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What careers can you pursue if you want to study forensics?

I've always found mysteries and crime shows very interesting and want to study forensics but I don't know specific jobs that I can have with a forensics degree. #forensic #forensics #criminal-justice

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Mistie’s Answer

Hello Cloris. I was just like you before I began working in the field. I loved watching crime shows, dramas with mystery, and etc. There are actually a ton of different avenues you can take when it comes to working in forensics and it totally depends on what you want to do. There are two basic aspects to forensics, working in the field as a Crime Scene Investigator (CSI) or working in the laboratory as a Forensic Scientist (FS) or as a specialist. Specialists include extra training in areas like Forensic Entomology, Forensic Pathology (conducting autopsies), Forensic Odontology (forensic dentist), Forensic Anthropology (working with bones), and more.

Let me give you a little background on my choices and how I pursued work. I knew that I wanted to work in Forensics, but wasn't sure if I wanted to work in the field or lab. So, while I was going to school, I chose to volunteer with the lab. I also decided to get a degree that allowed me to do both, a hard science degree. It will depend on the agency and what they require. Phoenix Crime Lab, where I lived and wanted to work, required a hard science degree to be an FS, but many agencies only require a CJ degree to work as a CSI. So, I got a bachelor's degree in Biology while volunteering at the lab. I am pretty certain the volunteer work was a main factor in me getting the position. So, I started out as a CSI and fell in love with the work. It was so much fun and so interesting to go to crime scenes and conduct investigations. However, the hours were a challenge for me as crime is 24/7, and the schedules I had were nights and weekends. This is another thing to keep in mind when choosing your career. I made the hard decision to leave as a CSI and start teaching in the field, which is possible with a Masters's degree. So, I have been teaching CJ and Forensics ever since.

I highly suggest reaching out to a local agency or the agency where you want to work and seeing what their requirements are. In some cases, agencies will hold classes to give citizens insight into their work. Go on a ride along, volunteer, ask for an internship, etc. These are all great tasks to help you decide what you want to do. Really understand what the position requires (schedule, type of work, etc) before you make a decision.

Let me know if you would like any other information on the world of Forensics. Good luck to you!


Mistie recommends the following next steps:

Reach out to your local agency or the agency where you want to work and get details on the positions.
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Alexis’s Answer

Forensic Science is the application of scientific methods and processes in various legal and criminal-related settings. The ten most common Forensic Science jobs would be:
I. Fingerprint analyst
II. Evidence technician
III. Forensic science technician
IV. Forensic specialist
V. Forensics manager
VI. Forensic investigator
VII. Forensic accountant
VIII. Forensic engineer
IX. Forensic psychologist
X. Forensic pathologist

I would advise you to meet with your Guidance Counselor/Advisor to explore academic requirements for the field of Forensic Science.