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This study programme is designed for 16 to 19 year olds (aged 19 to 24 for students with an Education, Health and Care Plan).

All courses take place on our Sixth Form Campus, therefore any applicants aged 25+ or over who do not have an Education, Health and Care Plan may be required to complete a DBS check as part of the conditional offer to West Suffolk College. The cost to the applicant for a DBS is £30.00 and the DBS check can be completed through the college.

Please visit our Adult EducationDegrees and Employer section for alternative courses.

About the course

There's a definite need for STEM skills and graduates and this course will give you the skills and knowledge to progress into a range of different scientific disciplines.


Forensic Scientists are traditionally involved in the production of scientific evidence for use in courts of law to support the prosecution or defence in criminal and civil investigations.4


Crime Scene Investigators examine crime scenes to gather forensic evidence that will ultimately lead to the detection and prosecution of criminals.


Both Forensic Scientists and Crime Scene Investigators are responsible for the quality and accuracy of the work they undertake within the limits of their personal authority. They will be responsible for processing and categorising evidence that may be used in criminal investigations. This might include collecting or processing disturbing evidence samples from the scene such as biological evidence. For both fields, you will need to demonstrate a core set of behaviours in order to be competent in your job role, and for the role of forensic scientist, complement wider business strategy and development. This will enable them to support their long-term career development.

Entry requirements

Entry Requirements - Grade 4 (C) in English, Grade 4 (C) mathematics and Grade 4 (C) in Science


Level 3 Extended Diploma in Forensics and Criminal Investigation

What you'll learn (core modules)

Foundation knowledge of Biology, Chemistry and Physics

Environmental Forensics

Analytical Biology, Chemistry and Physics

Forensic Photography

Forensic Genetics

Forensic Anthropology

Forensic Investigation Procedures in Practice

Essential skills including problem solving, working with others and ICT

Work experience, employability and careers


Benefits, skills and character strengths

By completing this course, you will gain a formal Science qualification that is recognised by universities as well as industry. It provides you with a pathway to an Apprenticeship with one of the many local employers West Suffolk College works with or the ability to progress onto numerous university course. The course is open to those progressing from Level 2 qualifications or GCSEs.


You will learn how to work effectively and practice advanced scientific skills. In addition to the practical skills you will develop, you will also improve your employability through the enhancement of your communication, numeracy and information technology abilities.

How will I be assessed?

This course is assessed with internal assessments and external examinations 

Where will the course take me?

Further Study - Subject to successful interview and completion of this course, you may progress to further levels of study within Science in the college, apprenticeship, university or employment.

Career Opportunities - Completion of this course of study and further courses can provide a stepping stone and lead to modern apprenticeships or employment as a trainee in a wide range of science sectors.

Typical job titles - Forensic Scientist, Crime Scene Investigator, Forensic Anthropologist, Forensic Archaeologist, Toxicologist, Teacher/Lecturer, Scientific Lab Technician, Teaching Lab Technician.

Application Process - You will be invited to discuss your application with us. Your application, current qualifications and interview will form part of the selection process.

I'm interested. What should I do now?

Come to an Open Event and apply online.

Days & times

Starting September 2023

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If there is anything more you would like to know about this course, please message us here.

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