Colleges that Offer Forensic Science Degree Programs
Forensic science is the process of collecting and examining evidence used in a criminal investigation. Degrees in this field are offered at both the undergraduate and graduate level and combine elements of biology and chemistry with U.S. law.
How to Select a Forensic Science School
When selecting a forensic science school, it's important that students understand what they can do with the various degree levels. A Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science is most often required for entry-level employment. Students can also pursue a B.S. in Pre-Forensic Science, which entails a chemistry or biology major and prepares students for graduate study.
Students may also want to consider a bachelor's to master's degree program. These accelerated degree programs often cater to students' undergraduate coursework. If a student has majored in biology as part of his or her pre-forensic curriculum, he or she can be on track for a master's degree specialization in forensic biology. Master's degree programs also offer specialties in forensic chemistry or forensic toxicology.
When searching out the appropriate program, it's important for students to find one that's accredited by the Forensic Science Education Programs Accreditation Commission. This commission sets the standards for forensic science education in the United States. Coursework guidelines could also be aligned with the DNA Advisory Board, the American Board of Forensic Toxicology and the Scientific Working Group for the Analysis of Seized Drugs.
Students may also want to find a school which offers clinical courses and is affiliated with local forensic science laboratories. Some schools may also house on-campus laboratories with industry-standard equipment, such as stereo microscopes, DNA sequencers and spectrometers. Instructors may be either professors or criminal law professionals.
Largest Schools by Overall Student Enrollment
|College/University||Student Population||Institution Type|
|University of Central Florida||50,121||4-year, Public|
|Michigan State University||46,510||4-year, Public|
|Pennsylvania State University - Main Campus||44,406||4-year, Public|
|Florida International University||38,759||4-year, Public|
|Riverside Community College||36,146||2-year, Public|
|City College of San Francisco||34,868||2-year, Public|
|University of Maryland - University College||34,172||4-year, Public|
|Pima Community College||34,136||2-year, Public|
|East Lost Angeles College||34,065||2-year, Public|
|Virginia Commonwealth University||32,044||4-year, Public|
|University of California - Davis||30,568||4-year, Public|
|Indiana University - Purdue University-Indianapolis||30,300||4-year, Public|
|West Virginia University||28,840||4-year, Public|
|University of Nevada - Las Vegas||28,600||4-year, Public|
|Long Beach City College||26,927||2-year, Public|
|Palomar College||26,805||2-year, Public|
|Utah Valley University||26,696||4-year, primarily associate's, Public|
|St. Petersburg College||26,659||4-year, primarily associate's, Public|
|Palm Beach State College||25,122||4-year, Public|
|Fresno City College||24,783||2-year, Public|
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