ForensicsColleges.com provides an extensive listing of careers in forensic science and related fields to help you research requirements, responsibilities, roles, and specializations within each field. The www.forensicscolleges.com staff will add and update careers on a regular basis.
Why pursue a career in forensic science? The short answer is opportunities! Careers in forensic life science, private investigation, and information security are experiencing exponential occupational growth. By illustration, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS 2021) shows that between 2020 and 2030, careers in forensic science are projected to grow 16 percent, private investigation at 13 percent, and information security at an astonishing 33 percent nationally.
Compared to the national growth average for all occupations at 8 percent (BLS 2021), it’s clear that choosing a career path in forensic science can prove a solid investment of time and resources for those who enjoy multidisciplinary careers in criminal justice and science.
Where do forensic science professionals work? Depending on rank and responsibilities, forensic scientists can be found working in laboratories or at crime scenes, private investigators in armored vehicles or insurance offices, and information security analysts behind screens and in boardrooms of private and public administrative offices.
Read on to learn how life scientists, computer scientists, nurses, artists, accountants, and other professionals use their primary areas of expertise to pursue careers in forensic science.
An arson investigator uses in-depth knowledge of fire chemistry and mechanics to investigate possible arson cases. They also gather evidence and eyewitness accounts, talk with insurance companies and provide expert testimony in court proceedings.
Computer or digital forensics is the study of how technology is used to commit crimes. Computer forensic specialists use computer hardware and software to recover information from machines that could be used in criminal trials.
Crime scene investigators spend time at crime scenes in order to collect evidence necessary in order to recreate a violent crime. Through careful documentation and evidence analysis, crime scene investigators provide proof that is the keystone of most criminal trials.
Criminalists use scientific and investigative methods to deduce how a particular crime took place. Although today’s criminalists utilize modern tools like 3-D imaging and DNA sequencing to help law enforcement, they still build upon the same foundation of this profession that dates back to the around 700 AD, when the Chinese used fingerprints to identify documents and clay sculptures.
A DNA analyst takes human tissue samples like blood, hair or semen and finds genetic code that will identify the victims and perpetrators of violent crimes. This is primarily a lab job, and DNA analysts do not spend much time at crime scenes, although they may be asked to testify in court about their findings.
A forensic accountant uses basic accounting and investigative skills to find defects in financial statements that may be indicative of criminal activity. They perform audits on financial and legal files and present their findings in trials.
Forensic anthropologists analyze and apply scientific techniques in order to diagnose posthumous death by violent force or trauma. Skin tissue, bone observation and demographics are key areas of study.
Working in a coroner’s office or medical examiner’s office could be a good job for people who are interested in science, the human body, and helping families to find out what may have caused the death of a loved one. Becoming a forensic autopsy technician is one option for those who are fascinated by human anatomy and who are not squeamish around the idea of dissecting bodies. Additionally, this career typically does not require extensive postsecondary learning.
By examining bodily fluids, bones, hair, insects, plants, and animals at a crime scene, a forensic biologist prepares detailed analysis of their findings which can be used in legal cases to determine the cause of a crime. Read on to learn more about the rewarding opportunities available in forensic biology careers.
Forensic chemistry involves using scientific methods to investigate physical evidence. Forensic chemists fight crimes with science by analyzing evidence collected from crime scenes and giving testimonies based on laboratory test results.
While the field of engineering is primarily tasked with designing and constructing reliable structures and designs that will operate safely, failures can still occur. Even with extensive structural and product testing, the most meticulous designs can still falter during and after construction or in the manufacturing stages.
Forensic entomologists are experts in the fields of criminal justice and science who, using their knowledge of how insects aid in bodily decomposition, can determine the time and source of death.
Forensic investigators share many responsibilities and competencies with detectives: conducting interviews, securing crime scenes, analyzing public and private records, and writing detailed investigative reports.
A medical examiner is a government employee that investigates human bodies that have died under unusual or unnatural circumstances. They are able to perform autopsies and post-mortem exams, but may more often perform administrative duties.
Forensic nurses learn how to identify and treat victims of violent acts such as abuse and rape. Forensic nurses are also trained on how to gather and present evidence of these actions in court.
If you already are working as a registered nurse and have an interest in protecting the welfare and health of others, you may want to consider training to become a forensic nurse examiner. As such, you will continue to work in nursing, but will learn to recognize and document the signs of abuse and violence that could be used to prosecute a criminal in a courtroom.
Forensic pathologists conducts autopsies and post-mortem examinations on individuals whose deaths may have been caused by unnatural circumstances. They also work closely with law enforcement officials and legal teams to provide expert opinions on their findings.
The study of forensic psychology specializes in how criminals and their victims behave and how it affects them emotionally and mentally. Forensic psychologists are often asked to present findings in court, especially in cases where mental illness could be a cause of violent acts.
Forensic science is the general study of how science can be used for legal purposes. Forensic scientists range from biological researchers to psychologists and have many specialized skills.
As high-tech digital advancements sharpen the accuracy and validity of law enforcement evidence-gathering, forensic artists with backgrounds in criminal justice should be pleased to learn that the use of analogy paper and pencil sketches still play a major role in criminal investigations.
The primary role of a forensic technician is to collect and analyze physical evidence. This can consist of biological material, as well as glass, hair, fingerprints, fabric, bullets, various chemicals, and anything else that can help identify what happened during a crime.
When it comes to portrayal in television, the nitty-gritty details of careers in forensic toxicology often end up on the cutting room floor. Read on to get a realistic glance at the typical responsibilities, specialties, salaries, and career paths for forensic toxicologists.
For those considering working at the intersection of the legal and medical fields in a dynamic, high-growth career, this guide provides a detailed discussion of the career outlook, salary prospects, and pathway to becoming a legal nurse consultant.
A pathology assistant is able to do most of the work of a pathologist except for diagnosis of a post-mortem patient. Pathology assistants collect samples, perform autopsies and do clerical work in pathology labs.