Class Central is learner-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

The University of Sheffield

Forensic Facial Reconstruction: Finding Mr. X

The University of Sheffield via FutureLearn


Solve the mystery of the body in the bag

On Saturday 22 January 2000, two men found a small holdall, abandoned on an industrial estate in the north of Sheffield. Upon opening the bag they made a gruesome discovery. A badly decomposed body.

Who was this person? Why did they die? Where had the body been stored all of this time?

On this course from The University of Sheffield, you’ll learn alongside the experts who worked to determine the identity of Mr. X. You’ll discover the forensic science techniques that were used to identify the body and understand the circumstances surrounding their death.

This course is suitable for anyone interested in how forensic anatomy and facial reconstruction can assist police investigations. No prior qualifications in forensic science or other disciplines are required.

Students and practitioners in the fields of archaeology, anatomy, and anthropology may gain valuable insights into the use of anatomy expertise in forensic work that they can apply to their study and work in the field.

Taught by

Katherine Linehan

Related Courses


4.8 rating, based on 405 reviews

Start your review of Forensic Facial Reconstruction: Finding Mr. X

  • This course diverges a lot from the regular Futurelearn courses I had dealt with earlier. The course has something weighing in on me in every chapter; a sense of relief, a collective sense of duty, a genuine cause. Every click of the subsequent chapters turns pages of progressive investigation of years. This course is highly supererogatory. Meanwhile, kindly check Durham's "Forensic Archaeology and Anthropology" course, which would be an excellent follow-up to this one.

  • Naser Aldhawi completed this course.

    Forensic Facial Reconstruction for me is quite new I learned many things about how to find the criminals or suspected murders and to investigate and the meaning of Forensic many specialists can participate, Anthropologist pathologist Anatomy and got new Idea that after death long period we can reconstruction human remains to find out the reason of the death and functionalist of many parts of the body and how to make clay for reconstruction
  • I like this course so much, it was helpful, consist all basic information and reading sooo interesting. I would like to learn more actually about this topic, so only pity this course is hort: only 2 weeks long.
  • Fantastic course. I learned many things!!!!!

    Forensic Facial Reconstruction is a wonderful job. This course showed me something fantastic about the police's job. I recomend to everyone that loves investigation.
  • Ibrahim Ridwan Madaki
    I really appreciate this cause of mine initially I thought I can't do it the fact that I'm a law student but when I stated I find it more interesting and more important in time of finding Mr X's and the identification of the male and female skeleton and their ethnicity I indeed appreciate the cause
  • I've enjoyed this course a lot, everything was easy to understand. I managed to learn a lot within two weeks. Thank you.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    I found this course really interesting and informative as it gave a real insight into what it takes to reconstruct someone's face. I liked how the individual facial muscles were highlighted in separate diagrams as it made it much clearer to understand,...
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    I signed up for this course following an email from Futurelearn and have to say that I am glad that I did. It is well paced and easy to follow and whilst it is obviously only covering the basics I feel that I have learnt a lot about the human skull,...
  • Anonymous
    I am now retired (57 years old) but I am interested in forensic science. I was between studying for my level 3 diploma and level 4 diploma, so the fact the the course was short (2 weeks) was perfect and the subject really appealed to me.

    The course presentation was very good, and I liked the fact that it looked at a real life case study from start to finish. This was greatly helped with videos of police and scientists involved in the original investigation.

    I learned a lot from the course. The content was very interesting and had left me hungry for more.

  • Anonymous
    The course was very well presented and clear and concise. I wish when starting out my career many years ago I may have had the opportunity to do something like Facial Reconstruction as part of forensics. Of course it did not start until the mid to late sixty's and in those days very few people were aware of the work. Today it is much published and great opportunities for young people.

    The course was short but packed with so much information. Well done Sheffield.

    Is there another course that follows on from this?
  • Michelle Mercer-Hay
    A very informative, interesting and enjoyable course that takes you step by step through the whole process.

    The knowledge and experience of those involved in putting this course together is fantastic. I loved every minute and will be looking to do more. I have always had a great interest in all aspects of crimes and how they are solved and I'm thinking perhaps it's not too late to change career direction in life. I highly recommend this course- thank you!
  • Anonymous
    This course has been very interesting and engaging. It provides participants with a crash course in aspects of forensic anthropology, human anatomy, odontology etc by guiding them through a real-life case study, which makes it more engaging. I chose to take this course because of my interest in forensic art and facial reconstruction, and was able to learn about the skull and musculature of the face, which was both useful and interesting.
  • Rena Marks
    This course was so informative and interesting I would recommended it to anyone regardless of age. Thank-you for a fascinating look into Forensic science.
  • Anonymous
    It was a really helpful and interesting course! I have always wanted to know more about the forensics industry and I'm glad i discovered this course. As expected, this topic of study is amazing and really cool, the study plan was well-paced and the topics/notes/lectures were engaging as well. Definitely recommend this course to anyone who would like to venture into the world of forensics!
  • Anonymous
    This course was so incredibly interesting, it gave me an insight into a huge variety of areas within forensics that i never knew existed. I really enjoyed the application to a real life murder/ investigation as it helped me understand the process and really put into perspective how much energy and time by so many people gets put into the case.

    Thankyou for the course, absolutely loved it
  • Anonymous
    A very interesting and fast moving course to give a good basic level understanding of what forensic facial recognition is, how it is done and where it could be useful. The modules move along at a good pace. The material is thorough and scientific yet easy for the layman to understand. I would recommend this course to anyone from any walk of life.
  • Anonymous
    It is a very informative course detailing what can be achieved with this specific knowledge; it also gives an insight of what other sciences can be called upon to achieve a satisfactory end result in a case, these could be of interest to future learning also.

    The two media downloads was a good ending to the 'story' of the demise of Mr X as this contained a lot of information which did not need to be included in the actual science of facial recognition but was interesting to see the whole picture.
  • Anonymous
    It is really interesting to learn a part of this branch of science. I've studied Biology in university but this is much more interesting and bring me back those memories when i was still a student. Love to learn about new stuff especially about crime. I'm looking forward to the next interesting courses. Thank you so much
  • Anonymous
    Extremely well done, simple enough for total newcomers to anatomy, but in-depth enough to encourage further research for folks with a more extensive background. Great information delivered concisely and with lots of extra resources. Awesome!
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Very interesting course for a Private Investigator, USA. facial reconstructions were stunning! An excellent introductory course. I pared it with the Forensic Psychology : Witness Investigation course to keep me well rounded.
    Facial Reconstruction can be completed relatively quickly & has led me to sign up for three other courses.
    Class is not to hard for beginners, well done!

Never Stop Learning!

Get personalized course recommendations, track subjects and courses with reminders, and more.

Sign up for free