Biological and Forensic Science BSc (Hons)

 

Course Code

UCAS Code: CF94
International Code: HLSU248

Location

Coventry University (Coventry)

 

Study mode

Full-time
Sandwich

Duration

3 years full-time
4 years full-time (study abroad or work placement)

Start date

September 2023

We are reviewing this course for 2023-24 entry and the validated module information will be added shortly. Please keep checking back on this course page to see our latest updates.


Course overview

Study level: Undergraduate

The Biological and Forensic Science BSc (Hons) course combines the rich diverse study of biology and the living world, with the forensic challenge of using scientific analysis to decipher legal cases.

This course provides graduates with a broad perspective that is very appealing to employers. The biology content supports employment in biological research and industry whilst the forensic science elements further broaden employment options, to include a range of forensic roles.

  • It aims to blend the study of human biology with the techniques used in forensic laboratories, including analysis of blood, fibres, particulates, fingerprints, drugs, documents, DNA, fire/explosives residue and other trace evidence.
  • You will be taught key experimental techniques and develop essential experimental, data handling, reporting and broader scientific skills, such as literature researching, information technology, bioinformatics, data processing and the use of statistics.
  • Our experienced staff aim to adopt a ‘Crime Scene to Court’ approach to their teaching, which should help you to understand forensic science, in particular the need to methodically collect samples, analyse them and present the results to the standard required by the courts.
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Global Ready

An international outlook, with global opportunities

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Teaching excellence

Taught by lecturers who are experts in their field

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Employability

Career ready graduates, with the skills to succeed

Why you should study this course

  • A teaching team of multidisciplinary experts from various subjects, including biologists, chemists, pharmacologists, toxicologists, forensic scientists, investigators and lawyers who bring their research and practical experiences into their teaching.
  • Hands-on practical experience, both in the state-of-the-art Superlab+ and in the immersive crime scene simulation houses and outdoor search and decomposition facilities4, so that students can confidently walk into a graduate job knowing that they have already used the same equipment used in hospital, commercial, police and research laboratories
  • A 3D printing lab where students can learn to design and 3D-print their own creations.
  • Regular expert guest lectures from professionals in their field, who provide insight into the numerous employability options available (subject to availability).
  • Opportunities to study international cold cases and take a global approach to their studies with collaborative online projects and the possibility of international field trips2.
No. 2

for graduate prospects in Forensic Science

The Complete University Guide 2022


How you'll learn

Teaching methods include lectures, seminars, tutorials, laboratory work, workshops, textbooks, module webs, journals (hard copies and electronic) within theory and laboratory-based modules.

Teaching contact hours

We understand that everyone learns differently, so each of our courses will consist of structured teaching sessions, which can include:

  • On campus lectures, seminars and workshops
  • Group work
  • Self-directed learning
  • Work placement opportunities.

If you would like more information, you can request information about teaching hours.

Part of university life is undertaking self-directed learning. During a typical week you will have time that allows you to work independently to apply the skills and knowledge you have learnt in taught or facilitated sessions to your projects or assignment briefs. This self-directed learning allows you to use your research skills, consolidate your knowledge or undertake collaborative group work.

As an innovative and enterprising institution, the university may seek to utilise emerging technologies within the student experience. For all courses (whether on-campus, blended, or distance learning), the university may deliver certain contact hours and assessments via online technologies and methods.


Assessment

This course will be assessed using a variety of methods which will vary depending upon the module. Assessment methods include:

  • Tests
  • Essays
  • Group work
  • Presentations
  • Reports
  • Projects
  • Coursework
  • Individual Assignments
  • Laboratory competency tests
  • Portfolios

The Coventry University Group assessment strategy ensures that our courses are fairly assessed and allows us to monitor student progression towards the achieving the intended learning outcomes.


International experience opportunities

Previous students in our department have been successful in securing places to study in Spain, France, Canada and the US.

The Biological and Forensic Sciences course attracts many international students, providing a diverse learning experience. This enhances the discussion of issues such as genetic inheritance, criminal justice and biomedical interventions and provides all students with a global perspective of developments in both human biology and forensic science.

Please note that all international experience opportunities may be subject to additional costs, competitive application, availability and meeting applicable visa and travel requirements are therefore not guaranteed2.


Entry requirements

Typical offer for 2023 entry.

Requirement What we're looking for
A Level BBC to include Biology. Excludes General Studies.
BTEC DMM in the BTEC Level 3 Extended National Diploma in a Biological Science subject.
IB Diploma 30 points to include a minimum of 5 points in Biology at Higher Level.
GCSE requirement 5 GCSEs at grade 4 / C or above to include English, Mathematics and two Sciences.

We recognise a breadth of qualifications, speak to one of our advisers today to find out how we can help you.

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Are you eligible for the Fair Access Scheme?

We believe every student should have the opportunity to dream big, reach their potential and succeed, regardless of their background.

Fair Access Scheme

Typical offer for 2023 entry.

Select your region to find detailed information about entry requirements:

You can view our full list of country specific entry requirements on our Entry requirements page.

If you do not have the typical entry requirements, you may want to consider studying this course with an international foundation year. Upon successful completion our International Foundation Year - Biosciences will provide you with the knowledge and skills you need to progress onto this undergraduate degree.

Alternatively, visit our International hub for further advice and guidance on finding in-country agents and representatives, joining our in-country events and how to apply.

English language requirements

  • IELTS: 6.0 overall (with at least 5.5 in each component area)

If you don't meet the English language requirements, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

For more information on our approved English language tests visit our English language requirements page.

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Fees and funding

2023/24 Tuition fees

Student Full time Part time
UK TBC per year Not available
International TBC per year Not available

If you choose to do a work placement, you should consider travel and living costs to cover this. There is also a tuition fee of £1,250 that will cover your academic support throughout your placement year.

For advice and guidance on tuition fees and student loans visit our Undergraduate Finance page and see The University’s Tuition Fee and Refund Terms and Conditions.

We offer a range of International scholarships to students all over the world. For more information, visit our International Scholarships page.

Tuition fees cover the cost of your teaching, assessments, facilities and support services. There may be additional costs not covered by this fee such as accommodation and living costs, recommended reading books, stationary, printing and re-assessments should you need them. Find out what's included in your tuition costs.


Facilities

This course is taught at the Coventry University main campus and you will benefit from its state-of-the-art SuperLab+ where students learn to carry out a wide range of experimental techniques using the same equipment found in hospital, commercial, police and research laboratories.

Facilities4 also include immersive crime scene houses, a mock courtroom and an Analytical Chemistry Suite.

Forensic crime scene tape over an open door

Community houses

Immersive crime scene simulation houses, outdoor search and decomposition facilities.
 

 

 


 

superlab facilities

SuperLab

The Alison Gingell building contains a state-of-the-art SuperLab. The lab's facilities include equipment for microscopy, DNA analysis and forensic testing.
 
 


 

Female in a white lab coat holding a plastic beaker, with a male and female standing behind wearing lab coats

Analytical Chemistry suite

The Analytical Chemistry Suite is a dedicated space for chemistry-based teaching. Students can complete ‘wet’ chemistry and preparatory work, complemented by a comprehensive suite of analytical equipment which includes ICP-OES, uHPLC, HPLC, Fluorescence Spectrometers, UV Spectrometers, GC, and GC-MS.


Careers and opportunities

Highly multidisciplinary in its approach, the course brings together a wide range of key subjects.

In biology, the course explores areas like biochemistry, molecular and cell biology, immunology, human physiology, and microbiology. Forensic science topics covered include blood spatter, fingerprints, toxicology, anthropology and taphonomy. This combination of the two subjects is unique in the field and gives our graduates a broad perspective that is very appealing to employers. Graduates also gain hands-on experience of DNA profiling, as well as the digital fluency with databases and bioinformatics that underpins both areas of science.

Students graduate with the knowledge to tackle challenges such as stopping the spread of disease, improving public health, as well as the practical skills and abilities to analyse, interpret and present evidence. This side specialism in forensic sciences also provides excellent tangible evidence of problem-solving, critical thinking, anti-contamination technique, good record-keeping, teamwork, interpersonal skills and professionalism.

Our students are equipped to pursue a wide range of careers. The extensive biology content supports employment in biological research and industry, including pharmaceutical, microbiology or food quality-testing laboratories, as well as medical and scientific equipment sales. The forensic science elements further broaden employment options, to include DNA analyst, DNA reporting officer and forensic scientist jobs. The multidisciplinary course prepares graduates for a wide range of careers, such as data analysis, scientific writing and teaching roles.


How to apply

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  • 1Accreditations

    The majority of our courses have been formally recognised by professional bodies, which means the courses have been reviewed and tested to ensure they reach a set standard. In some instances, studying on an accredited course can give you additional benefits such as exemptions from professional exams (subject to availability, fees may apply). Accreditations, partnerships, exemptions and memberships shall be renewed in accordance with the relevant bodies’ standard review process and subject to the university maintaining the same high standards of course delivery.

    2UK and international opportunities

    Please note that we are unable to guarantee any UK or International opportunities (whether required or optional) such as internships, work experience, field trips, conferences, placements or study abroad opportunities and that all such opportunities may be subject to additional costs (which could include, but is not limited to, equipment, materials, bench fees, studio or facilities hire, travel, accommodation and visas), competitive application, availability and/or meeting any applicable travel COVID and visa requirements. To ensure that you fully understand the visa requirements, please contact the International Office.

    3Tuition fees

    The University will charge the tuition fees that are stated in the above table for the first Academic Year of study. The University will review tuition fees each year. For Home Students, if Parliament permit an increase in tuition fees, the University may increase fees for each subsequent year of study in line with any such changes. Note that any increase is expected to be in line with inflation.

    For International Students, we may increase fees each year but such increases will be no more than 5% above inflation. If you defer your course start date or have to extend your studies beyond the normal duration of the course (e.g. to repeat a year or resit examinations) the University reserves the right to charge you fees at a higher rate and/or in accordance with any legislative changes during the additional period of study.

    4Facilities

    Facilities are subject to availability. Due to the ongoing restrictions relating to COVID-19, some facilities (including some teaching and learning spaces) may vary from those advertised and may have reduced availability or restrictions on their use.

    Student Contract

    By accepting your offer of a place and enrolling with us, a Student Contract will be formed between you and the university. The 2022/23 Contract is currently being updated so please revisit this page before submitting your application. The Contract details your rights and the obligations you will be bound by during your time as a student and contains the obligations that the university will owe to you. You should read the Contract before you accept an offer of a place and before you enrol at the university.