If you’re considering studying Crime & Investigation Studies (CIS) at ARU, this is the blog for you. It covers all my favourite elements about studying a CIS degree in Cambridge. I hope you enjoy.
Collecting evidence and practical hands-on experiences
To begin with when I was a first-year student, I found the module “Introduction to Forensic Methodologies” to be most exciting as it revolved around the collection of evidence from the crime scene, as well as its integrity and continuity (you will hear that a lot). I also loved that module because it was very practical and it's just amazing how quickly you learn stuff when you’re into the subject.
Another aspect that I really liked during my first year was the “Physical Criminalistics” module. I must admit that this one was difficult for me as a lot of the information that we received was sophisticated and detailed, some of which involved biology and chemistry.
Despite it being a challenge, it was a lot of fun because the practical work in the laboratory was amazing. I remember during one of our practical's and we were examining pollen. I was amazed by the information you can retrieve from pollen, I still am to this day. It is definitely a very helpful investigative tool!
Developing real skills
During my second year, I really enjoyed the “Investigative Skills” module.
As I want to pursue a career as a detective in the future, I found this module to be very helpful and informative. It allowed me and my friends to understand the nature of investigative policing, as well as the importance of teamwork and communication when it comes to criminal investigations.
We learned about the different roles in the police and their duties, and responsibilities. We were visited by a Detective Constable who talked about a real serial killer case. The lecture was regarding investigative interviewing which happens to be a great passion of mine, so this was one of my favourite memories during the second year of my study.
Using professional equipment
Another element which I very much enjoyed was “Forensic Photography.” This module was another challenge for me as I don’t consider myself to be a camera person. It was hard for me to get used to the equipment, let alone use it in accordance with the standard operating procedures we were provided.
Nevertheless, it was very fun and it helped me understand how important forensic photography is in criminal investigations.
Generally speaking, this course is great because it’s what I'm passionate about. I frequently find myself in the library, doing nothing but reading up on crime scene investigation, not because I had to, but because the topic was so interesting to me.
If this sounds like you then you’ll love this course and despite there being challenges ahead (as there should be with any degrees) you will get so much from the experience.