Those interested in graduate-level crime scene investigation training can pursue a master's degree in forensics. Students can expect to receive hands-on training via an internship in law enforcement, corrections or the court system. A bachelor's degree in a forensic or natural science is a must for admittance into these degree programs. Often, particular undergraduate science classes, like organic chemistry or forensic anthropology, are required. Additionally, incoming students should be prepared to submit to a background check and undergo a Hepatitis B vaccination.
Master's Degree in Forensics
Coursework in these programs covers both the theory and practice of forensic research and analysis. Students who are looking to graduate and move into a career in crime scene investigation can expect to take courses such as:
- Bloodstain Pattern and Fingerprint Analysis
- Photography and Documentation
- Drug Analysis
- Vehicle Impact Reconstruction
- Trace Evidence
- Tire/Footwear Analysis
Career Options and Outlook
Graduates will be qualified to work as forensic science technicians. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) estimated that these workers will see job growth of 14% for the years 2018 through 2028. As of May 2018, forensic science technicians earned $62,490 as a mean annual wage.
Graduates are eligible to sit for the certification exam given by the American Board of Criminalistics (ABC). After one year of work, the International Association of Identification offers an additional certification as a Certified Crime Scene Investigator.
Master's degree programs in crime scene investigation allow students to apply topics in biology, chemistry and anatomy to law enforcement investigations. Students enrolled in these programs will be able to pursue careers as forensic science technicians.