From a module to an MSc that upskills workers and improves graduate employability: an example from Audio/Video Forensics
Developing an academic programme that upskills students and enhances employability can be a challenge, however getting that ‘spark’ of an idea can come from unexpected places. Programme design can be improved through collaboration with different subject areas and with employers.
Audio and Video forensics is a fast-moving area at the forefront of evidence in the criminal justice system. The need for improving knowledge, skills and abilities of audio & video forensic officers has been acknowledged by the Ministry of Justice, the UK Forensic Regulator and the National Police Chiefs Council, with plans for all audio & video forensic officers to be educated and trained to the highest level.
Having taught Audio Production for many years, the Audio Team introduced a popular and well received Audio Forensics module. Based on this, and through a working relationship with the Forensic Science team (School of PBS), the School of Engineering started discussions with Merseyside Police in relation to audio and video forensics. This collaboration led to creating the MSc in Audio and Video Forensics (validated in July 2021) delivered primarily online. Given this MSc in Audio and Video Forensics is the only such programme in the world, LJMU are ideally placed to be at the forefront of this educational upskilling.
Senior Officers within Merseyside Police generally and the Merseyside Police Forensic Unit in particular, have been closely involved in developing the MSc programme, with their support extending to sending a significant number of their staff to study on the programme.
The talk will detail the collaboration between LJMU departments, students, and Police during the design process to produce a programme that meets the needs of Police Forensic Units, provides a route for Audio/Video Technology graduate to retrain into forensics, and provides graduates with the requisite transversal skills – an approach that other departments can follow.
Copyright (c) 2022 Karl Jones, Colin Robinson, John Marsland, Suzzanne McColl, Helen Burrell, Hellen Bennett
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