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Short Course

The Forensic Investigation of Sexual Offences

Forensic science interpretations in sexual offences cases are amongst the most complex and difficult interpretations faced by forensic scientists.


Course overview

Contrary to popular belief, forensic science is not definitive. In addition to identifying the type of evidence recovered, a more pertinent question might be, “How did it get there?” This is particularly relevant in dealing with forensic evidence in a sexual offence case. In this short course, the issues of transfer and persistence of evidence will be discussed, considering various areas of the body of both the complainant and perpetrator. The factors limiting persistence of evidence will be explored in detail with the aid of case studies, and the impact of body fluid test limitations and attribution issues on interpretation will be demonstrated.

Highlights of the course

  • Rape and the law
  • Transfer and persistence of biological evidence
  • The forensic medical examination
  • Laboratory strategy
  • Interpretation of complex evidence

Learning outcomes and aims

On completion of this course, delegates will have a thorough understanding of effective forensic strategy setting in sexual offence cases and will better understand persistence data and how to apply this to the interpretation of complex biological evidence.

Level: Short Course, CPD
Delivery: Campus
Study Mode: Full time
Duration: 5 days
Campus: Preston
Start Date: Start dates are varied

Entry requirements

Relevant operational experience.


This course is based in the School of Natural Sciences located in the Faculty of Science and Technology

For information on possible changes to course information, see our essential and important course information

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