Federal CIP: 43.0106 Forensic Science and Technology
Forensic science applies to several major careers, including: criminalistics, medical examiner, pathology/biology, odontology, toxicology, physical anthropology, questioned documents, engineering sciences, computer science, forensic weather, and jurisprudence. Forensic science is the application of science to studying evidence in cases related to criminal and civil laws that are enforced by agencies in a criminal justice system. A forensic science major can lead to a rewarding career where science can be applied to the good of society, public health, and public safety. Laboratories dealing with investigation of criminal acts are hiring employees who are trained as scientists. Forensic scientists work in crime laboratories, forensic laboratories, police departments, medical examiner/coroner offices, hospitals, government agencies, and private laboratories. The type of work forensic scientists are involved in is expanding-crime scene technicians/analysts, forensic molecular biologists, toxicologists, and medico-legal death investigators are just a few of the options available. Forensic scientists investigate crimes by collecting and analyzing physical evidence. They may specialize in areas such as DNA analysis, fingerprint analysis, toxicology, or performing tests on substances such as fiber, hair, tissue, or body fluids to determine the significance to an investigation. The course requirements of forensic science at Southern Wesleyan University will provide a solid biology and chemistry background, and qualifies a person to work at an entry level in a crime laboratory, where principles and techniques of science are practiced and applied to the analysis of crime scene evidence. A graduate is also qualified to pursue graduate programs in specialized areas of forensic science, medicine, physician’s assistant, or dentistry.
Students completing a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Forensic Science degree are expected to:
- comprehend, explain, and analyze chemical phenomena related to inorganic chemistry and inorganic analysis;
- comprehend, explain, and analyze chemical phenomena related to organic chemistry and organic analysis, especially components related to forensic science;
- comprehend, explain, and analyze chemical phenomena related to biochemistry, especially analysis of unknown biochemicals and of the techniques and instrumentation necessary to carry out appropriate procedures in bioanalytical chemistry;
- comprehend, explain, and analyze phenomena related to genetics and especially DNA analysis and of the techniques and instrumentation necessary to carry out appropriate procedures;
- demonstrate a satisfactory knowledge of fingerprint analysis;
- comprehend, explain, and analyze phenomena related to microbiology, especially as it relates to unknown microbiological organisms; and
- demonstrate basic knowledge about firearms and ballistics, tool marks and other impressions.