications of scientific and technological developments. While science and technology have always affected national and international security, current developments in the space, nuclear and biological weapons and long-range missiles, as well as work in biotechnology and information technology suggest that science will exert a greater and more complex influence on security and policy planning. At the same time, individuals and sub-national groups have greater access to new technologies than ever before.

Our course will provide you with an integrated understanding of science and politics. You will develop an understanding of the science underlying key weapons systems and technologies, the main concepts and tools of international politics and security studies and the process by which scientists and policymakers can interact productively in the policy process. Our goal is to equip you to analyse the impact of current and future scientific developments on security.

Course purpose

Our course is designed to provide you with an integrated understanding of science and international politics to cope with the demands of the emerging security agenda.

Course format and assessment

Teaching

For lectures, seminars andf feedback, you will typically have 20-40 hours per 40 credit module plus 12 hours of dissertation supervision. You will also have approximately 360 hours per 40 credit module plus 588 hours for dissertation for self-study. Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.

Assessment

Most 20 and 40-credit modules are assessed through a combination of essays, presentation, oral vivas and/or exams.

The dissertation module assessment will be based on a 100% dissertation assignment (up to 15,000 words).

Career prospects

War Studies graduates go on to work for NGOs, the FCO, the MOD, the Home Office, NATO, the UN or pursue careers in journalism, finance, academia, the diplomatic services, the armed forces and more. Recent posts held by our alumni include Threat Analyst, Director of Political Violence Forecasting, Research Advisor at NATO Defence College, Foreign Policy Fellow.



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At the School of Geography, Politics and Sociology, we conduct research and offer MPhil supervision in all major fields of politics, including. Read more
At the School of Geography, Politics and Sociology, we conduct research and offer MPhil supervision in all major fields of politics, including: international and global politics, governance and political organisations, and political theory.

We can offer you excellent supervision for your Politics MPhil, in a vibrant and supportive research environment.

We have a Politics Postgraduate Society, which organises:
-The 'New Voices' seminar series, with both internal and external presenters
-Round table discussions on topical issues
-Professional development workshops led by politics staff

You are encouraged to attend conferences to present papers, partial funding for this is available from the School.

Our main research themes are:

The politics of difference

We examine the issues thrown up by the social and political differences of humanity from a variety of perspectives including: analytical and continental political philosophy; comparative politics and international politics; post-colonialism. Our work includes research on:
-Multiculturalism and issues of identity
-Inequality and social justice
-Disability
-Competing discourses of national identity
-Ethnic-nationalism
-Political violence
-Socio-political exclusion and discrimination
-Global norms and cultural difference
-Free speech - toleration and recognition

Popular culture and political communication

Our research addresses various key issues including:
-Representation
-Aesthetics
-Identity
-Cultural political economy
-Memory
-Control

We also assess the processes and depiction of political struggles, such as:
-Armed conflict
-Everyday life
-Political organising and identity formation
-Elections

Political participation and elections

We examine the differing forms of political participation that link society to the political systems of the world. We look at both the formal electoral process and non-electoral politics (social movements, protest groups etc). Our research on the emergence of virtual political participation means that some of our work intersects with popular culture and political communication. We investigate:
-Citizen involvement and (dis)engagement
-Social capital
-Non-participation
-The role of civil society

Political ideologies and political thought

We focus on the history of political thought as well as how these ideas are embedded in programmes for political action. Our research incorporates both historical and contemporary political thought prominent in the Western tradition as well as Asian philosophy and post-colonial thinking. This is an interdisciplinary theme, serving as a bridge between empirical political science and political theory.

Global economic and environmental challenges

We study the importance of political ideas such as sustainable development and globalisation, as well as the struggle to define the core problems that society faces. These challenges pose questions to the nature and reform of global governance, and generate tensions between the state and transnationalising forces in global politics and political economy. Our work has already led to findings on:
-The implications for global justice
-The policy challenge for governments and non-governmental actors
-The empowerment of various actors

Democracy, the modern state and political organisations

Our work examines the role of interest groups, social movements, political parties, third-sector actors and charities, community organisations and postcolonial nationalism in relation to the modern state. We draw from ancient and modern political thought to understand the interpretation of democracy (including democratic rights and the foundations of democracy). Our research interrogates the forms democracy takes, including:
-Elite theories of democracy
-Deliberative democracy
-Cosmopolitan democracy
-Democracy in divided societies

Political economy of development

Our research focuses on the interaction of economic forces and principles with political power in the development of societal economics and welfare, as well as on theories of development and post-development. We cover a range of geographic areas in Africa, the Americas, Europe and Asia. We explore questions such as:
-The impact of the ongoing financial and economic crisis
-The role of communities and individuals in the face of global political economic forces
-The impact of the emerging economies (for example Brazil and China) on the global political economy

Critical geopolitics and security

Our research focuses on thinking critically about the political dynamics, consequences and discourses of historical and contemporary geopolitics. We cover both historical and contemporary questions of security, including:
-The territorialisation/de-territorialisation of identity and political agency
-Political cartography
-The role of fear and identity in shaping geopolitics
-Sovereignty and nationalism - the role and impact of the military
-Notions of terrorism and the war on terror
-The geographies of international boundaries
-The war on the trade in illegal substances
-The city and security
-The threat of biological weapons and infectious disease
-The vertical dimension in geopolitical and security studies
-Visual culture and world politics
-Technologies and architectures of security and insecurity
-The human body and security

Theory of international relations

We take an active role in the global debate on the units, actors and structures that shape the dynamics of international politics. Our research covers the political consequences of the constitution of the international as a distinct kind of relation. We examine political concepts including:
-The world system
-International diplomacy
-Networks
-Notions of empire
-Regional integration
-Non-governmental actors
-The (nation) state

Governance in Britain and wider Europe

Our research investigates the dynamics driving public policy-making at national, EU and international levels. We focus on the challenges multi-level governance offers for concerns about legitimacy and accountability. This includes the changing relationship between the governing and the governed over matters of politics and policy. Our geographic scope includes the United Kingdom, Western Europe, Eastern Europe and Russia, and the Mediterranean

Global justice and human rights

Our work in political philosophy reflects the increasing need to tackle issues at a global rather than a state-only level. We cover issues such as:
-The formulation and justification of human rights
-The competing claims of relativism, particularism, and cultural diversity
-The extension of ideas of distributive justice from states to humanity as a whole
-Proposals to secure global democracy
-The application of just war theory to modern conflicts and to humanitarian intervention
-Environmental justice, especially climate change

We tackle questions of justice from an issue perspective as well as surveys of nationalism, statism, and various non-cosmopolitan theories of global justice.

Political research and methods

We conduct qualitative and quantitative research reflecting both empirical and critical political methodologies. We use quantitative methods, including rational choice theory and experiments, to make sense of topics as diverse as party systems and transitional justice. Our aim is to push innovation in research methods in ethnography, hermeneutics and discourse analysis. We use concepts that challenge traditional notions of politics to investigate methods for research into new challenges, including:
-The rise of life sciences
-The focus on the relationship between the human body and security
-Emergent forms of subjectivity and politics

Research skills development

The University's Humanities and Social Sciences Graduate School provides a full range of research training in the social sciences, which meets the requirements of the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). This training includes:
-Bibliographical techniques
-Philosophy of social science
-Quantitative and qualitative methods

The Graduate School also hosts postgraduate events, including open days, and supports personal development.

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Our Non-Proliferation & International Security MA course will enable you to examine the causes, processes and effects of weapons proliferation, the evolution and effectiveness of the international non-proliferation regime, and the way in which proliferation influences other issues in international relations. Read more

Our Non-Proliferation & International Security MA course will enable you to examine the causes, processes and effects of weapons proliferation, the evolution and effectiveness of the international non-proliferation regime, and the way in which proliferation influences other issues in international relations. You will use knowledge and tools of analysis from history, political science, the hard sciences, philosophy and sociology to explore the topic from a variety of perspectives. 

Key benefits

  • Drawing on the strengths of the Department of War Studies, our course is multidisciplinary, utilising knowledge and tools of analysis from history, political science, the hard sciences, philosophy and sociology.
  • Through guest speakers and, when possible, field trips our course also draws on the broad range of expertise available in government and the NGO community.
  • The Centre for Science and Security Studies, located within the Department of War Studies, provides a vibrant home for our MA course, with its own speaker series and a growing cadre of PhD students and researchers. When possible, our centre also offers internships on current research projects. You are also encouraged to apply for internships at such other London-based institutions working in the field as the Verification Research, Training and Information Centre (VERTIC) and IISS.
  • Our Department has an excellent reputation as a graduate training institution and is recognised by the British Academy, the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the Economic and Social Research council as a training institution for war studies.
  • We place great emphasis on recruiting leading experts who bring with them not only a wealth of knowledge and ideas but an extensive and continually growing network of links with other departments, think-tanks, organisations, policymaking bodies and institutions.

Description

The development and spread of weapons technology has been, and continues to be of central importance in international relations, with growing concerns about the spread of chemical, biological and nuclear (CBN) weapons and their means of delivery to both state and non-state actors. Our MA course will enable you to examine the causes, processes and effects of weapons proliferation, the evolution and effectiveness of the international nonproliferation regime, and the way in which proliferation influences other key issues in international relations.

Course purpose

Our course is for graduates and professionals with an interest in understanding the causes, processes and effects of weapons proliferation, the evolution and effectiveness of the international non-proliferation regime, and the way in which proliferation influences other key issues in international relations.

Course format and assessment

Teaching

For lectures, seminars and feedack you will typically have 40 hours (two hours per week for two semesters)per 40-credit module, as well as 360 hours of self-study. For the dissertation module, you will have 12 hours of dissertation workshops and supervision to complement the 588 hours of self-study. Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.

Assessment

Most modules will be assessed through a combination of essays, presentation, oral vivas and/or exams.

The dissertation module assessment will be based on a 100% dissertation assignment (up to 15,000 words).

Career prospects

War Studies graduates go on to work for NGOs, the FCO, the MOD, the Home Office, NATO, the UN or pursue careers in journalism, finance, academia, the diplomatic services, the armed forces and more. Recent posts held by our alumni include Threat Analyst, Director of Political Violence Forecasting, Research Advisor at NATO Defence College, Foreign Policy Fellow.



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This course provides education and training in selected weapons systems. The course is intended for officers of the armed forces and for scientists and technical officers in government defence establishments and the defence industry. Read more

Course Description

This course provides education and training in selected weapons systems. The course is intended for officers of the armed forces and for scientists and technical officers in government defence establishments and the defence industry. It is particularly suitable for those who, in their subsequent careers, will be involved with the specification, analysis, development, technical management or operation of weapons systems.

The course is accredited by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers and will contribute towards an application for chartered status.

Overview

The Gun System Design MSc is part of the Vehicle and Weapons Engineering Programme. The course is designed to provide an understanding of the technologies used in the design, development, test and evaluation of gun systems.

This course offers the underpinning knowledge and education to enhance the student’s suitability for senior positions within their organisation.

Each individual module is designed and offered as a standalone course which allows an individual to understand the fundamental technology required to efficiently perform the relevant, specific job responsibilities. The course provides students with the depth of knowledge to undertake engineering analysis or the evaluation of relevant sub systems.

Duration: Full-time MSc - one year, Part-time MSc - up to three years, Full-time PgCert - one year, Part-time PgCert - two years, Full-time PgDip - one year, Part-time PgDip - two years

English Language Requirements

If you are an international student you will need to provide evidence that you have achieved a satisfactory test result in an English qualification. The minimum standard expected from a number of accepted courses are as follows:

IELTS - 6.5
TOEFL - 92
Pearson PTE Academic - 65
Cambridge English Scale - 180
Cambridge English: Advanced - C
Cambridge English: Proficiency - C

In addition to these minimum scores you are also expected to achieve a balanced score across all elements of the test. We reserve the right to reject any test score if any one element of the test score is too low.

We can only accept tests taken within two years of your registration date (with the exception of Cambridge English tests which have no expiry date).

Course overview

This MSc course is made up of two essential components, the equivalent of 12 taught modules (including some double modules, typically of a two-week duration), and an individual project.

Modules

MSc and PGDip students take 11 compulsory modules and 1 optional module.
PGCert students take 4 compulsory modules and 2 optional modules.

Core:
- Element Design
- Fundamentals of Ballistics
- Finite Element Methods in Engineering
- Gun System Design
- Light Weapon Design
- Military Vehicle Propulsion and Dynamics
- Modelling, Simulation and Control
- Solid Modelling CAD
- Survivability
- Vehicle Systems Integration

Optional:
- Guided Weapons
- Military Vehicle Dynamics
- Reliability and System Effectiveness
- Uninhabited Military Vehicle Systems

Individual Project

In addition to the taught part of the course, students can opt either to undertake an individual project or participate in a group design project. The aim of the project phase is to enable students to develop expertise in engineering research, design or development. The project phase requires a thesis to be submitted and is worth 80 credit points.

Examples of recent titles are given below.
- Use of Vibration Absorber to help in Vibration
- Validated Model of Unmanned Ground Vehicle Power Usage
- Effect of Ceramic Tile Spacing in Lightweight Armour systems
- Investigation of Suspension System for Main Battle Tank
- An Experimental and Theoretical Investigation into a Pivot Adjustable Suspension System as a Low Cost Method of Adjusting for Payload
- Analysis of Amphibious Operation and Waterjet Propulsions for Infantry Combat Vehicle.
- Design of the Light Weapon System
- Analysis of the Off-road Performance of a Wheeled or Tracked Vehicle

Group Project

- Armoured Fighting Vehicle and Weapon Systems Study
To develop the technical requirements and characteristics of armoured fighting vehicles and weapon systems, and to examine the interactions between the various sub-systems and consequential compromises and trade-offs.

Syllabus/curriculum:
- Application of systems engineering practice to an armoured fighting vehicle and weapon system.
- Practical aspects of system integration.
- Ammunition stowage, handling, replenishment and their effects on crew performance and safety.
- Applications of power, data and video bus technology to next generation armoured fighting vehicles.
- Effects of nuclear, biological and chemical attack on personnel and vehicles, and their survivability.

- Intended learning outcomes
On successful completion of the group project the students should be able to –
- Demonstrate an understanding of the engineering principles involved in matching elements of the vehicle and weapon system together.
- Propose concepts for vehicle and weapon systems, taking into account incomplete and possibly conflicting user requirements.
- Effectively apply Solid Modelling in outlining proposed solutions.
- Interpret relevant legislation and standards and understand their relevance to vehicle and weapon systems.
- Work effectively in a team, communicate and make decisions.
- Report the outcome of a design study orally to a critical audience.

Assessment

Continuous assessment, examinations and thesis (MSc only). Approximately 30% of the assessment is by examination.

Career opportunities

Many previous students have returned to their sponsor organisations to take up senior programme appointments and equivalent research and development roles in this technical area.

For further information

On this course, please visit our course webpage - https://www.cranfield.ac.uk/Courses/Masters/Gun-Systems-Design

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On this part-time, distance learning course you will learn how to evaluate and interpret different forms of forensic evidence and how to consider its relevance to police investigations. Read more

Course Description

On this part-time, distance learning course you will learn how to evaluate and interpret different forms of forensic evidence and how to consider its relevance to police investigations. You will study the scientific principles and practical application of the many and varied techniques used to forensically examine different evidence types.

You will learn how to select the most appropriate techniques for different evidence types, how to interpret the results and how to apply critical analysis to determine what that means in terms of evidential value.

The skills and knowledge you will gain on this course will enable you to confidently argue the reasoning behind the interpretation and evaluation of forensic evidence and to demonstrate in a court of law that you are credible as an expert witness.

This course is offered in association with the University of Florida and the University of Canberra.

If you have any questions about this course, join us for a live online chat with academic tutors and admissions staff.

Course Structure

If you complete all of the modules and a dissertation you will be awarded an MSc. However it is also possible to compete only the modules, without a dissertation, and receive a Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip), or to complete just the first year modules and receive a Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) These are 'exit awards' which means that you cannot apply for them directly; you must apply for the MSc.

Core Modules:

Crime Scene Examination
Trace Evidence Analysis
Evidential Value and Interpretation
Research Methods

Option Modules (choose 4-6):

Physical Evidence modules

Fingerprint corrosion of metal
Arson investigation
Forensic engineering
Toxicology of chemical weapons (F)
Blood distribution and spatter (F)
Environmental forensics (C)

Biological Evidence modules

Biological evidence and serology (F)
Forensic toxicology (F)
Biological evidence and serology (F)

Human Remains modules

Introduction to forensic archaeology
Introduction to forensic anthropology
Forensic entomology (F)
Forensic genetics (F)

Management modules

Crime scene management
Intelligence gathering and data mining

*Modules marked F or C are taught by the University of Florida or the University of Canberra.

After completing your modules, you will complete a dissertation of approximately 15,000-20,000 words, which may be related to work-based issues you are facing.

(Please note: due to regular enhancement of the University’s courses, please refer to Leicester’s own website (http://www.le.ac.uk) or/and Terms and Conditions (http://www2.le.ac.uk/legal) for the most accurate and up-to-date course information. We recommend that you familiarise yourself with this information prior to submitting an application.)

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Explore the multi-faceted subject of international security and gain fresh and leading perspectives, working with internationally renowned academics. Read more

Explore the multi-faceted subject of international security and gain fresh and leading perspectives, working with internationally renowned academics.

International security has evolved enormously in the last 15 years, with terrorism, human and drug trafficking and territorial and sovereignty disputes adding an extra layer of complexity to the traditional security challenges of states.

This course offers a distinctive focus on security issues, looking at politics and policy-making in the contemporary international arena, and the role of Europe and the European Union within it.

You'll gain a deep insight into the diverse dimensions of international security, unpacking the practices and challenges of different governments and organisations and exploring how these relate to research and policy-making.

Studying this at Bath provides a unique opportunity to work with internationally renowned experts who are leading the debate on both traditional and non-traditional security issues.

With expertise across a wide spectrum of topics - including borders in South East Asia, the American drone strikes in Pakistan, biological and chemical weapons, rising powers and global governance - you'll gain new perspectives on this complex subject area.

You'll leave with:

  • an in-depth understanding of the new international security environment of the post Cold War era
  • detailed knowledge of the theories and methods underpinning international security
  • the ability to analyse current security challenges and practices and the impact of those on research and policy-making
  • a strong foundation for an international career in administration, diplomacy, research and policy-making

This course is for students with a degree in an appropriate subject, such as public policy, government, international affairs, international relations, history or sociology. It's also suitable for professionals who want to specialise in security issues, whether you're working in an NGO, government or the private sector, or other relevant fields such as commerce, industry and teaching.

Course structure

This course lasts 1 year. Occasionally we make changes to our programmes in response to, for example, feedback from students, developments in research and the field of studies, and the requirements of accrediting bodies. You will be advised of any significant changes to the advertised programme, in accordance with our Terms and Conditions.

Units

Compulsory course units

These compulsory units are currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new units.

Semester 1

Semester 2

Summer

Optional course units

These optional units are currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new units.

Learning and assessment

Learning

  • Lectures
  • Online resources
  • Practical sessions
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Workshops

Assessment

  • Attendance
  • Coursework
  • Dissertation
  • Essay
  • Oral assessment
  • Practical work
  • Seminar
  • Other


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Study for this Masters in Bioarchaeology at Liverpool John Moores University and gain hands-on experience at the archaeology excavation at the Poulton Project, carry out novel research and discover new laboratory techniques. Read more
Study for this Masters in Bioarchaeology at Liverpool John Moores University and gain hands-on experience at the archaeology excavation at the Poulton Project, carry out novel research and discover new laboratory techniques.

-Complete this masters degree in one year (full time)
-Masters course developed and delivered by leading researchers in the field
-Excavation and bioarchaeological analysis of real human remains
-Gain hands-on experience in field and laboratory techniques using specialised bioarchaeological labs and facilities
-Substantial bone selection for research and for experience as teaching toolstools


Bioarchaeology is an exciting and fast-advancing science that combines archaeology with branches of the natural sciences. Study focuses on the key topics pertaining to human remains from archaeological sites.

Bioarchaeology includes areas of scientific investigation including palaeodemography, past behaviour, biological affinity, subsistence strategy, and health and well-being in the past.

The MSc in Bioarchaeology will help you to develop a broad understanding of these issues, through the excavation and analysis of human and animal remains. Analytical techniques will cover dental and osteological analyses, archaeological field methods, and ancient genetics.

The programme aims to develop your advanced practical skills in skeletal analysis, making use of the department’s well-equipped specialist laboratories and reference collections.

A particular strength of our provision and Faculty expertise is that we are able to address the bioarchaeology of many world areas and time periods. When you complete the course, you will have all the skills necessary to continue into an academic career or gain employment in research, museums, education or commercial organisations.

During the year you will be given a personal tutor that will support you throughout your time at LJMU and be following both your academic and professional development.

Please see guidance below on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.
Semester 1 (three core modules)

Advanced Osteology and Skeletal Pathology
Provides students with an advanced knowledge of the human skeleton and the ability to identify animal bones, methods of curation of skeletal collections and understanding of pathological modifications.
Research Design and Quantitative Methods
Provides extensive training in generic research knowledge and statistical techniques for the Natural Sciences. Students design a research project and are assessed via the preparation of a full grant application for the project.
Dental Anthropology
Provides students with the theoretical knowledge and practical experience required by bioarchaeologists to identify and examine human teeth.
Semester 2 (two core modules and one option)

Bioarchaeology: Bones, Teeth and Genes
Focuses on the different methods used to study human remains in archaeological and anthropological contexts. Delivery is through a combination of lectures, practicals, workshops and seminar sessions by experts in different fields, followed by reading and in-class discussion of recent literature.
Excavation
Covers field survey, site management, excavation and related data analysis. In addition to practicals and lectures, the course includes a non-residential field experience.
Dissertation
Comprises an independent, in-depth scientific research study on a chosen relevant topic. The following options are typically offered:
Ballistics and Arson Investigation
Teaches the fundamental principles of fire science, fire dynamics and material science, enabling students to demonstrate their application of fire investigation.
Taphonomy Trauma Analysis
Provides students with an extensive understanding of the biomechanics of human bones and the reaction of bones to the environment for a taphonomic history of the remains. Students gain a broad appreciation of different types of weapons to reconstruct a traumatic event using skeletal evidence.
Human Identification and Forensic DNA
Analyses the issues related to the identification of an unknown subject from both skeletal and genetic features. The module also introduces students to the use of a DNA typing approach for the identification of human remains.

Further guidance on modules

The information listed in the section entitled ‘What you will study’ is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal Academic Framework review, so may be subject to change. Students will be required to undertake modules that the University designates as core and will have a choice of designated option modules. Additionally, option modules may be offered subject to meeting minimum student numbers.

Please email if you require further guidance or clarification.

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