Forensic Science

Key Information


1 year


2 years

Start Date

September 2024

Typical Offer

See More


Brayford Pool

Academic Year

Course Overview

Forensic scientists provide impartial evidence in criminal investigations through their scientific expertise. They work in laboratories, at crime scenes, and in courtrooms, utilising their highly developed biology and chemistry skills. Their highly detailed work encompasses elements of chemistry and biology applied in areas such as toxicology, DNA analysis, and trace evidence.

At Lincoln, students are taught by experienced academics and practitioners with specialist expertise in analytical and organic chemistry, pharmacy, entomology, anthropology, and molecular biology. Students will be encouraged to engage in an interdisciplinary research culture and to work alongside academics who strive to advance forensic science techniques.

Teaching incorporates forensic principles, operating within the context of legal considerations, the role of the expert witness, and presentation of evidence. Students will have the opportunity to learn about the processes involved in providing impartial evidence in criminal investigations, from crime scenes to laboratory and, finally, to the courtroom.

Why Choose Lincoln

Learn from experienced academics and practitioners with specialist expertise

Engage in an interdisciplinary research culture

Learn about providing impartial evidence in criminal investigations

Integrated lectures, hands-on training, and workshops

Complete a research project in a specialist area

A focus on professional and personal development

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How You Study

Students on this course should typically expect around 350 hours of contact time over the duration of the programme. The amount of contact time will vary depending on the various module option choices chosen.

Postgraduate level study involves a significant proportion of independent study, exploring the material covered in lectures and seminars. For every hour spent in class, students are expected to spend at least two to three hours in independent study.

The composition and delivery for the course breaks down differently for each module and may include lectures, seminars, workshops, independent study, laboratory practicals, research, and one-to-one learning.


† Some courses may offer optional modules. The availability of optional modules may vary from year to year and will be subject to minimum student numbers being achieved. This means that the availability of specific optional modules cannot be guaranteed. Optional module selection may also be affected by staff availability.

Analytical Data Analysis 2024-25CHM9008MLevel 72024-25This module aims to develop students' knowledge of the value of statistical data in analytical science and how this data can be used to design experiments alongside extracting meaning from data acquired from analytical experiments. The module will also aim to provide knowledge of statistical software and how to best utilise it to achieve reliable and meaningful results and their presentation in a wide range of professional contexts.CoreCrime Scene to Court 2024-25FRS9075MLevel 72024-25In this module students can develop their understanding of the role and responsibilities of the crime scene manager and crime scene co-ordinator in the investigation of complex crime scenes, including engagement with key specialists and agencies. Within this context, students can develop a critical understanding of, and apply, a holistic approach to crime scene processing and forensic strategy formulation. Students have the opportunity to develop critical thinking skills and improve on future performance by analysing their experiences and using reflective learning techniques. The module also covers best practice in presenting evidence in documentary, visual and oral forms including mock-courts.CoreMethod Development and Validation 2024-25FRS9058MLevel 72024-25This module comprises two main components: The first will provide fundamental knowledge concerning strategies for Sampling, Data analysis, Reporting, Quality assurance and Quality control, Numerical and IT skills, and Safety in relation to analytical science. The second will provide the general introductory principles and a theoretical understanding of a range of instrumental analytical techniques and their applications. The module aims to provide the background knowledge needed for an understanding of the various principles discussed in greater detail in other modulesCoreResearch Project 2024-25CHM9014MLevel 72024-25This module provides students with opportunity to apply chemical knowledge and laboratory skills to an extended practical research study. This is designed to further develop professional skills including the use of online literature and chemical data searching, the ability to critically review relevant published literature, and written and oral presentation of research activities.CoreAdvanced Forensic Toxicology 2024-25FRS9063MLevel 72024-25In this module students have the opportunity to develop an in-depth understanding of the fate of toxins within the human body and the analysis of biological specimens that builds upon the knowledge gained from modules previously studied. Laboratory work will be based upon case work and the development of new methods providing a realistic experience of the role of the forensic toxicologist in legal cases. Use of external practitioners, laboratory visits and specialist equipment aim to further add to this experience and strengthen the opportunity for employment in this highly competitive field. Laboratory problems will be less directed and aim to further develop skills in teamwork and independent learning. Students are also expected to develop skills in interpretation of results and presentation in court, as expected for a professional forensic toxicologist within the present legal system. New method development will be backed up by consideration of research developments across all aspects of the field.OptionalAtomic and Molecular Methods of Analysis 2024-25CHM9009MLevel 72024-25This module aims to provide specialist knowledge in the principles of atomic and molecular spectroscopy, instrumental fundamentals, design of experiments and sample preparation. Including case studies related to applications in specialist areas and recent advances. The specialist knowledge is reinforced by the ‘hands-on’ practical component and will include use of the research instrumentation for collecting and analysing data, troubleshooting and method development/enhancement. The practical sessions will also involve following written experimental protocols, working in a small groups, and working to deadlines.OptionalBioanalytical Methods and Sensor Technologies 2024-25CHM9010MLevel 72024-25This inter-disciplinary module introduces the biology, physics, and chemistry behind some the most common and emerging sensors used in analytical science and their mode of action. The special challenges of bioanalytical methods provides a modern context for specific sensor development and case studies will be presented from forensic, pharmaceutical and healthcare contexts for development of sensors.OptionalChromatography and Mass Spectrometric Methods 2024-25CHM9011MLevel 72024-25This module is designed to develop specialist knowledge in the principles of separation science and hyphenated methods of analysis, principally mass spectrometry. The programme introduces instrumental fundamentals, design of experiments, sample preparation and derivatisation. Including case studies related to applications in specialist areas and recent advances. Specialist knowledge is reinforced by the ‘hands-on’ practical component and includes use of the research instrumentation for collecting and analysing data, troubleshooting, method development/enhancement. The practical sessions involve following written experimental protocols, working in a small group, and working to deadlines.OptionalCurrent Approaches in Forensic Bioscience 2024-25FRS9076MLevel 72024-25This module will explore and analyse four key themes where methods in the biosciences are applied to forensic questions or where forensic approaches are applied to bioscience.OptionalFire and Explosions 2024-25FRS9055MLevel 72024-25Students have the opportunity to develop knowledge in the physics and chemistry of fire and explosions, which is then used to understand and interpret fire and explosion scenes. Case studies, fieldwork and laboratory work will provide the contexts for the knowledge delivered in lectures and workshops. Laboratory skills can be further developed from modules covered earlier in the course and emphasis will be placed on students working on professionally focused group and individual problems. The professional and research literature will be a major information source that will inform module content and provide the context of the role of forensic scientists in fire and explosion investigation within the framework of the present legal system.Optional

What You Need to Know

We want you to have all the information you need to make an informed decision on where and what you want to study. In addition to the information provided on this course page, our What You Need to Know page offers explanations on key topics including programme validation/revalidation, additional costs, contact hours, and our return to face-to-face teaching.

How you are assessed

Assessment methods on the programme may include coursework, examinations, presentations, practical sessions, or work contributions to the module. Details will be provided in a module handbook given to students at the beginning of the academic year.

How to Apply

Postgraduate Application Support

Applying for a postgraduate programme at Lincoln is easy. Find out more about the application process and what you'll need to complete on our How to Apply page. Here, you'll also be able to find out more about the entry requirements we accept and how to contact us for dedicated support during the process.

How to Apply
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Entry Requirements 2024-25

Entry Requirements

First or upper second class honours degree in a relevant subject. Students holding a lower second class degree may be eligible subject to interview.

If you have studied outside of the UK, and are unsure whether your qualification meets the above requirements, please visit our country pages for information on equivalent qualifications.

Overseas students will be required to demonstrate English language proficiency equivalent to IELTS 6.0 overall, with a minimum of 5.5 in each element. For information regarding other English language qualifications we accept, please visit the English Requirements page.

If you do not meet the above IELTS requirements, you may be able to take part in one of our Pre-session English and Academic Study Skills courses. These specialist courses are designed to help students meet the English language requirements for their intended programme of study.

Course Fees

You will need to have funding in place for your studies before you arrive at the University. Our fees vary depending on the course, mode of study, and whether you are a UK or international student. You can view the breakdown of fees for this programme below.

Course Fees

Funding Your Study

Postgraduate Funding Options

Find out more about the optional available to support your postgraduate study, from Master's Loans to scholarship opportunities. You can also find out more about how to pay your fees and access support from our helpful advisors.

Explore Funding Options
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Career Development

This programme aims to prepare students for a career in forensic science. The specialist skills and technical knowledge that students have the opportunity to acquire may be transferable to roles in laboratory research, law enforcement, customs and excise, and investigatory agencies in the private sector. The programme can also be excellent preparation for advanced study at doctoral level.

Academic Contact

For more information about this course, please contact the Programme Leader.

Dr Jose Gonzalez Rodriguez

Postgraduate Events

To get a real feel for what it is like to study at the University of Lincoln, we hold a number of dedicated postgraduate events and activities throughout the year for you to take part in.

Upcoming Postgraduate Events
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The University intends to provide its courses as outlined in these pages, although the University may make changes in accordance with the Student Admissions Terms and Conditions.