1 MSc in Forensic Science and Criminal Justice by Distance Learning go.le.ac.uk/forensic-dl
2 2 University of Contents MSc Forensic Science 3 About Distance Learning at the University 4 Why Study for a Master s Degree in Forensic Science 4 Programme Details and Structure 6 Elective Modules 8 Learning and Assessment 9 Career Progression Entry Requirements, How to Apply and Fees 12 Frequently Asked Questions 13 Library 15 Welcome to We believe that our world changing research produces high-quality teaching and will inspire you to go further. At we re all about pushing the boundaries from our revolutionary discoveries in DNA fingerprinting, to unearthing ancient civilisations in Libya we consider education and knowledge to be a power for good. But this is also about you. We know our work is better in a shared academic community that includes you. Where you re coming from and your journey up to this point will have given you your own personal perspectives and ideas. Your experience, energy and willingness to ask the difficult questions benefits you and us. We believe that our teaching is inspirational when delivered by passionate scholars engaged in pioneering research. At you ll be working with our leading academics who are at the cutting edge of their disciplines. By sharing their enthusiasm you ll be immersed into a stimulating and innovative learning environment, which will enable you to realise your potential and to compete alongside the very best. Over half of our students are studying at postgraduate level so we understand your needs and concerns whatever your subject or mode of study. Credentials We are consistently ranked in the top 20 of all UK national league tables. We are also ranked in the top 2% in the world by the QS World University rankings 2012, THE World University rankings 2012 and the Taiwan World University rankings The University has won Times Higher Awards in 2007, 2008, 2009, 20, 2011 and We are the only university to win six consecutive awards. is ranked fourth in the 2012 National Student Survey. Our levels of student satisfaction have been consistently in the top ten since the annual survey commenced in The research conducted by the University has the strongest impact of any Midlands university measured by citations per academic. We are ranked in the top- in the UK and top-0 in the world for research citations by the QS World Rankings.
3 MSc in Forensic Science and Criminal Justice by distance learning 3 Martine Hamilton Knight MSc Forensic Science This postgraduate Master s programme is an excellent way to enhance your expertise and career prospects in a fascinating and rapidly developing area of science, whose importance in criminal evidence is growing as police and other agencies become increasingly reliant on scientific evidence to solve crime. Improve your career prospects: Perhaps you already work in the forensic industry and wish to have more responsibility, the opportunity to give expert opinion in court or involvement in the management of forensic science provision? Perhaps you already work in a scientific discipline but are now looking for a more exciting challenge in an expanding discipline that brings real job satisfaction and responsibility? You can also find more information by visiting our website: go.le.ac.uk/forensic-dl Perhaps you are already within the police service and would like to improve your knowledge and understanding of forensic science and your awareness of emerging technologies in crime solving? If you can relate to any of the above then our new Master s programme in Forensic Science and Criminal Justice by distance learning is just what you are looking for.
4 4 University of Distance Learning at We have over 20 years experience of offering high quality distance learning courses. More than 25,000 students have graduated from our Distance Learning programmes. Distance Learning means studying at home in your own time and space, so you can combine achieving a qualification with work or family commitments. You will benefit from studying with a University that has a huge amount of expertise in this kind of learning. We have more than 8,000 students currently studying by Distance Learning with us, making it part of our core educational provision. Why Study This Programme at the University of? Our distance learning Master s programme is designed to equip you to face the challenges of understanding the science behind the many and varied analytical techniques used to examine forensic evidence. You will learn how to select the most appropriate techniques for different evidence types, how to interpret the results and how to apply critical analysis to determine what that means in terms of evidential value. There is a strong emphasis on developing independent thinking and new technology. The programme draws heavily on the University of s world-wide reputation for innovation in forensic science in areas such as DNA profiling, fingerprint enhancement and forensic engineering, and world renowned academics at the University contribute to the programme. This programme benefits further from the University of being an integral part of the Global Forensics Network This network enables students enrolled at to select some of the taught element of the programme from modules offered by the forensic science Master s programmes at the University of Florida and the University of Canberra. This will give you access to learning material offered by highly respected forensic scientists selected on a global basis. You will also be able to tailor the programme, by focussing on modules that create a specialisation that can be suited to your professional needs.
5 MSc in Forensic Science and Criminal Justice by distance learning 5 Our forensic research reopened cold cases by revealing fingerprints on bullets. What evidence will you uncover? Dr John Bond in our Department of Chemistry developed a ground breaking technique that is able to analyse fingerprints on spent cartridge casings even after they ve been wiped clean. Sweat corrodes metal, so by applying an electrical charge and a fine carbon powder to the corroded area, a finger print can still be revealed. The impact of the discovery has been massively far-reaching. It has attracted interest from many police forces across the world, most notably in the US where Dr Bond has now examined cartridge cases from hundreds of cold cases, including some notorious crimes, and given testimony in court. Discover more:
6 6 University of Programme Details and Structure Aims and Objectives To provide you with detailed, specialised knowledge and understanding of a wide range of the latest analytical techniques used in forensic science. To enable you to analyse critically different techniques and to apply these in the forensic workplace. To develop independent thinking and learning, enabling you to apply these to select the most appropriate techniques for a particular case and subsequently analysing and interpreting the resulting forensic evidence. To help to extend and develop your career as a professional in forensic science and criminal justice. Programme Outline The Master s programme is studied by distance learning and takes months to complete. It consists of a number of compulsory and elective modules and culminates in a dissertation. You will have the choice of studying for the general MSc or opting to follow one of our specialist routes. The specialist routes include: Physical Evidence Biological Evidence Human Remains Start Date September/October each year. Next start date will be 30th September 2013 Duration months by distance learning. Year One (Oct-May) Compulsory modules Year Two (Oct-May) Themed elective modules Year Two (June-Sep/Dec) Semester One (Oct-Jan) Crime scene examination Trace evidence analysis Semester Two (Feb-May) Evidential value and interpretation Research methods Choose elective modules worth a minimum of 60 credits from the list offered by the Universities of, Florida and Canberra, with at least 30 credits from electives. See Page 8 Dissertation Master s Degree awarded Postgraduate Certificate* Postgraduate Diploma* *Exit awards
7 MSc in Forensic Science and Criminal Justice by distance learning 7 Programme Structure Each 60 credit year of taught study comprises a number of modules that you have to take and pass in order to proceed to the next year. The first year comprises four compulsory 15 credit modules that will equip you with the basics of understanding how forensic science is used to solve crime and how to critically analyse its use. The second year comprises elective modules. You will select your modules from a wide list offered by the Universities of, Florida and Canberra. You have choices across a number of topics but, if you wish, you can focus your choices around specialist themes that may be of particular interest to you or your sponsor. Your dissertation topic will be chosen from a number of broad fields and should reflect an area of particular interest to you. Core Modules Crime Scene Examination This module will focus on the physical evidence types that might be recovered from a crime scene as a means of identifying the offender. You will learn how to recover physical evidence from a crime scene and how to select the most appropriate technique for a given crime scenario. Recovery and packaging of different evidence types to ensure that evidence is not contaminated and the integrity of exhibits maintained will be covered. Trace Evidence This module will follow on from the Crime Scene Examination module and will focus on the underlying physics and chemistry of how the different techniques to recover and analyse physical evidence have developed and how they produce results. You will gain an appreciation of the many different analytical techniques that can be employed to examine physical evidence. Recent research and latest developments in the analysis of physical evidence will also be covered. Evaluation and Interpretation of Forensic Evidence This module will follow on from the Crime Scene Examination and Trace Evidence modules and will give you an appreciation of the evidential value of different evidence types and how the use of multiple analytical techniques might improve this. The interpretation of physical evidence in the context of a given crime scenario will be covered from the perspective of preparing expert evidence for a court of law. Recent research on the evidential value of physical evidence will also be covered. Research Methods This module aims to provide you with a range of skills and knowledge required at postgraduate level in physical and social science subjects for quantitative and qualitative research design, data collection, management and analysis. You will be introduced to some of the concepts and theories behind research, the ethical issues they may encounter whilst conducting research and how to go about researching sensitive topics. The module looks at the various approaches to research, providing guidance as to the appropriateness of certain methodologies in differing research scenarios.
8 8 University of Elective Modules You will choose elective modules worth a minimum of 60 credits from the list offered by the Universities of, Florida and Canberra, with at least 30 credits from electives. Up to a maximum of 30 credits may be gained from each theme, to enable you to benefit from studying a broad range of specialisms. You will make decisions about your elective modules towards the end of Year One in discussion with your tutor. Please note the portfolio of elective modules may be subject to change. Elective modules Specialist themes Module title University Credits Fingerprint corrosion Arson investigation Physical evidence Forensic engineering Weapons of mass destruction Florida 15 Blood distribution and spatter Florida 15 Environmental forensics I Canberra 15 Environmental forensics II Canberra 15 Biological evidence Forensic analysis of DNA Biological evidence and serology Florida 15 Forensic toxicology Florida 15 Human remains Forensic genetics Identification of body deposition sites Florida 15 Introduction to forensic archaeology Introduction to forensic anthropology Forensic entomology Florida 15 Management Crime scene management Forensic science and law Intelligence gathering and data mining
9 MSc in Forensic Science and Criminal Justice by distance learning 9 Learning and Assessment This distance learning programme takes advantage of the benefits of modern technology. How You Will Learn All of the material required for this programme will be delivered to you electronically, irrespective of the providing institution within the Global Forensics Network. Each module comprises a number of different elements designed to make the learning experience enjoyable and easy for you to tailor to your own style. Podcasts that set the scene for a particular topic are reinforced by voice over PowerPoint presentations to equip you with the basic scientific skills and understanding required. A number of self study activities supplement this learning. These are designed to enable you to expand your knowledge of a topic and to encourage you to think about what you have learned and how to apply it in the real world of forensic science. Each module also has at least one activity designed around a discussion group where you will have an opportunity to engage with other students, to exchange ideas and to comment on each other s views. Generally, a student will need to spend about 15 hours per week studying. Supporting Your Studies We understand that taking on postgraduate education whilst managing your career and other commitments may seem daunting. However we re committed to providing the best quality education and support that will enable you to succeed. You will be assigned a personal tutor for the duration of your studies. Your personal tutor will be an academic member of staff who will be able to offer advice and guidance throughout your studies. You will be offered personal tutor (virtual) meetings at two monthly intervals. At the outset of the course you will have the opportunity to visit the University for face-to-face meetings and induction / orientation sessions with our staff. You will have another chance to visit the campus prior to starting your dissertation in order to finalise your research topic, meet your supervisor, as well as refresh your study skills. Attending these sessions is not compulsory and all relevant information will be available online for those who are not able to visit campus. Dissertation supervisors will offer regular virtual supervisory sessions, using telephone or web-based tools when you reach this point in your studies. The programme administrator will be your first point of contact and will attempt to address any query you might have and, if not able to address the issue, will distribute enquiries as appropriate, primarily to the personal tutor or module leader. We recognise that, occasionally, work or family situations will change and therefore you may require an interruption to your studies. Here at the University of you will find us supportive of your needs and sympathetic to requests to halt or slow down your studies. You will be offered personal tutor (virtual) meetings four times a year to coincide with key stages in your studies. Assessment Each module is assessed by two written assignments, a short one (750-1,000 words) about half way through the module and then a longer piece of work at the end of the module (2,500-3,500 words). In addition, you will also be assessed throughout each module based on your participation in facilitated Blackboard discussion groups. This method of assessment is intended to enable both you and your tutors to see how well you are understanding the work as the module progresses so that any difficulties can be resolved prior to the larger written assignment. Each module also includes at least two multiple choice quizzes that are not assessed but designed to enable you to check that you have understood the work as the module progresses. After completing your elective modules, you will complete a dissertation of approximately 15,000-20,000 words, may be related to the work-based issues you are facing. The assessment of elective modules may vary with partner institutions. No assessment will be made by traditional examinations.
10 University of Career Progression A postgraduate qualification is an investment in your future. Like you, we are keen that your investment pays off. There is no doubt that studying for a postgraduate qualification can help your career prospects you will gain the deeper knowledge and high end skills and that will set you apart. Studying with us gives a clear signal to employers. It demonstrates that you have the spark, ambition and commitment to take your career to the next level. Your employer will also benefit directly from your newly acquired understanding and capabilities. This programme will equip you with the ability to evaluate and interpret different forms of forensic evidence and to consider its relevance to police investigations. You will also acquire an understanding of the many and varied techniques used to forensically examine different evidence types and how to sequence multiple techniques. The breadth of modules will enable you to acquire this skill and knowledge in a wide range of disciplines. Such skill and knowledge is an essential part of being able to demonstrate to a court of law that you are credible as an expert witness and able, therefore, to give opinion to a jury. We will offer guidance in skills evaluation at the outset of the programme, which may help when considering whether a specialist route is right for you. You will receive further guidance as you enter your dissertation. Careers Service As a student you will also be able to make use of the University Careers Service. They are well positioned to offer you guidance and support at any time during your time with us. Their huge range of programmes and awards are specifically designed to help you get ahead in your chosen career. 1. Succeed in Your Studies If you are returning to education, we know that getting to grips with styles of learning can be a challenge. However it is important if you are going to get the most out of your degree. The Careers Service s Learning Development team provides you with services and resources to help you extend and develop your academic skills through online tools and individually tailored advice. 2. Gain Experience In a competitive jobs market, having that little bit extra can make all the difference. At you can build on your talents and add to your CV with a number of employability programmes and awards offered by the Careers Service including the online version of our Award. 3. Develop Your Career Find out more about all the services offered by our Careers Service If you are looking for a change of direction in your working life, the Careers Service offers a wide selection of one-to-one careers consultations, workshops and webinars covering interview and assessment centre skills, psychometric testing and CVs, covering letters and application forms. Through the Careers Service events, you can also meet a range of employers and find out directly the careers paths that are open to you.
11 MSc in Forensic Science and Criminal Justice by distance learning 11 We revolutionised crime detection when we invented genetic fingerprinting. How will you change the world? The morning of September 1984 was Professor Sir Alec Jeffreys Eureka moment and the discovery of genetic fingerprinting at the University of. The implications of the discovery of DNA fingerprinting were to become massively far reaching, with applications in crime, testing paternity, twin studies, conservation and diversity and immigration, amongst others. Discover more:
12 12 University of Entry Requirements, How to Apply and Fees Applications are assessed on a case-by-case basis and we welcome them from students from a range of backgrounds and educational experiences. If you do not hold an academic qualification, we may be able to consider you on the basis of extensive and relevant work experience. Suitable candidates for the MSc Forensic Science and Criminal Justice will normally hold: A 2.1 UK honours degree or its overseas equivalent Or extensive and relevant work experience. English Language If your first language is not English you will need to satisfy the University s English language requirement. For example: IELTS 6.5 OR TOEFL 575 (Paper) plus TWE 4.0, 90 (IBT) More information about meeting the University s English requirements can be found at: To Apply Please complete our online application form. This can be done online at Please submit the following: Your completed application form. What happens when we receive your application? Once we receive your application and all supporting documents we aim to make a decision about your application within one week. If your application is successful, confirmation will be sent to you with details about what to do next. If your application is unsuccessful we will notify you by . Fees For 2013 entry the course fees will be 8,825 If your application is successful we will send you instructions about how to make payment. We offer a number of payment plans which means that you can pay your tuition fees in instalments if you would prefer. We accept a number of payment methods, including credit or debit card, bank transfer and sterling cheques. There will be no extra charges for studying elective modules with partner institutions. Copies of your degree/ qualification certificates. Copies of your transcripts of your modules and marks. Proof of English language competence, if applicable. If you have any questions about the entry requirements or application procedure, please contact the University of Distance Learning Team by telephoning +44 (0) or ing
13 MSc in Forensic Science and Criminal Justice by distance learning 13 Frequently Asked Questions How long will the course last? Studying our programmes by distance learning provides you with a more flexible approach to studying, meaning that you don t have to take a career break to get ahead. You can study in your own time and your own space. This also means that you can apply new knowledge and insights to your working life while you are still studying, with many students choosing to tackle work-related topics in their dissertations. The standard period of registration for this programme is months. It may be possible to take a break due to unforseen circumstances of a maximum of one year. You are provided with a timetable when you start the programme and key study targets are identified to enable effective time management. We recommend that you set aside 15 hours for studying per week. While it may be possible to complete your dissertation in three months, you may extend by up to a further three months should you need to. How will I be taught? As a distance learning student you will be supported by a dedicated team of tutors and support staff. Studying away from the campus is enabled through bespoke module study books available electronically and Blackboard, our virtual learning environment. Blackboard is the hub of our distance learning support system and through it you can access: Further information and materials to support each module. Study skills support to help you with writing essays, referencing materials and constructing arguments. Support forums hosted by Module Tutors, and Discussion forums and chat rooms where you can network with fellow students all over the world. The Digital Library, with thousands of articles, books and market reports, and other University support services. The latest news and information on your programme. Can I visit the campus? Yes as a University of student you are able to visit the campus at any time. You will be issued with a University Library/ID card and we encourage you to visit the University and make use of its facilities. As part of the programme you will be invited to attend two sets of workshops. The first will be held after registration and before the start of the course, in late September each year. This offers a great opportunity to meet fellow students and your tutors whilst being introduced to the programme and learning materials. The second workshop will focus on providing dissertation support, towards the end of the programme. Attending these sessions is not compulsory and all relevant information will be available online for those who are not able to visit campus. Our graduation ceremonies all take place on the University of campus. Attendance at these is optional, but many distance learning students welcome the chance to come to the University, meet fellow graduates and celebrate their success.
14 14 University of What if I m not able to complete the full MSc? Students who choose to leave the programme before completing the full masters may be able to claim an exit award. After successful completion of the four compulsory modules you can leave with the award of Postgraduate Certificate in Forensic Science and Criminal Justice. And after completion of the elective modules you may be able to leave with the award of Postgraduate Diploma in Forensic Science and Criminal Justice. Will I incur any additional costs? Your tuition fees cover the range of services that you will receive, including access to Blackboard, the provision of study support, and materials. You will not have to buy any text books unless you wish to do so. All of the study support materials described above are included in the course fee. In addition, you will have access to the University of Library s electronic services, the Digital Library, which includes a large number of e-journals and e-books. If you live close to you can of course visit the Library in person. For UK based students who wish to use other libraries, the Library can issue you with a card which allows you to do so. This is a national scheme which allows distance learning students to borrow material from up to three other participating libraries. Do I need access to the Internet? You will need to make sure that you have regular access to the internet in order that you can interact fully with Blackboard. Blackboard is an evolving environment, with new material being added on a weekly basis and students are expected to make full use of it. To make full use of the materials on Blackboard you will need a Broadband connection. I ve got more questions! Where can I get more information? Talk to the University of Distance Learning Team, by telephoning +44 (0) or ing You can also find more information by visiting our website: go.le.ac.uk/forensic-dl
15 MSc in Forensic Science and Criminal Justice by distance learning 15 Library As a distance learner, you ll have access to the David Wilson Library s comprehensive online catalogue: tens of thousands of journals, e- books and the Research Archive of research papers and theses from members of the University. You can use the Digital Library from anywhere you have an Internet connection. We can also arrange postal loans for books, as well as remote access to your files and . Distance learners also benefit from Blackboard, the University s Virtual Learning Environment. Blackboard is stacked with resources from useful web links to downloadable content and podcasts, as well as discussion forums, allowing you to interact with your colleagues all over the world. As a student you are welcome to come on to campus and use our facilities at any time. The Library offers self-service loan and return, group study rooms, hundreds of PCs, wireless access throughout, staffed Help Zones, 24-hour opening during term time, plus a bookshop and café. As a postgraduate, you will also benefit from the Graduate School Reading Room for the exclusive use of postgraduates and staff, which has additional study spaces and bookable group study rooms. A PC zone is also reserved for postgraduates. The Library:
16 Contact Details Distance Learning Team University of LE1 7RH t: +44(0) e: w: go.le.ac.uk/forensic-dl All information in this brochure was correct at the time of going to press. However, changes and developments are part of the life of the University, and alterations may occur to the programmes and services described in this brochure. University of LE1 7RH UK This was printed by Print Services, University of, using vegetable based inks on FSC certified stock 4248_03/12