These flexible, mock crime spaces are key to our teaching, research and collaboration with law enforcement partners. You'll find a series of realistic, simulated crime scenes where students can put their forensic skills into practice.

We use simulation aids, including realistic mannequins, complete with injuries and associated blood distribution, to give students experience of working at a crime scene. We integrate the latest forensic and education technologies to support learning and research, including Virtual Reality to improve forensic skills and investigative decision making.

Students learn to search, visualise and recover biological evidence, trace materials, marks and impressions from a variety of scenes covering all types of crime.

The facility is part of our Forensic Innovation Centre where we have developed strong partnerships with our local law enforcement partners. It won a Times Higher Education Awards for 'Outstanding Employer Engagement Initiative' in 2015 and we continue to work together with local, national and international partners providing placement and internship opportunities for students, and collaboration in forensic research.

Courses with access to the facilities include:

All PhD students and any other researchers working on forensic-based topics, such as those in the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice (SCCJ) and Department of Psychology, can also use the facilities.


  • 12 Oculus VR headsets used for interactive learning experiences
  • Hydra Immersive Learning Suite to create the reality of critical incident management
  • Incubator growth cabinets
  • Decomposition sites for learning how cadavers and trace material decomposes, and associated time since death estimates
  • Specialist microscopy including an industry-standard comparison microscope for ballistics and tool marks
  • 3D scanner and printer
  • Fingerprint enhancement and analysis
  • Gel scanner system for visualising footwear and fingerprints
  • Electrostatic Detection Apparatus (ESDA) – used to look at indents on pages and surfaces, such as handwriting
  • Thermal fingerprint developer for developing marks on paper using heat and alternative light sources
  • Lasers (BrightBeam 8-watt blue, Lumatech and Luna M05) for viewing fingerprints and trace elements
  • UV camera
  • Infrared camera for detecting bloodstains and gunshot residue
  • Vacuum metal deposition machine, which develops fingerprints on non-porous items