AP0420 - Understanding Police Investigations and Processes

What will I learn on this module?

This module introduces criminal investigations and police processes. The module covers the various stages of the law enforcement process, from the legislation/guidance underpinning information and intelligence to the provision of materials for disclosure by the Crown Prosecution Service. In doing so the module examines broad themes such as how information and intelligence held by other agencies can help police operations to specific ones such as things to consider when responding to an incident. It necessarily covers the fundamental principles, legislation and powers related to such activities as well as the police processes that are derived from these.

The core of the module provides a detailed examination of the processes involved in conduct investigations. Unsurprisingly, this section of the module considers the appropriate approaches and/or processes for both responding to and attending incidents as well as gathering and managing evidence/information and carrying out investigations at the crime scene and elsewhere. In doing so it examines the nature and management of evidence and its use within court process.

In addition, the module considers police ethics and how the police support the vulnerable, victims and witnesses but also the responsibilities and procedures for detaining and escorting suspects to and once within custody. It also explores processes surrounding the building of effective case files such as the securing of evidence and the management of exhibits. It also considers the data protection and the general management of management of information and intelligence

PCDA curriculum learning outcomes:

Week 16-19:
Criminal Justice: 2,7,8,9,10,11, 12
Information and Intelligence: 1-8
Conducting investigations: 1-9

How will I learn on this module?

Students will learn through participation in lectures, as well as interactive in-class tasks and discussions around problem solving and decision-making. Students will also participate in simulated interviews and searching of crime scene facilities.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

Students will be supported through on-going formative feedback related to participation in interactive class tasks and skills, both verbal and written. Academic tutors from the police force and the various departments within the university are engaged with the delivery of this module and also offer additional support where needed. All students are supported by the university’s guidance tutor system and, in addition, can request support or a meeting with any of the individuals that are delivering material for this module.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at: http://readinglists.northumbria.ac.uk
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team – http://library.northumbria.ac.uk/readinglists)

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
1. Examine fundamental principles, legislation and powers related to conducting investigations.
2. Understand and operate within relevant legislation/guidance underpinning information and intelligence in policing.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
3. Apply best practice when conducting an investigation
4. Understand and apply the processes for building effective case files and managing exhibits

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
5. Conduct effective ethical and professional interviews, employing differing approaches according to the investigation and the interviewee.

How will I be assessed?

The summative assessment will involve two online examinations. Both will assess the learning outcomes relating to knowledge and understanding. These will be weighted 40% (Component 001) and 60% (Component 002).

As a formative piece of work, students will also be required to produce a portfolio (a case file of evidence). This can include a variety of submissions be they written, visual or oral recordings. It will test the module learning outcomes on intellectual/professional skills and abilities as well as those on personal values and attributes.

Further opportunities for formative assessment will consist of feedback on practical role plays and mock interviews.





Module abstract

The aim of the module is to help the police apprentice understand how and why the police carry out criminal investigations in the way they do. The module covers the various stages of the law enforcement process, from the use of intelligence to arrest and charge people to the provision of evidence at court.

The core of the module focuses on how the police conduct investigations. It necessarily covers the various stages of the investigative process including attending an incident, interviewing witnesses, detaining, interviewing and charging suspects, building case files and managing evidence in court. It also considers police ethics how the police support the vulnerable, victims and witnesses and the general use of information and intelligence.

Enhanced by the use of technology such as blackboard ultra and a state-of-the-art multi-media facilities at Coach Lane and an intense but supportive learning environment the module provides crucial information for employment in the police service.

Course info

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years full-time

Location Coach Lane Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Fee Information

Module Information

All information on this course page is accurate at the time of viewing.

Our Campus based courses starting in 2022 and 2023 will be delivered on-campus with supporting online learning content. We continue to monitor government and local authority guidance in relation to Covid-19 and we are ready and able to adjust the delivery of our education accordingly to ensure the health and safety of our students and staff.

On-campus contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with any additional restrictions, which may be imposed by the Government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors. This could potentially mean increased or fully online delivery, should such restrictions on in-person contact time be required.


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