Course details

Study options

Full-time: 4 years

UK fee

£9,250 per year (2021/22)

International/EU fee

£14,045 per year (2021/22)

UCAS points

72 (September 2021 entry)

UCAS code

F412

Course level

Undergraduate

Qualification

BSc (Hons)

Start date

September

Location

Kedleston Road, Derby Campus

Course description

Extend your career scope and enhance your employability on a four-year course which brings together the skills of the forensic scientist and the insights of the criminologist.

Forensic Science - your questions answered

In the below video, Senior Lecturer, Jon Wright, answers some of the most frequently asked questions about Forensic Science at the University of Derby. You can also watch exclusive subject content by signing up to Derby on Demand.

Jon Wright, Programme Leader for Forensic Science.

View Forensic Science - Your questions answered video transcript

3rdin the UK for careers after 15 months of graduating**The Guardian University Guide 2021, Forensic Science subject area
2ndin the UK for teaching quality**The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020, Forensic Science subject area
90%of students satisfied with teaching - BSc (Hons) Forensic Science with Crimiminology**National Student Survey 2020
Top10in the UK for graduate prospects**The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021, Forensic Science subject area
8thfor student satisfaction**The Complete University Guide 2021, Forensic Science subject area
3rdin the UK for student experience**The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020, Forensic Science subject area

Forensic Science with Criminology at Derby

You’ll combine high-level skills as a forensic scientist with specific knowledge of criminology. We explore questions surrounding the causes of criminal behaviour and whether nature or nurture is responsible for such characteristics. We also cover legal aspects of forensic science, including the court process, and the role played by expert testimony and evidence.

Studying Criminology alongside Forensic Science will give you a comprehensive knowledge of how cases unfold – from collecting and examining evidence to presenting findings in court. We take you through the full spectrum of forensic techniques as you investigate mock crime scenes and have the opportunity to develop your skills in fingerprint, drugs, DNA, bodily fluids and blood pattern analysis as well as entomology, anthropology and taphonomy.

At the same time, we broaden your understanding of the criminal justice system and the legal aspects of forensic science. Your studies will span issues such as expert testimony and evidence, miscarriages of justice, the court process and the roles of the judge, jury and witnesses. You’ll also gain practice in delivering findings in court and being cross-examined by barristers.

A student in protective clothing in a forensics lab using a microscope.

Expert teaching

Our dynamic and forward-thinking teaching team includes forensic scientists, criminology specialists, practising lawyers, barristers and judges, so you can look forward to a stimulating study experience. They are supported by visiting speakers who will give you insights into the latest debates surrounding forensics and criminology, plus guidance to help you make informed decisions about your career.

Our team is pursuing studies into highly topical subjects such as entomology, forensic photography, anthropology, taphonomy, drug analysis, fingerprint detection and enhancement techniques, blood pattern analysis and fire investigations.

Foundation Year - helping you to achieve more

Including a foundation year as part of your four-year study programme will give you a head start in your academic and professional life. The foundation year offers the chance to strengthen your skills, knowledge and confidence – with extensive support from our expert staff – before you advance to stage one of your honours degree. It could also be beneficial if you are planning a career change and want to get to grips with aspects of subjects which are new to you.

Our degrees with a foundation year are continuous, meaning that you won’t need to apply again once you have successfully completed the first year.

Forensic science students studying fingerprints

Forensic Training Facility

This custom built facility offers seven replica domestic and commercial crime scenes, a blood spatter room and fully panoramic CCTV and audio for live feedback.

Take a virtual tourTake a virtual tour

Specialist facilities

Our purpose-built Forensic Training Facility includes several domestic and commercial crime scenes, including a bedroom, lounge, garage, office, and a commercial area such, as a pharmacy or pub. It also features a blood pattern analysis room used for both teaching and research. The house is fitted with state-of-the-art digital surveillance including panoramic CCTV and equipment for two-way audio recording, and live feedback during your investigations.

Other facilities include an osteology lab for skeletal study, a wet forensic lab, a darkroom for specialised light searching, an entomology lab for insect investigation, a Clandestine Burial site, replica courtroom for presenting evidence, two crime scene cars, and forensic imaging facilities.

Laboratory work is central to the role of the forensic scientist. We provide specialist forensic, biological and chemical laboratories featuring modern instrumentation where you can put theory into practice.

Employer links

We work hard to make your learning experience as authentic as possible, so we call on our numerous contacts within the forensic science and criminal justice sectors to contribute to the course. From workplace visits and placement opportunities to masterclasses and real-life case studies, they help place your learning in a professional context. There is even the opportunity to observe a post mortem.

Our partnerships include longstanding alliances with Derbyshire Constabulary, Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service and the East Midlands Scientific Operations Unit (EMSOU). You could apply to undertake a placement with EMSOU in their forensic imaging unit, footwear unit, forensic analytical service or scenes of crime team.

Tailor your degree

While you’ll cover all the core areas of forensic science and criminology, you can also ‘personalise’ your degree to tailor your studies to your career plans. We offer fascinating optional modules for you to choose from, so you can focus your studies on areas as diverse as forensic anthropology, victimology, toxicology and the human genome.

We support you to share your research through high-profile conferences or forensic journals. Such activities can raise your profile as a talent of the future, helping you to stand out in a highly competitive job market. Our students and graduates have gone on to win prestigious awards from organisations like FIRN, Royal Society of Chemistry and the Fingerprint Society, or to present innovative projects at the Houses of Parliament.

Take a look at Sanita Nezirovic, lecturer in Forensic Science, discussing her involvement, as an anthropologist, in profiling a Bronze Age skeleton recently discovered in Northumbria:

Sanita Nezirovic, Leader in Forensic Science with Criminology, discusses her involvement, as an anthropologist, in profiling a Bronze Age skeleton recently discovered in Northumbria
A female in PPE analysing a blood splatter in a shower

Human Sciences Research Centre

Our Human Sciences Research Centre conducts theoretical and applied research into the prevention and treatment of diseases and into improvements to the quality of life for people of all ages.

Find out more about our researchFind out more about our research
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Derby on Demand

Derby on Demand brings you the very best of Open Days on your terms. You can access exclusive online content wherever you are, whenever you want, and see all Derby has to offer.

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What you will study

Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.

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Live Virtual Undergraduate Open Day

Join our Live Virtual Undergraduate Open Day on Saturday 13 March from 10am – 2pm and find out all you need to know about studying at the University of Derby.

Book your Open DayBook your Open Day

How you will learn

You’ll use our specialist facilities, including our brand new on-campus Crime Scene House and crime scene cars. You’ll also have the opportunity to observe a post-mortem. You’ll be taught through lectures, practical sessions, fieldtrips, crime scene training and your own study.

How you're assessed

You’ll be assessed through a range of mediums, including, but not limited to, formal witness statements and expert testimony, case studies, essays, laboratory reports, portfolios, examinations and presentations.

Work placements

Between stages 2 and 3 there is the chance to work within the industry for three months to a year. This will give you a unique experience as you enter your final year and will give you a head-start when applying for jobs after university. You will also be given the opportunity to learn alongside industry professionals.

Personal academic tutoring

Your personal academic tutor will work with you to help you get the most out of your time at university. Having someone to talk to about your academic progress, your university experience and your professional aspirations is hugely valuable. We want you to feel challenged in your studies, stretched but confident to achieve your academic and professional goals.

Find out more about personal academic tutoring

Who will teach you

Adam Long conducting a fingerprint examination in the Forensics lab

Adam Long
Programme leader

Adam Long is the Undergraduate Programme Coordinator for Forensic Science at the University of Derby and teaches across all levels, with particular interest and expertise in fingerprints, their capture and comparison. Adam also sits on Governing Council for The Chartered Society of Forensic Science and is the main point of contact for the Fingerprint Working Group.

View full staff profileView full staff profile

Entry requirements

September 2021 typical entry requirements

RequirementWhat we're looking for
UCAS points72
Specific requirements at A-level

No specific subject requirements

Specific requirements at GCSE

GCSE Maths and English are preferred, however if you don't have these qualifications you will be able to undertake Maths and English at Level 2 as part of your course of study.

IELTS6.0 (with at least 5.5 in each skills area)
Interview / AuditionN/A
PortfolioN/A

Alternative entry qualifications:

Fees and funding

2021/22 Fees (August 2021 - July 2022)

 Full-timePart-time
UK

£9,250 per year

N/A

International/EU

£14,045 per year

N/A

Further information about our fees and support you may be entitled to.

Additional costs and optional extras

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There's still time to apply

If you're interested in finding out more about how to apply for university, we're here to help. We have advice and tips to help guide you as you complete your university application.

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How to apply

Apply for September 2021

Need help applying? Find out how we can help you with your UCAS application

UK students

Full-time students applying to start in September should apply for this course through UCAS.

Apply through UCASApply directly to the University

Careers

Our graduates have gone on to realise their career ambitions within the criminal justice system, the police force, the prison service and forensic services. The skills and knowledge you gain on the course will also make you well suited to roles in insurance companies, law firms, pharmaceutical companies and private laboratories.

You could also build on your analytical and research expertise to pursue postgraduate study with an MSc, MPhil or PhD in subjects related to forensic science and criminology. 

Some of our former students have moved into teaching careers within secondary or further education after studying our PGCE Secondary (Schools Direct) or PGCE Post-14 (Education and Training).

Through our Professional Development Package, you'll gain valuable transferable skills, including:

Careers and Employment Service

To boost your employment skills, you can access the University's Careers and Employment Service. The team can connect you with employers to help find opportunities for work placements, part-time jobs, and volunteering. Our careers consultants are also on hand to guide you through the career options for your degree, CV writing, or starting your own business - and we commit to helping you for three years after you graduate to find a job. 

Contact us

If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.

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Additional information about your studies

Teaching hours

Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.

Additional costs and optional extras

We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, excellent facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.

The information below is correct for entry in the academic year September 2020 - August 2021 only. Entry for future academic years may be subject to change.

Included in your fees
Mandatory costs not included in your fees
Optional costs not included in your fees

Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.

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