Forensic science specialists have been delving into some of the finer points of their work at an event in IT Sligo organised by one of the profession’s leading international organisations.
The choice of venue by the UK-based Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences (CSFS) is seen as prestigious recognition of IT Sligo’s leading role in the development of third-level studies of the specialism in Ireland.
“Being invited to host the event is in itself a mark of the Institute’s high standing in promoting undergraduate studies in this multi-faceted discipline,” according to Dr Aodhmar Cadogan, who lectures in Forensic Science at IT Sligo.
“We regard it as a very welcome stamp of approval for what we are doing and we are delighted to be able to host it.”
The two-day workshop, based on a busy programme of theory and practice, brought together ten academics and practitioners and focused on written interpretation of evidence. Attendees included representatives from De Montfort University and Teesside University in the UK and well as participants from Athlone IT, IT Sligo and IFIC Forensics.
Dr Cadogan explained: “In a court for example, unlike other witnesses a forensic scientist is asked to give his or her opinion about evidential material. As an expert witness, the forensic scientist will often be questioned on a written report that may have been prepared many months previously. So, it is vital that they are adept in professionally compiling and presenting those reports.”
CSFS is an international professional body with members in more than 60 countries.
In January a forensic science course at IT Sligo became the first in Ireland to be granted CSFS accreditation. The accolade was awarded to the BSc (Hons) Forensic Investigation and Analysis programme, which currently has some 130 students.
Accreditation signifies that the degree programme’s taught and practice components and IT Sligo’s scientific facilities and staff expertise meet the Society’s highest standards.
UK universities similarly accredited include Keele, Kent, East Anglia, Portsmouth and King’s College London.
Participants at the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences workshop at IT Sligo are, from left, workshop convenor Peter Smith, Felstead Forensics,with Marce Lee-Gorman, CSFS representative in Ireland, and IT Sligo lecturers Sharon Barrett and Fiona McArdle.