The forensic and criminology sector is diverse and wide-ranging - embracing the fields of forensic science, forensic and criminal psychology and forensic criminology. Graduate entry careers are available in forensic laboratories, the police force and the probation service. The Forensic BTEC course is a Diploma (equivalent to two A-Levels) and can be combined with another BTEC or A-Level course.
A minimum of five GCSEs at grade 4 including Maths and English and two grade 4s in Science.
Most students will progress to related courses at University. This qualification will also support students who choose to progress directly to employment, as the transferable knowledge, understanding and skills will give successful students an advantage when applying for roles in areas such as laboratory technician or forensic technician.
The content of this qualification has been developed in consultation with academics to ensure that it supports progression to higher education. The qualification provides the knowledge, understanding and skills that will prepare students for further study or training.
Everyone taking this qualification will study six mandatory units, covering the following areas:
- principles and applications of science
- practical scientific procedures and techniques
- science investigation skills
- forensic investigation procedures in practice
- applications of criminology
- criminal investigation procedures in practice.
Students choose two option units from a group. The option units have been designed to support progression to the range of sector-related courses in higher education and to link with relevant occupational areas. The optional units offer breadth and depth of topic areas relevant to the forensic and criminal investigation sector, and cover areas such as:
- physiology of human body systems
- forensic genetics
- environmental forensics
- forensic fire investigation
- practical chemical analysis.
This qualification enables students to acquire substantial cross-sector scientific knowledge and practical scientific skills, as well as forensic evidence collection and analysis skills, an appreciation of the application of psychology in forensic profiling and an understanding of the criminal justice system.