20132019

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Personal profile

Academic Biography

Melanie graduated from the University of Bradford with a First Class BSc Honours degree in Biomedical Sciences and has an MA in Education. Before joining the University in 2007, she worked for almost 19 years as a Forensic Biologist with the Forensic Science Service (FSS). During this operational career she worked on numerous major crime cases, including sexual offences and murders, and as a Reporting Officer specialising in DNA profiling, had responsibility for the interpretation, reporting and subsequent presentation of DNA evidence to the Courts.

Melanie has also undertaken a number of management roles during her time with the FSS. She was a Team Leader for an Analytical Team within the DNA Unit and also worked in the Business Development Team where she led a number of pioneering crime reduction initiatives in the North East region. Working in partnership with a number of police forces and the Home Office Police Standards Unit, her role involved designing, developing, implementing and managing projects aimed at improving processes and streamlining supply chains in order to maximise the use of forensic evidence in the investigation and detection of crime. During her latter years with the FSS, she was the Programme Manager for the acquisition, design and refurbishment of a new operational forensic science laboratory in Sunderland and was also a member of the Customer Relations Team. Melanie was also involved throughout her operational career in training crime scene investigators and police officers of all ranks, and it was this love for teaching and also her innate desire to work with people that led to her new career with the University.

At the University, Melanie teaches across all years of Undergraduate study and also at Master's level. She is Course Leader for a University Certificate of Postgraduate Professional Development (UCPPD) in General Forensic Medicine delivered by the Faculty of Forensic and Legal Medicine and also our Advanced Forensic Practitioner Higher Degree Apprenticeship. Melanie also holds the post of Principal Lecturer (Marketing & Recruitment) where she has responsibility for a range of student recruitment activities across the portfolio of Science, Engineering and Design courses within the School. Melanie is a member of the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

'Most Engaging Teacher of Year’ - 2013

The University held its inaugural Celebrating Excellence and Service event in March 2013 and awards were presented by the Vice-Chancellor to recognise the outstanding contribution made by colleagues across the University. VC’s award nominations for the award of ‘Most Engaging Teacher of the Year’ were sought from staff and students and Melanie was announced as the winner of the accolade from one of three finalists.

Summary of Research Interests

Her research interests include Blood Pattern Analysis and developing improved protocols for the detection and identification of body fluids, and the transfer and persistence of textile fibres and human/animal hair.

Learning and Teaching Interests and Activities

Melanie holds a Master of Arts in Education from Teesside University and is particularly interested in evaluating the academic confidence of students and how this affects their ability to cope with the demands of Higher Education.

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Research Output

A novel semi-automated direct lysis method for DNA recovery from live and spent 9mm ammunition.

Subhani, Z., Coleman, K., Moore, D., Clayton, T. & Brown, M., 1 Oct 2019, In : Forensic Science International: Genetics Supplement Series. 7, 1, p. 268-270 3 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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    The acid phosphatase test two minute cut-off: An insufficient time to detect some semen stains

    Redhead, P. & Brown, M., 1 Jun 2013, In : Science & Justice. 53, 2, p. 187-191

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle