What is a Forensic Scientist?
We hope you forgive our pun, but forensic scientists can be classified as lab rats. This is because they primarily work in crime labs. The role they play in the criminal justice field is that of analyzing physical and chemical evidence collected at crime scenes. This analysis helps law enforcement agencies solve crimes.
In the analysis of evidence, the forensic scientist will perform the following:
1. Biological analysis that involves the examination of body fluids and hair. This will oftentimes involve DNA analysis
2. Controlled substance and toxicology analysis that involves the examination of blood and other body fluids and tissues to find alcohol, drugs, and poisons
3. Firearms analysis that involves examination of firearms to identify characteristics between firearm and projectile and between projectile and target
4. Document analysis to find forgery, document dating, and handwriting
5. Chemical analysis that involves the examination of blood spatter, paint, soil, and glass. This analysis can help tell how a crime was committed
How to Become a Forensic Scientist:
This is one of those criminal justice careers where a 4 year
college degree is needed. You will need a bachelor degree in either
biology, physics, microbiology, or chemistry. There are schools now that
offer forensic science major that combines all the above. This will
give you concentration in what you need to do your job. You should
prepare yourself to study such things as:
1. Introduction to Forensics
2. Forensic Psychology
4. Computer Forensics
5. Principles of Law Enforcement
Forensic scientists must be analytical and detail oriented. They employ math and problem solving methodologies. They also work with complex instruments.
Forensic Scientist Salary:
Because of the degree requirement, forensic scientists make good money. The ones with bachelors degree can make as much as $25,000 per year to start. The ones with masters degree and lab experience can make as much as $55,000 per year. Those with PhD even make more.
Forensic Scientist School:
AIU online is one school that we have uncovered that offers a bachelors degree in forensic science online. Check them out by clicking here.
Criminal Justice Careers