University Master in Forensic Sciences

General

Read more about this program on the school's website

Program Description

Forensic Sciences, that is, the application of scientific methods to legal questions, are an exciting, complex and multidisciplinary field of study. They use scientific principles (chemical, physical, biological, etc.) as well as social and legal sciences for the resolution of legal cases. They are a rapidly evolving discipline that is becoming increasingly important in the scientific and legal fields. This has to do, on the one hand, with the increasing number of cases of violence, voluntary or not, generating conflicts, frequently involving judicial resolutions, and, on the other hand, the increasing demand from the different instances that They intervene in the judicial system, regarding the rigor and security of the scientific evidence produced.

The complexity of the issues linked to the tests and their obtaining gives prominence to Forensic Sciences and its multidisciplinary nature. There are a wide variety of fields of interest in relation to Forensic Sciences, from the research in the practice of dating corpses through sarcoprophagous fauna or pollen or ficological valuation to the most advanced technologies of vocal identification or analytical techniques.

Master's file

Teaching center: Faculty of Biology
Type of teaching: Face-to-face
Language: Spanish
Duration: 1.5 years
ECTS credits: 90
Title: University Master's Degree in Artistic Production and Management
Scholarships, grants and mobility: National / International
Price per credit:
  • In 1st registration: € 35.24
  • In 2nd registration: € 57.28
  • In 3rd registration: € 66.09
  • In 4th or successive: € 66.09

Justification

The Universidad de Murcia teaching the Official Master's Degree in Forensic Sciences since the 2020/2021 academic year; In addition to adapting to current regulations, this proposal for an Official Master's Degree in Forensic Sciences involves expanding from 60 to 90 ECTS credits and a double orientation: professional and investigative.

Forensic Sciences, that is, the application of scientific methods to legal questions, are an exciting, complex and multidisciplinary field of study. They use scientific principles (chemical, physical, biological, etc.) as well as social and legal sciences for the resolution of legal cases. They are a rapidly evolving discipline that is becoming increasingly important in the scientific and legal fields. This has to do, on the one hand, with the increasing number of cases of violence, voluntary or not, generating conflicts, frequently involving judicial resolutions, and, on the other hand, the increasing demand from the different instances that They intervene in the judicial system, regarding the rigor and security of the scientific evidence produced.

The complexity of the issues linked to the tests and their obtaining gives prominence to Forensic Sciences and its multidisciplinary nature. There are a wide variety of fields of interest in relation to Forensic Sciences, from the research in the practice of dating corpses through sarcoprophagous fauna or pollen or ficological valuation to the most advanced technologies of vocal identification or analytical techniques.

The program focuses on advanced physical, chemical, biological, geological and sanitary methods and techniques applicable to forensic analysis, along with the obligations of forensic scientists. Students will become familiar with, among others, the usual separation techniques, spectroscopy, microscopic procedures, vocal analysis, as well as blood and DNA analysis methods. Thus, it offers students, from different disciplines, the opportunity to acquire skills to understand and apply emerging technologies and provide reliable evaluations of the evidence and testimonies in the judicial system. It influences the presentation of evidence as experts, which requires students to become expert analysts and develop oral and written communication skills in the forensic field.

The environment of influence is that of the Universidad de Murcia , which we can confine to the region itself and the neighboring ones, as well as that of various Spanish-speaking universities with which there are collaboration agreements, through which studies such as those proposed. The data on the requests for information, as well as the origin of the current students of the Master in Forensic Sciences, support this. Also the absence of studies similar to those proposed in this master's degree in the aforementioned environment of influence, coupled with the need to respond, from the university level, to the growing demand by the judicial bodies for highly specialized professionals who they have the mission of collaborating with justice, which already justifies its implantation.

Given that our program is aimed at professionals related to the field of Forensic Sciences, including Biologists, Veterinarians, Doctors, Pharmacists, Chemists, Criminologists, Dentists, etc., a high-level scientific-technical training in the theoretical and practical bases that allow the development of various activities related to forensic practice. The interest is that the program provides an offer that covers almost all the important aspects related to Forensic Sciences. Among the students trained in the program will undoubtedly be the germ of scientific research and of professionals capable of carrying out their work in the forensic field, either in official instances or in private consultancies, so that the technical aspects and the practical training will be of great interest.

On the other hand, in the Autonomous Community of Murcia, the creation of the Regional Institute of Forensic Sciences is being planned, in which our university will undoubtedly have a notable presence, and this master's degree can represent one of the pillars of this collaboration. It is foreseeable the collaboration of numerous related organizations such as the Professional Colleges, Security Forces, Penitentiary Institutions, Laboratories, Judicial Power, Civil Protection and Emergencies, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Health and Consumption, both of the Autonomous Community of Murcia, Victims Associations, Foundations, etc. This collaboration will be carried out through the appropriate agreements and collaboration agreements, which will include the participation as teachers of the master of qualified professionals from some of the aforementioned organizations and also contemplate the possibility of carrying out the Practicum by future students in their installations.

The influence that all this future infrastructure (both the teaching and the Regional Institute) will have on a socioeconomic scale in our Autonomous Region is evident. Just as an example, to point out that many of the expert techniques that could be demanded have sufficient technological development in our university, and can be put at the service of society, with the consequent adaptation of the available means. We also have the high qualification of professors and researchers in charge of applying the aforementioned techniques.

There are both national and international references that support our proposal. Thus, in our country, this type of study has had a punctual, almost testimonial representation, although under the old concept of Master as an unregulated postgraduate study. It is true that certain institutions (University of Florida) have incorporated study programs in the recent past, in relation to some more or less specific aspects of Forensic Sciences, and that other Universities, such as Murcia, developed a Master's in Forensic Sciences of a highly interdisciplinary nature. Besides, the Autonomous University of Catalonia has proposed a Master in Legal Psychology and Forensic Psychological Expertise, which delves into one of the aspects of Forensic Sciences. But beyond this, at the moment, unless we know of, there are no other initiatives in this regard.

In the international context, although there is a growing trend towards the consideration of integrated, interdisciplinary studies, related to Forensic Sciences, depending on centers of various kinds (Faculty of Sciences, Strathclyde, UK, Faculty of Medicine, Coimbra, School of Sciences Lausanne Criminals, Institutes of Forensic Medicine and Forensic Sciences, Istanbul), the study of Forensic Sciences is not excessively established in the European territory (in fact, the University of Strathclyde affirms that its Forensic Sciences Unit is the only one of its kind in the EU that has a teaching on the wide field of such Sciences), although the influence of the structure of studies in the USA, where Forensic Sciences are extremely well established, augurs a notable boom for this type of studies. In fact, there are already forensic scientists in Europe, specialized in different fields, who freely practice their profession. As an example, it is worth mentioning that forensic laboratories dedicated to DNA typing must be supervised by personnel with a minimum degree of Master of Forensic Sciences (in the USA).

For all these reasons, we understand that the implementation of this training program will be of great interest in coming to fill a gap in the training of potential professionals and researchers in a complex area in great expansion. External professionals are involved in the program, as well as groups of researchers whose work focuses on some of the aspects of Forensic Sciences, some of which have been collaborating for years and whose scientific work has materialized in contributions to national and international conferences. , scientific articles, books, doctoral theses, etc.glowing, uv, luminescent doctor-a / Pixabay

goals

The proposed Master aims that students achieve specialized training that covers a wide spectrum of scientific disciplines applied to forensic practice so that they can be part of interdisciplinary teams in their future professional or investigator. However, given the multidisciplinary nature of potential students, the Master will allow greater specialization in those subjects and areas of study more in line with the initial training of each one through the Master's Final Project.

Two different profiles are proposed to be followed, optionally, by the student. The professional profile aims, through the completion of external practices (Practicum), the direct contact with the reality of the exercise of the different disciplines in their application to forensic practice. On the other hand, the research profile, anticipated in part in the different subjects common to the Master, will be complemented by a subject that delves into the research side of the fundamental nucleus of the CC. Forensics, its more specific principles and procedures, to train future researchers in Forensic Sciences.

The Study Plan of this Master's Degree takes into account that any professional activity must be carried out

  • From the respect to the fundamental rights and equality between men and women, should be included, in the curricula where appropriate, teachings related to said rights.
  • From the respect and promotion of Human Rights and the principles of universal accessibility and design for all in accordance with the provisions of the tenth final provision of Law 51/2003, of December 2, on Equal opportunities, non-discrimination and accessibility universal of people with disabilities, and should include, in the curricula where appropriate, teachings related to these rights and principles.
  • In accordance with the values of a culture of peace and democratic values, and should include, in the curricula where appropriate, teachings related to these values.

Competencies

The competencies can be distinguished between the basic competences that must be achieved in any Master's degree in the new Spanish Framework for Higher Education and those specific to the Master's Degree in Forensic Sciences.

The following basic competences will be guaranteed as a minimum, and those others that appear in the Spanish Framework of Qualifications for Higher Education (MECES). The basic competencies of this study plan allow and guarantee that students:

  • That students know how to apply the knowledge acquired and their ability to solve problems in new or unfamiliar environments within broader (or multidisciplinary) contexts related to their area of ​​study.
  • That students are able to integrate knowledge and face the complexity of making judgments based on information that, being incomplete or limited, includes reflections on social and ethical responsibilities linked to the application of their knowledge and judgments.
  • That the students know how to communicate their conclusions –and the knowledge and ultimate reasons that support them- to specialized and non-specialized audiences in a clear way and without symbiguities.
  • That students have the learning skills that allow them to continue studying in a way that will be largely self-directed or autonomous.

On the other hand, the study plan guarantees the acquisition of the following specific competences, required to grant the Master's Degree in Forensic Sciences:

  • Ability to recognize and interpret expert evidence.
  • Ability to recognize and indicate the professional profile of those who must carry out a specific expertise within a multidisciplinary work team.
  • Ability to manage information (consult databases and relevant and specialized publications) in the field of Forensic Sciences and understand the problem to be addressed in a specific case.
  • Ability to solve, within the scope of your specific training, the expert problems that arise.
  • Know the legal framework that regulates the application of the test in any of the areas of Law.
  • Discern between the main analysis and evaluation techniques applicable to the field of expert evidence and design, where appropriate, analytical and study procedures.
  • Know the foundations and principles that govern the preparation of an expert report in the field of Forensic Sciences.
  • Know the basic and applied research methods in the field of Forensic Sciences.
  • Acquire skills and abilities in relation to the appropriate techniques for the different types of forensic evidence.
  • Conduct themselves under ethical principles in the development of the activity in the field of Forensic Sciences.

Specific competences that students must acquire in the professional itinerary

  • Ability to prepare an expert report in the field of Forensic Sciences and present and defend it in the appropriate forums.
  • Ability to prepare contradictory expert opinions.

Specific competences that students must acquire in the research itinerary

  • Ability to design and evaluate specific investigation methods in the field of Forensic Sciences.
  • Design and develop a research project in the field of Forensic Sciences.

Admission profile

In accordance with the provisions of Royal Decree 1393/2007, it will be necessary to be in possession of an official Spanish university degree or another issued by a higher education institution of the European Higher Education Area (or other systems upon request for recognition of studies equivalents) that empower the degree issuing country to access the master's degree.

There are no special conditions or specific tests for access to the training period.

Students will be able to access the Master in Forensic Sciences while holding official degrees whose preferred profiles will be degrees in Medicine and Surgery, Criminology, Biology, Chemistry, Pharmacy, Psychology, Veterinary Medicine, Nursing, Law and Dentistry or their foreign equivalents, either from the European Higher Education Area or any other space, after checking the equivalent level of training for access.

Likewise, other graduates who, in the opinion of the Academic Commission of the Master, have adequate training for it may have access.

Admission to a Master will be decided by the Center that offers it on the proposal of the Academic Commission of the Master. For admission, the following will be taken into account:

  • Academic curriculum
  • An assessment of the merits of special relevance or significance in relation to the Master
  • Any other criteria or procedure that, in the opinion of the Academic Commission of the Master, allows to verify the suitability of the applicant to continue the studies that he / she is requesting.

In particular, the following will be considered:

  • Professional activity or work or research experience related to the master's subjects.
  • Belonging to Corps or State Security Forces.

In the event of there being a greater number of applications than of places offered, the selection of those admitted will take place based on their academic record (30%), their Curriculum Vitae adjusted to their own income profile (50%) and the result of a previous interview (20%) carried out by the Academic Commission of the Master.

Graduation profile

After completing the master's degree, graduates will have acquired training and skills to carry out professional work related to the forensic field, either in official instances or in private consultancies. They will also be able to join a doctoral program as researchers in training, for the completion of a doctoral thesis.

Professional outings

Both research training and professional experience, acquired through external internships, will make it easier for students to be recruited by consulting companies, universities, hospitals and public and private centers that carry out research tasks and carry out related expert reports. with Forensic Sciences in its many facets.

The complementary preparation it offers to overcome access by opposition to institutions such as State Security Forces, the National Institute of Toxicology and Forensic Sciences or the Administration of Justice deserves to be highlighted.

Last updated Mar 2020

About the School

Una institución docente de enseñanza superior que cuenta con unas infraestructuras para la docencia y la investigación de excelencia internacional. Una universidad innovadora, dinámica, responsable y ... Read More

Una institución docente de enseñanza superior que cuenta con unas infraestructuras para la docencia y la investigación de excelencia internacional. Una universidad innovadora, dinámica, responsable y comprometida con su entorno, que no olvida sus raíces históricas. Read less