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As a Senior Lecturer in the Institute of Science and Environment, my key role is leadership of the BSc(Hons) Forensic Science and BSc(Hons) Forensic Science (with integrated foundation year) programmes, which link forensic techniques to investigative strategies.  In 2002, I was responsible for leading the development of the nascent area and have subsequently steered the programmes through two validations and accreditation.  This has included the production of programme specifications, programme handbooks and module descriptors, and also ensuring the degrees align with educational and occupational standards (e.g. CSFS component standards, QAA Subject Benchmark Statement for Forensic Science and National Occupational Standards).

With experience across FE and HE, I have been teaching for over 25 years, developing and delivering material for students in the fields of forensic investigation, forensic biology, biochemistry, cell biology, ethics and undertaking research projects. At undergraduate level, I lead the Dissertation module and have supervised dissertation projects in a range of areas, such as latent blood detection, the enhancement and recovery of fingerprints, domestic violence and the support of offenders with learning disabilities within the criminal justice system.

As a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, a qualified learning coach through the Centre of Excellence in Leadership and a professional member of the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences, I am committed to providing high quality guidance and support. Through leadership or direct teaching, I aim to develop and deliver accessible and quality assured programmes that provide academic inspiration and challenge, with emphasis on the development of professional and transferable skills to enhance employability.

Qualifications and memberships

BSc (Hons), PGCE, DMS, Postgraduate Diploma in Academic Practice (Discipline Research), MBA

Senior Fellow - Higher Education Academy

Professional Member - The Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences

Academic and research interests

Enhancing student employability through effective teaching, learning and assessment practices.

The role of peer assisted study sessions in supporting student transition, retention and achievement.

The concept of science capital as a tool for supporting more people to engage with science.

Approaches to widening participation in higher education science.


Selected Conferences

Smith, N. (2021) ‘Enhancing employability and building science capital through the FIRST® LEGO® league’, Three Rivers knowledge exchange for learning and teaching in HE conference. Sunderland (online), 25th June. 

Smith, N. (2020) Building science capital through the FIRST® LEGO® league’, Erasmus+ MaCE practical solutions to educational inequality conference. Kongsberg, Norway (online), 4th-5th June. 

Smith, C. and Smith, N. (2017) Poster entitled ‘Time and Temperature: their impact on lifting powders’ ability to recover fingerprints’. Presented at Annual Conference of the CSFS Fingerprint Division, Manchester.

Smith, N. and Frost, S. (2016) Conference Paper entitled 'PASS: A learner-centred approach to transition into and on from Higher Education'. Presented at HEA STEM Conference, Nottingham.