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Session: 2022/23

Last modified: 14/03/2022 13:56:35

Title of Module: From Crime Scene to Court

Code: BIOL10014 SCQF Level: 10
(Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework)
Credit Points: 20 ECTS: 10
(European Credit Transfer Scheme)
School:School of Health and Life Sciences
Module Co-ordinator:David  Thompson

Summary of Module

This module is designed to offer students the opportunity to utilise their previous forensic-based module content in an analysis of two staged crime scenes.

From Crime Scene to Court reviews chain of evidence requirements, evidence collection, and analysis. Students’ knowledge of case documentation and report writing is extended by means of exemplars and exercises. Students are introduced to the duties and responsibilities of the expert witness presenting evidence in court. A practice session is used for expert witness training.

The module is assessed by means of group submission scene notes, individual written reports on the two crime scenes and by an expert witness defence of these reports in a mock court. In the mock court, students are expected to dress and act as would be expected of an expert witness. In court, students will be examined by the prosecution and cross-examined by the defence. As in real life, they may then be re-examined by the prosecution. Although this is only a mock court, the exercise is treated seriously by all participants.

Module Delivery Method
Face-To-FaceBlendedFully OnlineHybridCHybridOWork-based Learning
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Term used to describe the traditional classroom environment where the students and the lecturer meet synchronously in the same room for the whole provision.

A mode of delivery of a module or a programme that involves online and face-to-face delivery of learning, teaching and assessment activities, student support and feedback. A programme may be considered “blended” if it includes a combination of face-to-face, online and blended modules. If an online programme has any compulsory face-to-face and campus elements it must be described as blended with clearly articulated delivery information to manage student expectations

Fully Online
Instruction that is solely delivered by web-based or internet-based technologies. This term is used to describe the previously used terms distance learning and e learning.

Online with mandatory face-to-face learning on Campus

Online with optional face-to-face learning on Campus

Work-based Learning
Learning activities where the main location for the learning experience is in the workplace.

Campus(es) for Module Delivery
The module will normally be offered on the following campuses / or by Distance/Online Learning: (Provided viable student numbers permit)
Paisley:Ayr:Dumfries:Lanarkshire:London:Distance/Online Learning:Other:




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Term(s) for Module Delivery
(Provided viable student numbers permit).
Term 1


Term 2check markTerm 3


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Learning Outcomes: (maximum of 5 statements)

On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:

L1. Identify, recover, package and process evidence from a staged scene of crime, according to chain of evidence requirements.

L2. Produce a written report detailing and critically evaluating evidence collected.

L3. Present and defend evidence and conclusions orally in a mock court

Employability Skills and Personal Development Planning (PDP) Skills
SCQF Headings During completion of this module, there will be an opportunity to achieve core skills in:
Knowledge and Understanding (K and U) SCQF Level 10.

Demonstrate a critical understanding of the principal theories, concepts and principles involved in bringing evidence form crime scene to court.

Work with knowledge that covers and integrates most of the principal areas, features, boundaries, terminology and conventions of forensic investigation.

Practice: Applied Knowledge and Understanding SCQF Level 10.

Practise in a range of professional level contexts which include a degree of unpredictability.

Generic Cognitive skills SCQF Level 10.

Critically review and consolidate knowledge, skills and practice and thinking in forensic investigations.

Make appropriate judgements where information is limited.

Communication, ICT and Numeracy Skills SCQF Level 10.

Make formal written presentations about specialized topics to informed audiences.

Communicate with professional level peers, senior colleagues and specialists.

Autonomy, Accountability and Working with others SCQF Level 10.

Practise in ways which show a clear awareness of own and others' roles and responsibilities.

Deal with complex professional issues in accordance with current practices.

Pre-requisites: Before undertaking this module the student should have undertaken the following:
Module Code:
Module Title:
Forensic Investigation
Forensic Evidence- Analysis and Retrieval
Co-requisitesModule Code:
Module Title:

* Indicates that module descriptor is not published.

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Learning and Teaching
The module will be delivered by means of a mixture of lectures, seminars, practical work and practice presentations.

The lectures will provide underpinning knowledge of the role of the expert witness in relation to the Scottish Courts' system and will also review work from earlier modules in this course.

Seminars and practice presentations will be used to enhance the written and oral presentation skills of the students through a series of exercises designed for this purpose, including training specific to expert witness testimony.

The practical work will be the recovery of evidence from the staged crime scenes and the presentation and defence of evidence from both crime scenes in a mock court. In the mock court, student performance is marked by three assessors and the average mark awarded.

Learning Activities
During completion of this module, the learning activities undertaken to achieve the module learning outcomes are stated below:
Student Learning Hours
(Normally totalling 200 hours):
(Note: Learning hours include both contact hours and hours spent on other learning activities)
Tutorial/Synchronous Support Activity24
Laboratory/Practical Demonstration/Workshop24
Independent Study152
200 Hours Total

**Indicative Resources: (eg. Core text, journals, internet access)

The following materials form essential underpinning for the module content and ultimately for the learning outcomes:

White, P., Crime Scene to Court : The Essentials of Forensic Science, 2nd Edition, Royal Society of Chemistry (2004)

Langford, A., Dean, J., Reed, R., Holmes, D., Weyers, J., Jones, A., Practical Skills in Forensic Science (2018)

Essential Forensic Biology 3rd Edition (2019), Gunn; Wile

Jackson, A. & Jackson, J., Forensic Science, 3rd Edition, Pearson Education (2011)

Additional resources will be made available using the module's VLE page.

(**N.B. Although reading lists should include current publications, students are advised (particularly for material marked with an asterisk*) to wait until the start of session for confirmation of the most up-to-date material)

Engagement Requirements

In line with the Academic Engagement Procedure, Students are defined as academically engaged if they are regularly engaged with timetabled teaching sessions, course-related learning resources including those in the Library and on the relevant learning platform, and complete assessments and submit these on time. Please refer to the Academic Engagement Procedure at the following link: Academic engagement procedure

Where a module has Professional, Statutory or Regulatory Body requirements these will be listed here:
Attendance at synchronous sessions (lectures, workshops, and tutorials), completion of asynchronous activities, and submission of assessments to meet the learning outcomes of the module.

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Supplemental Information

Programme BoardBiological Sciences and Health
Assessment Results (Pass/Fail) No
Subject PanelBiology L7-11
ModeratorGail McGarvie
External ExaminerA Tsaousis
Accreditation DetailsN/A
Version Number


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Assessment: (also refer to Assessment Outcomes Grids below)
Written reports (50%)
Presentation & Practical Skills Assessment (50%)
(N.B. (i) Assessment Outcomes Grids for the module (one for each component) can be found below which clearly demonstrate how the learning outcomes of the module will be assessed.
(ii) An indicative schedule listing approximate times within the academic calendar when assessment is likely to feature will be provided within the Student Handbook.)

Assessment Outcome Grids (Footnote A.)

Component 1
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Portfolio of written workcheck markcheck mark 508

Component 2
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Clinical/ Fieldwork/ Practical skills assessment/ Debate/ Interview/ Viva voce/ Oral  check mark506
Combined Total For All Components100% 14 hours

A. Referred to within Assessment Section above
B. Identified in the Learning Outcome Section above

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  1. More than one assessment method can be used to assess individual learning outcomes.
  2. Schools are responsible for determining student contact hours. Please refer to University Policy on contact hours (extract contained within section 10 of the Module Descriptor guidance note).
    This will normally be variable across Schools, dependent on Programmes &/or Professional requirements.

Equality and Diversity
In line with current legislation (Equality Act, 2010) and the UWS Equality, Diversity, and Human Rights Code, our modules are accessible and inclusive, with reasonable adjustment for different needs where appropriate. Module materials comply with University guidance on inclusive learning and teaching, and specialist assistive equipment, support provision and adjustment to assessment practice will be made in accordance with UWS policy and regulations. Where modules require practical and/or laboratory based learning or assessment required to meet accrediting body requirements the University will make reasonable adjustment such as adjustable height benches or assistance of a ‘buddy’ or helper.
Please refer to the UWS Equality and Diversity Policy at the following link: UWS Equality and Diversity Policy

UWS Equality and Diversity Policy
(N.B. Every effort will be made by the University to accommodate any equality and diversity issues brought to the attention of the School)

2014 University of the West of Scotland

University of the West of Scotland is a Registered Scottish Charity.

Charity number SC002520.