Would you like to gain an insight into criminal profiling and crime scene investigation, while exploring how and why crimes are committed?
Our four-year MSci course oﬀers study of subjects such as crime scene analysis and management, and advanced physical evidence analysis. You’ll complete an independent forensic science research project and you can study for a PRINCE2 Foundation qualification in project management.
Accredited by The Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences, the MSci Forensic Science with Criminology allows you to explore your interests in the scientific and forensic investigation of crime, while exploring the nature, consequences and prevention of criminal behaviour.
You’ll be introduced to many traditional fields of crime scene analysis, including the scientific investigations of fires and homicides, plus a range of approaches from the field of chemistry.
The wellbeing and health and safety of our students and staff is paramount to us. We are committed to delivering all of our courses and services as safely as possible. Due to the pandemic, the methods and activities adopted for the coming year may differ from those previously published and may be subject to further change through the course of your study if such change is necessary due to public health concerns, health and safety guidance or in response to Government Guidelines. USW is committed to providing you with a fantastic student experience and a wealth of support, and you can hear how students have benefitted from this approach here: Learn more about blended learning.
Our four-year MSci Forensic Science with Criminology course offers study of subjects such as crime scene analysis and management, and advanced physical evidence analysis. You’ll complete an independent forensic science research project and you can study for a PRINCE2 Foundation qualification in project management.
You will explore crime scene investigation and the criminal justice sector with analytical and forensic investigations, to provide a full scientific and statistical evaluation of evidence. What's more, you'll study relationships between professionals in the criminal justice sector, including how forensic scientists work alongside police forensic teams and the wider criminal justice sector to achieve successful prosecutions.
Modules in years one to three are taught linearly across three academic terms, meaning that you will usually receive a lecture in each module every week, allowing you to build up your knowledge throughout the year. This will also be supplemented by practical work in our Crime Scene Training Facility or in our laboratories, and especially in year one, small group tutorials to offer you extra academic study support.
In years two and three, we encourage a greater level of independent directed study, and there is greater time spent developing your analytical skills in our laboratories.
In year four, modules are taught through the block-mode approach, meaning study is more intensive, and is focussed upon one module at one time. This allows you to conduct longer, more involved practicals and research-style experiments to gain greater exposure to these higher level skills. The research project is usually taken over the summer in year four.
Our forensic science research is driven by our backgrounds as practitioners – either working with UK police, forensic service providers or through academia. We are interested in applied science projects that have practical applications in forensic case work scenarios.
You will be assessed using a broad range of methods which will focus upon your academic knowledge and practical and vocational skills, including written laboratory reports, evidence case files, expert witness style statements, online tests, short essays and in-term and end of year formal examinations and tests.
You will also create a written scientific dissertation in year four which is evidence of the outcomes of your research project. Oral presentations and cross-examinations also form part of the assessment methods to encourage you to develop your communication skills for the workplace and the courtroom. You will also complete a PRINCE2 foundation examination in year four.
The MSci Forensic Science with Criminology programme is accredited by The Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences.
You will train in our Forensic Science facilities where you will learn key skills in our purpose-built laboratories and in our scenes of crime house.
You'll gain practical experience using state-of-the-art instrumentation scenarios found in modern forensic analysis laboratories, plus comprehensive training in crime scene investigation protocols by conducting casework-based experiments and processing simulated scenarios in our Crime Scene Training Facility on campus.
Entry criteria detail typical offers but USW considers all applications on an individual basis which means that we could make offers based on qualifications, personal profile and experience. Combinations of qualifications are acceptable and other qualifications not listed may also be acceptable.
Please note that whilst this course does not require a DBS Check for entry, some professions will not consider candidates who have certain types of criminal convictions.
Therefore, if you have a criminal conviction and you are considering a particular career path we would recommend that you check with the relevant professional body or refer to their recruitment policy to make sure that your conviction will not disadvantage you.
BBC to include Chemistry and another Science but to exclude General Studies
Grade C and BB at A Level to include Chemistry and another Science but to exclude General Studies
BTEC Extended Diploma Distinction Merit Merit in a relevant subject to include Chemistry modules
Pass the International Baccalaureate Diploma with a minimum score of 30 overall including a score of 5 in Chemistry and one other Science subject at Higher Level. You will also need to obtain a score of 5 or above in English at standard level.
An Access to Higher Education Diploma Science with 60 credits overall to include 45 level 3 credits equating to 18 Distinctions, 24 Merits and 3 Passes to include Biology and Chemistry modules
GCSEs: The University normally requires a minimum 5 GCSEs including Mathematics and English at Grade C or above, or their equivalent but consideration is given to individual circumstances
We also welcome international applications with equivalent qualifications. Please visit the country specific pages on our international website for exact details.
In general, international applicants will need to have achieved an overall IELTS grade of 6.0 with a minimum score of 5.5 in each component.
However, if you have previously studied through the medium of English IELTS might not be required, but please visit the country specific page on our international website for exact details. If your country is not featured please contact us.
Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.
Find out how to pay your tuition fees in full or by payment plan.
This course is eligible under the Enhanced Learning Credits scheme for Ex-Armed Forces personnel.
International Scholarships are available for self-funding international students.
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.
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.
Employment prospects for those with a MSci Forensic Science with Criminology degree are very good. You will have a much increased set of practical skills to offer employers, including skills in research, method development and project management Analytical Scientists such as forensic scientists have a wealth of career opportunities available to them in the field of forensics and elsewhere. We would anticipate that most graduates will obtain positions as scientists in laboratories with forensic science service providers such as in toxicology or physical evidence examination laboratories, or related analytical industries where quality assurance and the use of instrumentation for analyte quantification or detection plays a significant part of the process.
With experience and employment, graduates should have the scope to aspire to becoming reporting scientists, expert witnesses or laboratory managers. Good analytical scientists have the capacity to work in the area, and in teaching or research. Additionally, your background in criminology should allow you to further study within this subject area in terms of research, or work in the wider criminal justice sector.
As a USW Forensic Science 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.