We are pleased to offer a range of pre and post Symposium workshops.  These workshops are organised and run by independent facilitators.

For many of the workshops a minimum number of participants will need to be reached to go ahead.  Should you wish to cancel your registration less than 90 days prior to the workshop, no refund will be available.

Details of the workshops available are below and all prices are GST (15%) inclusive. 

Workshop registration

To register to attend a pre or post symposium workshop please contact


Workshops are listed below in date date order.  Please click on the title of the workshop you would like to know more about to expand the information.  To close the information, please click again on the title.


Excavation of Human Remains: Towards A Best Practice Approach


Date: Saturday 17 September and Sunday 18 September 2016

Time: 0900-1700

Venue: Arts 1 Building, University of Auckland,  back off the road between 14 and 16 Symonds St, University of Auckland City Campus (see map below).

Price: $145.00


This is a two-day workshop focussing on the practical aspects of recovering human remains, as well as drawing on participants' experiences in broader fields of site excavation to complement the recovery of remains in a forensic context.

It will be held at the University of Auckland Anthropology Simulated Excavation Site, where we will explore technological approaches to site mapping and excavation recording techniques, and participants will engage with both surface and subsurface searching processes. 

There will also be group discussions on key topics such as protocols for first responders, evidence priority and liaison of experts, handling of human remains in a cultural context and the presentation of evidence for legal proceedings.


The aims of this workshop are:

  1. To provide an opportunity for forensic casework practitioners to discuss and practice a range of methods and technologies available for surface and subsurface searching, site mapping and documentation relating to likely case scenarios;
  2. To gain a deeper understanding of how the context of the remains can provide valuable information to support the recovered evidence;
  3. To provide a forum for discussion of best practice in cases of recovering human remains, and facilitate future dialogue with key subject experts.


If participants have experiences or case study examples to draw upon for the discussion sessions this will be helpful. However it is not a requirement for attendance as we welcome any interested delegates to this workshop.


As we expect to be working outdoors for some of the time, please could participants bring appropriate clothing and footwear.


Venue location:


Ian Riebeling New practitioner Workshop 


Date: Saturday 17 September and Sunday 18 September 2016

Time: 0900-1700

Venue: Epsom Room 3, Level 4, SkyCity Auckland Convention Centre

Price: $310 Standard / $185 Student


This is 2 Day Workshop that will run on Saturday 17 & Sunday 18 September 2016


The Ian Riebeling New Practitioners Workshop is aimed at new and aspiring forensic practitioners, to provide them with an overview of forensic science in Australia and New Zealand; the jurisdictions, the major agencies and the various forensic disciplines (and what all those acronyms mean!). 


The workshop aims to provide new practitioners with a sense of where their chosen discipline fits within the bigger forensic framework. Current practitioners from various disciplines will discuss their examinations in relation to the investigation of a case. Current status and future directions of forensic science will also be discussed. The workshop will culminate in a mock court to highlight the court process and the interaction with the expert witness.


A social dinner on the Saturday night is included in the cost of attending, to facilitate participants to get to know each other.

Colour Fidelity and CMOS Sensors - How to ensure evidence grade colour fidelity using single chip CMOS cameras


Date: Saturday 17 September 2016

Time: 09.00-13.00

Venue: Marlborough Room 1, Level 5, SkyCity Auckland Convention Centre

Price: $150.00


This workshop aims at providing you with knowledge and skills to ensure the methods you use to capture photographic or video evidence will stand up under judicial scrutiny.


You will be exposed to the fundamental workings of today's digital still and video cameras as well as an understanding of the critical relationship between various lighting and display technologies.


Experienced presenters will demonstrate techniques to overcome limitations as well as provide you with the necessary knowledge to withstand a robust judicial challenge in your defense of methods and techniques used in capturing evidence.


You are welcomed and encouraged to bring along your own still or video camera if available. 


Morning tea will be provided.

Practitioners Guide to Y STR Validation, Implementation and Interpretation


Date: Saturday 17 September 2016

Time: 0900-1700

Venue: Epsom Room 1, Level 4, SkyCity Auckland Convention Centre

Price: $495.00

One day workshop to understand the benefits and challenges associated with validating, implementing and interpreting Y STR testing in forensic casework.

Attendees will be provided with a guide to practical considerations for internal laboratory validation, implementation and interpretation of Y STR evidence. Using worked examples, attendees will have the opportunity to discuss a range of Y STR results including mixtures, low template DNA and consideration of autosomal and Y STR results.  Important transfer and persistence considerations will be discussed in detail, along with worked examples of potential issues raised during the court process.


  • Laboratory validation
  • Specificity
  • Y Population Databases
  • Strategy and reporting framework for low template samples


  • Mixture interpretation
  • Transfer and persistence considerations
  • Courtroom challenges
  • Open discussion.

Pre-workshop preparation:
The participants are expected to have a background in forensic DNA testing (whether autosomal and/or Y STR based).

Morning and afternoon tea will be provided, however lunch is not included.

An Introduction to the STRmix™ probabilistic software


Date: Saturday 17 September 2016

Time: 0900-1700

Venue: ESR, 120 Mt Albert Road, Sandringham, Auckland

Price: No charge



Participants will become familiar with the use of STRmix™ and the underlying statistical and biological concepts supporting it.  Participants will leave with course a time restricted full version of STRmix™.  They will be able to undertake a further evaluation of STRmix™ within their own laboratory using their own profiles.

Workshop description:

STRmix™ is expert forensic software that can resolve previously unresolvable mixed DNA profiles. It uses a fully continuous approach for DNA profile interpretation, resolving complex DNA mixtures with no restriction on the number of contributors.  STRmix™ is the standard for DNA profile interpretation in Australia and New Zealand.

This workshop includes an introduction to probabilistic software including a hands-on demonstration of STRmix™.  Theory topics include the principles of, advantages and difficulties of probabilistic genotyping, principles of using peak heights and stutter ratios and the basis of the models underpinning the software.  Attendees will walk through the interpretation of a number of complex and mixed DNA profiles using STRmix™ as a class.  The class will explore the variability in likelihood ratios, and the run diagnostics within STRmix™.  

Intended audience:

Participants should be casework reporting scientists, have a basic understanding of mixture interpretation and have an understanding of likelihood ratios.

Equipment required:

To participate in the afternoon sessions, attendees will need to bring a laptop.  A time limited full version of STRmix™ will be pre-installed prior to the workshop.

Introduction To Statistics For Forensic Science


Date: Saturday 17 September 2016

Time: 0900-1700

Venue: Marlborough Room 3, Level 5, Skycity Auckland Convention Centre

Price: $460.00


Statistics and the statistical interpretation of the results of forensic examinations and analysis is of increasing importance and is scrutinised as never before. 


This workshop is designed for those forensic practitioners who may have studied statistics at University but have forgotten most of what they learnt, or those who have never studied statistics and now have to deal with statistical interpretation.


The workshop is designed for practitioners in all disciplines. 


Topics to be covered include:

• Basic probability theory

• Laws of probability

• Normal distribution

• Confidence limits

• Sampling / sampling error

• Hypothesis testing in determination of the null hypothesis

• Bayes' Theorem and Likelihood ratios

• Prosecutor/defence fallacies

• Measurement uncertainty

Massively parallel sequencing: Legislation, privacy and ethics


Date: Sunday 18 September 2016

Time: 0900-1200

Venue: Marlborough Room 2, Level 5, SkyCity Auckland Convention Centre

Price: $90.00 / $80.00 if also attending the Introduction to data analysis workshop


Participants will understand the challenges and opportunities associated with the forensic use of new genetic markers that can be analysed using massively parallel sequencing (MPS) or next generation sequencing (NGS).  MPS has rapidly emerged as a technology revolution for forensic DNA.  It provides an opportunity to obtain information from evidential material beyond just identity including forensic DNA intelligence such as the prediction of biogeographical ancestry (BGA) and externally visible characteristics (EVCs). 


In addition, as MPS enables the analysis of every single base in a DNA fragment, it provides the ability to deconvolute complex mixtures and utilise variations within STR repeat regions to increase differentiation between individuals beyond what is possible using capillary electrophoresis (CE) alone. A number of commercial MPS kits are now available for identity and intelligence analysis.  The forensic community must consider the legislative, policy and ethical implications of these new types of DNA tests, especially given that legislation and policy regarding the provision of DNA intelligence is largely silent globally. We will examine national and international case studies while highlighting important issues for the forensic community.

Infrared and Ultraviolet Digital Photography Techniques


Date: Sunday 18 September 2016

Time: 0900-1230

Venue: Auckland Central Police Station, Cnr Cook and Vincent St, Auckland City (access from Cook Street).

Price: $184.00


Infrared (IR) and ultraviolet (UV) photography has been a part of forensic investigation and analysis for many years. It has been used for identifying trace evidence, enhancing fingerprints, revealing details in obliterated tattoos, documenting bite marks/bruising as well as revealing counterfeit materials. Digital technologies have also made infrared imaging common in surveillance techniques.


Traditionally photographed with IR and UV sensitive silver halide film, today's digital cameras have the ability to create the images faster with more consistent results. The new digital cameras, however, come with pitfalls concerning the interpretation of the images. This workshop will demonstrate and address these pitfalls as well discuss the conversion of traditional digital cameras for use with IR and UV techniques making them a useful scientific and forensic imaging tool. 


This workshop will be conducted primarily through demonstration and lecture, but time will be allocated to those wanting to try it themselves. Experts and practitioners representing law enforcement, forensic medicine and scientific research will deliver the workshop. The presentation will be based around current research by the presenters. The workshop aims are to demystify the processes involved in IR and UV digital photography, broaden the knowledge of participants in applications of IR/UV imaging and identify the specific dangers in the interpretation of the IR and UV images.

Please note all participants will be security checked and will need photo ID to gain access to the venue.


The scheduled presenters are:

Adjunct Professor Gale E Spring, RMIT University, Melbourne;

A/Senior Sergeant Kathryn Denny, Photographic Section, Queensland Police, Brisbane;

Clair Richards, Forensic Photographer, Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine, Melbourne, Victoria.

Advanced STRmix™ users forum


Date: Sunday 18 September 2016

Time: 0900-1700

Venue: Kakapo Room, ESR, 120 Mt Albert Rd, Mt Albert, Auckland

Price: $0.00


Dr Jo-Anne Bright1,Dr Duncan Taylor² and invited speaker(s) TBC


1 Institute of Environmental Science and Research Limited 

² Forensic Science South Australia


In this workshop the developers will present the latest extensions to the software, and provide in depth details about software functionality.  Topics include addressing variability through improvements to MCMC performance and applying the STRmixTM continuous model to YSTR data.

This workshop will also provide a forum for current STRmixTM users to present and discuss their experiences of the software.   Areas for discussion will span validation data to software comparsions and approaches to casework implementation.  Participants are invited to bring their questions, studies and experiences to share in an open and constructive learning enviroment.  

Intended audience:

Participants must be current users of the STRmixTM software, and familiar with probablistic approaches to DNA mixture interpretation. 

Forensic workflow advancements in reference and casework sample analysis 


Date: Sunday 18 September 2016

Time: 1215-1345 (Lunch provided)

Venue: Epsom Room 2, SkyCity Auckland Convention Centre

Price: $0


QIAGEN invites you to attend this workshop on Sunday 18th September 2016 at the 23rd International Conference on the Forensic Sciences.

In this workshop, we will explore the latest developments in forensic sample preparation and analysis, and provide you with an insight into the potential of Massive Parallel Sequencing (MPS) or Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) for human identity.

Join us to hear presentations from our invited speakers: Dr Dennis McNevin (University of Canberra), Ms Biljana Micic (Forensic and Scientific Services, Health Support Queensland) and Dr Keith Elliott (QIAGEN GmbH).


1215 – 1225   Welcome and lunch provided  
1225 – 1230    

Opening remarks
Ms Julie Chmielowski, Market Development Manager Applied Testing ANZ, QIAGEN 

1230 – 1250    

Sample to Insight: Solutions for Capillary Electrophoresis and Next Generation Sequencing Workflows
Dr Keith Elliott, Senior Manager, Global Human ID & Forensics, Applied Sciences QIAGEN GmbH 

1250 – 1310    

Validation of the QIAsymphony®SP/AS using the Artel liquid handler calibration system
Ms Biljana Micic, Scientist, Analytical Section, Forensic DNA Analysis, Police Services Stream, Forensic and Scientific Services, Health Support Queensland, Department of Health, Queensland Government 

1310 – 1330    

Evaluation of QIAGEN's universal Next Generation Sequencing workflow and SNP panel for identity and relationship testing
Dr Dennis McNevin, Associate Professor (Forensic Genetics), University of Canberra 

1330 – 1345   Q&A Panel Discussion and Closing Remarks  

Forensic intelligence framework: Study of the main generic building through examples


Date: Sunday 18 September 2016

Time: 1300-1600

Venue: Epsom Room 1, Level 4, SkyCity Auckland Convention Centre

Price: $125.00


A more effective use of forensic case data is increasingly becoming necessary and it is important for forensic scientists (field and laboratory), investigators, laboratory, police administrators and researchers to improve their understanding and knowledge of forensic intelligence. This workshop aims to engage the participants with the opportunities and challenges related to the implementation of forensic intelligence. Examples including but not limited to illicit drug monitoring will highlight transversalities and possibilities to extend the role of forensic science beyond traditional court purposes.


The workshop includes a practical component where the participants will work in small groups on different datasets. Furthermore, initiatives in Australia and in Switzerland will be presented to discuss criteria useful to properly conceive and operate a forensic intelligence system. Based on these initiatives, the workshop will provide some criteria to answer questions such as:


- What forensic data to analyse and profile to provide meaningful intelligence products?

- How to process and compare data to monitor illicit drug trafficking or other types of organised crime in a tactical, operational and strategic perspective?

- How to fuse the results of the profiling of illicit drug with other information (e.g. wastewater data, etc.)? 

- How to integrate such results into an intelligence-led policing perspective? 


The targeted audience is broad and does not require any previous knowledge of forensic intelligence.


Crime and Stable Isotopes


Date: Sunday 18 September 2016

Time: 1300-1800

Venue: Canterbury Room, Level 5, SkyCity Auckland Convention Centre

Price: $185.00 Member / $235.00 Non-Member


Stable isotopic analysis is increasing used in forensic science to augment existing physical and chemical measurements to associate or discriminate materials which are otherwise identical.

Areas of application include; illicit drugs, explosives, human remains and many plastic products manufactured on vast scales such as adhesive tapes and ropes.


This workshop will describe how stable isotope measurements of a wide range of materials can be applied to solve real-life forensic problems.

The workshop will comprise a series of presentations by some of the world's leading practitioners on the principles and applications of stable isotopic analysis.

Each presentation will be followed by an opportunity for question, answers and discussion.

The workshop will conclude with an interactive session examining forensic case studies employing stable isotope and allied techniques.


Massively parallel sequencing: Introduction to data analysis


Date: Sunday 18 September 2016

Time: 1400-1700

Venue: Marlborough Room 2, Level 5, SkyCity Auckland Convention Centre

Price: $90.00 / $80 if also attending Legislation, privacy and ethics workshop


Massively parallel sequencing (MPS) or next generation sequencing (NGS) enables the simultaneous analysis of hundreds to thousands of DNA markers in multiple samples. The generation of MPS data relies on an analysis pipeline from raw sequences to interpretable profiles.  This process results in the production of megabases of sequences and the generation of data files in the order of megabytes to terabytes from a single run, significantly more than current capillary electrophoresis (CE) analysis.  Data generated from MPS must be condensed into a forensic report for both or either of the courts or forensic investigators.  We will reveal the transformation of raw sequence data into short tandem repeat (STR) or single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) profiles in a process that is referred to as 'bioinformatics'.  We will also show how MPS has the potential to deconvolute complex mixtures by sequencing STRs and their flanking regions and discuss the new nomenclature issues arising for DNA databases.  A number of software tools will be demonstrated, some of which will be able to be downloaded by participants.  As such, participants will need a laptop with 16 GB RAM (or will need to sit next to someone with such a laptop).

Collection to Court


Date: Friday 23 September 2016

Time: 0900-1700

Venue: Courtroom 7.1, Auckland District Court, 65-69 Albert Street, Auckland City

Price: $460.00


Do you collect samples for legal testing?

Do you analysis or examine samples for legal testing?

Do you write legal reports?

Have you ever been asked to give expert evidence?


This workshop includes practical training for any professional in any discipline who may be required to:

o Collect, preserve, examine or analyse material or samples for legal testing;

o Required to write a legal report; or

o To appear in a court of law


Topics to be covered include:

o The Australian and New Zealand legal systems.

o The role of the 'expert' in these legal systems.

o The end to end process from material collection to reporting

o The requirements for results of these processes to be admitted into legal argument.

o The requirements stated in relevant standards  including:

o AS 5388.1 Forensic Analysis – Recognition, recording, recovery, transport and storage of material;

o AS 5388.2 Forensic Analysis – Analysis and examination of material;

o AS 5388.3 Forensic Analysis – Interpretation; and

o AS 5388.4 Forensic Analysis – Reporting.

o ISO 17020 General criteria for the operation of various types of bodies performing inspection; and

o ISO/IEC 17025 General requirements for the competence of testing and calibration laboratories

Drug Analogues Workshop – A Skills Refresher Course in Mass Spectra (MS) Analysis and Interpretation


Date: Friday 23 September 2016

Time: 0900-1300

Venue: Epsom Room 2, Level 4, SkyCity Auckland Convention Centre

Price: $150.00


Forensic drug analysts are currently working in an era where they can expect to come across a novel compound or new drug analogue on a regular basis. Exciting as this maybe, these new substances present analytical issues for the drug analyst usually beginning with an unknown MS result or an unconvincing library match. Good interpretation skills at this stage help the analyst to move forward with their investigation quickly which may ultimately see them purchasing new standards or using other analytical techniques, both of which, if they are available at all, can be time consuming and expensive. The analyst may also rely on reference papers or communication with experts at other laboratories to support a tentative MS identification. This workshop acknowledges how important the MS tool can be and is therefore intended to bring together a group, including expert analysts in this field, to share knowledge and experience in this area. The workshop will include a look back at first principals of MS analysis with direct focus and further application to illicit drugs, psychoactive substances and their analogues.  


Workshop Guest Tutors/Speakers:
Associate Professor Brent Copp (School of Chemical Sciences - The University of Auckland)
Dr Jim Pearson (Principal RD & I Specialist - Forensic Services Department - Victoria Police)
Karen Blakey (Senior Chemist – Illicit Drugs – Department of Health – Queensland)