Skip to main content
1 answer
Asked 333 views

What do you like most about being a CSI?


+25 Karma if successful
From: You
To: Friend
Subject: Career question for you


1 answer

Share a link to this answer
Share a link to this answer

Thomas’s Answer

"Crime scene investigators, also known as forensic science technicians, collect and analyze physical evidence to solve crimes. They need the composure to work at scenes that may be unpleasant and distressing. The profession requires working staggered schedules that include day, evening, night and weekend shifts because crime can occur at any time. Despite these challenges, the job attracts many applicants because it offers many benefits.

Earning Potential
A big benefit to the profession is the high compensation, which averaged $62,220 per year but could exceed $95,600 yearly, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics for May 2016. Although most investigators worked for local government, such as in municipal police departments, earnings there were slightly less than average, at a mean $62,040 per year. The highest pay was in the federal government, averaging an annual $105,650.

Job Growth Opportunities
With predicted job increases of 17 percent from 2016 to 2026, crime scene investigators will not want for employment. The job growth rate is higher than the 7 percent expected for all occupations in all industries, and better than the 8 percent projected for all life, physical and social science technicians. Media portrayals have made potential jurors more aware of the use of forensic evidence for identifying criminals, motives and methods. Investigators provide the forensics evidence necessary for court cases. However, job openings will vary depending on federal, state and local law enforcement budgets.

Optional Specialization
Crime scene investigators can choose to focus on one or more areas of interest. Firearms specialists can provide information about the precise firearm used in a crime by examining the marks left by bullets. DNA experts use bodily fluids and substances, such as bits of skin, to identify criminal suspects, even in cases many years old. Toxicologists analyze the controlled substances in powders, pills, liquids and body fluids to determine whether suspects and victims were under the influence. Trace evidence specialists examine the very small details, such as fibers, hair, paint, glass, pollen and food residue, to discover case specifics.

Intangible Benefits
Among the intangible benefits of being a crime scene investigator is the satisfaction of solving a crime, identifying suspects, and bringing justice to victims and their survivors. They work closely with law enforcement officers who also derive and communicate that same satisfaction, albeit through the use of different methods. The field is never boring because each investigation differs from the last and offers varied types of evidence. Methods, techniques and laws are constantly changing, which helps to keep the job interesting."