AP0503 - Body Fluids and Blood Pattern Analysis

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What will I learn on this module?

You will learn the theory, knowledge, practical application and laboratory skill to locate and identify a range of body fluids including blood, semen and saliva. You will cover the identification, documentation, analysis and subsequent interpretation of these body fluids within the context of a forensic investigation. You will gain an appreciation of the complexity of differing case types, such as murder or burglary, and understand that each requires a different forensic strategy that is bespoke to the individual case, depending on what exhibits are available for examination and what needs to be established. Your knowledge and experience will be further developed to understand the dynamics that underpin blood pattern analysis and how they can be interpreted to provide information on the actions that have taken place and an individuals participation or otherwise. You will review blood patterns from a crime scene right through to the consideration of clothing and weapons. By the end of this module you will have an overall comprehension on the role of a forensic biologist and what value they bring to the forensic aspect of crime investigation.

How will I learn on this module?

You will learn through lectures and practical laboratory sessions specifically designed to provide the theory and laboratory skills to enable a full examination of an exhibit for a variety of blody fluids followed by a case specific interpretation of the value of any recovered evidence. Case studies and recent academic and government publications will supplement your learning, ensuring that your knowledge is situated within ‘real world’ experiences. You will visit our replica crime scene house, to investigate and put into context the complexities of body fluid examination within major crime investigations such as murder. Furthermore, you will gain experience using R2S scene capturing technology to move around and interrogate replica crime scenes to add further depth to your practical experiences. The replica and IT based crime scenes will simulate real world experiences and enable you to visualise the potential, or otherwise, for the transfer of evidence between individuals and items involved in a crime. This will support your understanding of case assessment and interpretation, helping you to develop evidence based opinions based on forensic scientific and case specific knowledge.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

You will be supported through active participation and discussion during laboratory practicals and scene house examinations. These offer a unique opportunity to fully understand the scientific theory underpinning the laboratory tests and the interpretation of your scientific findings.

All lecture and practical material will be available on the University’s eLearning Portal, supplemented with guidance on further reading relevant to the subjects.

Written assessment feedback will also be provided to allow you to understand how you performed and how you can build on this performance in subsequent assessments within your programme.

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:
• You will be expected to engage with the theoretical and practical aspects of forensic body fluid examination to demonstrate how you can apply this knowledge to understand and evaluate your scientific findings within the context crime investigation

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
• You will develop your skills to justify your scientific approach, methodology and subsequent analysis of your observations in your role as a forensic biologist

How will I be assessed?

The assessment will split between a 2,000 word essay (70%) MLO 1 and a practical assessment (30%) MLO 2

The practical assessment will be designed to assess your understanding and approach to the sequential nature of body fluid examination and how you evidence your scientific findings and opinion. Formative feedback provide during taught laboratory classes will direct and support you to achieve this.

The essay will be designed to allow you to demonstrate the depth and breadth of your knowledge to evaluate the potential for and interpretation of body fluid evidence within the context of crime investigation.

The combination of these two assessment styles will illustrate your ability to problem solve and accurately and effectively communicate your opinions through authentic assessment tasks that align to and support your overall progression through your programme.

Pre-requisite(s)

L4 Practical Skills in Forensic Science
L4 Processes and Practices in Forensic Science

Co-requisite(s)

N/A

Module abstract

You will cover the identification, documentation, analysis and subsequent interpretation of body fluids such as blood, semen and saliva within the context of a forensic investigation. You will gain an appreciation of the complexity of differing case types, such as murder or burglary, and understand that each requires a different forensic strategy that is bespoke to the individual case, depending on what exhibits are available for examination and what needs to be established. The practical laboratory, crime scene and IT based sessions will provide an innovative and invaluable learning experience to establish your knowledge of the expectations and abilities of a forensic biologist. The case studies and practical experiences that underpin this module will provide an authentic experience of professional practictioner based forensic examinations.

Course info

UCAS Code F410

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years full-time or 4 years full-time with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department Applied Sciences

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2020

Fee Information

Module Information

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