In this unit plan, students develop a mobile evidence collection system to collect forensic evidence from a crime scene in a reliable, repeatable way. They are provided with some material for gathering evidence, and their task is to research and design a mobile evidence-gathering kit that provides not only instructions for use but also a suggested sequence that should be followed.
This unit plan was trialled with year 10 students, and this case study is described in the download Word document, (see below).
To develop an understanding of the process of collecting evidence so that a collection system can be developed.
Suggestions for a scenario
The school skeleton has been found in the glasshouse of St Trinian’s College on Monday morning by the caretaker. It seems that the culprit had to break the window of the shed to gain entrance. Not only did the culprit leave behind a drop of blood but also remnants of clothing. Further clues were left behind. There seems to have been a party in the shed as a half empty glass was left and some hairs attached to the skeleton. Furthermore, a footprint was left on the doorstep. It appears that the alarm didn’t go off and only two people have access in the weekend. They are the school reception staff.
Nature of science
Providing opportunities for an applied style of learning – like this crime scene scenario - puts learnt techniques into a ‘real’ context for learning and can be a powerful tool for student engagement and curiosity in science.