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Masters Degrees (Crime Scene Investigation)

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MSc Top-up This programme allows forensic practitioners who are holders of the Forensic Science Society Diploma to study for an MSc. Read more
MSc Top-up This programme allows forensic practitioners who are holders of the Forensic Science Society Diploma to study for an MSc.

From 2010 the Forensic Science Society Diploma was credit rated at 120 credits at postgraduate level. This has allowed the university to offer a top-up of the diploma to masters level on the successful completion of a project in either Crime Scene Investigation, Fire Investigation,, Firearm Examination and Questioned Documents..

The MSc course in Crime Scene Investigation require the student to carry out a major independent research project in crime scene investigation. The project can be undertaken in the student s own laboratories or at the University. The exact subject of the project is agreed by negotiation with the member of staff who will act as the academic supervisor for the project.

Support for the course is provided by Blackboard which gives details of risk assessments and ethical considerations which have to be in place before the commencement of the project.

Accreditation

This award is accredited by the Forensic Science Society.

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Forensic Archaeology is the specialist application of archaeological techniques to the search and recovery of evidential material from crime scenes, often but not always related to buried human remains. Read more
Forensic Archaeology is the specialist application of archaeological techniques to the search and recovery of evidential material from crime scenes, often but not always related to buried human remains.

This course is taught by staff with extensive crime scene experience who regularly work on a range of operations and are at the forefront of the professional development of the discipline.

The course will:
-Provide you with advanced practical, analytical and interpretative skills in forensic archaeology
-Provide training in discipline skills to enable graduates to pursue careers in Forensic Archaeology and Crime Scene Investigation (CSI)
-Prepare students for careers in non-cognate fields through emphasis on team working and application of a wide knowledge base to problem solving

This course combines approaches from different disciplines to provide students with a comprehensive forensic skill set.

It is essential that forensic archaeologists are able to appreciate their role within a wider police investigation and have a detailed understanding of crime scene management procedures. Forensic Archaeology in the United Kingdom is rapidly developing and recognised as a distinct discipline by the Home Office Forensic Science Regulator. Bradford staff have been actively involved in defining skills matrices for use by the Institute for Archaeologists as part of the process of professional regulation.

For more information on the part time version of this course, please view this web-page: http://www.brad.ac.uk/study/courses/info/forensic-archaeology-crime-scene-investigation-msc-part-time

Why Bradford?

-The course is underpinned by modules on English Law delivered by University of Bradford School of Law
-The course provides hands-on experience utilising simulated complex, multi-scene crime scene scenarios and is based upon direct case experience by the principal tutors working with UK police forces
-Flexible design means that the MSc award can include either a substantial research dissertation or a period of enhanced professional training
-The course can be studied full-time over 12 months or by flexible study up to 5 years

Modules

Semester 1 (60 Credits - 5 Modules):
-Crime Scene Management (10 Credits)
-English Legal System and Criminal Law for Non-Lawyers (Law 1) (10 Credits)
-Introduction to Forensic Anthropology for Crime Scene Investigators (10 Credits)
-Introduction to Forensic Archaeology (20 Credits)
-Recording Crime Scenes: the use of photographic and survey techniques (10 Credits)

Semester 2 (70 Credits - 5 Modules):
-Research Skills (10 Credits)
-Research and Brief Writing (10 Credits)
-Forensic Archaeology and Crime Scene Investigation (20 Credits)
-Elements of Forensic Taphonomy (20 Credits)
-Law of Evidence for Non-Lawyers (Law 2) (10 Credits)

End of Semester 2 onwards (60 Credits - 1 Module):
-Dissertation (MSc) (60 Credits)

The MSc award can be obtained with enhanced professional training (MSc without dissertation) in which case, the following modules are taken instead of the Dissertation:
-Advanced Fieldwork Programme for CSI (30 Credits)
-Independent Research Paper for CSI 1 (10 Credits )
-Independent Research Paper for CSI 2 (20 Credits)

Career support and prospects

The University is committed to helping students develop and enhance employability and this is an integral part of many programmes. Specialist support is available throughout the course from Career and Employability Services including help to find part-time work while studying, placements, vacation work and graduate vacancies. Students are encouraged to access this support at an early stage and to use the extensive resources on the Careers website.

Discussing options with specialist advisers helps to clarify plans through exploring options and refining skills of job-hunting. In most of our programmes there is direct input by Career Development Advisers into the curriculum or through specially arranged workshops.

Graduates from this programme have gone on to work in law enforcement (both as Police Officers and Scene of Crime/Scientific Support), Forensic Science as well as commercial archaeology with enhanced skill sets.

Read less
Forensic Archaeology is the specialist application of archaeological techniques to the search and recovery of evidential material from crime scenes, often but not always related to buried human remains. Read more
Forensic Archaeology is the specialist application of archaeological techniques to the search and recovery of evidential material from crime scenes, often but not always related to buried human remains.

This course is taught by staff with extensive crime scene experience who regularly work on a range of operations and are at the forefront of the professional development of the discipline.

The course will:
-Provide you with advanced practical, analytical and interpretative skills in forensic archaeology
-Provide training in discipline skills to enable graduates to pursue careers in Forensic Archaeology and Crime Scene Investigation (CSI)
-Prepare students for careers in non-cognate fields through emphasis on team working and application of a wide knowledge base to problem solving

This course combines approaches from different disciplines to provide students with a comprehensive forensic skill set.

It is essential that forensic archaeologists are able to appreciate their role within a wider police investigation and have a detailed understanding of crime scene management procedures.

Forensic Archaeology in the United Kingdom is rapidly developing and recognised as a distinct discipline by the Home Office Forensic Science Regulator. Bradford staff have been actively involved in defining skills matrices for use by the Institute for Archaeologists as part of the process of professional regulation.

For more information on the part time version of this course, please view this web-page: http://www.brad.ac.uk/study/courses/info/forensic-archaeology-crime-scene-investigation-pgdip-part-time

Why Bradford?

-The course is underpinned by modules on English Law delivered by University of Bradford School of Law
-The course provides hands-on experience utilising simulated complex, multi-scene crime scene scenarios and is based upon direct case experience by the principal tutors working with UK police forces
-Flexible design means that the MSc award can include either a substantial research dissertation or a period of enhanced professional training
-The course can be studied full-time over 12 months or by flexible study up to 5 years

Modules

Semester 1 (60 Credits - 5 Modules):
-Crime Scene Management (10 Credits)
-English Legal System and Criminal Law for Non-Lawyers (Law 1) (10 Credits)
-Introduction to Forensic Anthropology for Crime Scene Investigators (10 Credits)
-Introduction to Forensic Archaeology (20 Credits)
-Recording Crime Scenes: the use of photographic and survey techniques (10 Credits)

Semester 2 (70 Credits - 5 Modules):
-Research Skills (10 Credits)
-Research and Brief Writing (10 Credits)
-Forensic Archaeology and Crime Scene Investigation (20 Credits)
-Elements of Forensic Taphonomy (20 Credits)
-Law of Evidence for Non-Lawyers (Law 2) (10 Credits)

Career support and prospects

The University is committed to helping students develop and enhance employability and this is an integral part of many programmes. Specialist support is available throughout the course from Career and Employability Services including help to find part-time work while studying, placements, vacation work and graduate vacancies. Students are encouraged to access this support at an early stage and to use the extensive resources on the Careers website.

Discussing options with specialist advisers helps to clarify plans through exploring options and refining skills of job-hunting. In most of our programmes there is direct input by Career Development Advisers into the curriculum or through specially arranged workshops.

Graduates from this programme have gone on to work in law enforcement (both as Police Officers and Scene of Crime/Scientific Support), Forensic Science as well as commercial archaeology with enhanced skill sets.

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Forensic science is a dynamic discipline that is crucial to the investigation of crime, the collection of evidence and intelligence, and in securing justice. Read more
Forensic science is a dynamic discipline that is crucial to the investigation of crime, the collection of evidence and intelligence, and in securing justice. This multidisciplinary MSc programme offers students a unique opportunity to gain forensic science skills and methods within a holistic crime science framework.

Degree information

Students will develop an understanding of the fundamental principles of crime and forensic science, together with the key conceptual and philosophical frameworks in this field. They will gain practical skills in crime scene investigation, experimental design and implementation, statistical analysis, data analysis and modelling, and will be able to evaluate the weight and applicability of forensic evidence for investigative and court purposes.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of five core modules (75 credits), three optional modules (45 credits) and a research dissertation (60 credits). An exit-only Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits) is offered.

Core modules
-Quantitative Methods
-Designing and Doing Research
-Understanding and Interpreting Forensic Evidence
-Foundations of Security and Crime Science
-Judicial Decision Making and Expert Evidence

Optional modules - students choose three of the following optional modules:
-Case Assessment and Interpretation for Forensic Scientists
-Fundamentals of Molecular Biology
-Information Security Management
-Forensic Archaeology
-Forensic Osteology
-Forensic Geoscience
-Frontiers in Experimental Physical Chemistry
-Judgment and Decision Making
-Practices of Crime Scene Investigation and Expert Testimony
-Structural Methods in Modern Chemistry

Dissertation/report
All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 10,000 words.

Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical exercises and statistical and computer classes. Assessment is through coursework, examination and the dissertation.

Careers

Graduates of this programme will gain the skills necessary for a career in crime investigation, forensic science provision, consultancy, policymaking, and with public sector employers such as police forces, Home Office, and Ministry of Defence. They will also have gained the research tools necessary for a PhD or further doctoral research.

Employability
Graduates from this programme gain a solid understanding of the key principles of crime and forensic science, along with the ability to analyse problems and use appropriate scientific and professional skills to solve them. They can evaluate forensic evidence and their CSI training (developed and delivered with input from London-based police forces) gives them the edge over other applicants for crime scene investigation roles, if this is what they decide to do. They have the opportunity to learn specialist techniques in areas such as forensic archaeology and forensic geoscience, and are given a thorough grounding in academic research methods.

Each year we ask our graduates to tell us about their experience of the programme and their career after leaving UCL and we include some real-life graduate profiles on our website: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/scs/degree-programmes/postgraduate/graduate-profiles

Why study this degree at UCL?

This MSc will train graduates to think strategically and critically about crime and forensic science, equipping them with transferable skills suitable for a wide range of careers.

The UCL Jill Dando Institute of Security and Crime Science (JDI) brings together academics from across the physical sciences, social sciences and humanities. Our graduate students come from varied backgrounds; many are practitioners and are encouraged to share their professional experience.

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Study Policing and Criminal Investigation at LJMU and work with crime victims and witnesses to enhance your knowledge and key skills in this area. Read more
Study Policing and Criminal Investigation at LJMU and work with crime victims and witnesses to enhance your knowledge and key skills in this area.

-Commences January 2017
-Explore investigative issues to gain the knowledge and practical skills to operate as a crime investigator in serious and complex cases
-Consider the links between investigation, forensics and psychology
-Work with crime victims and witnesses
-Ideal for serving officers and those about to embark on their policing or academic career
-Excellent employment opportunities in policing/investigative work, private investigation and with bodies such as Trading Standards and the Inland Revenue
-A valuable foundation for progression to PhD

The MSc Policing and Criminal Investigation combines supervised independent research with specialist training in research methods and academic skills, while also helping students become aware of emerging approaches currently practiced in the discipline.
​Over the course of the programme you will be introduced to key developments in policing studies and given the skills necessary to produce a successful postgraduate research project. You will work individually with a supervisor throughout the year, as well as taking part in taught modules with fellow Policing Studies students and/or students from other disciplines/Faculties. In addition, you will be part of the wider research activities of the Liverpool Centre for Advanced Policing Studies.

You will receive specialist supervision and study within a diverse community of fellow researchers. Staff are active in a wide range of fields including: Crime Prevention, GIS, People Trafficking, Public Order, Mental Health, Multi Agency and Partnership Working in the Public Sector, Computer Crime, Investigation, Terrorism and Counter-terrorism, Port Security, Risk Management and Education.

What you will study on this degree

Please see guidance below on core modules:

Policing in Context

Gain insights into current policing, community safety and criminal justice priorities by exploring different perspectives that relate to policing, regulatory processes, professional values and ethics

Advanced Research Skills

In preparation for your dissertation, this module introduces key epistemological and methodological issues that impact upon research into crime, security, community safety and criminal justice

Advanced Investigation Skills

Examine the administrative difficulties posited during a criminal investigation and the importance of investigative ethics

Forensic and Medicolegal Death

Discover core foundational concepts of criminal investigations, enabling you to understand, explain, analyse and evaluate causes, sustainment and consequences of processing a death scene

Forensic Cognition

Critically explore why offenders commit acts of sexual and physical violence by examining influential theories that have been developed to aid in investigating sexual/violent offences

Investigative Interviewing

Examine current practices, techniques and applications of police interviewing by being exposed to comparative international techniques in interviewing, interpretation of verbal and physical behaviour, causes of denial, deception and defensiveness

Dissertation

Analyse and interpret an issue in your chosen field

​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.

Academic Framework reviews are conducted by LJMU from time to time to ensure that academic standards continue to be maintained.

Please email if you require further guidance or clarification.

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Fire Investigation is the analysis of fire-related incidents and is a highly multi-disciplinary area. Fire investigators need knowledge of fire behaviour, scene management, analytical chemistry and investigative skills. Read more
Fire Investigation is the analysis of fire-related incidents and is a highly multi-disciplinary area. Fire investigators need knowledge of fire behaviour, scene management, analytical chemistry and investigative skills. The course is designed for those from a range of backgrounds who are employed, or who wish to pursue a career, in the area of Fire Investigation, working for fire and rescue services, insurance companies or independent agencies, or as a Crime Scene Investigator or Forensic Scientist.

The course covers fire science and fire behaviour, fire investigation and analytical science, and provides students with research skills and knowledge of being an expert witness in the English legal system. Guided teaching and formal assessments will enhance the development of transferable skills such report-writing, maintenance of casenotes, formal presentations, participation in discussions, ability to work to deadlines, computing skills, public speaking, scientific analysis, and adherence and development of laboratory protocols.

This course is designed for those from a range of backgrounds who are employed, or who wish to pursue a career, in the area of fire investigation as a fire officer, crime scene investigator, forensic scientist or insurance investigator. It covers fire science and fire behaviour, fire investigation, analytical science, and provides students with research skills and knowledge of being an expert witness in the English legal system. The course will be delivered through lectures, tutorials and practical exercises. Guided teaching and formal assessments will enhance the development of transferable skills such as report-writing, maintenance of casenotes, formal presentations, participation in discussions, ability to work to deadlines, computing skills, public speaking, scientific analysis, adherence and development of laboratory protocols and research methods. The course develops fire investigation knowledge and practical experience of investigation of actual fire scenes including excavation of fire debris, location of the seat of fire, investigation of the cause of fire, analysis for accelerants.

Assessment is by exam, practicals and coursework. Assessments include the examination of fire scenes from real fires and producing case notes and reports, essays, moot courts, presentations and a dissertation.

Graduates are well placed to gain employment in fire investigation especially in the public and insurance sectors, or to conduct further research.

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MSc Forensic Anthropology is designed to enable graduate students to develop skills in a variety of areas, which concern the processing, analysis and identification of human remains. Read more
MSc Forensic Anthropology is designed to enable graduate students to develop skills in a variety of areas, which concern the processing, analysis and identification of human remains. This postgraduate course provides intensive training in developmental anatomy and osteology, forensic anthropology methods and theory, forensic taphonomy in theory and practice, crime scene investigation and the law, research methods and expert witness and presentation skills. The course has a focus on both domestic forensic anthropology work (e.g. UK and US) and forensic anthropology in the context of international humanitarian work and international criminal investigation.

UCLan’s postgraduate Forensic Anthropology course is the only forensic anthropology/osteology MSc in the UK to be based within a dedicated forensics department with state-of-the-art Crime Scene Investigation practical labs as well as excellent resources in Forensic Biology and Chemistry.

LEARNING ENVIRONMENT AND ASSESSMENT

We have a dedicated MSc Forensic Anthropology laboratory and radiography facilities with the full range of teaching casts as well as an extensive collection of experimentally induced projectile, blunt and sharp force trauma. We have an archaeological skeletal collection consisting of some 120 individuals from two sites, one late Medieval and one Victorian. UCLan’s TRACES facility for decomposition and taphonomic experimentation is located nearby and many students choose to conduct MSc dissertation research projects as part of the long term research agenda into estimating time since death. Staff members teaching the course are also active in research and consultancy. UCLan has an MSc-level Exchange with two US universities with forensic anthropology MA programmes, namely California State University at Chico and Wichita State University, both of which have active forensic anthropology consulting services.

Assessment is based on a combination of coursework and examination and includes an MSc dissertation project. Students are encouraged to present their research findings at international meetings.

OPPORTUNITIES

Graduating from this course, you will be well placed to undertake further research at the doctoral level, take up jobs in forensic anthropology laboratories, or to participate in human remains excavations.

A course module that will help you plan your career is available as a free choice module (called an elective), which you can study as part of your degree programme.

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MSc Top-up This programme allows forensic practitioners who are holders of the Forensic Science Society Diploma to study for an MSc. Read more
MSc Top-up This programme allows forensic practitioners who are holders of the Forensic Science Society Diploma to study for an MSc.

From 2010 the Forensic Science Society Diploma was credit rated at 120 credits at postgraduate level. This has allowed the university to offer a top-up of the diploma to masters level on the successful completion of a project in either Crime Scene Investigation, Fire Investigation, Firearm Examination and Questioned Documents.

The MSc course in Firearm Examination requires the student to carry out a major independent research project in crime scene investigation.

The project can be undertaken in the student s own laboratories or at the University. The exact subject of the project is agreed by negotiation with the member of staff who will act as the academic supervisor for the project. Support for the course is provided by Blackboard which gives details of risk assessments and ethical considerations which have to be in place before the commencement of the project.

Accreditation

This award is accredited by the Forensic Science Society.

Read less
MSc Fire Investigation develops fire investigation knowledge and practical experience of investigation of actual fire scenes including excavation of fire debris, location of the seat of fire, investigation of the cause of fire, analysis for accelerants. Read more
MSc Fire Investigation develops fire investigation knowledge and practical experience of investigation of actual fire scenes including excavation of fire debris, location of the seat of fire, investigation of the cause of fire, analysis for accelerants.

This course is designed for those who are employed, or who wish to pursue a career, in the area of fire investigation as a fire officer, crime scene investigator, forensic scientist or insurance investigator.

Fire Investigation is the analysis of fire-related incidents and is a highly multi-disciplinary area. Fire investigators need knowledge of fire behaviour, scene management, analytical chemistry and investigative skills. This course covers fire science and fire behaviour, fire investigation, analytical science, and provides students with research skills and knowledge of being an expert witness in the English legal system.

LEARNING ENVIRONMENT AND ASSESSMENT

The Fire Laboratory houses a full suite of fire test equipment where the flammability and fire toxicity of various materials can be investigated. MSc students take practical classes, carry out simulated casework and conduct lab-based dissertation research projects. Students also have access to a wide range of analytical instrumentation in the Faculty of Science and Technology’s Analytical Unit. The Unit has gas chromatographs with pyrolysis injection capability and FID, MS and EC detectors, ion chromatographs and high performance liquid chromatographs with diode array, fluorescence and MS and Differential refractometer detectors. The Unit also has facilities for atomic absorption, UV-visible and infrared spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy, NMR spectrometry, inductive coupled plasma mass spectrometry and Scanning Electron Microscopy With Energy Dispersive X-Ray Spectroscopy (SEM/EDAX).

The course will be delivered through lectures, tutorials and practical exercises. Guided teaching and formal assessments will enhance the development of transferable skills such as report-writing, maintenance of case notes, formal presentations, participation in discussions, ability to work to deadlines, computing skills, public speaking, scientific analysis, adherence and development of laboratory protocols and research methods.

Assessment is by exam, practicals and coursework. Assessments include the examination of fire scenes from real fires and producing case notes and reports, essays, moot courts, presentations and a dissertation.

OPPORTUNITIES

Students graduating from this course will be well placed to gain employment in fire investigation teams, forensic science laboratories, and fraud departments in major government or private organisations, or to go on to further research in academia.

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Enhance your depth and breadth of knowledge, understanding and practical skills with this Analytical Forensic Science Masters from Liverpool John Moores University. Read more
Enhance your depth and breadth of knowledge, understanding and practical skills with this Analytical Forensic Science Masters from Liverpool John Moores University. Prepare for analytical careers in forensics and beyond.

•Complete this masters degree in one year (full time)
•Study a curriculum informed by research and industry practice
•Benefit from LJMU’s investment in Analytical Chemistry, accessing cutting edge technology, state-of-the-art laboratories and new crime scene facilities
•Learn from analytical forensic chemists, molecular biologists, crime scene and fire investigation specialists and leading national experts
•Develop transferrable legal and research skills
•Enjoy extensive career opportunities

Analytical Forensic Science is one of four forensic programmes offered by LJMU. All four options share a number of common modules, but each course has its own distinct identity.

Analytical Forensic Science has a heavy practical bias, enabling you to explore current and emerging analytical techniques and practices.
Using state-of-the-art laboratory, crime scene and moot room facilities, you will:
•explore the criminal justice system as a setting in which a forensic scientist might work
•be able to apply appropriate techniques following the analysis and evaluation of complex forensic cases
•learn to critically evaluate current crime scene techniques

You will enjoy a first class learning environment at the city centre Byrom Street site which boasts an ongoing £12 million laboratory investment programme and state-of-the-art research facilities in the newly developed Life Sciences building. Legal aspects of the course are taught in the Moot Room at the multi-million pound Redmonds building on Brownlow Hill.


This is a full time, year-long Masters course although you can opt to work at a slower pace and study over three years. There may even be the option to carry out the dissertation project in your existing place of work.
On joining the course you will be appointed a personal tutor who will offer academic and pastoral support. The School also operates an open door policy, providing access to members of staff when you need them.

Please see guidance below on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.
Advanced Drug Analysis and Toxicology
Combines theory and practical work in analytical chemistry techniques, relating to drug analysis including legal highs.
Law and Court Room Skills
Discusses the criminal justice systems under which a forensic scientist may work and examines expert witness testimony. Aspects of regulation and quality assurance are touched upon.
Research Methods
Covers grant application, critical appraisal of leading research and data interpretation and evaluation. This leads naturally into the dissertation.
Bioanalytical Techniques
Examines state-of-the-art biomolecular techniques, including DNA and protein analysis. Commonly used techniques in the forensic field will be critically analysed and performed along with emerging techniques which can form the basis of the dissertation or further postgraduate study.
Fire Investigation
Offers specialist knowledge of fire and explosive analysis both at the crime scene and in terms of analytical techniques.
Trace Evidence Analysis
Teaches you to identify, differentiate and analyse different types of trace evidence using advanced techniques. Microscopy, including SEM (EDX) and atomic force, form the basis of the practical analysis performed, along with other techniques.
Dissertation
The Dissertation research themes are led by staff and PhD students. Students are encouraged to present their research at conferences.
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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The PgDip/MSc Forensic Science concentrates on practices, procedures and analytical techniques used within forensic science, and how they are applied in support of the investigation of crime and the criminal justice system as a whole. Read more
The PgDip/MSc Forensic Science concentrates on practices, procedures and analytical techniques used within forensic science, and how they are applied in support of the investigation of crime and the criminal justice system as a whole.

Course details

This course is accredited by The Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences.On completing this course you will be able to demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of forensic science and how scientific methods are applied to the investigation of crime. You benefit from our links with practitioners and other professional organisations relevant to the field of forensic science. Key members of staff are former forensic scientists or crime scene scientists with considerable operational experience.Expect to carry out analytical and practical work in the University’s on-campus forensic facilities including specialist analytical laboratories, crime scene house laboratory and forensic chemistry and biology laboratories. Watch a short video and hear what Matthew Grima, a former student, says about this course.

Professional accreditation

The Forensic Science Society This course has been accredited and commended by the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences - the international professional body for forensic science.

What you study

For the PgDip award you must successfully complete 120 credits of taught modules. For an MSc award you must successfully complete the 120 credits of taught modules and a 60-credit master's research project.

PgDip and MSc core modules
-Advanced Analytical Techniques
-Forensic Biology
-Forensic Chemistry
-Forensic Investigative Strategy
-Legal Issues and Evidence Reporting
-Research Methods and Proposal

MSc only
-Research Project

Modules offered may vary.

Teaching

The course provides a number of contact teaching and assessment hours (through lectures, tutorials, projects, assignments and laboratory work).

You are also expected to spend time on your own (this is called self-study time), to review lecture notes, prepare course work assignments, work on projects and revise for assessments.

As an example, each 20-credit module typically has around 200 hours of learning time.

On this programme you complete a project related to professional practice. This, along with the involvement of practitioners and academics in the delivery of these courses, ensures that they are relevant to the requirements of the criminal justice system.

Modules are assessed by in-course assignments, including a courtroom-based expert witness assessment and end exams.

Career opportunities

Employment opportunities exist in the field of forensic science and forensic investigation with forensic science providers and law enforcement agencies. Other roles include scientific investigation where the application of science in a legal or regulatory context is important.

This MSc programme has been accredited and commended by the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences, the international professional body for forensic science.

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This course will enable you to gain a strong background in the theory of analytical and forensic techniques and how to apply them to complex problems such as those encountered at crime scenes. Read more
This course will enable you to gain a strong background in the theory of analytical and forensic techniques and how to apply them to complex problems such as those encountered at crime scenes. It emphasises the key skills required in this specialised area of science, including good measurement and scientific practice, sample collection and chain of custody, evaluation and interpretation of data, and constructing expert witness reports.

Kingston University has its own scene-of-crime house located on site, which is used to recreate crime scenes and enables you to put your investigative skills into practice. The property's garden is used by the forensic team's archaeologist for field investigations.

Lecturers on the course have wide experience in the forensics sector and many have worked either as forensic scientists or as expert witnesses. They are also actively engaged in forensic research, and are supported by visiting speakers from leading forensic consultancies.

What will you study?

You will explore recent trends in forensic science and learn about the latest analytical devices used, such as atomic and molecular spectroscopic and separation techniques and DNA profiling.

You will look at the role of the forensic scientist and learn how to, for example, investigate and analyse drugs of abuse, fibres and firearms and conduct fire investigation. There is also the opportunity to present expert evidence at a mock courtroom trial in a magistrates' court, examined by Kingston's own trainee lawyers and/or their law lecturers.

In addition, you will have the opportunity to carry out your research project in industry (depending on your results and project availability) or in Kingston University's extensive forensic and analytical laboratories.

Assessment

Exams, laboratory reports, assignments, case studies, oral presentations, poster presentations, practical research project.

Work placement scheme

Kingston University has set up a scheme that allows postgraduate students in the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Computing to include a work placement element in their course starting from September 2017. The placement scheme is available for both international and home/EU students.

-The work placement, up to 12 months; is optional.
-The work placement takes place after postgraduate students have successfully completed the taught portion of their degree.
-The responsibility for finding the placement is with the student. We cannot guarantee the placement, just the opportunity to undertake it.
-As the work placement is an assessed part of the course for international students, this is covered by a student's tier 4 visa.

Details on how to apply will be confirmed shortly.

Accreditation for this course

This course is accredited by the The Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences for the component standards in Interpretation, Evaluation and Presentation of Evidence; Laboratory Analysis; and Crime Scene Investigation.

When you graduate you are eligible to apply to be an Associate Member (AFSSoc post-nominals) of The Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences. Having completed appropriate continuing professional development in a forensic science workplace, you can also become a Professional Member (MFSSoc) or Accredited Forensic Practitioner.

Course structure

Please note that this is an indicative list of modules and is not intended as a definitive list.

Modules
-The Role of the Professional Forensic Scientist
-Separation Science
-Molecular and Atomic Spectroscopy
-Forensic Chemistry and Trace Analysis
-Project

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The MSc is building a reputation for producing excellent scientists and highly sought after graduates. Our postgraduates have been offered employment in some of the most prestigious companies in the UK and Europe, in fields ranging from analytical toxicology to forensic DNA analysis. Read more
The MSc is building a reputation for producing excellent scientists and highly sought after graduates. Our postgraduates have been offered employment in some of the most prestigious companies in the UK and Europe, in fields ranging from analytical toxicology to forensic DNA analysis.

On this course, you can study a range of specialist areas in analytical and forensic science. It focuses on cutting edge research, the latest analytical techniques, and transferable and professional skills that will prepare you to practise as a professional analytical or forensic scientist. A 60 credit research project of your choice allows you to customise the MSc and specialise in your chosen field.

“Completing this MSc gave me a much more advanced knowledge of analytical instruments and techniques and has been a great help in preparing me for the role that I now have in toxicology. The amount of hands on practical experience in the Masters is much more extensive than in a Bachelors degree and it’s the higher level of practical work that can make the difference. Covering a variety of techniques applied to a wide range of sample types ensures you have an understanding that other graduates will not have, particularly after the completion of your dissertation by spending a considerable amount of time in the lab. The addition of the PRINCE2 qualification also makes you more employable to commercial labs. I have no doubt that without this MSc my chances of gaining a job with a career path would be significantly less.” – Laura Miles, MSc Analytical and Forensic Science graduate.

What You Will Study

You will study the following modules:
- Advanced DNA analysis
- Separation science
- Analytical toxicology
- Interpretation, evalutation and presentation of casework
- Advanced crime scene and evidence analysis
- Project design, management and enterprise
- Laboratory research project

Our tuition offers detailed training in the following areas:

- DNA Analysis
You will gain a thorough understanding of DNA analysis and interpretation techniques. There is practical training in a large range of advanced extraction techniques, quantitation, amplification and electrophoresis of DNA, through simulated case-work using our crime scene house and DNA analysis laboratory.

- Analytical Toxicology and Separation Science
You will gain knowledge of the basis and application of a number of novel analytical and extraction techniques such as chiral chromatography, supercritical fluid chromatography, solid phase microextraction and derivatisation techniques. You will also receive high level practical training in ion mobility mass spectrometry, GCMS/MS, LCMS/MS and ICP-OES. There is a particular focus on hair as a matrix for forensic toxicological analysis. You will also be fully trained in experimental design and effective method development.

- Major crime scene analysis
You will learn how to effectively process major and specialist crime scenes through our simulation facilities, and will study novel mapping techniques such as 3D scanning and LIDAR as applied to crime scene investigation.

- Expert witness techniques
To improve your employment prospects, you will also learn about the law as it relates to the forensic scientist and their relationship with the police, lawyers and courts, and the role of the expert witness. You will receive training from professional case working forensic scientists in how to draft expert witness statements and how to give testimony in court.

- Data analysis and Prince 2 qualification
For added benefit, there will be guest lectures from eminent analytical scientists and forensic practitioners, and you will be encouraged to observe courtroom proceedings and visit analytical laboratories. You will receive training in advanced data analysis techniques which is very desirable for potential employers. You will even complete a PRINCE 2 foundation certificate as part of this course, which will stand you in good stead for the management of major projects in laboratories. The PRINCE 2 award is a prestigious, internationally recognized qualification. Please note additional fees apply.

- Additional Fees:
There is an additional fee of £1,500 for this course which covers the Prince2 Project Management course and laboratory costs.

Learning and teaching methods

Modules are studied sequentially throughout the course. There are periods of self directed learning where you will study online material including journals, research notes and recommended books before engaging in hands on laboratory training, lectures and seminars on campus.

The course is available as a one year full time option, or 2 years part time option. All students complete a research project in your chosen area of specialisation.

Work Experience and Employment Prospects

There are many exciting employment opportunities in the analytical and forensic science sector. Key recruitment areas are DNA profiling, analytical chemistry and toxicological analysis. In these competitive fields, a postgraduate qualification will really make you stand out from the crowd. We have had an excellent response to the MSc analytical and forensic science from science companies across the UK. Major national companies have even contacted the University specifically asking for our MSc Analytical and Forensic Science graduates to apply for positions with them.

Our MSc graduates have been offered employment in toxicology, DNA and forensic science companies across the UK. An MSc award in Analytical and Forensic Science will demonstrate to employers the highest level of achievement and training.

Work experience

Students have the opportunity to undertake a work placement with Synergy Health Laboratories where they will undertake laboratory training. There is also an opportunity to conduct your research project in collaboration with Synergy Health with the possibility of working towards developing UKAS accredited methods of analysis -the ultimate standard in analytical science and a huge boost to your C.V.

Assessment methods

You will complete 120 credits of taught modules across the course, and an original laboratory research project (60 credits). For this, you will apply and extend your practical skills and knowledge in a key area of analytical or forensic science that interests you.

Read less
MSc Top-up This programme allows forensic practitioners who are holders of the Forensic Science Society Diploma to study for an MSc. Read more
MSc Top-up This programme allows forensic practitioners who are holders of the Forensic Science Society Diploma to study for an MSc.

From 2010 the Forensic Science Society Diploma was credit rated at 120 credits at postgraduate level. This has allowed the university to offer a "top-up" of the diploma to masters level on the successful completion of a project in either Crime Scene Investigation, Fire Investigation, Firearm Examination and Questioned Documents.

The MSc course in Fire Investigation requires the student to carry out a major independent research project in fire investigation. The project can be undertaken in the student's own laboratories or at the University. The exact subject of the project is agreed by negotiation with the member of staff who will act as the academic supervisor for the project.

Support for the course is provided by Blackboard which gives details of risk assessments and ethical considerations which have to be in place before the commencement of the project.

Accreditation

This award is accredited by the Forensic Science Society.

Read less
MSc Top-up This programme allows forensic practitioners who are holders of the Forensic Science Society Diploma to study for an MSc. Read more
MSc Top-up This programme allows forensic practitioners who are holders of the Forensic Science Society Diploma to study for an MSc.

From 2010 the Forensic Science Society Diploma was credit rated at 120 credits at postgraduate level. This has allowed the university to offer a “top-up” of the diploma to masters level on the successful completion of a project in either Crime Scene Investigation, Fire Investigation, Firearm Examination and Questioned Documents.

The MSc course in Questioned Documents require the student to carry out a major independent research project in an aspect of document analysis. The project can be undertaken in the student’s own laboratories or at the University. The exact subject of the project is agreed by negotiation with the member of staff who will act as the academic supervisor for the project. Support for the course is provided by Blackboard which gives details of risk assessments and ethical considerations which have to be in place before the commencement of the project.

Professional Accreditation

This award is accredited by the Forensic Science Society.

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