This course is available as a full-time three-year or optional four-year sandwich course, the latter incorporating a work placement or study year in a related field with previous students working as Forensic Intelligence Operators for Maryland Police in the USA or analysts at Veolia Environmental Services, for example. For the previous two years, this course has achieved a positive destination score of 100% in the Destinations of Leavers from HE (DLHE) survey. This survey collects information on what all leavers from higher education (HE) programmes are doing six months after qualifying, with those undertaking graduate jobs or further study deemed to have a positive destination.
The applied nature of the course has led to consistently high levels of student satisfaction – 100% for the quality of teaching in the National Student Survey (NSS) 2016 with 100% of students saying that the teaching team was good at explaining things and enthusiastic about what they teach.
We offer a range of practical classes, where you will undertake analysis of real samples such as bodily fluids like blood and saliva, environmental samples like soil, food and agricultural elements, such as soft drinks, and pharmaceutical agents, as well as forensically specific samples such as drugs of abuse and fire debris. In order to analyse this, you will use a range of analytical equipment including ICP-OES, GC-MS, HPLC, ATR-FT-IR, analytical titrations and DNA prisms. These deliver a logical acquisition and development of laboratory skills.
Throughout the course, there will be opportunities to receive insight from the latest research and input from guest speakers in specific areas of analytical chemistry and forensic science, such as environmental disaster management and offender profiling. Each year, the School of Life Sciences also organises a trip for a number of students to go to Malawi, the UN identified ‘poorest country in the world’, to carry out charitable work in science education, environmental improvement, medical assessment and development and reconstruction.
Teaching methods include:
lectures, seminars, tutorials, laboratory work, workshops, textbooks, module webs, journals (hard copies and electronic) within theory and laboratory-based modules.