A forensics student examining a skeleton's remains

Course details

Year of entry



1 YR (FT) 2 YRS (PT)

Institution Code



Blended Learning, Wrexham

Course Highlights


systematic knowledge of forensic anthropology and bioarchaeology.


training in the handling of skeletal remains from diverse and contemporary contexts.


transferable skills enabling career progression and potential for doctoral study.

Why choose? this course?

The MRes Forensic Anthropology & Bioarchaeology programme has been designed to serve graduates wanting to embark on a Master of Research degree focusing on the search, recovery or identification of human remains and factors influencing these aspects.

  • Graduates will be equipped with the skills and subject-specific knowledge needed to pursue either a research-based career in a variety of academic disciplines, or a fieldwork career in commercial or forensic archaeology & anthropology.
  • The course will focus on field and lab-based practical, analytical and research skills, and provides ideal training for students who want to work in the industry, or are looking to move onto a PhD programme, or who simply wish to undertake a more significant and flexible amount of research at masters level.
  • Blended learning with a mix of flexible self-directed study at home, with rich face-to-face teaching experiences.

Key course features

  • Taught modules to develop understanding of the principles and application of research relevant to your discipline followed by a research project.
  • Develop an in depth knowledge in the field of forensic anthropology and bioarchaeology, and acquire a critical awareness of current issues and developments in the subject.
  • Be informed by, and contribute to, broader academic debates about the methods, approaches and practices within the Archaeological and Forensic Science Sector.
  • Undertake a tailored research project in industry, or through specialised facilitates.
  • Gain proficiency in the application of acquired knowledge to challenging scenarios.
  • Be equipped in a wide range of industry standard and novel techniques, applicable in the collection and examination of remains.
This degree is offered in full-time and part-time modes of attendance. There is a blended approach of online delivery and scheduled attendance. You will only have to attend university during specified block delivery weeks for modules requiring practical work, or face-to-face sessions. The in-person modules include Advanced Research Skills, Forensic Analytical Chemistry, and Human Osteology. You will attend the university for two or three days of a specified week for each module when studying either full or part-time, in addition to studying in your own time.  

What you will study


  • Advanced Research Skills: With a focus on developing research ideas, undertaking a literature review and planning a research study, this module develops the skillset and subject knowledge of the students so that research work can be effectively undertaken.
  • Human Osteology: A detailed understanding of human remains and skeletal material in a casework and research environment is covered, showing students the key concepts and techniques used for developing biological profiles and their applications in cases of crime, mass disaster and other casualties.
  • Negotiated Learning: Students may negotiate a tailored learning and research plan with their tutors for their personal and professional development, and to focus in more depth on a particular subject of their own expertise.
  • Professional Practice & Placement: Students have the opportunity to undertake a 100 hour work placement in a scientific role of their interest, and to learn more about the codes of conduct and accreditations and certifications associated with it.
  • Dissertation: Pilot Study: Students will begin their primary research on a small scale, expanding their knowledge of the appropriate practical research methods, and exploring the potential challenges and limitations they may face in the early stages of their final research project.
  • Dissertation: Research Project: Students will undertake an advanced research project, putting in to practice their knowledge and understanding of the subject, and demonstrating the practical, intellectual and transferable skills they have developed throughout the programme.

The information listed in this section is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal academic framework review, so may be subject to change.


Entry requirements & applying

To be considered for the course, candidates must be able to satisfy one or more of the following criteria:

  1. An initial honours degree of Wrexham University or another approved degree awarding body with a minimum of 2:2 honours degree* which has a significant content of Forensic Science, Crime, Archaeology, Anthropology or Biology.
  2. Equivalent qualifications of another overseas country which are deemed satisfactory by the programme team.

A non-graduate can also be admitted for candidature, provided that they have:

  1. A non-graduate qualification, which the university deems to be of a satisfactory standard for the purpose of postgraduate admission.
  2. Relevant work experience at a level that is deemed to compensate for the lack of formal qualifications, and have held a position of responsibility within the Forensic, Archaeological or Policing sector for a minimum of three years.

*Students who have scored less than 60% (or 2.1 equivalent) in their undergraduate dissertation or equivalent research project module will be offered an interview prior to any place being offered.

In the case where there is a lack of clarity or need to gain deeper insight into a candidate’s suitability for the programme, an informal interview with the candidate may be held, which may be undertaken via Skype or other distance communication technology. This will allow the candidate an opportunity to provide evidence to the satisfaction of the interview panel of his/her ability to complete academic work of the required standard in the subject area.

Prospective students may also apply for the Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) against specific modules, in accordance with Wrexham University regulations.

Students who currently study the PGDip in Forensic Anthropology & Bioarchaeology at the Cyprus Institute of Science and Humanities, are eligible to apply for the MRes Top-Up through advanced standing. For more information on this, please contact the Programme Leader Amy.Rattenbury@glyndwr.ac.uk.

DBS checks will not be required as standard. In some exceptional circumstances, students undertaking a placement or research project (dissertation) may be required to obtain a relevant DBS. For example, if working within schools, fieldschools or at museums where contact with children or vulnerable people could be required.

It is the students’ responsibility to determine this requirement with the relevant external institution, and to contact the Student Administration team to organise for the check to be completed in advance of any placement or research project. Any DBS checks required to complete the programme of study will be paid for by the university.


Teaching & Assessment

A range of summative assessment strategies will be used, including formal examinations, portfolios, reports, poster presentations, oral presentations, research and learning logs. These have been designed to reflect workplace requirements and developing technologies where appropriate. Students will receive formative assessments, particularly during the practical and self-study elements of the programme, to ensure that they can keep track of their progress and development.

Teaching and Learning

Wrexham University is committed to supporting our students to maximise their academic potential.

We offer workshops and support sessions in areas such as academic writing, effective note-making and preparing for assignments. Students can book appointments with academic skills tutors dedicated to helping them deal with the practicalities of university work. Our Student Support section has more information on the help available.

In terms of particular needs, the university can provide appropriate guidance and support should any students require reasonable adjustments to be made because of a recognised prevailing disability, medical condition, or specific learning difficulty. 

The programme will be delivered via blended learning, meaning that teaching will encompass both online and classroom-based delivery, guest talks, tutorials, and laboratory workshops. This mode of delivery would mean that students can travel from a distance to study a programme, without having to commit to living in Wrexham full time, as well as allowing more flexibility for those wishing to work alongside their studies. Each module will take the form of a learning package consisting of online resources such as videos, articles, quizzes, websites, discussion boards, etc. (accessed via the module space on Moodle), tutorial support meetings and, where appropriate, practical workshops.

In addition, students will complete 100 hours of a work placement activity in an appropriate industry, such as laboratories, hospitals, museums, fieldschools, education institutions or the police. Placements can be paid or voluntary and completed on a full-time, part-time or ad-hoc basis, so long as they allow for adequate time to complete the assessments before the end of the second trimester. There is no restriction on where the placement can be completed, and students are encouraged to investigate a wide range of possibilities, including international roles.

The programme will be delivered through the medium of English, however students are entitled to submit assessments in Welsh. Students are also encouraged to engage in placements which support the Welsh language where available and appropriate.


Career prospects

Our Careers & Employability service is there to help you make decisions and plan the next steps towards a bright future. From finding work or further study to working out your interests, skills and aspirations, they can provide you with the expert information, advice and guidance you need.

Graduates of this programme could go on to work in:

  • Forensic Anthropology
  • Bioarchaeology
  • Human Osteology
  • Forensic & Crime Scene Science
  • Commercial Archaeology
  • Humanitarian Work
  • Museums & Heritage
  • Research Scientist
  • Laboratory Technician
  • Education
  • PhD Study



Fees & funding

You do not have to pay your tuition fees upfront.

The fees you pay and the support available will depend on a number of different factors. Full information can be found on our fees & finance pages. You will also find information about what your fees include in the fee FAQs.

All fees are subject to any changes in government policy, view our postgraduate fees.

Programme specification

You can see the full programme specification here.