SLE228 - Forensic Genomics


2023 unit information

Enrolment modes: Trimester 2: Waurn Ponds (Geelong)
Credit point(s): 1
EFTSL value: 0.125


Corequisite: Nil
Incompatible with: Nil
Study commitment

Students will on average spend 150 hours over the teaching period undertaking the teaching, learning and assessment activities for this unit.

Scheduled learning activities - campus

1 x 1 hour online class per week, 1 x 1 hour seminar per week, 5 x 3 hour practicals per trimester.


Advances in genomic techniques have allowed genetic data to be obtained faster, cheaper, and in greater volume than ever before. It is also means genetic information can now be obtained from minute amounts of biological material. This has significant implications for forensic science. Forensic biologists are now able to not only identify individuals from DNA, but can also use it for a myriad of forensic applications, including predicting how a person looks, determining cause of death, genealogical relationships and distinguishing between twins. DNA data can also be used in investigations in the food industry to identify bacterial contaminates in processed and unprocessed food items, species substitutions in the seafood industry and in wildlife forensics to identify protected species or their products. Such information can be critical in criminal investigations. This unit covers both contemporary forensic DNA analysis, and emerging applications and techniques, and aims to provide students with important theory and basic skills in the acquisition, analysis and interpretation of forensic DNA data.

The unit includes both theoretical and practical components. Students will learn how DNA is currently analysed in criminal investigations, include vetting of cases, Short Tandem Repeat and fragment analysis, DNA profile interpretation, and Bayesian statistical analysis and presentation of data. Advanced techniques using next generation sequencing, and the interpretation of these data, will also be covered. Forensic applications of both contemporary and next generation sequencing techniques, and the advantages and limitations of each, will be discussed.

Hurdle requirement

To be eligible to obtain a pass in this unit, students must achieve at least 50% in the practical component.

Unit Fee Information

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