AP0400 - Practical Skills in Forensic Science

What will I learn on this module?

On this module you will cover the basic scientific knowledge and practical skills required of a scientist. Topics will include microscopy, required mathematical calcllations, basic laboratory skills such as use of Gilson pipettes, practices of documenting forensic examinations, scientific report writing and referencing and presentation skills.

How will I learn on this module?

This module will be delivered by a combination of lectures and laboratory practical sessions. The laboratory sessions are designed to allow you to learn and develop your practical skills based upon the theory taught in lectures and also the recording of scientific information accurately, in a concise manner and presenting such findings to a ‘lay audience’, which is a key skill in forensic science. The use of case studies facilitates discussion of fundamental issues in these cases. Directed reading and your independent study will enhance both the taught and practical sessions.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

You will be supported through active participation and discussion during laboratory practicals. These offer a unique opportunity to fully understand the scientific theory underpinning the laboratory tests and the interpretation of your scientific findings.
All lecture and practical material will be available on the University’s eLearning Portal, supplemented with guidance on further reading relevant to the subjects.
Written assessment feedback will also be provided to allow you to understand how you performed and how you can build on this performance in subsequent assessments within your programme.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at: http://readinglists.northumbria.ac.uk
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team – http://library.northumbria.ac.uk/readinglists)

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:

• You will be able to recognise the range of forensic techniques available and their value for analysis of different evidence types

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:

• Exhibit a basic competence in key practical laboratory skills required for study at level 5, whilst applying good laboratory practice (GLP)
• Develop verbal and written communication skills in the delivery of factual information relating to forensic science topics

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):

• Demonstrate aptitude in the intellectual skills required to become a forensic graduate

How will I be assessed?

a. Formative assessment and rationale for task questions will be embedded within lectures to enable you to assess your knowledge and understanding of delivered material and prepare you for the summative exams. Formative laboratory sessions will help develop your skills in individual aspects of forensic examinations and establish the theory delivered within the lectures. These will enable you to gain confidence in the laboratory in advance of the summative laboratory assessment.

b. Summative assessment and rationale for task
Laboratory practical assessment (70%) MLO's 1,4 will take place at the end of the module and will allow you to evidence your laboratory skills accrued during the formative practical laboratory sessions.
The second assessed component of this module will include a group oral presentation on a forensic topic that will be communicated to you at the beginning of the module that will allow you to start develop confidence in oral presentations, communication skills and group working skills (30%) MLO's 2,3,4.

c. Feedback strategy
Individual written feedback will be provided for the summative laboratory practical as well as for the oral presentation. All feedback will be provided by within the university timeline guidelines.





Module abstract

The content of this module includes the basic scientific knowledge and practical skills required of a scientist. This module will be delivered by a combination of lectures and laboratory practical sessions. The laboratories are designed to allow the student to acquire and develop practical skills based upon the theory taught in lectures. The recording of scientific information accurately and in a concise manner and presenting such findings to a ‘lay audience’ is another key skill in forensic science.The use of case studies facilitates both written and communication skills within the module.

Course info

UCAS Code MF94

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years full-time or 4 years full-time with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department Applied Sciences

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024 or September 2025

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


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