Programme Specification

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1 Programme Specification Title: Forensic Science Final Award: Master of Science (MSc) With Exit Awards at: Master of Science (MSc) Postgraduate Certificate (PG Cert) Postgraduate Diploma (PG Dip) To be delivered from: 1 Oct 2013 Level Date Masters or Master of Science (MSc) Masters or Postgraduate Certificate (PG Cert) Masters or Postgraduate Diploma (PG Dip) Page 1/17

2 Table Of Contents 1. Introduction Basic Programme Data Programme Description Overview Aims and Objectives Variations to Standard Regulations and Guidance Programme Outcomes Knowledge and Understanding Subject Specific Intellectual Skills Subject Specific Practical Skills Transferable Skills and Attributes Learning, Teaching and Assessment Strategies Learning and Teaching Strategy Assessment Strategy Programme Structure Appendix I - Curriculum Map Appendix II - Assessment Map Appendix III - Benchmark Analysis Appendix IV - Benchmark Statements(s) Page 2/17

3 1. Introduction This document describes one of the University of Lincoln's programmes using the protocols required by the UK National Qualifications Framework as defined in the publication QAA guidelines for preparing programme specifications. This programme operates under the policy and regulatory frameworks of the University of Lincoln. Page 3/17

4 2. Basic Programme Data Final Award: Programme Title: Exit Awards and Titles Master of Science (MSc) Forensic Science Master of Science (MSc) Postgraduate Certificate (PG Cert) Postgraduate Diploma (PG Dip) Subject(s) Forensic Science Mode(s) of delivery Full Time Part Time Is there a Placement or Exchange? UCAS code Awarding Body Campus(es) School(s) Programme Leader Relevant Subject Benchmark Statements Professional, Statutory or Regulatory Body Accreditation Yes University of Lincoln Lincoln Campus Programme Start Date School of Chemistry Jose Gonzalez-Rodriguez (jgonzalezrodriguez) Page 4/17

5 3. Programme Description 3.1 Overview The MSc in Forensic Science presented here builds upon the undergraduate programme in Forensic Science and sits alongside the existing Erasmus Mundus in Forensic Science. An important feature of this Masters is its multidisciplinary approach, as Forensic Science is a representative example of a multidisciplinary field in which chemistry, biology, pharmacy, physics, among others, combine to solve a legally binding case. At present we do not offer a one-year Masters in Forensic Science whilst all our relevant competitors in this field do offer this option, which in many cases better suits the requirements of home/eu students and some international students. The aim of this programme is to complement the recruitment of the Erasmus Mundus (EM) and fill a gap in recruitment. As the programme is shorter in duration and not restricted by the EC rules for recruiting candidates, we will have the opportunity to charge full fees and still attract those candidates that cannot afford paying the full price of the 2 year-em programme and the high mobility that implies. The network of international agents established by the international office will help in this sense. At present they have no incentive to advertise the EM as they do not receive any reward for it. A one-year course following the traditional scheme will open the Asian market to the forensic field much more than it is now, as we do not receive many applications from Asian countries at present. The resources to be used in the new proposed Masters are the same as those we are already using in the EM Forensic Science and we will utilise the modules we already deliver to make them even more cost effective so will not incur in extra economic costs. Also, we will be able to offer the same high quality that we are already offering in the EM and, because of our international agreements, we will still be able to offer the possibility of placements abroad. The good reputation we have obtained through the Erasmus Mundus programme and a more extensive marketing strategy based on the one we have already developed will help us to attract students that are able to pay for a more affordable 1- year Masters. Also, UK/EU students will be able to afford a Masters in the UK much more easily. The Masters course presented here is focused on the development of an international Forensic Science Masters. A key feature of this Masters is its multidisciplinary approach, as Forensic Science is a representative example of a multidisciplinary field in which chemistry, biology, medicine, pharmacy, physics, computer engineering, among others, combine to solve a legally binding case. A Masters course including this wide range of interdisciplinary approach will help to provide the different national/international forensic companies/agencies with professionals with a common approach to common problems. Students in this course will benefit of close interaction with students of the Erasmus Mundus course and the internationalisation associated to it. The EM Masters in Forensic Science would help because of its wide coverage (intended for European and Third Country students), its international character (three European Universities give rise to a consortium, supported by national professional bodies and private companies), and also, the multidisciplinary approach. 3.2 Aims and Objectives The main aim of the programme is to promote the delivery of training, education and research of future cohorts of forensic scientists at Masters level. Page 5/17

6 The general objectives of this Masters course are: 1) Education and training in a multidisciplinary context at Masters level: science graduates will be taught by a wide variety of specialists in the main areas of the masters degree (analytical and organic chemistry, pharmacy, entomology, anthropology, molecular biology). Professional organisation and practitioners will also participate in the masters with seminars and/or visits. 2) Transfer of knowledge: the high level of internationalisation provided by the existing Erasmus Mundus will enable students to appreciate the different procedures used in each country through combination of Universities, professional organisations and companies involved, and to apply this knowledge in their future professional activity. 3) Training in the professional skills: students will be trained in good forensic practice from the laboratory to Court and this will incorporate general forensic principles, operating within the context of legal considerations and the role of the expert witness and presentation of evidence. 4) Promotion of research: research will be fully integrated in the programme through case studies and research carried out in the consortium universities presented in a European forensic scientific context. Students will carry out their own research projects and they will be integrated into the research culture of the UoL. 3.3 Variations to Standard Regulations and Guidance This masters course will follow the benchmark statements regarding Masters programmes in forensic science. This programme has also been benchmarked against statements for Masters degrees in general and for those in Life and Chemical Sciences (QAA) as there is overlap between the topics covered in these statements and the programme. The Masters course will follow the standard regulations for UoL Masters courses with 15 CATS modules being taught. Page 6/17

7 4. Programme Outcomes Programme-level learning outcomes are identified below. Refer to Appendix I Curriculum Map for details of how outcomes are deployed across the programme. 4.1 Knowledge and Understanding On successful completion of this programme a student will have knowledge and understanding of: 1 have demonstrated knowledge and understanding that is founded upon and extends and/or enhances that typically associated with Bachelor s level, and that provides a basis or opportunity for originality in developing and/or applying ideas, often within a research context; 2 be able to apply their knowledge and understanding, and problem solving abilities in new or unfamiliar environments within broader (or multidisciplinary) contexts related to their field of study 3 have the ability to integrate knowledge and handle complexity, and formulate judgements with incomplete or limited information, but that include reflecting on social and ethical responsibilities linked to the application of their knowledge and judgements 4 be able to communicate their conclusions, and the knowledge and rationale underpinning these, to specialist and non-specialist audiences clearly and unambiguously 5 have the learning skills to allow them to continue to study in a manner that may be largely self-directed or autonomous 4.2 Subject Specific Intellectual Skills On successful completion of this programme a student will be able to: 6 apply generic scientific principles related to chemistry, biology, toxicology, physics, and mathematics to solve forensic cases 7 develop an effective self-critical attitude in planning, carrying out and reporting investigations 8 use and select scientific methodologies to collect, classify and analyse forensic evidence and data that ensure the chain of custody and observe all the requirements of a quality assurance system, including the absence of contamination in the samples 9 demonstrate a deep specialist knowledge and experience of techniques within a particular area of forensic science and a wide knowledge and critical awareness of the whole discipline 10 demonstrate understanding of the dynamic character of toxicological, chemical or biological phenomena in the forensic field in order to correctly interpret the results; 11 assimilate and understand the role of forensic scientists as expert witnesses 12 assess the socio-economic impact of new advances in forensic science 4.3 Subject Specific Practical Skills On successful completion of this programme a student will be able to: Page 7/17

8 13 synthesize and characterize different chemical substances of forensic interest using appropriate equipment and instrumentation; 14 acquire skills in evidence sampling, preservation and identification for forensic purposes 15 have an open and innovative attitude in the ability to plan and execute new experimental procedures. 4.4 Transferable Skills and Attributes On successful completion of this programme a student will be able to: 16 show originality in the application of knowledge, and tackling and solving problems 17 understand how the boundaries of knowledge are advanced through research 18 express coherent, concise and structured arguments 19 work productively with others by collaborating, facilitating, negotiating and networking 20 present appropriate levels of personal management and organisational skills, personal responsibility and initiative, in complex and unpredictable professional environments. For details of each module contributing to the programme, please consult the module specification document. Page 8/17

9 5. Learning, Teaching and Assessment Strategies 5.1. Learning and Teaching Strategy The teaching methodology to be used in the different masters modules encompasses the use of the activities shown in Table 3. Table 3. General teaching activities used for the development of the course Activity Description In class Lectures Presentation of theoretical content Laboratory practical work Performance of experimental work in the laboratory under direct supervision Field practical work Experimental work carried out in the field under supervision Seminars Tutor- or student-led problem solving sessions Case studies Thematic or context based activities presented as written work, oral presentation and further discussion Seminars in computer laboratories Use of computer software in problem solving Workshops Paper based practical work carried out through individual or team work Oral presentations Oral presentation in a topic of interest, research based or professional practice Poster presentation Preparation and presentation of conference-quality poster Independent research Autonomous research activities utilising theoretical, experimental and field activities. Autonomous activities Individual Study of theoretical concepts, reflection on experimental work, solution of problems, case studies Team work Solution of questions, case studies, workshops The teaching and learning strategy reflects the requirements for Masters level with emphasis on student centred-problem-based learning. Activities will include problem solving exercises in which students will either work individually or in groups to solve forensic related problems. Practical activities will be enquiry-based and research-based following the principles of students as producers. Teaching will be supported by the use of research material and student independence will be further developed in the Project Preparation and final Research Project modules. The research-engaged teaching will be favoured to nurture student independence Assessment Strategy The grading system for modules and award will follow the standard regulations for postgraduate taught degrees. The pass mark for module is 50% or above and the distinction mark is 70% of above. The module mark will be awarded based on different assessment methods: coursework, examinations, presentations, practical sessions or work contributions to the module and it will be specified by the module coordinator in the module handbook given to the students at the beginning of the academic year. Assessment methods will measure the progress of students against the module learning outcomes. Page 9/17

10 6. Programme Structure The total number of credit points required for the achievement of Master of Science (MSc) is 60. The total number of credit points required for the achievement of Postgraduate Certificate (PG Cert) is 120. The total number of credit points required for the achievement of Postgraduate Diploma (PG Dip) is 180. Masters Title Credit Rating Core / Optional Method Development and Validation Optional Project Preparation Core Forensic Anthropology Optional Forensic Entomology Optional Fire and Explosions Optional Advanced Forensic Biology Optional Advanced Forensic Toxicology Optional Sensors in Forensic Science Optional Statistics in Forensic Science Core Disaster Victim Identification Optional Synthetic Chemistry for Forensic Science Optional Research Project (Forensic Science) Core Page 10/17

11 Appendix I - Curriculum Map This table indicates which modules assume responsibility for delivering and ordering particular programme learning outcomes. Key: Delivered and Assessed Delivered Assessed Masters Advanced Forensic Biology Advanced Forensic Toxicology Disaster Victim Identification Fire and Explosions Forensic Anthropology Forensic Entomology Method Development and Validation Project Preparation Research Project (Forensic Science) Sensors in Forensic Science Statistics in Forensic Science Synthetic Chemistry for Forensic Science Advanced Forensic Biology Advanced Forensic Toxicology Disaster Victim Identification Fire and Explosions Forensic Anthropology Forensic Entomology Method Development and Validation Project Preparation PO1 PO2 PO3 PO4 PO5 PO6 PO7 PO8 PO9 PO10 PO11 PO12 PO13 PO14 PO15 PO16 PO17 PO18 PO19 PO20 Page 11/17

12 Research Project (Forensic Science) Sensors in Forensic Science Statistics in Forensic Science Synthetic Chemistry for Forensic Science Page 12/17

13 Appendix II - Assessment Map This table indicates the spread of assessment activity across the programme. Percentages indicate assessment weighting. Masters Advanced Forensic Biology Advanced Forensic Toxicology Disaster Victim Identification Fire and Explosions Forensic Anthropology Forensic Entomology Method Development and Validation Project Preparation Research Project (Forensic Science) Sensors in Forensic Science Statistics in Forensic Science Synthetic Chemistry for Forensic Science Advanced Forensic Biology Advanced Forensic Toxicology Disaster Victim Identification Fire and Explosions Forensic Anthropology Forensic Entomology Method Development and Validation Project Preparation Research Project (Forensic Science) Sensors in Forensic Science Page 13/17

14 Statistics in Forensic Science Synthetic Chemistry for Forensic Science Advanced Forensic Biology Advanced Forensic Toxicology Disaster Victim Identification Fire and Explosions Forensic Anthropology Forensic Entomology Method Development and Validation Project Preparation Research Project (Forensic Science) Sensors in Forensic Science Statistics in Forensic Science Synthetic Chemistry for Forensic Science Advanced Forensic Biology Advanced Forensic Toxicology Disaster Victim Identification Fire and Explosions Forensic Anthropology Forensic Entomology Method Development and Validation Project Preparation Research Project (Forensic Science) Sensors in Forensic Science Statistics in Forensic Science Synthetic Chemistry for Forensic Science Page 14/17

15 Advanced Forensic Biology Advanced Forensic Toxicology Disaster Victim Identification Fire and Explosions Forensic Anthropology Forensic Entomology Method Development and Validation Project Preparation Research Project (Forensic Science) Sensors in Forensic Science Statistics in Forensic Science Synthetic Chemistry for Forensic Science EP 1 (Wk 16) EP 2 (Wks 33, 34, 35) Page 15/17

16 Appendix III - Benchmark Analysis This table maps programme learning outcomes to relevant QAA subject benchmark statements or PSRB guidelines. Knowledge and Understanding Subject Specific Intellectual Skills Subject Specific Practical Skills Transferable Skills and Attributes Page 16/17

17 Powered by TCPDF (www.tcpdf.org) University of Lincoln Programme Specification - Master of Science (MSc) Forensic Science Appendix IV: Benchmark Benchmark Statement(s) Page 17/17

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