Would you like to enter the fascinating field of forensic science but don't have a traditional science background? Our Forensic Investigation course allows students without a science background, or those with a specific interest in this field, to acquire knowledge relating to the use of forensic techniques in a wide range of criminal investigations. These include areas such as sport and competition, consumer protection and authenticity, wildlife crime, and various forms of terrorism.
As part of your Forensic Investigation training, you'll gain practical skills in volume crime scene examination, analysis of forensic evidence, and courtroom simulations. You'll also learn about the structure and processes that regulate the criminal justice system, and the law associated with criminal investigation. You'll undertake simulated investigations in our multi-room Crime Scene House, ranging from domestic burglaries and vehicle examinations to more complex scenes such as arson and homicide. You'll study several cases and learn about the forensic techniques used to solve the crime, and be able to critically appraise and evaluate forensic approaches.
Our chemistry and analytical laboratories are of a standard you would expect to find in industry. If you choose to study one of our courses, you will make full use of the George Knox laboratories and gain hands-on experience using extensive analytical equipment. This will allow you to develop a portfolio of highly desirable practical skills that you can add to your CV. In particular, when using the more specialised equipment and facilities, you will find yourself working in groups of up to just four or five students.
Our laboratory facilities include a dedicated organic chemistry laboratory; a combined inorganic/physical chemistry laboratory; two large general instrument laboratories that house analytical instruments such as UV/visible spectrometers, infrared spectrometers, fluorescence spectrometers, optical emission spectrometers, and gas and liquid chromatographs; a dedicated student research laboratory and two specialist laboratories for performing nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectrometry and scanning electron microscopy In addition, students have access to the laboratories and instrumentation in the University's Sustainable Environment Research Centre (SERC) which include ultra-high performance liquid chromatograph tandem mass spectrometers, ion chromatographs and headspace gas chromatographs. View our Forensic Science facilities.
You will be taught by staff in our analytical and forensic science team which consist of specialist forensic science practitioners, experts in DNA analysis and bloodstain pattern analysis, experts in forensic toxicology, crime scene investigators and chartered chemists.
- Helen Higgins, Forensic Investigation course leader
- Mark Boulter, Forensic Investigation course leader
- Nigel Hodge
- Dr Paul Jones
- Richard Price
- Dr Stephen Ling
- Dr Harriet Pierpoint
- Dr Sorcha Diskin
- Stuart Simpson
- Dr John Morton
- Stuart Twigg
- Dr Gareth Powell
- Sharan Johnstone
- James Nutt
- Dr Ross Davies
We also employ several specialists within the forensic field to deliver training on this course to enhance your study.
The BSc Forensic Investigation degree will help you develop the academic, vocational and personal skills needed to pursue a variety of caeers. These include roles in crime scene and forensic investigation units, and in the wider criminal justice sector. The course is designed to also develop transferrable skills that you can apply to a range of occupations requiring a scientific analytical background.
Our Careers and Employability Service
As a USW student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.
This includes: one-to-one appointments from faculty based Career Advisers, in person, over the phone or even on Skype and through email via the "Ask a Question" service. We also have extensive online resources for help with considering your career options and presenting yourself well to employers. Resources include psychometric tests, career assessments, a CV builder, interview simulator and application help. Our employer database has over 2,000 registered employers targeting USW students, you can receive weekly email alerts for jobs.
Our Careers service has dedicated teams: A central work experience team to help you find relevant placements; an employability development team which includes an employability programme called Grad Edge; and an Enterprise team focused on new business ideas and entrepreneurship.
MSci or BSc?
UK and EU students
Apply via UCAS if you are a UK/EU residing applicant, applying for year one of a full-time undergraduate degree, Foundation Year, Foundation Degree or HND and you have not applied through UCAS before. If you are applying to study part-time, to top up your Foundation Degree or HND, or to transfer to USW from another institution, please apply directly.
Apply directly to the University if you live outside the UK/EU.
Fees and funding
All fees are per year. Once you have started your course, your fee will remain the same for each year of study.
August 2017 - July 2018 Fees
- Full-time UK and EU: £9000
- Full-time International: £11900
August 2018 - July 2019 Fees
- Full-time UK and EU: TBC
- Full-time International: TBC
Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University's library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student's own expense.