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Postgraduate study
Forensic Science (with Advanced Practice)

Forensic Science (with Advanced Practice) MSc

The MSc Forensic Science (with Advanced Practice) concentrates on practices, procedures and analytical techniques used within forensic science, and how they are applied in support of the investigation of crime.


Course overview


This course is accredited by The Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences.On completing this course you will be able to demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of forensic science and how scientific methods are applied to the investigation of crime. You benefit from our links with practitioners and other professional organisations relevant to the field of forensic science. Key members of staff are former forensic scientists or crime scene scientists with considerable operational experience. Expect to carry out analytical and practical work in the University’s on-campus forensic facilities including specialist analytical laboratories, crime scene house laboratory and forensic chemistry and biology laboratories.

This two-year master’s degree with advanced practice enhances your qualification by adding to the one-year master’s programme a vocational or research based internship. A vocational internship is a great way to gain work experience and give your CV a competitive edge. A research internship provides you with the opportunity to develop your analytical, team-working, research and academic skills by working alongside a research team in an academic setting. We guarantee a research internship, but cannot guarantee a vocational internship. We will, however, provide you with practical support and advice on how to find and secure your own vocational internship position should you prefer this type of internship.

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Course details

For the MSc with advanced practice, you complete 120 credits of taught modules, a 60-credit master’s research project and 60 credits of advanced practice.

Course structure

Core modules

Advanced Research Project

You complete a major hypothesis-driven research project in your discipline, working independently and at a high level. Using discipline-specific laboratory, database or computational research methodologies, you interrogate a hypothesis in a specialised area of research. Your skills in research and knowledge creation are developed. You must demonstrate comprehensive and objective analysis, developing innovative and constructive proposals for the solution to the project topic. Your supervisor(s) and their research team provide support and guidance, but a high degree of autonomy is required. Additional support is provided by technical and learning support staff.

Advanced/Applied Practice in Health & Life Sciences

You complete advanced practice (AP) when you study our two-year postgraduate courses. Completed over one semester (12 weeks), you gain additional experience and enhance your employability and academic learning.
You normally complete one of the below AP internship types:
• a research or development internship developed by Teesside University staff
• an employer-led internship developed by the employer partner
• a virtual internship working on projects for an external organisation
• a vocational internship with an external organisation.
All internships are located at our Middlesbrough or Darlington campus (including NHC), apart from the vocational internship which is located at the external organisation.
The AP internship is related to your course. You receive preparatory sessions, normally in the semester before (delivered by our Student Futures team) and an introductory session from the module leader.

You are expected to complete at least 400 hours of AP work, including preparation for AP, induction, training and any personal or professional development completed.

You receive 12 hours of supervision (normally 1 hour per week) and are assigned an AP supervisor (a member of University staff) to support and assess your work. Your supervisor’s role varies depending upon the internship type (explained in the learning strategy). As a minimum, they meet with you at the start, mid-point and end of the internship, coordinate meetings and are the point of contact for internship providers. You are also allocated a work-based mentor who functions as your supervisor when completing specific internship types.

Analytical Techniques in Heritage Crime

Use your interdisciplinary knowledge to investigate national and international heritage sites, evaluating the threat to cultural assets, such as paintings, sculptures and buildings. Appraise current legislation surrounding heritage crime and protection and explore scientific instrumentation to detect, monitor and develop strategies to manage heritage crime. Through case studies, you assess some of the ethical considerations associated with heritage crime. You develop your analysis of scientific literature and problem-solving.

Criminal Justice and the Forensic Practitioner

Forensic practitioners are called upon to do crucial work in evidence recovery, analysis and interpretation in some of society’s most challenging situations (such as crime scenes, custody blocks and mortuaries) and. Getting to a successful outcome in a courtroom means navigating the complexities of the criminal justice system, understanding the components of crimes, knowing the rules of evidence and skilfully delivering written and verbal testimony. This module addresses these questions from the point of view of a potential expert witness. Drawing on UK and international examples, you explore human rights, violent and property crime, and the admissibility of evidence. You prepare and deliver expert evidence in a simulated courtroom setting.

Forensic Biology

Detect, examine, interpret and evaluate biological evidence for forensic investigations. A broad range of biological evidence, including body fluids, hairs, fibres and DNA profiling are explored in forensic context with underpinning research.

Forensic Chemistry

Explore the range of evidence types encountered at crime scenes or recovered from individuals. You examine types of evidence, such as fibres, paint, glass and drugs of abuse. Apply and use analytical instrumentation including statistical analyses from obtained data.

Forensic Investigative Strategy

Develop your understanding of the principles of crime scene science and its relationship with forensic analysis and the legal process. You address key areas in forensic practice such as quality standards, evidence continuity and contamination issues. Gain an understanding of the methodologies for processing and examining physical evidence. You take part in a series of practical sessions, including evidence recovery at a mock crime scene and the initial forensic examination of recovered items.

Human Remains and Identification

This module focuses on the forensic analysis of skeletal remains to assist in the identification of missing and unknown persons. You study elements of skeletal biological profiling, bioarchaeology, and the expert witness skills required for reporting on skeletal evidence.


Modules offered may vary.


How you learn

You learn through a variety of teaching methods including lectures, tutorials, projects and assignments. You are also expected to participate in self-directed study, to review lecture notes, prepare assignments, work on projects and revise for assessments. Each 20-credit module typically has around 200 hours of learning time.

How you are assessed

Modules are assessed by in-course assignments – including a courtroom-based expert witness assessment – and end exams.


Entry requirements

You are expected to have at least a lower second-class (2.2) UK honours degree (or equivalent) in an appropriate science subject. Acceptable subjects include biology, chemistry, biomedical science, biochemistry and forensic science.

For general information please see our overview of entry requirements

International applicants can find out what qualifications they need by visiting Your Country



Career opportunities

Employment opportunities exist in the fields of forensic science and forensic investigation with forensic science providers and law enforcement agencies. Other roles include scientific investigation where it’s important to be apply forensic science in a legal or regulatory context.

This MSc programme has been accredited and commended by the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences, the international professional body for forensic science.

Work placement

On this programme you complete one semester of advanced practice as an intern, as well as a research project related to professional practice. This, along with involving practitioners and academics in delivering these courses, ensures that your learning is relevant to the requirements of the criminal justice system


Information for international applicants


International applicants - find out what qualifications you need by selecting your country below.

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Useful information

Visit our international pages for useful information for non-UK students and applicants.

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Professional accreditation

The Forensic Science Society

This course has been accredited and commended by the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences - the international professional body for forensic science.


2024/25 entry

Fee for UK applicants
£4,770 a year

More details about our fees

Fee for international applicants
£10,000 a year

More details about our fees for international applicants

  • Length: September enrolment: 20 months, including a summer break; January enrolment: 2 years, including two summer breaks
  • Start date: September or January
  • Semester dates

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