AINV12003 - Victim Pathology

General Information

Unit Synopsis

This unit will provide students with an alternative approach to traditional methods of accident reconstruction. Students will begin with the study of nature of injury pathology, and learn how different regions of the human body react with different tolerance to impact trauma. The body is comprised of tissues, which also have different tolerance to force and acceleration. Students will then learn the use of victim pathology as the starting point for research or investigation in case studies ranging from simple vehicle collisions to very complex cases of multi-system severe or fatal injuries sustained where factual data may be sparse, or non existing. Students will solve cases of misadventure resulting in death or severe traumatic injuries, based on the methods of victim pathology.


Level Undergraduate
Unit Level 2
Credit Points 6
Student Contribution Band 2
Fraction of Full-Time Student Load 0.125
Pre-requisites or Co-requisites

48 credit points

Important note: Students enrolled in a subsequent unit who failed their pre-requisite unit, should drop the subsequent unit before the census date or within 10 working days of Fail grade notification. Students who do not drop the unit in this timeframe cannot later drop the unit without academic and financial liability. See details in the Assessment Policy and Procedure (Higher Education Coursework).

Class Timetable View Unit Timetable
Residential School No Residential School

Unit Availabilities from Term 2 - 2019

Term 2 - 2019 Profile

Attendance Requirements

All on-campus students are expected to attend scheduled classes – in some units, these classes are identified as a mandatory (pass/fail) component and attendance is compulsory. International students, on a student visa, must maintain a full time study load and meet both attendance and academic progress requirements in each study period (satisfactory attendance for International students is defined as maintaining at least an 80% attendance record).

Assessment Overview

Recommended Student Time Commitment

Each 6-credit Undergraduate unit at CQUniversity requires an overall time commitment of an average of 12.5 hours of study per week, making a total of 150 hours for the unit.

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Task Weighting
1. Written Assessment 30%
2. Written Assessment 40%
3. Written Assessment 30%

This is a graded unit: your overall grade will be calculated from the marks or grades for each assessment task, based on the relative weightings shown in the table above. You must obtain an overall mark for the unit of at least 50%, or an overall grade of ‘pass’ in order to pass the unit. If any ‘pass/fail’ tasks are shown in the table above they must also be completed successfully (‘pass’ grade). You must also meet any minimum mark requirements specified for a particular assessment task, as detailed in the ‘assessment task’ section (note that in some instances, the minimum mark for a task may be greater than 50%).

Consult the University’s Grades and Results Policy for more details of interim results and final grades

Past Exams

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Previous Feedback

Term 2 - 2018 : The overall satisfaction for students in the last offering of this course was 4.7 (on a 5 point Likert scale), based on a 53.57% response rate.

Feedback, Recommendations and Responses

Every unit is reviewed for enhancement each year. At the most recent review, the following staff and student feedback items were identified and recommendations were made.

Source: Student evaluations and lecturer observation
The timing of the deadlines for the assessment items left little time for previous feedback to inform subsequent submissions.
Spread out the assessment deadlines throughout the term so as to provide more time between assessment items to allow for students to engage with their previous feedback and use it to improve their subsequent submissions.
Action Taken
Assessment deadlines were altered to allow students more time to utilise feedback from previous assessments.
Source: Student communication
Students would appreciate assignment exemplars to demonstrate the assessment criteria and what constitutes a good submission
Some HD submissions have been retained with student permission to be used as exemplars for future offerings of this unit. The case study for these assignments should be altered so as to allow for these exemplars to be utilised.
Action Taken
The assessments were re-written for this offering so no previous submission exemplars were relevant.
Source: Unit coordinator observation
The case study utilised for this unit has been used for a number of years now and should be updated.
The students appreciate the roleplay aspect of the unit so this format should be retained; to allow for this the case study utilised should be updated for 2018.
Action Taken
The assessments for this unit were altered for this offering, and so were based on a variety of case studies instead of utilising a single one for the whole term.
Source: Unit Coordinator reflections
The assessments in this unit have been continually altered and improved over the previous few offerings, and there is potential room for further improvement.
The wording of assessment descriptions and criteria may need to be revisited for clarity.
Action Taken
Source: Student feedback
Although students typically enjoy this unit, more emphasis could be placed on contextualising learning to improve understanding of its utility.
Expand upon the final topic 'Contextualising Victim Pathology' to provide more numerous examples of the utility of this discipline area to the broader scientific and investigative community.
Action Taken
Source: Unit Coordinator reflections
Some of the materials in this unit graphically depict the human body in states of extreme injury, including images of deceased persons. These images may be unsettling or disturbing, but are nevertheless necessary for the study of pathoanatomy.
Continue to provide graphic content warnings, particularly early in the term and especially before Census date.
Action Taken
Unit learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  1. Analyse the relevance of victim pathology in establishing causality.
  2. Explain and elaborate on differential human tolerance to trauma based on tissues and body regions.
  3. Interpret published data on human tolerance to impact.
  4. Analyse complex case scenarios involving multiple severe or fatal traumatic injuries and determine likely causal events.
  5. Demonstrate reflective skills appropriate to the development of the intermediate practitioner.
  6. Demonstrate ability in confidentiality and ethical practice appropriate for a forensic practitioner.

Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Learning Outcomes
Assessment Tasks Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4 5 6
1 - Written Assessment
2 - Written Assessment
3 - Written Assessment
Alignment of Graduate Attributes to Learning Outcomes
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Graduate Attributes Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4 5 6
1 - Communication
2 - Problem Solving
3 - Critical Thinking
4 - Information Literacy
5 - Team Work
6 - Information Technology Competence
7 - Cross Cultural Competence
8 - Ethical practice
Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Graduate Attributes
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Assessment Tasks Graduate Attributes
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
1 - Written Assessment
2 - Written Assessment
3 - Written Assessment