Forensic Science Honours Course underway – First in SA

It is with great excitement that we can report that our first group of Forensic Science Analyst students are into their 2nd week of their studies at the UFS! The specialised DNA analysis equipment, kindly supplied on exceptionally favorable terms and conditions by Applied Biosystems and Qiagen/Southern Cross Biotechnology have now been installed and the Honours students have began their rigorous 1 year course, specialising in DNA Forensic Analysis.

Dr Karin Ehlers with the QIACUBE

Lecturer, Letecia Wessels with the QIACUBE

The official launch of the first ever Forensic Science Analyst Degree in SA has been set for 12 March 2010 in Bloemfontein at the UFS, and myself and Dr Hancock have been invited to attend this prestigious event together with representatives of Applied Biosystems and Qiagen/Southern Cross Biotechnology.

We are very proud that we have reached this point, as without the development of the course material by The DNA Project, as well as our commitment to fund a lecturer at UFS for the first year of the course and Qiagen and Applied Biosystems generous contributions of equipment and training, none of this would have been possible.

Our long term vision is for all tertiary institutions in SA to offer this Forensic Analysis course, and for the qualified students to be able to enter the field of Forensic Science, fully qualified, which in turn will result in more efficient Forensic Labs and ultimately more DNA samples being processed.

We have stuck by our initial commitment to offer the “Forensic Science Course Pack” at no charge, to any tertiary institution who wishes to offer the course. The reason for this, is that in order for SA to expand the size of its National DNA Database, it needs as many qualified Forensic Science Analysts as possible.

Dr Karin Ehlers with the Applied Biosystems Sequencer

Dr Karin Ehlers with the Applied Biosystems Sequencer

We shall continue to update our website with news and information on this subject as the year progresses.

Should you require further information with regard to this Honours degree, please email Dr Carolyn Hancock on

with thanks


Applied Biosystems' Real Time PCR at work in the UFS Forensic Lab.

Applied Biosystems' Real Time PCR at work in the UFS Forensic Lab.

2 Responses to “Forensic Science Honours Course underway – First in SA”

  1. Chiloane S says:

    I am doing my final year in Bsc(zoology and physiology) and i would like to further my studies by doing forensic sciences,will i be accepted and how long will it take?

  2. Brighton Chitembwe says:

    This Forensic Honours Degree will surely go a long way in reducing crime and solving many criminal puzzles.
    It is a relevant degree in our contemporary society which is unfortunately ridden with a high degree of crime.
    The holders of such a prestigious qualification will contribute significantly, not only to South Africa but to the African continent and the whole world in its entirety.
    I wish to study for this Honours degree.