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FORENSIC COURSES AND CRIME SCENE COURSES FOR STUDENTS

We have a wealth of experience in bringing forensic investigation and the underpinning sciences to life in our courses for students. Our practitioners have involvement not only with the police and forensic sectors, but also with students at all levels including those pursuing a university-based education.


Whatever the source - film, television, radio, literature, whether fiction or fact - all possess the same common themes - mystery, intrigue, and investigation of the darker side of human nature - and all serve as testimony to the fact that interest in the forensic sciences and police investigation has never been greater. Yet, despite the gloss and glamour, we believe it is important to note two important issues. First, there is an unfortunate misconception in the public mind that forensic investigation is able to solve crimes quickly, often through the work of a single individual, and secondly, people called to jury service have a distorted appreciation of what is possible and what is fanciful in real case investigation. It is for these, and other reasons, that CastleViewUK has as its mission the "Communication of forensic information to industry, to education and the public".

With courses and workshops for all ages, and targeted at all Key Stages, CastleViewUK can give students (and teachers alike) a hands-on taste of forensic investigation either in your own school/college or on a university campus. With many cases scenarios to choose from, students will:

  • Discover what forensic science is really about

  • Recognise the importance of teamwork in solving a crime

  • Learn about methods for collection of evidence

  • Carry out hands-on, laboratory-based investigation

  • See how science is fundamental to forensic investigation

  • Develop some skills in interpreting forensic evidence

  • Have a great day

  • Adopt a more critical view of what they see on the television!



Downloads

Case Scenarios
Registered users can download and print some examples of our case scenarios.

  • Who Killed Father Patrick O'Reilly?

  • The Poisoning of Ms Treadstone

  • The Case of The Lady Smudgeonly Smythe


Members' Area
Register with us, or Log in to your account to access these documents.

 
 
 
 
 
 
Make it fun and it sticks!

FORENSIC COURSES AND CRIME SCENE COURSES FOR STUDENTS

CastleViewUK Forensics Limited has a wealth of experience in bringing forensic investigation and the underpinning sciences to life in our courses for students. Our practitioners have involvement not only with the police and forensic sectors, but also with students at all levels including those pursuing a university-based education.



Whatever the source - film, television, radio, literature, whether fiction or fact - all possess the same common themes - mystery, intrigue, and investigation of the darker side of human nature - and all serve as testimony to the fact that interest in the forensic sciences and police investigation has never been greater. Yet, despite the gloss and glamour, we believe it is important to note two important issues. First, there is an unfortunate misconception in the public mind that forensic investigation is able to solve crimes quickly, often through the work of a single individual, and secondly, people called to jury service have a distorted appreciation of what is possible and what is fanciful in real case investigation. It is for these, and other reasons, that CastleViewUK has as its mission the "Communication of forensic information to industry, to education and the public".

With courses and workshops for all ages, and targeted at all Key Stages, CastleViewUK can give students (and teachers alike) a hands-on taste of forensic investigation either in your own school/college or on a university campus. With many cases scenarios to choose from, students will:

  • Discover what forensic science is really about

  • Recognise the importance of teamwork in solving a crime

  • Learn about methods for collection of evidence

  • Carry out hands-on, laboratory-based investigation

  • See how science is fundamental to forensic investigation

  • Develop some skills in interpreting forensic evidence

  • Have a great day

  • Adopt a more critical view of what they see on the television!


TYPES OF EVENT


PRESENTATION ONLY EVENTS

In these, we provide a speaker to deliver a lecture or themed workshop to support activities the institution has developed themselves. Speakers are scientists who have worked or are working in the forensic sector, or are Scenes of Crime Examiners, as appropriate.

FORENSIC SCIENCE EDUCATION CENTRE

Our Forensic Science Education Centre, based in Keighley, West Yorkshire has recently been opened. Based in the Old Police Station, and incorporating a police museum, the centre allows us to deliver short (half day and full day) crime scene and forensic courses to students. Read about the Forensic Science Education Centre HERE
.

SINGLE DAY FORENSIC COURSES FOR STUDENTS

Our one-day courses for students are the most popular with schools and colleges, and can be delivered either in our Forensic Science Education Centre, or on your own school or college premises. They can even be provided at a university reasonably local to the students' own centre. These events typically begin with registration of the students at around 8.45 - 9.00, followed by two short presentations. The first introduces course participants to the work of the forensic practitioner, and the central theme of forensic investigation - every contact leaves a trace, and the second introduces the day's forensic scenario (see our leaflet "Example Forensic Scenarios) and sets the targets for the day's activities. Each student is provided with a course booklet (in which they record their findings) and they are then placed into teams (usually mixing students who are from different schools); after a short period for refreshment, each team begins to explore a different aspect of the forensic investigation.

Aspects can include examination of footwear marks, fingerprints, pollen grains, hairs and fibres, dental marks, tool marks, documents, etc., and where scope exists, also body fluids (blood, saliva and semen) though these latter usually require a Class 2 containment laboratory, so are usually reserved for courses on university premises. We can simulate the presence of these substances, and so can still include these types of evidence in case scenarios, where appropriate. The inclusion of tests for illicit substances is also possible.

There are usually four to five separate investigative activities in the one day events, and students rotate between them as the day proceeds, carrying out two to three activities before lunch and the remaining activities in the afternoon. At each stage of the investigation, students enter their findings into their laboratory log and draw conclusions from the findings based on the information presented to them in the opening sessions. The importance of accuracy in recording information, and good communication skills are reinforced in these activities. Teams congregate to reflect on the significance of their findings in the middle of the afternoon, develop a definitive answer to the questions posed by the case scenario, and finally present their conclusions to the collective group. All participants receive a certificate of course attendance before the event closes, at around 3.30 pm.

The students' course booklet gives clear, concise instructions on how to carry out each of the investigative steps, the instructions themselves being divided into two parts: a "learn by practice-first" part, and a "put learning into practice" part.
The degree to which scientific principles are explored in the booklet is appropriate to the educational (and often intellectual) abilities of the students, and is determined by the participating institution on the basis of Key Stage attainments.

Teachers also receive a course booklet, but one in which some of the underlying scientific and forensic principles are explained, and which also includes details of the forensic interpretation (the answers), of course!

SINGLE DAY CRIME SCENE COURSES FOR STUDENTS

The examination of crime scenes and the forensic examination of items of physical evidence recovered from them require very different sets of skills. Our one-day crime scene courses introduce students to the basic principles of processing and management of a crime scene and the recovery of evidence within it. Like our one-day forensic events, activities span the whole of the school or college day beginning with introductory talks on the work of the crime scene examiner and giving details of the scenario. This is followed by group workshops on packaging, the recording of information, basic photography, lifting latent fingerprints, and on methods for searching a crime scene. Learning is put into practice by students in searching a scene (that has been set up by us) and as they recover and package evidence. The event culminates after students (in groups) have written a short statement and presented their findings in an open forum at which they receive feedback about the quality of their work. These events can be very staff-intensive and usually, therefore, only be delivered to small groups of students. Typically, a group of four students per crime scene is optimum. For indoor crime scenes, the availability of several adjacent rooms with common access from a corridor or other common space is essential to maximise supervision by our staff and minimise costs to the school or college.

We also offer examination of outdoor crime scenes including those that involve the archaeological recovery of human remains (not real ones!). These events are always held at a university-owned site, and by their very nature can expose participants to the vagaries of the British weather.

TWO DAY CRIME SCENE + FORENSIC COURSES FOR STUDENTS

Two day events make it possible to include the examination of a scene of crime appropriate to the scenario, and provide students with a more immersive experience in the process of forensic examination. The focus of the course is on developing greater understanding of the forensic laboratory process rather than on how to examine a scene of crime. The number of activities themselves can be extended, to include 1) a more in-depth examination of physical items and the recording of scientific findings using bespoke forensic examination forms, 2) additional forms of examination, and 3) more time in which to carry out the examinations. There is also greater scope for the development of each student's understanding of the underlying scientific principles, where this is appropriate. Like the shorter, one-day event, two-day events can be delivered either on the institution's premises, or at a university reasonably local to the students' own centre.


THREE DAY CRIME SCENE + FORENSIC + COURTROOM COURSES FOR STUDENTS
The crime scene to court process falls into three discrete stages: examination of the crime scene and recovery of evidence from it; examination of items of physical evidence in the forensic laboratory; preparation
for, and delivery of expert evidence in the court of law. Three day events provide the ideal framework in which to develop each of these themes, with one day being devoted to each aspect of this three-stage process. On day 1 students learn how to process and manage a crime scene (see Single Day Crime Scene Events for Students); on day 2 students learn about the principles of forensic examination and then examine the items they recovered from the scenes (see Single Day Forensic Events for Students); on day 3 students learn about giving evidence in court, prepare an expert witness statement based on their activities on the first two days, and then give testimony evidence in a mock courtroom. This latter activity can be adapted to include students who are pursuing law so that they are involved in setting up the courtroom and being involved in the role-playing exercises. These events are also staff intensive and are therefore best suited to groups of no more than 30 students.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT WHAT ELSE WE PROVIDE AND WHAT WE DO NOT
We carry out all of the preparation and planning for the workshop, including liaising with the schools' and/or LEA coordinators, and host university department. We provide all course documentation / packs, including certificates of achievement / attendance and absolutely everything physically needed to make the day run smoothly, including trained staff. We are serious about safety, so we will make sure that all of the facilities are appropriate and safe and students will be provided with a laboratory coat and where appropriate, disposable protective eye-glasses and gloves. For events lasting more than one day, we will arrange for provision of meals and accommodation with the host institution.

We do not provide transport to and away from the venue where this is away from the school or college. Transport will therefore need to be arranged by the school's or LEA coordinator. In the case of one-day events, we do not provide lunch, so students and teachers should bring their own, or sufficient funds to be able to purchase meals from campus facilities.

PLANNING AHEAD

Our workshops are very popular and it is important to plan well ahead to avoid the disappointment of missed opportunity. Universities do not always have a great deal of slack during term time; so many events are often packed in during vacation periods. For these reasons, we typically need at least two months and usually four months in advance to be able to secure appropriate campus facilities.

COURSES FOR TEACHERS

We also offer CPD courses to train teachers to teach forensic science to students.
more ....

 
 

Activities
These "themed" half-day sessions each cover a single aspect of forensic enquiry, including the examination of fingerprints, footwear marks, blood spatter, trace evidence, and documents. They are suitable for those who wish to "dig a little deeper" into the world of forensic examination. The days are split into two halves, the first half for the younger sleuth (ages 7 - 11) and the second for the slightly more grown up would-be forensic detective (ages 11 - 16). Themed activities for adults will also be offered in altenative evening sessions (details are yet to be posted).

Times
Each day is split into two sessions targetting children of different ages:

Mornings 09.30 - 12.30 [ For children aged 7 - 11 ]
Afternoons
1.30 - 4.30 [ For children aged 11 - 16 ]
Saturdays
10.00 - 13.00 (One for the family)


EVERY ONE OF US IS DIFFERENT

Monday 5th August

Fingerprints and Fingerprinting

 
TREADING ON SECRETS

Tuesday 6th August

Footwear Marks, Recovery and Examination


 
EVERY PATTERN TELLS A STORY

Wednesday 7th August

Blood Spatter Pattern Analysis

 
LOOKING FOR NEEDLES IN HAYSTACKS

Thursday 8th August

Trace Evidence

 
HIDDEN EVIDENCE ON THE WRITTEN PAGE

Friday 9th August

Handwriting and Ink Analysis

 
COME AND PLAY

Saturday 10th August

A range of hands-on activities to whet your appetite

 
 
 
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