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Masters Degrees in Forensic Science, United Kingdom

We have 46 Masters Degrees in Forensic Science, United Kingdom

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Why this course?. The MSc in Forensic Science is the UK’s longest established forensic science degree course, celebrating its . Read more

Why this course?

The MSc in Forensic Science is the UK’s longest established forensic science degree course, celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2016/2017.

You’ll join a global network of Strathclyde forensic science graduates in highly respected positions all over the world.

In addition to preparing you for life as a forensic scientist, you’ll also graduate with a wide range of practical skills, problem solving and investigative thinking relevant to a wide range of careers.

You'll study

  • crime scene investigation
  • legal procedures and the law
  • evidence interpretation and statistical evaluation
  • analysis of range of evidence types including footwear marks, trace evidence, and questioned documents

Following a general introduction to forensic science in semester 1, you can choose to specialise in either forensic biology or forensic chemistry. As a forensic biologist you’ll study a range of topics including:

  • body fluid analysis
  • blood pattern interpretation
  • DNA profiling
  • investigation of assaults and sexual offences

If you choose to specialise in forensic chemistry, you’ll develop expertise in:

  • analysis of fires and explosives
  • drugs of abuse
  • alcohol and toxicology

The focal point of the course is our major crime scene exercise, in which you are expected to investigate your own mock outdoor crime scene, collect and analyse the evidence, and present this in Glasgow Sheriff Court in conjunction with students training in Strathclyde Law School.

Project

In semester 3, MSc students undertake a three-month project, culminating in the production of a dissertation.

Students may be given the opportunity to complete their project in an operational forensic science provider either in the UK or overseas (subject to visa requirements). Alternatively, students may complete their project within the Centre for Forensic Science itself, under the supervision of our team of academics.

Examples of institutions that previous Strathclyde students have been placed in to undertake their project include: 

  • Scottish Police Authority, Forensic Services
  • Centre for Applied Science and Technology (CAST)
  • Forensic Explosives Laboratory, Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL)
  • LGC Forensics
  • Cellmark Forensic Services
  • Institute of Environmental Science and Research, Auckland, New Zealand
  • Institute of Forensic Research, Krakow, Poland
  • Centre of Forensic Sciences, Toronto, Canada

The MSc in Forensic Science runs for 12 months, commencing in September. 

Facilities

Teaching takes place in the Centre for Forensic Science. It’s a modern purpose-built laboratory for practical forensic training, equipped with state-of-the-art instrumentation for analysis of a wide range of evidence types. This includes a microscopy suite, DNA profiling laboratory, analytical chemistry laboratory, blood pattern analysis room, and a suite for setting up mock crime scenes.

Accreditation

The Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences is a professional body with members in over 60 countries and is one of the oldest and largest forensic science associations in the world.

Our MSc in Forensic Science is accredited by the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences, demonstrating our commitment to meeting their high educational standards for forensic science tuition.

Assessment

Assessment consists of written coursework, practical work assessments, oral presentations and formal written examinations. Practical work is continually assessed and counts towards the award of the degree. The project is assessed through the completion of a dissertation.

The award of MSc is based upon 180 credits.

Careers

Most forensic scientists in Scotland are employed by the Scottish Police Authority.

In the rest of the UK, forensic scientists are employed by individual police forces, private forensic science providers such as LGC Forensics and Cellmark Forensic Services, or government bodies such as the Centre for Applied Science and Technology (CAST) and the Defence Science Technology Laboratory (DSTL).

Outside of the UK, forensic scientists may be employed by police forces, government bodies or private companies.

Forensic scientists can specialise in specific areas such as crime scene examination, DNA analysis, drug analysis, and fire investigation.

Most of the work is laboratory-based but experienced forensic scientists may have to attend crime scenes and give evidence in court.

Where are they now?

Many of our graduates are in work or further study.**

Job titles include:

  • Analytical Chemist
  • Biology Casework Examiner
  • Deputy Laboratory Director
  • DNA Analyst
  • Forensic Case Worker Examiner
  • Forensic DNA Analyst
  • Forensic Scientist
  • Laboratory Analyst
  • Medical Laboratory Assistant Histopathology
  • Research & Development Chemist

Employers include:

  • Gen-Probe Life Sciences
  • HKSTC
  • Key Forensic Services Ltd
  • Lancaster Labs
  • LGC Forensics
  • Life Technologies
  • National Institute Of Criminalistics And Criminology
  • NHS
  • Seychelles Forensic Science Lab
  • University of Strathclyde

*information is intended only as a guide.

**Based on the results of the National Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education Survey (2010/11 and 2011/12).



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Expand your knowledge in all areas of forensic science, from gathering evidence at the crime scene itself, right through to the courtroom. Read more
Expand your knowledge in all areas of forensic science, from gathering evidence at the crime scene itself, right through to the courtroom. Develop your skills and knowledge on our accredited course, as you collect and analyse evidence, equipping you to become a confident and effective practitioner.

See the website http://www.anglia.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/forensic-science

In-keeping with its industry-focus our Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences accredited course is taught by experienced forensics practitioners. We’ll immerse you in a practical environment that closely emulates a real forensics laboratory. The analytical skills and expertise you gain apply equally well in the broader scientific and technological fields as they do in forensics.

Our course combines practical skills with high-level theoretical knowledge of the wide range of forensic techniques you need to apply at all stages of an investigation. Going further still, you’ll be trained to design and execute your own research project in a relevant area, which particularly interests you. This will include guidance on research methods, good practice, presentation and the application of your research.

Full-time - January start, 15 months. September start, 12 months.
Part-time - January start, 33 months. September start, 28 months.

See the website http://www.anglia.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/forensic-science

This course will provide you with:
• the opportunity to acquire Masters level capabilities, knowledge and skills in diverse areas of forensic science from the crime scene to the court
• training in the design and execution of science based research in an appropriate area of forensic science
• the opportunity to undertake a formal research programme in an appropriate area of forensic science

The intention is to immerse you in an environment that is as realistically close to that of a practising forensic science laboratory as is possible in an academic institution. The experience and background of Anglia Ruskin's staff, their intimate knowledge and working relationships with the industry and the availability or new or relatively new purpose-built laboratory facilities places this course in a strong position to deliver such an experience.

This course is suitable for candidates who wish to specialise in Forensic Science as a progression from their first degree in forensic science and for candidates coming into Forensic Science with a strong background in traditional analytical science. This course is accredited by The Forensic Science Society

On successful completion of this course you will be able to:
• demonstrate deep and systematic knowledge of several major areas of forensic science, including either chemical or biological criminalistics.
• apply theoretical and experimentally based empirical knowledge to the solution of problems in forensic science
demonstrate that you are cognisant with the best ethical practices, validation and accreditation procedures relevant to forensic science.
• demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of the theory and practice of advanced analytical techniques, as used and applied in forensic science.
• devise, design, implement and, if necessary, modify a programme of basic research directly related to the solution of practical problems in the broad field of forensic science.
• assimilate the known knowledge and information concerning a particular problem/issue and erect testable and viable alternative hypotheses, from theoretical and empirical/experimental view points.
• demonstrate a level of conceptual understanding that will enable information from a wide range of sources and methodologies to be comprehensively and critically appraised.
• operate competently, safely and legally in a variety of complex, possibly unpredictable contexts and be able to apply appropriate standards of established good practice in such circumstances.
• demonstrate that you are able to exercise initiative in your work tasks, but yet be able to exercise your responsibility so as not to move beyond the scope of your expertise.
• search for and obtain information from a wide range of traditional, non-traditional and digital/electronic sources and be able to synthesis it into a coherent argument.
• present the results of your work in a number of forms (reports, papers, posters and all forms of oral presentation) at a level intelligible to the target audience (highly trained/specialised professional to informed lay-person).
• organise your own time and patterns of work to maximum effect and be able to work competently either autonomously or as part of groups and teams as required.

Careers

Our course is enhanced by our excellent working relationships with most of the major employers in the forensic science industry, including the police and fire services.

This focus on theory and good laboratory practice, analytical measurement and research and management skills, together with our industry contacts will make you an attractive candidate for employment. It’ll open up career opportunities in specialist forensic science laboratories in the chemical, biological, environmental, pharmaceutical and law enforcement industries.

You’re also in the perfect position to continue your academic career and move up to our Forensic Science PhD.

Core modules

Evidence Collection and Management
Mastering Forensic Evidence
Mastering Forensic Analysis
Specialist Topics
Research Methods
Research Project

Assessment

Your progress will be assessed using a variety of methods including laboratory reports, court reports (including witness statements), presentations, exams, essays and reports.

Facilities

Wide range of advanced microscopy instruments. SEM with EDS. Full range of organic analysis (GC, GC-MS, HPLC and ion chromatography). FT-IR and Raman spectrometers. Gene sequencing and other DNA analytical equipment. Comprehensive collection of specialist forensic equipment including GRIM, VSC and MSP. Dedicated crime scene facility with video equipment.

Your faculty

The Faculty of Science & Technology is one of the largest of five faculties at Anglia Ruskin University. Whether you choose to study with us full- or part-time, on campus or at a distance, there’s an option whatever your level – from a foundation degree, to a BSc, MSc, PhD or professional doctorate.

Whichever course you pick, you’ll gain the theory and practical skills needed to progress with confidence. Join us and you could find yourself learning in the very latest laboratories or on field trips or work placements with well-known and respected companies. You may even have the opportunity to study abroad.

Everything we do in the faculty has a singular purpose: to provide a world-class environment to create, share and advance knowledge in science and technology fields. This is key to all of our futures.

Specialist facilities

Our facilities include a wide range of advanced microscopy instruments – SEM with EDS, a full range of organic analysis (GC, HPLC and ion chromatography). FT-IR and Raman Spectrometers, gene sequencing and other DNA analytical equipment. A comprehensive collection of specialist forensic equipment includes GRIM, VSC and MSP and we also have a dedicated crime scene facility with video equipment.

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This Masters course will open the door to a fascinating and fast-moving sector of analytical science that will build on your previous undergraduate studies, in chemistry, biology or other appropriate science courses. Read more
This Masters course will open the door to a fascinating and fast-moving sector of analytical science that will build on your previous undergraduate studies, in chemistry, biology or other appropriate science courses. You will gain knowledge and scientific skills that are directly applicable to the field of forensic science, with prospects of employment in forensic science laboratories as well as in other analytical science laboratories.

The course involves a unique combination of forensic chemistry and forensic biology, covering subjects such as trace evidence, toxicology and DNA analysis. Once you have covered the underlying principles of both areas, you can then specialise in your chosen field for your MSc research project.

The course is accredited by the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences, which enhances its credibility and currency among potential employers.

This course can also be taken part time - for more information, please view this web-page: https://www.northumbria.ac.uk/study-at-northumbria/courses/forensic-science-dtpfrs6/

Learn From The Best

Our teaching team are active researchers who routinely incorporate their expertise and enthusiasm into their teaching. Many of the staff have worked in forensic science laboratories and have been involved in high profile cases such as the Stephen Lawrence, Joanna Yeates, Suffolk strangler and Jigsaw murder cases. Their areas of research include toxicology, the analysis of fibres and their transfer and persistence and the analysis of ancient DNA.

Academic staff include former forensic biologists, forensic toxicologists, and forensic fibre experts. They continue to maintain close links with the industry including the police and practising forensic scientists. Many of them are well-established within professional forensic science societies and organisations, which directly inform policy and practices within the field.

Teaching And Assessment

Our teaching will give you a solid grounding in all the technical areas that are key to forensic science, while simultaneously developing the higher level of independent thinking and advanced interpretation that is expected at Masters level. To support your learning journey, many of the staff have an ‘open door’ policy which makes it easy to ask questions; it’s also possible to book appointments with them so that you can work through queries about lab work, concepts and theories, and any other aspects of the subject.

We use different types of assessments: some will contribute to your final grade while others will be used to provide you with guidance on your progress and reinforce your learning. You can expect both your tutors and your peers to provide useful comments and feedback throughout the course.

Module Overview
AP0700 - Graduate Science Research Methods (Core, 20 Credits)
AP0703 - Subject Exploration (Core, 20 Credits)
AP0708 - Applied Sciences Research Project (Core, 60 Credits)
AP0723 - Practices & Procedures in Forensic Science (Core, 20 Credits)
AP0724 - Forensic Toxicology & Drugs of Abuse (Core, 20 Credits)
AP0725 - Criminalistics (Core, 20 Credits)
AP0726 - Forensic Genetics (Core, 20 Credits)

Learning Environment

You will have access to a dedicated crime scene house to enable you to examine simulated crime scenes. Students can also access Return to Scene (R2S) software which provides a 360 degree interactive scan of a crime scene allowing you to perform further analysis in detail after you have left the scene. Northumbria University has also invested heavily in an impressive suite of analytical equipment allowing you to gain first-hand experience of the techniques used in operational laboratories.

We use a range of technologies to enhance your learning, with tools including web-based self-guided exercises, online tests with feedback, and electronic discussion boards. These tools support and extend the material that is delivered during lectures.

You will have 24/7 term-time access to Northumbria’s library, which was ranked #2 in the Times Higher Education Student Experience Survey for 2015 and has been accredited by the UK Government for Customer Service Excellence since 2010.

Research-Rich Learning

We host the Northumbria University Centre for Forensic Science and our research directly impacts on what and how you learn. Northumbria is helping to push the frontiers of knowledge in areas such as:
-Forensic fibre comparisons using statistical and chemometric approaches
-DNA profiling in contexts such as injuries to children and poaching of wildlife
-Human genetic and phenotypic variation
-Analytical toxicology

As part of the course, you will undertake a Masters project that will require you to evaluate relevant literature as well as to develop your ideas within the context of existing research. The project will involve information retrieval, critical appraisal, presentation of aims and strategy, development of advanced analytical and problem-solving skills, the discussion and interpretation of results, and the composition of a written dissertation. Each project will be aligned to an active area of research that is specific to an academic member of staff.

Give Your Career An Edge

This course is accredited by the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences. This reflects the relevance and rigour of the curriculum, and provides assurance of workplace-ready knowledge and application.

The focus on practical laboratory work, combined with the mix of group work, independent learning and professional practice, will help ensure that you develop skills that are transferable to a range of careers and disciplines.

Throughout your time at Northumbria we will prompt you to reflect on your self-development through the Higher Education Achievement Report process. We will also encourage you to take advantage of the services of our Careers and Employment Service such as CV advice and interview preparation.

Your Future

Forensic science has gained a high profile through TV dramas and, in the years ahead the sector is likely to be further transformed by technological advances in a number of fields. With an MSc Forensic Science you will be well-placed to take up a fascinating and rewarding role in forensic science laboratories.

What’s more, by developing the attributes of a Masters student, including the ability to solve complex problems, think critically, and work effectively with others and on your own, you will enhance your employability in all sectors of the analytical science industry. You will also be well equipped to pursue further studies at PhD level.

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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

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.

Course structure

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

How you learn

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. 

Industrial experience 

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.

How you are assessed

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.

See the career path of one of our graduates



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This programme is for graduates with a strong grounding in forensic science who wish to advance their knowledge of the field. It prepares you for a professional role in forensic science within the criminal or civil judicial system, police or forensic practice, or research. Read more
This programme is for graduates with a strong grounding in forensic science who wish to advance their knowledge of the field.

It prepares you for a professional role in forensic science within the criminal or civil judicial system, police or forensic practice, or research. You develop command, control and management skills that will enable you to present expert evidential incident reports to the highest standard at court.

You also develop your knowledge and understanding of advanced laboratory analytical methods applied to forensic investigation. This enables you to select the most appropriate analytical techniques for forensic investigation and to use a wide range of advanced analytic apparatus to evidential standards.

This programme helps you to develop an integrated and critical understanding of forensic science to prepare you to undertake a PhD in any associated discipline.

Visit the website https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/5/forensic-science

About The School of Physical Sciences

The School offers postgraduate students the opportunity to participate in groundbreaking science in the realms of physics, chemistry, forensics and astronomy. With strong international reputations, our staff provide plausible ideas, well-designed projects, research training and enthusiasm within a stimulating environment. Recent investment in modern laboratory equipment and computational facilities accelerates the research.

The School maintains a focus on progress to ensure each student is able to compete with their peers in their chosen field. We carefully nurture the skills, abilities and motivation of our students which are vital elements in our research activity. We offer higher degree programmes in chemistry and physics (including specialisations in forensics, astronomy and space science) by research. We also offer taught programmes in Forensic Science, studied over one year full-time, and a two-year European-style Master’s in Physics.

Our principal research covers a wide variety of topics within physics, astronomy and chemistry, ranging from specifically theoretical work on surfaces and interfaces, through mainstream experimental condensed matter physics, astrobiology, space science and astrophysics, to applied areas such as biomedical imaging, forensic imaging and space vehicle protection. We scored highly in the most recent Research Assessment Exercise, with 25% of our research ranked as “world-leading” and our Functional Materials Research Group ranked 2nd nationally in the Metallurgy and Materials discipline.

Modules

The following modules are indicative of those offered on this programme. This list is based on the current curriculum and may change year to year in response to new curriculum developments and innovation. Most programmes will require you to study a combination of compulsory and optional modules. You may also have the option to take modules from other programmes so that you may customise your programme and explore other subject areas that interest you.

PS601 - Fires and Explosions (15 credits)
PS637 - DNA Analysis & Interpretation (15 credits)
PS700 - Physical Science Research Planning (15 credits)
PS702 - Contemporary and Advanced Issues in Forensic Science (15 credits)
PS704 - Major Incident Management (15 credits)
PS713 - Substances of Abuse (15 credits)
PS720 - Advanced Forensic Project Laboratory (30 credits)
PS780 - MSC Research Project (60 credits)

Assessment

Assessment is by examination and coursework.

Programme aims

This programme aims to:

- develop your integrated and critically aware understanding of forensic science and to prepare you to undertake a PhD in any associated disciplines

- prepare you for a professional role in forensic science within the criminal or civil judicial system, police, or forensic practice or research

- develop your command, control, and management skills in relation to major incidents, and to prepare and present expert evidential incident reports at court to the highest standard

- develop a clear recognition of the constraints and opportunities of the environment in which professional forensic science is carried out

- develop a variety of Masters’ level intellectual and transferable skills

- equip you with the learning skills to keep abreast of developments in the continually evolving field of forensic science and forensic investigation

- enable you to realise your academic potential.

Careers

All programmes in the School of Physical Sciences equip you with the tools you need to conduct research, solve problems, communicate effectively and transfer skills to the workplace, which means our graduates are always in high demand. Our links with industry not only provide you with the opportunity to gain work experience during your degree, but also equip you with the general and specialist skills and knowledge needed to succeed in the workplace.

Typical employment destinations for graduates from the physics programmes include power companies, aerospace, defence, optoelectronics and medical industries. Typical employment destinations for graduates from our forensic science and chemistry programmes include government agencies, consultancies, emergency services, laboratories, research or academia.

Find out how to apply here - https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/apply/

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The MSc Forensic Science (with Advanced Practice) postgraduate course concentrates on practices, procedures and analytical techniques used within forensic science. Read more

The MSc Forensic Science (with Advanced Practice) postgraduate course concentrates on practices, procedures and analytical techniques used within forensic science. It considers how these are applied to support the investigation of crime and the criminal justice system as a whole.

Course details

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 forensic science field. 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, a crime scene house laboratory, and forensic chemistry and biology laboratories.There are three routes you can select from to gain a postgraduate Master’s award:

  • MSc Forensic Science – one year full time
  • MSc Forensic Science – two years part time
  • MSc Forensic Science (with Advanced Practice) – two years full time

The one-year programme is a great option if you want to gain a traditional MSc qualification – you can find out more here. This two-year master’s degree with advanced practice enhances your qualification by adding to the one-year master’s programme an internship, research or study abroad experience.

The MSc Forensic Science (with Advanced Practice) course offers you the chance to enhance your qualification by completing an internship, research or study abroad experience in addition to the content of the one-year MSc. This two-year programme is an opportunity to enhance your qualification by spending one semester completing a vocational internship, research internship or by studying abroad. Although we can’t guarantee an internship, we can provide you with practical support and advice on how to find and secure your own internship position.

What you study

For the MSc with advanced practice, you complete 120 credits of taught modules, a 60-credit master’s research project and 60 credits of advanced practice.

Course structure

Core modules

  • Advanced Analytical Techniques
  • Data Acquisition and Signal Processing Techniques
  • Forensic Biology
  • Forensic Chemistry
  • Forensic Investigative Strategy
  • Legal Issues and Evidence Reporting
  • Research Methods and Proposal
  • Research Project (Advanced Practice)

Advanced Practice options

  • Research Internship
  • Study Abroad
  • Vocational Internship

Modules offered may vary.

Teaching

How you learn

You learn through a variety of teaching methods including lectures, tutorials, projects and assignments. You are also expected to participate in self-directed study, to review lecture notes, prepare assignments, work on projects and revise for assessments. Each 20-credit module typically has around 200 hours of learning time. 

How you are assessed

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

Employability

Career opportunities

Employment opportunities exist in the fields of forensic science and forensic investigation with forensic science providers and law enforcement agencies. Other roles include scientific investigation where it’s important to be apply forensic science in a legal or regulatory context. 

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

Work placement

On this programme you complete a project related to professional practice. This, along with involving practitioners and academics in delivering these courses, ensures that your learning is relevant to the requirements of the criminal justice system.



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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.

About this degree

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
  • Law and Expert Evidence
  • Dissertation

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 Anthropology
  • 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
  • Introduction to Cybersecurity
  • Advanced Forensic Anthropology

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.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Crime and Forensic Science MSc

Careers

Graduates of this programme will gain the skills necessary for a career in crime investigation, forensic science provision, consultancy, policy-making, 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.

Recent career destinations for this degree

  • Crime Analyst, Home Office
  • Data Analyst, Civil Service
  • Rehabilitation Adviser, Frimley Park Hospital (NHS)
  • PhD in Security Science, UCL

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.

Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.

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.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.

Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.



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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.

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MSc Forensic Science is designed for both graduate students and forensic practitioners. It will develop theoretical knowledge and practical application of the key aspects of forensic science. Read more
MSc Forensic Science is designed for both graduate students and forensic practitioners. It will develop theoretical knowledge and practical application of the key aspects of forensic science. On this course you will initially cover the fundamentals of forensic biology and forensic chemistry that underpin much of the laboratory analysis associated with forensic investigations. Following on from this, the recovery and processing of a variety of evidence types found at crime scenes will be studied in detail as will the evaluation and presentation of that evidence in a legal context. You will have access to extensive modern facilities with state-of-art facilities, including our crime scene houses, forensic, chemistry and biology laboratories. After completing six taught modules students will undertake a three module research project which will develop research skills – a diverse range of projects are available, both within the University and through external placements.

LEARNING ENVIRONMENT AND ASSESSMENT

UCLan’s School of Forensic and Applied Sciences is the first specialist School of its kind in Europe, benefiting from purpose-built facilities and £29 million of investment. Our facilities have recently been enhanced by the opening of our new £12.5-million J B Firth building to support our capability in chemistry and fire safety and engineering. In addition, our state-of-the-art resources include three crime scene houses, a vehicle examination area, a blood spatter pattern analysis suite, dedicated laboratories for the search and recovery of evidential materials, forensic anthropology, forensic biology and genetics and forensic entomology, together with a moot court room.

This course is assessed through preparation of case notes, essays, reports, practical reports, group and individual presentations and written and practical exams.

OPPORTUNITIES

Placements are possible with forensic providers, both in the UK and overseas on an ad-hoc basis. Placements are also possible in other relevant institutions, such and biology or chemistry laboratories.

Our courses are taught by internationally-acclaimed academics and former senior practitioners.

Will Goodwin, Sibte Hadi, Matt Baker, Judith Smith, Isobel Colclough, Allan Scott, Charlie Ellis, Geoff Keeling, Kev Pritchard

[[LEARNING OUTCOMES[[
-To provide an in-depth study of Forensic Science
-To develop the critical and analytical skills involving the principles, practices and techniques of Forensic Science
-To develop competence in research methods and presentation of information
-To develop skills in solving problems both independently and as a team member to a level commensurate to the master’s level

FURTHER INFORMATION

On this course you will initially cover the fundamentals of Forensic Biology and Forensic Chemistry that underpin much of the laboratory analysis associated with forensic investigations. Following on from this, the recovery and processing of a variety of evidence types found at crime scenes will be studied in detail as will the evaluation and presentation of that evidence in a legal context. The final 16 weeks of the course will involve undertaking a research project.

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The Forensic Science programme will provide you with advanced knowledge of the forensic processes (particularly chemistry and biology) and analytical techniques used in crime investigation. Read more

The Forensic Science programme will provide you with advanced knowledge of the forensic processes (particularly chemistry and biology) and analytical techniques used in crime investigation. It is the longest-running accredited programme of its type in England. 

Key benefits

  • Study programme fully accredited by The Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences.
  • A well-established and highly respected forensic science programme with contributions from leading forensic scientists.
  • Strategic alliance with the Metropolitan Police Forensic Services Directorate and research partners with LGC Forensics forming the Met/LGC/KCL managed forensic service provision (2017). 
  • Links with over 25 forensic laboratories and institutions worldwide provide research placement opportunities for students’ projects.
  • Exposure to cutting-edge technology and methodology at the forefront of forensic science research and development.
  • Flexible study pathway with the opportunity to extend your project to a 28-week project to gain an extra 30 ECTS and the MRes qualification.

Description

Accredited by the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences, our Forensic Sciences study programme is the longest-running programme of its type in England, having been first established in 1985.

You will benefit from an advanced and flexible study programme devised and delivered by internationally leading researchers, and recognised forensic providers including our accredited DNA analysis and Drug Control Centre testing laboratories. We also collaborate closely with the Metropolitan Police Forensic Services Directorate in both teaching and research.

The course is made up of two 15 credit modules and three 30 credit modules followed by a 60 or 120 credit research module. If you are studying full-time, you will complete the course in one year, from September to September. If you are studying for the MRes qualification, you will study an extended research module that carries a further 120 credits to complete the course.

Course format and assessment

Teaching

For flexibility, a significant proportion of the course will be delivered by narrated PowerPoint. Teaching time includes workshops, group discussions and problem-based learning exercises. Approximate total contact hours for the taught modules is 360-hours.

You are also expected to undertake 840 hours of team and individual study.

Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.

Assessment

Current evaluation methods include examinations, MCQs, witness statements, courtroom appearance, crime scene management and assignments.

Formative assessments are carried out as teamwork with both peer and academic feedback. This is designed to help students with the subsequent summative assessments.

The study time and assessment methods detailed above are typical and give you a good indication of what to expect. However, they are subject to change.

Extra information

You will also need to have either started or completed a course of Hepatitis B vaccinations.

Career prospects

Most of our students go on to work in the forensic science sector with forensic service providers within the UK, European and International field being the major employers. Others have taken employment with the Metropolitan Police or crime scene departments of other police forces. Many of our Canadian graduates now work for the RCMP or the Toronto Centre for Forensic Sciences. Some of our students go on to do a PhD either at King's College London or other universities across the country.



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This course provides postgraduate education in Forensic Entomology. Forensic Entomology involves the use of entomological evidence to address questions of interest to a court of law; most famously, the question of the time-since-death or post mortem interval estimation. Read more
This course provides postgraduate education in Forensic Entomology. Forensic Entomology involves the use of entomological evidence to address questions of interest to a court of law; most famously, the question of the time-since-death or post mortem interval estimation. This course provides you with an overview of forensic science in general, following the crime scene to court model. This includes a series of crime scene exercises in our crime scene facilities, covering strategies for crime scene examination and an exploration of techniques associated with crime scene examination. You will also receive a comprehensive overview of a variety of forensic science disciplines through the forensic biology and forensic chemistry modules. You will also explore quality, which is an increasingly fundamental issue within forensic science industry; as well as the presentation of evidence and preparations for defending your evidence in a court of law.

In addition, you will then study subject specific modules underpinning the principles relating to forensic entomology. These modules will provide you with a comprehensive overview of the most recent technological developments and applications in forensic entomology. This course is comprised of two thirds taught component and one third research project component.

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Our MSc Advanced Forensic Analysis course is designed to give you an advanced understanding of the main areas of forensic science and is unlike any other postgraduate course in forensic science, in that it covers in more depth all of the areas touched on in UWE Bristol's undergraduate courses. Read more
Our MSc Advanced Forensic Analysis course is designed to give you an advanced understanding of the main areas of forensic science and is unlike any other postgraduate course in forensic science, in that it covers in more depth all of the areas touched on in UWE Bristol's undergraduate courses. There are modules in all three key areas of forensic science: biology, chemistry and crime scene science and we also offer a module covering more advanced aspects of research and statistics. You can base your in-depth research project aspect of the programme at UWE Bristol's Forensic Analysis department, or on placement with one of our partner forensic providers. These include West Technology or Mass Spec Analytical, and local fire services that rely on the analytical skills you'll develop.

Key benefits

A flexible and highly vocational postgraduate programme, accredited by the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences, for those looking to enhance skills and knowledge to support careers in forensic science.

You'll have access to the specially modified Crime Scene House, which can be adapted to mimic the conditions typically found at a variety of crime scenes.

The two-bedroom house, which also includes a bathroom, kitchen and lounge, gives you authentic experience of what you might encounter as a forensics professional following a range of incidents and scenarios for example, a burglary, murder or abduction. There is CCTV and two-way communication in all the rooms, along with a control suite to allow live feedback from observing instructors. We can record sessions for analysis and evaluation an excellent learning tool.

Course detail

The department has an excellent bio- sensors research team, which supports this study programme and offers wider perspectives on the role of a forensic scientist.

Through your studies, you will follow evidence from the crime scene, through laboratory examination and analysis, to writing a report for court and giving evidence in a courtroom situation with examination-in-chief and cross examination.

The course is available as a full-time or part-time route, allowing flexibility and access for students already in related employment. It also offers excellent preparation for doctorate-levels studies.

Modules

• Advanced Crime Scene Science
• Forensic Biology and Genetics
• Forensic Analysis and Toxicology
• Research Methods and Practical Skills
• Research Project

Format

The research project is undertaken for the MSc award. Part-time students do this over two terms of the second year in the laboratory where they work. Full-time students carry out the project supervised by specialist subject tutors at UWE Bristol, or on placement with one of our partner forensic providers.

Students who complete all taught modules successfully, but do not undertake the research project, achieve a Postgraduate Diploma.

Students who complete the Forensic Biology and Genetics module successfully, plus any one of the other modules on the course, achieve a Postgraduate Certificate.

Assessment

We assess each taught module through written examinations and coursework. Coursework may be in the form of a case study, practical report, poster or oral presentation. One assessment involves collecting evidence from a mock crime scene, examining it in the laboratory, and providing a written report as you would for a court, plus examination-in-chief and cross examination in a mock courtroom.

Careers / Further study

Our postgraduate course in Advanced Forensic Analysis is highly regarded by forensic science employers it feeds into analytical careers and into specialisms such as DNA analysis. It is also ideal preparation for PhD routes, and UWE Bristol has excellent links with institutions providing doctorate-level programmes in forensic analysis. They use our departmental facilities for aspects of their research.
Graduates have gone on to work with our local partner providers, and in roles that include DNA analyst, forensic chemist and Scene of Crime Officer (SOCO).

How to apply

Information on applications can be found at the following link: http://www1.uwe.ac.uk/study/applyingtouwebristol/postgraduateapplications.aspx

Funding

- New Postgraduate Master's loans for 2016/17 academic year –
-
The government are introducing a master’s loan scheme, whereby master’s students under 60 can access a loan of up to £10,000 as a contribution towards the cost of their study. This is part of the government’s long-term commitment to enhance support for postgraduate study.

Scholarships and other sources of funding are also available.

More information can be found here: http://www1.uwe.ac.uk/students/feesandfunding/fundingandscholarships/postgraduatefunding.aspx

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Research students in Forensic Science have the opportunity to work alongside a multidisciplinary team in the School of Life Sciences, and can benefit from strong links with industry practitioners. Read more
Research students in Forensic Science have the opportunity to work alongside a multidisciplinary team in the School of Life Sciences, and can benefit from strong links with industry practitioners.

You have the opportunity to engage in the work of the Forensic Analysis Research Group, to develop innovative methods and techniques to assist in solving crime and casework-related issues. The team are currently engaged in high-profile studies including collaborative projects with the Centre for Applied Science and Technology at the UK Home Office.

You have access to a range of training programmes to support you in your independent investigations and an experienced supervisory team are on hand to offer advice and direction. Ongoing research projects in the School include Chemical Analysis of Legal Highs and GHB, DNA Analysis in Forensic and Archaeological Contexts, and Microcrystalline Testing for Drugs.

Research Areas, Projects & Topics

Main research areas:
-Drug analysis
-Ignitable liquid and fuel analysis
-Explosives analysis
-DNA fingerprinting
-Fingerprinting science
-Dye and pigment analysis
-Forensic anthropology
-Spectroscopic techniques (including Raman) and separation science
-Surface analysis
-Mechanical properties of biological materials.

Recent research projects include:
-Chemical analysis of fingerprints
-Analysis of legal highs and GHB
-Analysis of fuel markers and detection of fuel adulteration
-Development of sensors for forensic applications
-Microcrystalline testing for drugs
-Analysis of smoke for fire investigation
-Enhancement of DNA at crime scenes
-Development of colloids and Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS)
-DNA analysis in forensic and archaeological contexts
-Molecular typing of skin micro-organisms in forensic identification
-Forensic analysis of the mechanical properties of biological materials.

How You Study

Due to the nature of postgraduate research programmes, the vast majority of your time will be spent in independent study and research. You will have meetings with your academic supervisors to assess progress and guide research methodologies, however the regularity of these will vary depending on your own individual requirements, subject area, staff availability and the stage of your programme.

How You Are Assessed

A PhD is usually awarded based on the quality of your thesis and your ability in an oral examination (viva voce) to present and successfully defend your chosen research topic to a group of academics. You are also expected to demonstrate how your research findings have contributed to knowledge or developed existing theory or understanding.

Career and Personal Development

These postgraduate research programmes allow you the opportunity to expand your knowledge and expertise in the specialist field of forensic science. They provide the chance to develop an in-depth foundation for further research or progression to careers in forensic science-related industries.

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This course provides postgraduate education in Forensic Science with a further specialisation in DNA/Body fluids; which is the main discipline of Forensic Biology. Read more
This course provides postgraduate education in Forensic Science with a further specialisation in DNA/Body fluids; which is the main discipline of Forensic Biology. Forensic Science involves the use of scientific techniques and principles to address questions of interest to a court of law. This course aims to provide you with an overview of forensic science in general, following the crime scene to court model. This includes a series of crime scene exercises in our crime scene facilities, covering strategies for crime scene examination and an exploration of techniques associated with crime scene examination

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The emphasis of this course is on the application of engineering and the physical sciences to forensic problems. The course is designed to give a broad introduction to the subject, rapidly advancing into the understanding of the cutting-edge research and latest techniques. Read more

Course Description

The emphasis of this course is on the application of engineering and the physical sciences to forensic problems. The course is designed to give a broad introduction to the subject, rapidly advancing into the understanding of the cutting-edge research and latest techniques.

The course is highly practical and hands-on, aiming to produce forensic experts capable of giving an expert opinion in a courtroom situation and elsewhere.

The course consists of a two-week period of introductory studies followed by academic instruction in modular form. Most modules are of five days' duration, interspersed with weeks devoted to private study and visits to forensic science establishments.

The Forensic Engineering and Science MSc is part of the Forensic MSc Programme which has been formally accredited by the Forensic Science Society.

Course overview

The course consists of a one-week period of introductory studies followed by academic instruction in modular form. Most modules are of five days' duration, interspersed with weeks devoted to private study. Students are required to take four core modules, four role specific modules and choose three elective modules based on their particular background, future requirements or interests. This is followed by a four-month research project and either a thesis or literature review and paper.

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

English Language Requirements

Students whose first language is not English must attain an IELTS score of 7

Individual Project

The individual project takes four months from April to July. The student selects from a range of titles, or may propose their own topic. Most are practically or experimentally based using Cranfield’s unique facilities.

Assessment

By written and practical examinations, continuous assessment, project presentation and viva voce.

Career opportunities

Takes you on a career opportunities in forensic engineering and science with, for example, forensic laboratories, government bodies, police departments and independent consultants working for insurance companies.

For further information

On this course, please visit our course webpage - http://www.cranfield.ac.uk/courses/masters/forensic-engineering-and-science.html

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