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Bachelor of Forensic Science/Bachelor of Criminology

Undergraduate degree

Gain valuable insight into criminal behaviour, while developing a full range of practical skills, to take you from crime scene to courtroom.

Domestic International

International student information

Key facts

Duration

4 years full-time

Current Deakin Students

To access your official course details for the year you started your degree, please visit the handbook

Course overview

The Bachelor of Forensic Science/Bachelor of Criminology trains you to examine the many facets of crime. Understanding the nature of crime and the motivations behind criminal behaviour is a sought-after skill and is particularly powerful when combined with expertise in modern forensic science. By developing skills in these complementary disciplines, you will graduate with more career options and a broader perspective of crime and the justice system.

This industry-led combined degree is designed in partnership with the Australian Crime Commission, ensuring your study experience reflects the everyday challenges of your future career. Practical learning is a key focus within this degree. You will develop your skills in our purpose-built crime scene training facility, gain industry experience through work-integrated learning opportunities and learn from international leaders in criminology.

Want to pursue a career in forensic science or the justice system?

Led by a team of highly experienced criminology and forensic science experts, the Bachelor of Forensic Science/Bachelor of Criminology gives you a glimpse into the minds of criminals, while training you to confidently examine, interpret and present forensic evidence.

This combined course draws from both the arts and science disciplines. You will develop a broad appreciation of the professional, social, economic and cultural contexts of why crimes are committed and learn how to examine evidence using modern forensic analysis techniques.

In the forensic science stream, choose to specialise in either forensic biology or forensic chemistry. Depending on your major, you'll cover a range of disciplines including:

  • toxicology
  • analysis of illicit drugs
  • DNA analysis
  • blood spatter pattern analysis
  • entomology

Our purpose-built crime scene facility lets you apply the theory you learn in the classroom in a simulated crime scene environment. Search for evidence, conduct forensic analysis and get hands-on training taking an investigation from the crime scene to the courtroom.

In the criminology stream, you will explore topics that are crucial to the prevention of crime, including cyber security, surveillance, anti-terrorism and policing. Learn about the historical repercussions, technological developments and media representations of crime and the desirable outcomes of criminal justice processes. Get hands-on experience through optional internships, allowing you to bridge theory with practice and gain insight into how the study of criminology applies across different industries and sectors. You can even take your learning overseas and gain a global perspective on how other countries approach criminology.

Our course is designed with input from professional bodies including Victoria Police and the Australian Crime Commission. This means you will develop the skills in demand by employers and graduate ready to tackle criminal justice issues in fields including:

  • anti-corruption agencies
  • correctional services
  • community services
  • crime prevention agencies
  • intelligence agencies
  • law enforcement
  • local, state and federal government
  • private security industries
  • state and federal police.
Read More

Course information

Award granted
Bachelor of Forensic Science / Bachelor of Criminology
Year

2024 course information

VTAC code
1400315563 - Waurn Ponds (Geelong), International full-fee paying place
Deakin code
D329
CRICOS code?
075455D Waurn Ponds (Geelong)
Level
Undergraduate
Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) recognition

The award conferred upon completion is recognised in the Australian Qualifications Framework at Level 7

Course structure

To complete the Bachelor of Forensic Science/Bachelor of Criminology, students must attain 32 credit points.

This combined course comprises 32 credit points of study. Students will undertake 16 credit point in the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Built Environment and 16 credit points in the Faculty of Arts and Education units. Course requirements for both the Bachelor of Forensic Science (S324) and Bachelor of Criminology (A329) must be satisfied.^

Forensic Science requirements (16 cp):

  • ten (10) credit points of core Forensic Science units (plus 1 other core unit shared with Criminology – ACR102)
  • a six (6) credit point major sequence in either Forensic Chemistry or Forensic Biology
  • DAI001 Academic Integrity Module (0-credit point compulsory unit)
  • SLE010 Laboratory and Fieldwork Safety Induction Program (0-credit point unit)
  • STP010 Career Tools for Employability (0-credit point unit)
  • at least 6 credit points at level 3 (including a minimum of 4 Science units).

Criminology requirements (16 cp):

  • students must complete 16 credit points of study from the Faculty of Arts and Education including;
  • at least 12-credit points of Criminology units, including the compulsory core units of ACR101, ACR102, ACR201, ACR202, ACR301 and ACR302
  • at least 6 credit points at level 3 including ACR301 and ACR302
  • 4 course elective units available from within the Bachelor of Arts major sequences. Please refer to A310 Bachelor of Arts for a list of Faculty of Arts and Education units.

^Combined rule: No more than 10-credit points at level 1 including SIT191, SLE111, SLE112, SLE132, SLE133, SLE155, ACR101 and ACR102

Students are required to meet the University's academic progress and conduct requirements.

16

Bachelor of Forensic science units

16

Bachelor of Criminology units

32

Total

Forensic Science Core Units

  • Academic Integrity Module (0 credit points)
  • Laboratory and Fieldwork Safety Induction Program (0 credit points)
  • Career Tools for Employability (0 credit points)
  • Cells and Genes
  • Chemistry in Our World
  • Fundamentals of Forensic Science
  • Biology: Form and Function
  • Chemistry for the Professional Sciences
  • Introduction to Statistics and Data Analysis
  • Forensic Biology
  • Research Methods and Data Analysis #
  • The Analytical Chemist's Toolbox
  • Forensic Analysis and Interpretation
  • Students must complete a major sequence in either Forensic Biology or Forensic Chemistry on top of the core unit requirements.

    # Must have successfully completed STP010 Career Tools for Employability (0 credit point unit)

    Criminology Core Units

  • Introducing Crime and Criminology
  • Introducing Crime and Criminal Justice
  • Issues in Criminal Justice
  • Explaining Crime
  • International and Comparative Criminal Justice
  • Criminology Research
  • Plus at least six credit points from the list below:

  • Crime, Victims and Justice
  • Crime, Media and Justice
  • Criminology in Action
  • Inequality, Power and Justice
  • Crime Prevention and Security
  • Surveillance and Social Justice
  • Crime, Terrorism and Security
  • Careers in Criminal Justice
  • Black Market Economics: Exploring the Underworld of Illicit Trade
  • Electives

    Select from a range of elective units offered across many courses. In some cases you may even be able to choose elective units from a completely different discipline area (subject to meeting unit requirements).

    It is important to note that some elective units may include compulsory placement, study tours, work-based training or collaborative research training arrangements.

    Major sequences

    Bachelor of Forensic Science major sequences

    Refer to the details of each major sequence for availability.

    *Enrolment in a Trimester 3 study period is compulsory

    Intakes by location

    The availability of a course varies across locations and intakes. This means that a course offered in Trimester 1 may not be offered in the same location for Trimester 2 or 3. Check each intake for up-to-date information on when and where you can commence your studies.

    Trimester 1 - March

    • Start date: March
    • Available at:
      • Waurn Ponds (Geelong)

    Trimester 2 - July

    • Start date: July
    • Available at:
      • Waurn Ponds (Geelong)

    Deakin splits the academic year into three terms, known as trimesters. Most students usually undertake two trimesters each year (March-June, July-November).

    Additional course information

    Course duration

    Course duration may be affected by delays in completing course requirements, such as accessing or completing work placements.

    Workload

    You can expect to participate in a range of teaching activities each week. This could include lectures, seminars, practicals and online interaction. You can refer to the individual unit details in the course structure for more information. You will also need to study and complete assessment tasks in your own time.

    Participation requirements

    You may be required to complete units in Trimester 3 depending on your chosen major. Please refer to the Handbook for unit offering patterns.

    Elective units may be selected that include compulsory placements, work-based training, community-based learning or collaborative research training arrangements.

    Reasonable adjustments to participation and other course requirements will be made for students with a disability. More information available at Disability support services.

    Work experience

    This course aims to provide students with a holistic experience of their role as forensic analysts. You will have the opportunity to visit a court, a crime scene and participate in a ‘moot court’ which allows students to experience a simulated courtroom environment.

    Entry requirements

    Selection is based on a holistic consideration of your academic merit, work experience, likelihood of success, availability of places, participation requirements, regulatory requirements, and individual circumstances. You will need to meet the minimum academic and English language proficiency requirements to be considered for selection, but this does not guarantee admission.

    Academic requirements

    Current or recent secondary education

    If you’re currently studying Year 12, or completed Year 12 in the last two years, you will need to meet all the following criteria to be considered for admission to this degree:

    Year 12 prerequisite subjects

    • Units 3 and 4: a study score of at least 25 in English EAL (English as an Additional Language) or at least 20 in English other than EAL

    ATAR

    • Senior Secondary Certificate of Education with an unadjusted ATAR of at least 50 or equivalent

    Higher education

    If you have undertaken higher education studies after secondary schooling, you will need to meet all the following criteria to be considered for admission to this degree:

    • successful completion of at least two bachelor level or above units (AQF Level 7 or equivalent)

    Vocational education

    If you have undertaken any Vocational Education and Training (VET) study after secondary school, you will need to meet at least one of following criteria to be considered for admission to this degree:

    • completion of a certificate IV or higher in a related discipline
    • completion of a diploma or higher in any discipline
    • at least 50% completion of a diploma or higher in a related discipline

    Work and life experience

    If you finished Year 12 more than three years ago, or did not finish Year 12, and have not undertaken any further study, you may be considered for admission to this degree based on your work, volunteer and/or life experience.

    Submit a personal statement outlining your motivation to study, previous education and employment history, and how this course can assist your career aspirations or progression. Think of it as a job application cover letter – it should be relevant and demonstrate your commitment and interest in this course or study area.

    English language proficiency requirements

    To meet the English language proficiency requirements of this course, you will need to demonstrate at least one of the following:

    • Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) English Units 3 and 4: Study score of 25 in English as an Additional Language (EAL) or 20 in any other English
    • IELTS overall score of 6 (with no band score less than 6.0) or equivalent
    • other evidence of English language proficiency (learn more about other ways to satisfy the requirements)

    Selection adjustments

    Subject adjustment

    A study score of 30 in any English, Legal Studies, any Mathematics or any Science equals 2 aggregate points per study. Overall maximum of 10 points.

    Access and equity

    Special entry access schemes (SEAS) enable Deakin to consider disadvantaged circumstances you may have experienced and the impact upon your studies. SEAS also allows us to identify if you’re from under-represented groups when making selection decisions for some courses. SEAS does not exempt you from meeting any of the course entry requirements. Learn more about Deakin’s special entry access schemes.

    Admissions information

    Learn more about Deakin courses and how we compare to other universities when it comes to the quality of our teaching and learning. We're also committed to admissions transparency. Read about our first intake of 2023 students (PDF, 354KB) – their average ATARs, whether they had any previous higher education experience and more.

    Not sure if you can get into Deakin? Discover the different entry pathways we offer and study options available to you, no matter your ATAR or education history.

    Recognition of prior learning

    If you have completed previous studies which you believe may reduce the number of units you have to complete at Deakin, indicate in the appropriate section on your application that you wish to be considered for credit for prior learning. You will need to provide a certified copy of your previous course details so your credit can be determined. If you are eligible, your offer letter will then contain information about your Recognition of prior learning.
    Your credit for prior learning is formally approved prior to your enrolment at Deakin during the Enrolment and Orientation Program. You must bring original documents relating to your previous study so that this approval can occur.

    You can also refer to the Recognition of prior learning system which outlines the credit that may be granted towards a Deakin University degree.

    Fees and scholarships

    Fee information

    Estimated tuition fee - full-fee paying place

    The tuition fees you pay are determined by the course you are enrolled in.

    The 'Estimated tuition fee' is provided as a guide only based on a typical enrolment of students completing the first year of this course. The cost will vary depending on the units you choose, your study load, the length of your course and any approved Recognition of prior learning you have.

    Each unit you enrol in has a credit point value. The 'Estimated tuition fee' is calculated by adding together eight credit points of a typical combination of units for that course. Eight credit points is used as it represents a typical full-time enrolment load for a year.

    You can find the credit point value of each unit under the Unit Description by searching for the unit in the handbook.

    Learn more about international student fees.

    Scholarship options

    A Deakin scholarship could help you pay for your course fees, living costs and study materials. If you've got something special to offer Deakin - or maybe you just need a bit of extra support - we've got a scholarship opportunity for you. Search or browse through our scholarships

    Apply now

    Apply through VTAC and Deakin

    International students who are currently completing an Australian Year 12 in Australia or overseas should apply through the Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre (VTAC), as well as directly to Deakin through StudyLink Connect – Deakin University's International Student Application Service. For information on the application process and closing dates, see the How to apply web page.

    Apply through Deakin

    All other international students apply directly to the University through StudyLink Connect - Deakin University's International Student Application Service. For information on the application process and closing dates, see the How to apply web page.

    Deakin International office or Deakin representative

    Fill out the application form and submit to a Deakin International office or take your application form to a Deakin representative for assistance

    Need more information on how to apply?

    For information on the application process and closing dates, see the How to apply webpage.
    If you’re still having problems, please contact Deakin International for assistance.

    Careers

    Career outcomes

    This combined course gives you a competitive edge in the fields of criminology, forensic science and forensic criminology. Your strong understanding of both the criminal justice system and forensic science prepares you to thrive in a variety of roles including:

    • forensic scientist
    • research scientist
    • insurance investigator
    • crime prevention officer
    • cyber security specialist
    • intelligence analyst
    • risk assessment officer
    • state and federal policing.

    Professional recognition

    The Bachelor of Forensic Science has been professionally accredited by the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences. Students of this course are encouraged to apply for membership of the Australian and New Zealand Forensic Science Society (ANZFSS) and the Australian and New Zealand Society of Criminology (ANZSOC).

    The Bachelor of Forensic Science/Bachelor of Criminology (Chemistry major) has been professionally accredited by the Royal Australian Chemical Institute (RACI). Graduates of this course are encouraged to apply for membership of the respective local branch of the Royal Australian Chemical Institute.

    Course learning outcomes

    Deakin's graduate learning outcomes describe the knowledge and capabilities graduates can demonstrate at the completion of their course. These outcomes mean that regardless of the Deakin course you undertake, you can rest assured your degree will teach you the skills and professional attributes that employers value. They'll set you up to learn and work effectively in the future.

    Please refer to the Course Learning Outcomes (CLOs) of the single degree.