Scientific Investigation Techniques

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Scientific Investigation Techniques

Workshop 1 – Article Summaries (Assessment 1)


The aim of this one-hour workshop is to help you with what is required for their article summaries, by allowing peer review and formative class feedback.

Overview of the assessment

This aspect of the assessment allows you to demonstrate their understanding of a broad range of topics covered by the unit. It will also help you to practice locating and summarising suitable original research articles for your next assessment, the report.


You are required to select four recent original research articles, published after 2010, one on each of any four topics covered by lectures in teaching block 1. These include:

  • Crime scene management and forensic investigation
  • Forensic pathology
  • Forensic entomology
  • Forensic odontology
  • Forensic anthropology
  • Disaster victim identification
  • Forensic archaeology
  • Forensic radiography

A 250-word summary must be written on each article (NOT a copy of the abstract), including a description of the work, an explanation of the contribution of the work to the respective field and forensic science, and a short critique of the quality of the research. A summary should be something you can go back to, to get the gist of the article without reading it fully; a memory jog. The critique should be brief and demonstrate one limitation of the article. For example, a study conducted in Portsmouth on local fauna/flora will not apply elsewhere (add a reference that supports this or gives an example of another study).



During consolidation week in teaching block one, must draft one of these summaries. It is up to you to find your own article; seminar tutors will not advise you on this. You should then bring this draft summary to this workshop.

Workshop guidance

Be prepared to talk about your article and your summary in pairs/small groups, and relay this to the class. You will also be given opportunities to ask questions of each other and the seminar tutor for help and guidance. You may also have time to work on your summary.

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