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Masters Degrees (Forensic Document Analysis)

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This course is designed to enable graduate students and forensic practitioners to develop the theoretical knowledge underpinning forensic document examination and provide intensive training and practical experience. Read more
This course is designed to enable graduate students and forensic practitioners to develop the theoretical knowledge underpinning forensic document examination and provide intensive training and practical experience. It covers the analysis of handwriting, signatures, questioned and fraudulent documents and provides training in the use of a range of highly specialised techniques, such as VSC, comparison microscopy, ESDA and Raman Spectroscopy.

LEARNING ENVIRONMENT AND ASSESSMENT

The dedicated laboratory for this course houses an ESDA and a VSC-5000 and this is where MSc students will take a wide range of practical classes, carry out simulated casework and conduct laboratory-based dissertation research projects. Students will also have access to a wide range of state-of-the-art analytical instrumentation within the Analytical Unit. The Unit houses gas chromatographs with pyrolysis injection capability and FID, MS and EC detectors, ion chromatographs and high performance liquid chromatographs with diode array fluorescence, MS and Differential refractometer detectors. The Unit also houses 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).

Modules will be assessed through theory and practical examinations, and coursework (essays, moot courts, presentations and a dissertation). Students will be required to examine documents and equipment, produce case notes and reports.

Please note that Distance Learning students will be required to attend a two-week residential workshop at UCLan’s Preston campus during Semester 2. More information will be provided about this in Semester 1.

FURTHER INFORMATION

Modules are assessed through theoretical and practical examinations as well as coursework. Assessments include the examination of suspect documents and pieces of equipment from simulated cases and the production of formal case notes and expert reports, as well as essays, mock courtroom trials, group and individual presentations and a dissertation. Upon graduating from this course you will be well placed to gain employment in forensic science laboratories, police investigation teams, fraud departments in major government or private organisations, or to go on to further research in academia.

MSc Document Analysis is designed to enable graduate students and forensic practitioners to understand and develop the theoretical knowledge underpinning all aspects of forensic document examination and to develop skills in a variety of areas, which concern the processing, analysis, identification and interpretation of questioned documents. The course provides intensive training in all areas of forensic document analysis and provides extensive practical training in the areas of the analysis and identification of handwriting, signatures, printing apparatus and fraudulent documents. The course also provides you with training to act as an expert witness and presentation and communication skills.

You will study the principles underpinning the scientific analysis of handwriting and signatures together with the considerations involved when carrying out forensic casework. This course will also provide practical experience in the examination of printing equipment, typewriters, photocopiers and the identification of forged or counterfeit documents. You will be trained in a number of analytical techniques using highly specialised apparatus, such as the use of the video spectral comparator, a comparison microscope, ESDA (Electrostatic Detection Apparatus) and a Raman Spectrometer. In addition, the course will provide you with the opportunity to develop a large number of transferable skills.

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

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Visit our website for more information on fees, scholarships, postgraduate loans and other funding options to study Applied Analytical Science (LCMS) at Swansea University - 'Welsh University of the Year 2017' (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017). Read more

Visit our website for more information on fees, scholarships, postgraduate loans and other funding options to study Applied Analytical Science (LCMS) at Swansea University - 'Welsh University of the Year 2017' (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017).

World demand for mass spectrometry (MS) and chromatography has grown at an unprecedented rate, with qualified graduates in short supply and highly sought-after. Postgraduate (PG) training is essential as undergraduates are not taught to the required depth. Swansea is the only UK institution to offer a range of schemes solely dedicated to these topics, drawing upon expertise in the Institute of Mass Spectrometry (IMS), based at a long established UK centre of excellence.

Key Features

Course content designed for the needs of industry:

Essential topics such as fundamentals of mass spectrometry and separation science, professional management of laboratory practice, data analysis and method development.

Extensive training in a research-led Institute:

To improve their analytical science skills to professional levels required for the workplace.

Highly practical course and extensive in-house equipment:

MRes Applied Analytical Science (LCMS) students can experience more in-depth and ‘hands-on’ learning than most current analytical MRes programmes. Additional sessions including experiment design, health and safety, and laboratory skills are held in preparation of the research project, to ensure students are adequately equipped for project work.

Taught modules encourage problem solving skills, involving relevant simulated (pre-existing) scenarios:

To develop analytical thinking, professional and academic skills through advanced practical and theoretical studies and the submission of a scientifically defensible thesis.

Participation of expert industrial guest lecturers:

Unique opportunities to network with potential employers and enhanced employability prospects in highly skilled and relevant areas such as pharmaceuticals, agriculture, food and nutrition, homeland security, clinical diagnostics, veterinary and forensic science, environmental analysis, plus marketing and sales, to name a few.

Assessments that encourage transferrable skills essential for employment:

Including case studies, problem sheets, data processing and informatics exercises in addition to the traditional examinations and essay based assignments.

Modules

All MRes Applied Analytical Science (LCMS) students will complete the following taught modules:

Mass spectrometry – basics and fundamentals

Separation science and sample handling

Data analysis and method development

Professional management and laboratory practice

MRes students will also be expected to complete a 120 credit research thesis with a viva.

Professional Accreditation

Professional Development (PD) Portfolio

This will enable students to organise and highlight current competencies and training needs into a single document. This can be essential in documenting necessary requirements for continued professional development with a relevant professional body (i.e. Royal Society of Chemistry, RSC, CChem status).

A PD portfolio will typically contain:

- Educational training and experience

From external parties such as National Mass Spectrometry Facility (NMSF), industrial guest lecturers, and educational exercises recognised by the RSC.

- Practical/instrument training and experience

From external parties such as NMSf and instrument manufacturers.

- Research training and experience

MRes project - health and safety, project training, laboratory practice competency framework test and research

- Qualifications

Plus any affiliations and CV.

This will be an organised and detailed record of competencies for presenting to prospective employers with the potential to offer Swansea University (SU) PG students an edge in ensuring gainful relevant employment.

Accreditation.

An application to the Royal Society of Chemistry will be submitted after the first year of study.

Careers and Employability

Course content designed for the needs of industry

Fundamentals of mass spectrometry and separation science, professional management of laboratory practice, data analysis and method development.

Extensive training in a research-led Institute

Highly practical course and extensive in-house equipment

Experience more in-depth and ‘hands-on’ MRes than most Applied Analytical Science courses.

Taught modules encourage problem solving skills, involving relevant simulated (pre-existing) scenarios

Assessments that encourage transferrable skills essential for employment

Professional Development (PD) Portfolio

Participation of expert industrial guest lecturers

Unique networking opportunities with relevant potential employers for enhanced employability in areas such as:

- Pharmaceuticals

- Food and Nutrition

- Clinical diagnostics

- Forensics

- Environment

- Agriculture

- Homeland security

- Marketing and sales

- Veterinary

- Cosmology

- Geology

- Textile manufacture

- Archaeology

Facilities

Applied Analytical Science graduates will be extensively trained in a research-led institute. The highly practical nature of the course and extensive in-house equipment will enable students to experience a more in-depth and 'hands-on' MRes than most current analytical courses.

Instrumentation/techniques within IMS include:

Liquid chromatography/high resolution tandem mass spectrometry (LC/HRMS and LC/HRMSn)

Liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (LC/MSn); low resolution MS.

Nano-liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (nano-LC/MS)

Gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS)

Liquid chromatography/ultraviolet spectrophotometry (LC/UV)

Liquid chromatography/diode array (LC/DAD)

Electrospray ionisation-mass spectrometry (ESI-MS)

Atmospheric pressure chemical ionisation-mass spectrometry (APCI-MS)

Electron ionisation-mass spectrometry (EI-MS)

Chemical ionisation-mass spectrometry (CI-MS)

Liquid secondary ion-mass spectrometry (LSI-MS i.e. ‘Fast Atom Bombardment’, FAB),

Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionisation-mass spectrometry (MALDI-MS)

We routinely carry out a number of sample preparation techniques including:

Solid phase extraction (SPE)

Liquid-liquid extraction (LLE)

Electrophoretic techniques

Affinity extraction

Ion-exchange

Precipitation



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Computer and information security is a vital issue in today’s IT environment. This programme will provide you with the necessary skills to understand and apply specialised security knowledge in the identification and resolution of IT security threats facing modern organisations. Read more
Computer and information security is a vital issue in today’s IT environment. This programme will provide you with the necessary skills to understand and apply specialised security knowledge in the identification and resolution of IT security threats facing modern organisations. Develop a rounded view of key security domain topics such as security management and computer forensics, and gain the hands-on skills to confidently implement, configure and manage the tools you’ll face in practice.

Key features

-Be confident studying a degree accredited by BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT. The University has been awarded Academic Partner status by the Institute of Information Security Professionals (IISP), in recognition of the significant base of security-related expertise within the institution. This link encourages and enables a dialogue between academia and the wider community of security practitioners.
-Learn from research-active staff at the forefront of knowledge, conducting research within the Centre for Security, Communications and Network Research.
-Put your skills into practice in our high specification security, networking and digital forensic laboratories.
-Technology supported learning with free iPad mini and eBooks.
-Active Computer and Information Security Society (CISS) provide opportunities for networking, problem solving, speakers from industry as well as a valuable source of contacts.
-Build on the foundation which this course offers and take the opportunity to progress onto a research degree at MPhil or PhD level.
-Explore the option of completing the programme over two years with an integral work placement year.
-Benefit from the courses extensive links with major professional bodies and societies such as the BCS, ISACA, IFIP Technical Committee 11 and the Institute for Information Security Professionals (IISP).
-Take the opportunity to make career inroads through strong industrial links with major organisations such as Kaspersky Labs, Symantec, Orange, France-Telecom, and various UK government departments.
-Engage with the BCS South West branch programme, who hold many of their sessions at Plymouth University. The branch has a rich programme of events that contributes to broadening the knowledge and experience of the students.
-Continually under review to ensure all content is relevant and timely the programme has recently begun to offer AccessData Certification as a part of the cybercrime and investigation module, enabling you to achieve professional recognition as well as academic credit.

Course details

During your year of study you will gain an understanding of key topics such as security management, cryptography, network and system security, computer forensics, and protection in application scenarios. You'll also benefit from being taught a wide variety of hands-on skills, which enable you to implement, configure and manage many of the typical controls you will encounter in practice - including firewalls, intrusion detection systems, authentication and access mechanisms, and forensic case management tools. The project will enable you to explore and develop in-depth knowledge on a particular area of security. You'll become a subject expert and push the boundaries of the current understanding.

Core modules
-SEC501 Information Security Management and Governance
-SEC503 Intrusion Analysis and Incident Management
-BPIE500 Masters Stage 1 Placement Preparation
-PROJ513 MSc Project (September)
-SEC502 Network Security and Penetration Testing
-SEC505 Digital Forensic Investigation
-SEC504 Secure Systems Architectures and Mechanisms
-FTGS507 Professional and Research Skills with Entrepreneurship

Optional placement year
-BPIE501 Computing Masters Industrial Placement

Every postgraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the programme aims, the programme structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

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