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Department of Forensic Science - PPA: 35 years of construction, striving and growing

As soon as the new school was established, the subject of Forensic Science was introduced into the professional theory section of the police training program for all courses such as the 12 month training course. (9 months at school, 3 months in field) designated class K; The course of complementary training, from 6 months to 9 months (without time to practice) is designated as class T and training classes in the spirit of international cooperation with Laos, Cambodia called class C.

The period from 1968 to 1980 marked a significant progression and development of the Department of Forensic Science. From a subject in Department of Professional Training II of the People's Police University, with the task of teaching in every course, in September 1978, the Department of Forensic Science at that time was assigned the main task of training police cadet majoring in forensic science. By October 1, 1980, the Department of Forensic Science of the People’s Police University  was formally established under Decision 66 / NC / QD of the Minister of Home Affairs (now the Ministry of Public Security) with comrade Vu Ngoc Huynh as the Head of Department.

On October 2, 2001, the Minister of Public Security signed the Decision 969 / QD / BCA (X13) on the organization of the People's Police University into the People's Police Academy comprising of 26 units including the Department of Forensic Science.

Currently, according to Decision No. 3999 / QD-BCA-X11 of the Minister of Public Security, the People's Police Academy is the main educational institution of the Ministry of Public Security, consisting of 40 units comprising of departments, divisions, institutes, and centers. The Department of Forensic Science is a teaching unit with more than 25 members (three comrades are rotated three years to the Institute of Criminalistics, one in Russia), in which there are 05 doctors, 07 masters (06 of them are doctoral students), 13 bachelors (including 04 comrades are studying in masters, 04 comrades taking masters exams). There are 04 senior lecturers, 10 lecturers, 05 teaching assistants, 05 non-approved lecturers. About the organizational structure: The Department has 01 Dean, 03 Deputies, 02 Divisions, each with its Head and Deputy Head.

Over the past years, under the leadership and direction of the Party Committee, the Board of Directors of the People's Police Academy, the Party commissariat and unit leaders have focused on compiling the curriculum, course materials, reference materials, question bank, and exercises for each subject and each course to ensure complete and rich document system for each course; continuously improve teaching methods, practice, improve the quality of teaching and practice for students; Many comrades have won the teaching title at the ministerial level and cademy level. The Department always focuses on training, fostering to raise the level of education, specialization, foreign languages, and informatics for lecturers. To step by step consolidate and build a more and more comprehensive and well-balanced unit which deserves to be the leading center for teaching and scientific research of forensic science in the People's Police force.

Since its inception, the Department has been training thousands of cadres and soldiers for the forensic science force nationwide to meet the practical requirements of crime prevention and combat in each period of the revolution. Among them, many comrades have achieved their working positions, being appointed to be leaders and commanders at all levels in local police offices.

Looking back on the past 35 years, the Department of Forensic Science has had ups and downs in training cadets of forensic science. In the course of training, the Department has always paid attention to renovating the content and methods, improving the quality of training for all coursess. Thereby, the Department is considered one of the teaching units of the Institute, leading the innovation of higher education in two directions: to combine theory with practice and comprehensive innovation. Accordingly, the Department has cooperated in many fields with the police of the Gia Lam district, Phuc Tho district of Hanoi police, the police department, police units of the local. In particular, the Department has cooperated with the Institute of Criminalistics and other professional departments of the Ministry of Public Security in the rotation of cadres and associated training of specialized students with combat practice. In addition, the Department has continuously innovated content and teaching methods in the direction of "learning along with practice" to provide students with good skills after graduation; the method of examination and evaluation has been gradually reformed and considered as a breakthrough to improve the quality of the students' output.

On the scale of training, up to now, following the model of the key educational institution, the Department of Forensic Science is now a training center in the field of occupational medicine in the fields of:

- Undergraduate training: Bachelor's degree training with two majors: Forensic science and Forensic science examination.

- Higher education: Master's degree program

The training of the staff of Forensic Science with university degrees for the forensic science force in the past time shows that there are still some shortcomings and weaknesses to the requirements of the practice of crime prevention and combat. Compared with practical requirements, the work force of the forensic science from the central to local levels in the country is generally weak and lacking, the organization and use of staff members of the still has defects. The technical equipment for forensic science force is not synchronized, even more technical equipment is newly equipped but not effective. At people’s police schools, the content and training programs are still slow, especially the knowledge assignment in the training of students at all levels of education; The curriculum system, teaching materials have not been amended in time, the reference system is poor and does not fully meet the teaching and learning process. Especially, during the period of training in the current credit system, the teaching staff of forensic science in police schools is still lacking, most of them are young, with limited experience and practical knowledge.

With these urgent requirements, forensic science force need to organize, build up forces, develop programs and plans for training, fostering, improving the quality of training forensic science force in order to meet the requirements of reality, serving the task of combating crimes in the context of international integration, ensuring that the forensic science force catch up with the speed of scientific and technological development. To address the above issues, it is important to focus on the following:

First of all, it is necessary to develop and plan the overall staffing of forensic science force from the Institute of Criminalistic (C54) to the Provincial Police (PC54) and the District Police to ensure the balance of numbers and specialties.. In order to train the staffs of intensive careers, it is necessary to step by step renovate the contents of the pre-natal training curricula for the pre-university students in the primary schools in order to determine the knowledge for each educational level; At the same time, it is necessary to enhance the training and upgrading of the operational staff members in practice in order to improve the quality to meet the requirements of the fight against crimes in the new situation.

Second, the People's Police Academy proposed the Ministry of Public Security to early define the functions and responsibilities of the Department of Forensic Science; to quickly develop the curriculum and training contents in the field of forensic science. In the coming time, it is necessary to request the Ministry to continue the specialized training on crime prevention techniques in order to apply modern science and technology to the crime prevention and combat by technical means.

Third, strengthen the development of lecturers to suit the development trend of the training of forensisc science. Focusing on building a team of members in the Department of Forensic Science with sufficient quantity (at least 40 lecturers by 2020), meeting the standards of quality, high professional qualifications and skills in teaching and scientific research to undertake intensive training in three specialties of the Forensics: Forensic Examination, Crime Prevention Techniques and Crime Scene Investigation and Forensic Medicine.

In order to meet the requirement of building members of the Department of Forensic Science, the People’s Police Academy should propose to the Ministry to increase the payroll norm for the Department in the direction of: Recruite students majoring in forensic science, recruite students from universities in areas related to the teaching of professional skills such as physics, chemistry, biology, electrical and electronic techniques. At the same time, to create more favorable conditions for studying, reserching and visiting in countries that has highly-developed criminalistics research for members. Thus, meeting the requirements of training, quality assurance of forensic science force, meet the requirements of practice.

Fourth, in order to improve the quality of the staff of forensic science to well perform the task of protecting social order and safety during the development of science and technology, we need to focus on the facilities, equipment and technical means so that they are both modern and essential for the forensic science force in general and for the Department of Forensic Science of the People’s Police School in particular, especially the Department of Forensic Science of the People's Police Academy.

The availability of technical facilities should be based on the actual needs of the combat personnel of the forensic science force, as well as on teaching in public security schools. This requirement, requires the exchange and unification between units for effective use in combat and professional training. Avoid wasting and not effectively utilizing the equiments.

Over 35 years of construction and development, up to now the Department of Forensic Science, the People’s Police Academy is the center for training undergraduate, postgraduate, leading research in the field of forensic science. History has proven, the strong development of the forensic science both in quality and quantity. However, in the coming time, the Department needs to be paid more attention to the quantity and quality of its staffs, lecturers, facilities and technical equipment to improve the quality of training in the People’s Police in general and the forensic science force in particular to meet the requirements of the fight against crimes in the new situation, matching the key institutions of the public security sector./.

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