Forensic Science

By: Staff Writer

Online forensic science degrees from accredited universities and schools.

Forensic Science

What is Forensic Science?

Have you ever watched a television program like CSI or Law & Order and been intrigued at how the characters solved the crime by finding a strand of hair or by analyzing the markings on a piece of furniture? The actors who play these roles are acting as forensic scientists or specialists, a profession entailed in the criminal justice system to help law enforcement agencies solve crimes. Forensic science is a multifaceted field that focuses on examining crime scenes and retrieving evidence in order to prosecute those responsible for committing those crimes.

Degrees in Forensic Science

Forensic science degrees mainly stem from expertise in biology, chemistry, physics and medicine, although the other sciences are made useful in this field of study. Forensic scientists examine substances like blood, bullet casings, chemicals, paint, hair, skin, and fingerprints left at the crime scene. Because of the intricate nature of forensics, most employers require at least a four-year bachelor’s degree with a specialization in a forensics related field. Lab experience and internships are imperative to learning the meticulous nature of this profession.

Job Opportunities in Forensic Science

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, entry-level forensic science technicians could expect a starting wage of $21.16 per hour in 2004. Experienced crime lab professionals have potential earning power of $40,000 to $85,000, and some lab directors can earn as much as $100,000. Specialized positions include that of medical examiners, crime laboratory analysts, crime scene examiners, and forensic engineers. Career opportunities in this field are expected to rise, as the retrieval of evidence from crime scenes becomes more demanding and technologically challenging.