Digital Forensics - PSCI5110

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Module delivery information

This module is not currently running in 2024 to 2025.


Facial Identification
Indicative topics are: Facial reconstruction, facial composites, description by witness – cognitive interview - Turnbull's rules (R v Turnbull, 1976), identity parades – psychology of facial identification – video identity parades, facial mapping, automated recognition technologies, age progression.

Digital Image Analysis
Indicative topics are: Image formation, image storage, image distortion, image restoration methods, the digital image in crime detection, steganography (implementation and detection).

Digital Forensics
Indicative topics are: Encryption, fallacies about hiding and destroying data, where to find data and methods for retrieving it, disk imaging, file integrity, cryptographic hashing, privacy vs need for investigation. Legislation relating to computer misuse.


Contact hours

Total contact hours: 40
Private study hours: 110
Total study hours: 150


This is not available as a wild module.

Method of assessment

Assignment 1 (6.6%) 2hr
Assignment 2 (6.6%) 2hr
Assignment 3 (6.7%) 2hr
Lab assignment 4 (6.7%) 2hr
Lab assignment 5 (6.7%) 2hr
Lab assignment 6 (6.7%) 2hr
Examination (60%) 2hr

Indicative reading

Crime Scene to Court, The Essentials of Forensic Science, 2nd edition, ed. P. White. Royal Society of Chemistry, 2004. ISBN: 0854046569
Digital Image Processing using Matlab, Gonzalez, Woods and Eddins, Pearson Prentice Hall, 2004
Handbook of Computer Crime Investigation, E. Casey, Academic Press, 2002

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes. On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
Have a knowledge and understanding of:
Association of Chief Police Officer's guidelines for 'National Working Practices in Facial Imaging'
The main facial identification techniques used in criminal investigations
Practical experience of b) using facial composite software
Methods used in digital image forensics and their implementation in computer software
Aspects of digital forensics including: legislation to enforce appropriate computer use, cryptography for secret communication, network forensics and methods used to hide data on computer hardware and methods for retrieving it

The intended generic learning outcomes. On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
To use forensic software in relation to mock criminal investigations
To enhance skills in a laboratory environment
Ability to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the essential facts, and concepts, relating to the subject area


  1. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  2. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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