Forensic Science Programs in Massachusetts
What Can I Do with a Forensic Science Degree in Massachusetts?
Forensic science has gained a significant amount of attention in recent years, after the initial period of growth it experienced with the development of crime scene investigation television shows. Technology has continued to develop at a rate that changes the landscape of criminal justice every day. This leads to new and innovative ways for investigators to solve violent crimes.
Studying forensic science at the undergraduate or graduate level may give you the chance to explore a variety of career options in this field.
If you've been waiting for the right time to start a career in forensic science, why not take the first step right now?
Use our list of forensic science schools in Massachusetts to contact programs that suit your goals.
The skills you build as a forensic science student may be used in quite a few employment settings. The Massachusetts State Police Crime Lab is one of the largest forensic science laboratories in this region, with eight locations throughout the state. These accredited labs have different units for each type of crime and evidence, including trace analysis, explosives, evidence control, and narcotics.
The more that this field grows, the more important it is to have highly trained professionals who know how to safely and appropriately handle the evidence that comes into their labs.
Forensic Science Degrees in Massachusetts
One of the benefits of a forensic science education is the fact that programs are available at all levels of study.
Whether you earn a certificate, undergraduate degree, or graduate degree, you may gain in-demand skills that can make you an asset to local employers and crime labs. If you're interested in entry-level job openings in forensic science, you may want to get started with an associate degree in forensic science.
This degree requires between 60 and 70 credits, which you may earn over the course of two to three years.
Associate-Level Forensic Science Classes
- Forensic Biology (5 credits): Learn how to apply the principles of forensic science to biological samples and testing methods.
- Computers and Technology (3 credits): Technology plays a major role in crime, evidence, and criminal investigation. Learn more about using technology to investigate crimes in this course.
- Criminal Law and Procedures (3 credits): The goal of this class is to show students how the criminal investigation process works from start to finish, covering relevant laws and protocols along the way.
- Criminal Evidence (4 credits): Investigators use many different types of evidence to solve criminal cases. Cover the different classifications of evidence and learn how to analyze them properly.
The next step up from an associate degree is a bachelor's degree. This type of program lasts an average of four years, requiring the completion of 120 to 130 credits. In addition to helping you meet qualifications for entry-level jobs, a bachelor's degree may help you prepare for graduate-level study in this field.
Bachelor's Degree Forensic Science Coursework
- Criminology (3 credits): This course looks at the sociological factors that cause some people to commit crimes. This knowledge may help you better understand the mindset of perpetrators and analyze evidence accordingly.
- Research Methods in Criminal Justice (3 credits): Research is at the core of criminal justice, and in this course, you can start learning how to conduct research that shapes the future of criminal justice.
- Criminal Profiling Strategies (3 credits): Profiling can be an effective tool to understand how crime happens, why it happens, and how it can be prevented.
- Investigative Methods and Procedures (3 credits): Criminal investigation is a complex field, and forensic science is a key player in it. Learn about forensic science methods for investigation in this class.
After you earn a bachelor's degree, you may have the core critical thinking skills needed to pursue a master's in forensic science. Part of learning how to become a forensics scientist is knowing how to conduct research and analyze results, which are two of the most important skills in this program.
Graduate Courses in Forensic Psychology
- Crime Scene Investigation (3 credits): Explore advanced concepts in crime scene analysis, evidence collection, and interpretation.
- Advanced Forensic Biology (3 credits): The biological sciences are foundational in forensic science, which is why most graduate forensic science programs include high-level biology courses.
- Forensic Chemistry (3 credits): Analyzing components and chemicals is a fundamental skill in forensic science.
- Forensic Pathology and Medicolegal Death Investigation (3 credits): Learn how to determine the cause of death using scientific methods, evidence, and biological samples.
- Forensic DNA Analysis (3 credits): DNA analysis covers skills used to identify remains, figure out who was present at the time of death, and determine whether or not eyewitness testimony is accurate.
Are you ready to study forensic science? MA schools can help you get started.
Reach out to Massachusetts schools to learn more about different degree programs.
Working as a Forensic Scientist in Massachusetts
Here's the scoop:
Getting hands-on experience while earning your degree may help you when it's time to start looking for jobs. If you have professional connections with local employers and supervisors, you may be able to network your way into a promising position. Furthermore, having strong references from nearby employers may give you a leg up on other job applicants.
One of the most popular job openings in Massachusetts is that of a forensic science technician. Forensic science technicians fill a number of roles in Massachusetts' crime labs and criminal justice agencies, ensuring that evidence is processed promptly, analyzed accurately, and stored in a safe manner.
In Massachusetts, the average salary for a forensic science technician is $75,570 per year (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2017). Although job outlook data is not available for this state, the demand for forensic science technicians is expected to grow at a whopping 15% nationwide from 2016 to 2026 (O*Net, 2017).
Those with experience in law enforcement may choose to become criminal investigators. With professional experience in forensic science, you could navigate crime scenes with ease, gather evidence for analysis, and ensure that samples are not contaminated.
Massachusetts criminal investigators earn an average of $93, 480 per year (BLS, 2017). Between 2016 and 2026, job openings may increase by an average of 120 positions per year in the state (O*Net, 2017).
This is the time to declare a forensic science major and build your knowledge in one of criminal justice's fastest growing specialties.
Contact forensic science schools near you to compare your options.
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