Analytical Chemistry and Forensic Science

Coventry University

Degree level: Undergraduate

There are other course options available which may have a different vacancy status or entry requirements – view the full list of options

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Course summary

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In laboratory sessions, we cover key experimental techniques and develop essential lab, data handling, reporting and broader scientific skills, such as literature researching, information technology, bioinformatics, data processing and the use of statistics. The course is underpinned with practical experience, enabling students to participate in ‘real-life’ simulated situations within our dedicated video-linked crime scene house or mock court room, for example. There is also the opportunity to become familiar with a wide range of other academic disciplines, including cell structures and function, biochemistry and genetics, which play a key role in the forensic arena. You’ll be taught by our experienced staff, many of whom bring professional or research expertise to their teaching in the areas of toxicology, environmental analysis, pharmacology, biochemistry, genomic and molecular biology, as well as highly specialist areas such as footwear analysis and sensor design. They have held roles as quality assurance managers in major pharmaceuticals companies, such as GSK and British Biotech, as forensic scientists in the Forensic Science Service or as analytical scientists in government laboratories. You will have the chance to conduct research alongside members of staff or the many professional organisations we have links with – such as Leicester Royal Infirmary, Key Forensic Services Ltd, Nemaura Pharmaceuticals Ltd, Nicholls Colton, West Midlands Police and Excilica, a chemistry company that was set up by Coventry University. Key Course Benefits

  • Support applying for short and long-term placements in laboratory and industrial settings.
  • Scene of crime outfit, basic fingerprint kit, laboratory coat and safety spectacles provided for use.High levels of student satisfaction.
  • Regular guest speakers have previously included: Derek Forrest OBE, Interpol’s lead on Disaster Victim Identification; a former student now working as a DNA analyst and a forensic scientist with many years’ experience of presenting evidence in court.
  • Many of our staff are professionally recognised as accredited as Chartered Chemists by the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC), Chartered Biologists by the Royal Society of Biology (RSB) and are professional members of the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences (CSFS).
  • Hands-on experience of a wide range of laboratory technique techniques including High Performance Liquid Chromatography, Gas chromatography-Mass Spectrometry, UV and IR Spectrometry, Atomic Emission Spectroscopy, Capillary Electrophoresis, gene amplification using PCR and Gene Sequencing (DNA17). * Strong network of professional agencies and potential employers and excellent research links with Key Forensic Services Ltd and LGC Forensics Ltd, whose practising forensic scientists have previously provided guest lectures and workshops to help students prepare themselves for the real-world experience of forensic science, as well as specific topics for final year research projects.

Course details


Your main study themes are: Chemical analysis We deal with the important areas of sampling, sample preparation, extraction techniques and analysis in the analytical sciences. The quantitative aspects of spectrometry, chromatography and electrophoresis will be emphasised. We will examine the various processes and techniques involved and their possible uses in analysis of a wide variety of chemical and biological materials including foods, environmental and pharmaceutical samples within industrial and manufacturing environments. Forensic science Covers crime scene protocols for recovery, physical, biological and chemical techniques for analysis, statistical interpretation and legal aspects governing presentation of evidence for the criminal justice system. Techniques covered range from ‘spot tests’ for blood, drugs and firearm residues to the development of latent fingerprints, the identification of glass and paint fragments and the microscopic examination of hairs and fibres. Biology for chemists Covers key biological principles including the structure and activities of both prokaryotic (bacterial) and eukaryotic cells, the structure and function of biological macromolecules, enzymes and metabolic pathways, and genetic inheritance. These concepts are vital for understanding of key techniques employed in forensic science such as DNA analysis. Laboratory competence Generic and specialised skills in experimental biology, including experimentation and measurements on humans, anti-contamination and audit trail procedures, safety (eg. key laboratory skills and competencies, good laboratory practice) and ethical considerations. Research methods Critical analysis, reflection, information searching and experimental design in the Analytical Chemistry and Forensic Sciences. Data collection, analysis and presentation. For more information about what you will study, please visit our website.

Professional bodies

Professionally accredited courses provide industry-wide recognition of the quality of your qualification.

  • Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences

How to apply

Application deadlines

If your application is completed by the following date, it’s guaranteed to be considered:

15 January

*If you apply after this deadline, universities or colleges don’t have to consider your application if they’ve filled their spaces, so the sooner you apply, the better!

Application codes

You will need these codes when you add a choice to your application.

Please select a course option – you will then see the application code you need to use to apply for the course.

Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Year 1

Entry requirements

Qualification requirements

QualificationOfferFurther information
A level BBC to include Chemistry or Biology. Excludes General Studies.
Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (first teaching from September 2016) DMM in a Biological or Chemical Science subject. Excludes Health and Social Care.
Access to HE Diploma The Access to HE Diploma to include 30 Level 3 credits at Merit of which 15 must be in Biology or Chemistry units. Plus GCSE English and Mathematics at grade 4 / C or above.
International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme 30 points to include 5 points in Biology or Chemistry at Higher level.
GCSE/National 4/National 5 5 GCSEs at grade 4 / C or above to include English, Mathematics and two Sciences.

All applications are considered on an individual basis and the whole application is reviewed which includes previous and predicted qualifications, experience, reference and your motivation to study the course. The University also accepts the BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate / BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma and BTEC Level 3 National Diploma / BTEC Level 3 Diploma for entry onto degree programmes, provided that they are studied in combination with other qualifications that total the equivalent of three A2 Levels. This may include subject specific requirements where necessary. If you are successful in receiving an offer, you will be invited to attend an Applicant Visit Day to discover more about the course and studying at Coventry University.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

EU £9250 Year 1
England £9250 Year 1
Northern Ireland £9250 Year 1
Scotland £9250 Year 1
Wales £9250 Year 1

Additional fee information

EU students should be aware that there may be a change to UK laws following the UK’s exit from the European Union, this may change their student status and/or their tuition fee charges. Coventry University Group will act in accordance with the UK’s laws in force in relation to student tuition fees and finance at that time.
Analytical Chemistry and Forensic Science at Coventry University - UCAS