Principles of Forensic Medicine 1

GMS6360

Course Description: A study of basic concepts, techniques and practical philosophies that comprise the foundation of Forensic Pathology.  This course introduces the student to the forensic autopsy, death scene investigation, the importance of human identification, death scene chronological analysis and significant factors that may have contributed to a decedent’s demise.  A basic understanding of forensic histology is reviewed.

Course Objectives:  Upon completion of this course students should be able to:

  • Define a forensic autopsy and describe the conditions under which it is necessary to perform one.  Students will also understand the distinct types of autopsies and the advantages and limitations of each.
  • Understand basic principles of death scene investigation, death scene etiquette and the relationship between partner organizations present at every death scene.
  • Become familiar with multiple techniques used to positively identify a decedent.
  • Accurately estimate the time of death by observing decedent post mortem changes and the interpretation of evidence found near the body.
  • Understand the significance of traumatic injuries and natural disease when determining cause, manner and mechanism of death.

Topics:

Week # Module and Topics
1 Module 1: Introduction to Forensic Pathology
2 Module 2: The Forensic Autopsy
3 Module 3: Death Scene Investigation
4
5 Module 4: Medicolegal Death Investigation
6 Module 5: Human Identification

 

7
8 Module 6: Postmortem Changes
9 Module 7: Time of Assault vs. Time of Death
10
11 Module 8: Post-injury Intervals and Trauma Analysis
12 Module 9: Contributing Factors to Cause, Manner, and Mechanism of Death Determination
13
14 Module 10: Forensic Histology
15 Final Exam