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Forensic Pathology Technician Schools and Colleges

A forensic pathology technician handles the laboratory testing involved in autopsies and death investigations. Read on to learn about program options for aspiring forensic pathology technicians, and to get school info.

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Individuals interested in becoming forensic pathology technicians can find training programs at 4-year colleges and universities. Unlike pathologists, technicians aren't required to go to medical school. They often receive medical training in a biology or pathology program that teaches concepts of medicine.

10 Schools with Forensic Pathology Technician Programs

This list of colleges and universities identifies some schools offering forensic pathology technician programs.

College/University Location Institution Type Degrees Offered Tuition* (2015-2016)
Alabama State University Montgomery, AL 4-year, Public Bachelor's, Master's In-state Undergraduate $8,723 Out-of-state Undergraduate $15,656; Out-of-state Undergraduate $15,656; In-state Graduate $8,232; Out-of-state Graduate $16,464
Ashland University Ashland, OH 4-year, Private not-for-profit Bachelor's Undergraduate $20,242
Becker College Worcester, MA 4-year, Private not-for-profit Bachelor's Undergraduate $34,080
Emmanuel College Boston, MA 4-year, Private not-for-profit Bachelor's Undergraduate $36,504
Florida International University Miami, FL 4-year, Public Bachelor's, Master's, Doctoral In-state Undergraduate $6,556; Out-of-state Undergraduate $18,954; In-state Graduate $8,912; Out-of-state Graduate $21,393
Keystone College La Plume, PA 4-year, Private not-for-profit Bachelor's Undergraduate $24,300
Lewis University Romeoville, IL 4-year, Private not-for-profit Bachelor's Undergraduate $29,040
Newman University Wichita, KS 4-year, Private not-for-profit Bachelor's Undergraduate $26,030
Quincy University Quincy, IL 4-year, Private not-for-profit Bachelor's Undergraduate $26,998
Mount Ida College Newton, MA 4-year, Private not-for-profit Bachelor's Undergraduate $32,300

Source: *National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)

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School Selection Criteria

There are a number of things to consider when selecting a program in this field.

  • Pathologist technicians, or pathologists' assistants, are usually required to have a bachelor's degree in a biological science or in a related topic, such as an allied health field.
  • Upon completion of their bachelor's degree, many aspiring technicians choose to enroll in a Master of Health Sciences or a Master of Science in Pathology degree program, with a focus on becoming a pathologist's assistant.
  • Successful forensic pathology technicians need a background in the sciences, such as chemistry, anatomy and biology; their programs may also teach surgical pathology, laboratory management and the preparation of specimens for microscope examination.
  • Technicians may not be required to complete a pre-med program, but they are expected to be familiar with medical terms and procedures, and to have extensive medical lab experience.

Bachelor's Degree Program in Biomedical Sciences or Forensic Science

Bachelor's programs in specific subsets of biology, such as biomedical science or forensic science, are well suited to students who want to make pathology their focus. Fieldwork and internships are combined with courses such as immunology, toxicology, histology and microbiology.

Bachelor's Degree in Biology

General biology programs, which usually include laboratory work, can prepare students to work as technicians. Some programs offer tracks in medical laboratory science within a biology major. Biology students get a comprehensive introduction to different scientific disciplines.

Master's Degree in a Pathologist Assistant Program

Aspiring forensic technicians can obtain a master's degree in two years. The usual prerequisite for a masters' program is an undergraduate degree in a biological science or allied health discipline, or the equivalent in medical experience. The second year usually consists of practicums and rotations in autopsy, surgical, pediatric and forensic pathology.

A career as a forensic pathology technician can be pursued with postsecondary training in a relevant field, such as forensic science, biological science, biology or pathology. Many public and private institutions offer graduate and undergraduate programs in these disciplines.

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