FSC-10003 - Forensic Chemistry and Analysis
Coordinator: Natalie J Capel Tel: +44 1782 7 33584
Lecture Time: See Timetable...
Level: Level 4
Credits: 30
Study Hours: 300
School Office: 01782 734921

Programme/Approved Electives for 2020/21

None

Available as a Free Standing Elective

No

Co-requisites

None

Prerequisites

None

Barred Combinations

None

Description for 2020/21

This is a core module that covers the principal concepts of chemistry with emphasis on those that are relevant to the field of forensic science, aiming to extend students┐ understanding and practical experimental skills. It focuses on some of the key characterisation and separation techniques used in forensic analysis, such as microscopy, spectroscopy, microspectroscopy and chromatography, and provides hands-on experience in a variety of analytical methods through practical work. In addition, it introduces the important topic of statistics in the interpretation and evaluation of forensic evidence.

Aims
This module covers the principal concepts of chemistry necessary for the study of forensic science. It aims to solidify students understanding of relevant background theory with emphasis on its application to forensic science. This will build to focus upon some of the key characterisation and separation techniques used in forensic analysis, and provide hands-on experience in a variety of experimental skills and analytical methods through practical laboratory work. In addition, it introduces students to the fundamental mathematical concepts necessary for the analysis of forensic evidence, including the study of statistical methods for the interpretation and evaluation of forensic data.

Intended Learning Outcomes

Describe and explain the basic principles of atomic and molecular structure and chemical bonding: 2,3
Describe and explain the principles and applications of selected spectroscopic, microscopic and separation methods within forensic contexts: 1,2,3
Apply the principles of aspects of physical chemistry to solve standard problems of relevance to forensic contexts and crime scene investigation: 2,3
Interpret organic and inorganic chemical structures, and discuss the appropriate spectroscopic and chromatographic methods for analysing organic and inorganic samples: 2,3
Perform fundamental laboratory and instrumental skills to specified standards: 1
Interpret and explain fundamental statistical data within forensic contexts: 2,3
Record, report and present the results of forensic investigation and analysis: 1,3

Study hours

Lectures (42h), laboratory and data analysis sessions (39h), problem classes (10h), class test and feedback (4h)
Directed and not directed reading (55 h), preparation of assessments (150 h)

School Rules

None

Description of Module Assessment

1: Portfolio weighted 40%
Laboratory Portfolio
A portfolio equivalent to 2500-3000 words incorporating a number of assessments such as laboratory exercises, scientific presentation, data analysis and a laboratory exam.

2: Class Test weighted 20%
Class Test
Unseen questions, both information recall and problem solving. The student effort is equivalent to that required to prepare for and complete two 1 hour exams.

3: Portfolio weighted 40%
Coursework Portfolio
A portfolio equivalent to 2500-3000 words incorporating a number of assessments such as maths and statistics problem sheets, analysis of spectra, and interpretation of kinetics data.