Studying Forensic Investigation at Winchester

1 May 2018
Students in front of a fire engine

When visiting Winchester, you might see us around. We're the ones kitted out from head to toe in a white Tyvek suit with blue shoe covers and gloves to match. While it may not be the most flattering outfit, I wouldn’t have changed anything over the past three years. Now I'm coming to the end of my time at the University of Winchester, I'd like to share my experiences, advice and knowledge from my Forensic Investigation* degree.

Students dressed in lab coats

Firstly, forensic science is one of the most engaging and fascinating subjects that you can study. During my time here, I have excavated bones, processed a crime scene and presented evidence in a mock court. All of this realistic training is due to being taught by practitioners in fields ranging from entomology to archaeology and psychology. With their experience comes wisdom and many entertaining stories from crime scenes. While getting stuck in and doing these practical sessions is a lot of fun, it can be exhausting and very challenging. Thankfully, you share and overcome these challenges with your team and the feeling at the end of the day is hugely rewarding, though I recommend wearing sturdy boots!

students digging as part of forensics course

Teamwork is a huge part of this course and forensics as a discipline in general and my class is small but contains the most supportive system of students. We work together to complete practical work and spending a day digging and collecting evidence is one of the most valuable bonding experiences. We also get to do practical work outside of the university with trips to army bases as well as Hampshire Fire and Police Headquarters. Here we got to examine new, realistic crime scenes which have been set up to train those professionals in the field. Going to these outside locations allowed us to contextualise the theoretical knowledge we gained in lectures. And if that isn't enough, we also got to meet the fire investigation dogs!

Group of students stood in front of a fire engine

Guest lecturers also provided new opinions and insights into their specialised fields. We have met a variety of professionals including police officers, fire investigators and crime scene managers throughout the past three years. Through giving their time to participate in our course, we could ask questions and hear new insights into forensically related careers. Drawing on all of these different fields we experienced a variety of disciplines within forensics allowing us to branch out and perform our own research for our dissertations which is a great project to showcase the knowledge we have gained throughout our degree.

Third year female student holding her dissertation proudly

I hope that this blog post has given you an insight into life as a Forensic Investigation* student. If this is the course for you it will be one of the most challenging, rewarding and enjoyable three years you'll experience. So make the most of your time here and have fun because it goes quickly!

About the author

Charlotte Bailey - Year 3 BA (Hons) Forensic Studies

*Course Title change in 2019 from BA (Hons) Forensic Studies to BSc (Hons) Forensic Investigation

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