Amy Rattenbury

Senior Lecturer in Forensic Science

Picture of staff member

Amy holds a BSc (Hons) in Forensic Biology from Staffordshire University and an MSc in Forensic Archaeology and Crime Scene Investigation from Bradford University. Her previous research has looked in to ‘How time and pressure can cause distortion in overlapping fingerprints’, ‘Modified weapons trafficking’ and ‘An investigation into identification from light air crashes on the Russian-Finnish border’.

Prior to joining Wrexham University in 2016, she was a programme leader on BSc (Hons) in Criminology & Forensic Investigation at the University Centre Southend, as well as having previously worked in a number of other colleges and UKAS accredited laboratories. Amy’s specialism is in the techniques of search, recovery and identification, and she has substantive experience working with human skeletal remains.

She holds a consultancy position with Kenyon International Emergency Services working in search, location and disaster victim identification, and has been deployed to a Mass Fatality incident as a Database Manager. Amy is an active member of the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences, the British Association of Forensic Anthropologists and the British Association of Biological Anthropology and Osteoarchaeology as well as various other professional and regulatory bodies. She is currently working toward Certified Forensic Anthropologist status (FA-III) with the Royal Anthropological Institute.

She works closely with local and national teams specialising in the training of forensic search dogs, and has also supported in the delivery of programmes focusing on human remains both nationally and internationally. Her current focus is in the area of forensic taphonomy, and more specifically the impact of decomposition on identification techniques and the use of drone technology in forensic search and recording. She also has broader interests in cold case reviews, buried and concealed evidence and forensic pathology.

Research Interests

Amy's main research focus is currently in the areas of:

• Forensic Anthropology: specifically related to human osteology and dental anthropology

• Forensic Taphonomy: concentrating on factors affecting the rate of decomposition

• Search Dog Handling: specialising on accuracy and reliability of cadaver dogs

• Forensic Education: focused on emerging pedagogies and digital integration.

Other key words related to her research interests: Forensic Archaeology; Forensic Pathology; Entomology; Disaster Management; Disaster Victim Identification; Mass Fatalities; Biological Anthropology; Bioarchaeology; Forensic Imaging; Drones; UAVs; 3D Scanning; 3D Printing; Geophysics; Artificial Intelligence; and Equality & Diversity.


Name Role Company
Dr Neil Pickles Associate Dean (Planning & Quality) Edge Hill University
Dr Xenia-Paula Kyriakou Senior Lecturer in Forensic Sciences University of West London
Dr Christopher Aris Lecturer in Forensic Anthropology Keele University
Dr Amber Collings Lecturer in Forensic Anthropology Keele University
Dr Chris Rogers Senior Lecturer in Forensic Science Wolverhampton University
Paige Tynan Lecturer in Bioscience Wrexham University
Dr Jixin Yang Reader in Materials Chemistry Wrexham University
Prof Alison McMillan Professor in Aerospace Technology Wrexham University


Year Publication Type
2023 Forensic Investigation Conference: From Death to Discovery, Wrexham Glyndwr University.  Conference Contribution
2023 BAFA Winter Conference: Searching for Human Remains, British Association for Forensic Anthropology.  Conference Contribution
2023 Advancing Forensic Taphonomy: Reviews & Recommendations, BAFA Winter Conference: Searching for Human Remains. [DOI]
Paige Tynan;Amy Rattenbury;Neil Pickles
Conference Contribution
2021 Measuring decay: Forensic techniques for scoring decomposition, LGBTQ+ STEMinar. [DOI] Other Publication
2020 Reviewing Total Body Scores (TBS): inter-observer reliability when scoring Sus scrofa decomposition in the UK., British Association for Forensic Anthrropology Virtual Conference. [DOI] Other Publication
2020 The challenges of forensic taphonomic research in the UK, Chartered Society for Forensic Science Postgraduate Symposium. [DOI] Other Publication
2020 The challenges of taphonomic research in the UK, TaphCon. [DOI] Other Publication
2020 Proposing a Database for Forensic Taphonomy: Plans for an online open access repository for teaching and research of post-mortem processes, British Association for Forensic Anthropology Winter Conference. [DOI] Other Publication
2018 Effect of salt water on cadaver dog scent detection abilities, INTREPID Conference: Innovation through collaboration. [DOI]
Ellis, D.;Rattenbury, A.;Jones, D.
Conference Contribution
2018 Forensic Taphonomy, Forensic Ecogenomics. [DOI]
A. E. Rattenbury
Book Chapter
2017 Forensic Investigation Conference: Search & Identification, Wrexham Glyndwr University.  Conference Contribution
2017 Review Of “Criminal Investigations: A Method for Reconstructing the Past, CSEye. 
Amy Rattenbury
Book Review

Honors and Awards

Date Title Awarding Body
2023 Best Personal Tutor - Finalist Wrexham Glyndwr SU
2022 Aurora Award Advanced HE
2023 Woman of the Year - Finalist Wales STEM Awards
2021 Inspire! Tutor Award - Winner Learning & Work Institute of Wales
2020 Best Lecturer - Finalist Wrexham Glyndwr SU
2020 Best Personal Tutor - Finalist Wrexham Glyndwr SU
2020 Best Team - Commendation Glyndwr Above & Beyond Staff Awards
2020 Woman in STEM - Finalist Chwarae Teg Womenspire
2020 Woman of the Year - Finalist Wales STEM Awards

Professional Associations

Association Function
British Association of Biological Anthropology & Osteoarchaeology Member
Mentoring Women in Archaeology & Heritage Member
Wales STEM Network Member
Chartered Management Institute Affiliate
British Association for Forensic Anthropology Member
Chartered Society of Forensic Science Professional Member
Royal Anthropological Institute Fellow
Association for Learning Technology Associate


Name Description From/To
British Association for Forensic Anthropology Membership Secretary 2017 - 2023


Institution Qualification Subject From/To
Chester University EdD Doctorate in Education 2019
Bradford Univertsity MSc Forensic Archaeology & Crime Scene Investigation 2012 - 2013
Staffordshire Universtiy BSc (Hons) Forensic Biology 2009 - 2012

Consultancy & Knowledge Transfer Partnerships

Client Description From/To
UKK9 Training for Excellence Search and recovery consultant for missing persons and human remains 2016

Teaching Interests

Amy's teaching interests are deeply rooted in forensic science, with a particular emphasis on forensic biology, forensic archaeology, and crime scene investigation. She is keenly interested in the practical applications of forensic science in solving crimes, including the techniques of search, recovery, and identification, especially in relation to human skeletal remains. Additionally, her interests extend to the training of forensic search dogs, the use of drone technology in forensic search and recording, and the forensic investigation of cold cases, buried and concealed evidence, and forensic pathology.

Amy is passionate about incorporating active learning strategies and technology-enhanced teaching methods into her forensic science courses. She believes in engaging students through hands-on activities, real-world case studies, and the use of innovative technologies, such as drone technology for forensic search and recording. This approach not only deepens students' understanding of forensic science but also prepares them for the practical challenges they will face in their careers.

Programs/ Modules Coordinated

Title Subject
Science in Court SCI635
Human Osteology SCI723
Anatomy, Pathology and the Forensic Examination of Human Remains SCI519
Negotiated Learning SCI718
Forensic Taphonomy SCI608
Forensic Investigation of Mass Fatalities SCI611
Forensic Evidence and Criminal Justice SCI417
Intro to Facial Reconstruction SCI438
Professional Practice & Placement SCI724
Intro to Ballistics SCI452
Intro to Search Dog Handling SCI445
Canine Operational Support SCI444
Forensic Biology SCI533
Human Skeletal Remains SCI439
Research Methods: Theory & Practice SCI525
Forensic Science for Health Professionals SCI454