Most crime scenes have traces of different types from a perpetrator. A genetic, chemical or toxicological analysis can play a critical role in an investigation and may lead to a conviction in a court trial. The advanced and constantly improved methods for analysing evidence material make forensic science a growing field of knowledge. The Master's Programme in Forensic Science will enable you to meet the increasing need for academic competence and research, and at the same time the knowledge can also be used within many other fields.
Why this programme?
The aim of the Master's Programme in Forensic Science is to give a broad as well as deep knowledge within the field of forensic science. Several of the laboratory exercises in the programme are connected to criminalistics and based on novel research. The methods are, however, generally used in many other areas apart from forensic science, for example the food industry, medicine, pharmaceuticals, environmental monitoring and the biotech industry. You will be trained in critical thinking and analysis of information and results, which are important skills in all scientific areas. The programme is a broad education with close ties to research.
The programme gives you an in-depth understanding of applications of biological and chemical analyses within the legal system. This includes knowledge of human genetics, criminalistics, forensic genetics, forensic medicine, law, psychology and analytical chemistry.
During the programme you can expect to:
learn to independently carry out examinations and apply statistical methods and evaluate your results
have access to excellent laboratory facilities
acquire forensic competence and research.
The Master's Programme in Forensic Science received the highest possible quality credential in the latest evaluation by the Swedish Higher Education Authority.
Student profile You have a strong foundation in biology with chemistry courses, or a chemistry background that includes molecular biology. You have good knowledge in molecular biology or human genetics and organic, inorganic and analytical chemistry. During your Bachelor's studies you also gained experience in laboratory work.
You have an analytical mindset and are able and willing to express your thoughts and views. Talking and writing in English is not a problem for you and you expect a mutual exchange with your peer students in an international environment with different experiences and knowledge. You want a broad international education that can lead you in many directions including for example the forensic area, molecular biology, toxicology or analytical chemistry.
A future PhD education is a possibility you have thought about and you will value the opportunity to get in closer contact with current research. You also appreciate the possibility to apply your knowledge with an internship in the industry, within an authority or abroad. You would like to keep your options open for now.
The programme leads to a Master of Medical Science (120 credits) with Forensic Science as the main field of study.
During the first year, you will attend five courses that give you broad knowledge of forensic work, from the time a crime has been committed until a verdict is reached in court. The first semester you will learn about crime scene investigations, medical genetics and forensic medicine. During semester two, you will learn about chemical analysis methods of evidence, the legal system and evaluation of evidence in criminal cases. The courses are organised by researchers with expertise in their fields, with invited lecturers from the police and the National Board of Forensic Medicine.
In parallel with the courses throughout the first semester, you will participate in a lecture series in professional training, which includes presentation techniques, research ethics and cultural intelligence.
Year two begins with further in-depth studies of analytical chemistry, followed by an elective period. During this period, you can choose to either take a 15 credit course of your choice or extend your degree project from 30 to 45 credits. You can carry out the degree project at, for example, a forensic laboratory, company, university or a government agency. It can also be done abroad and in many different subject areas (the subject is not limited to forensic science).
Courses within the programme
Semester 1: Medical Genetics, 7.5 credits Forensic Science and Criminalistics, 7.5 credits Forensic Genetics and Medicine, 15 credits
The Master's Programme in Forensic Science is given in an international and small group (approximately 20 students), and the instruction includes lectures, project work, laboratory work, group instruction and demonstrations.
Lectures are mixed with laborations and you will work with compilation of information from laboratory work, evaluate scientific articles and learn to critically review scientific texts and your own results. Your achievements will be assessed by examinations, seminars and projects.
Attendance is compulsory at all scheduled sessions including demonstrations, group instructions, seminars, laboratory work and demonstration of an autopsy.
The programme is given entirely in English and requires full-time studies in Uppsala.
The programme prepares you for forensic work within the police authority or at forensic laboratories. For example, you can work with DNA analyses, fingerprints, shoeprints, tool marks or toxicological analyses.
With broad and deep knowledge in biology and chemistry, you can also work in many other areas such as the academia, the food industry, the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries and with environmental work. Our alumni work, for example, as laboratory engineers, chemists, quality assurance officers and life science consultants. Many students also choose to pursue a PhD after graduation.
About a third of our alumni work at Swedish or foreign authorities as, for example, forensic experts, a quarter work in academic research and a fifth in the private sector. A majority find their first job before or within six months after graduation.
Career support During your whole time as a student UU Careers offers you support and guidance. You have the opportunity to partake in a variety of career activities and events, as well as receive individual career counselling. This service is free of charge for all students at Uppsala University. Learn more about UU Careers.
Below you will find the details about eligibility requirements, selection criteria, and tuition fees. For information on how to apply and what documents you need to submit, check the application guide. For this programme, besides the general supporting documents, you also need to submit two programme-specific documents: 1. an Application Summary Sheet; 2. document(s) and/or letter(s) of recommendation certifying your previous experience.
There are two admission rounds for this Master's programme. The first admission round is open to all international applicants at www.universityadmissions.se. The last date to apply is 17 January 2022. We strongly encourage all international students to apply in this first admission round.
The second admission round is primarily for Swedish applicants. Only students who are citizens of a country within the European Union, European Economic Area and Switzerland can apply in this admission round. The last date to apply is 19 April 2022 and it is done at www.antagning.se in Swedish.
Requirements: Academic requirements A Bachelor's degree, equivalent to a Swedish Kandidatexamen, from an internationally recognised university. The main field of study must be in molecular biology, biomedicine, chemistry, biology, or a similar field of study that includes at least 15 credits in chemistry and/or biochemistry as well as 15 credits in cell biology, molecular biology and/or genetics. Also required is knowledge and practical experience of laboratory experiments in life sciences.
Language requirements Proficiency in English equivalent to the Swedish upper secondary course English 6. This requirement can be met either by achieving the required score on an internationally recognised test, or by previous upper secondary or university studies in some countries. Detailed instructions on how to provide evidence of your English proficiency are available at universityadmissions.se.
Students are selected based on an overall appraisal of:
the quantity and quality of previous university studies with emphasis on grades in relevant fields,
a statement of purpose describing your interest in the programme,
a summary in English (maximum one page) of a research project, or similar, performed during the Bachelor's studies and
relevant work experience.
Tuition fee-paying students and non-paying students are admitted on the same grounds but in different selection groups.
If you are not a citizen of a European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) country, or Switzerland, you are required to pay application and tuition fees. Fees cover application and tuition only and do not cover accommodation, academic literature or the general cost of living. Read more about fees.