Forensic Science (FSC)


FSC 1700 - Forensic Photography - 3 credits

Fall and Spring Semesters

Forensic Crime Scene Photography is a field of photography that deals with photographing crime scenes, corpses and evidences serving as a key part of police records for accidents and crime scenes. Forensic photographers must have the skills to utilize their cameras to capture a permanent visual record of any crime scene or accident. Their photographs must be detailed, and they must photograph every piece of evidence available at a scene. The final photographs can be used for evidence analysis and in court to attempt to prove or disprove what happened throughout the crime or accident. This course will utilize both lecture and lab activities. The photos are documented for use in investigations. Crime scene photographers are always allowed to enter the crime scene from the beginning in order to take detailed and accurate images. This course covers the operation of various photographic equipment and its application to criminal justice. Topics include cameras, analog and digital videography, proper light exposure, developing film and prints and preparing photographic evidence. Upon completion students should be able to demonstrate and explain the role of photography and proper film exposure and development techniques in crime scene investigation.


FSC 2700, 2701 - Forensic Science I - 4 credits

Fall Semester

This course will cover a variety of subjects within the field of forensic science. Topics will include: the identification and collection of evidence; the scientific methods used to identify, recognize, preserve, and process items of evidentiary value, evidentiary DNA testing; and the principles behind the chemical analysis of firearms and trace evidence. Lectures will focus on scientific analysis and the application of forensic techniques to actual casework. Relevant lab activities will focus on presented lectures and complimentary lab exercises.

Prerequisites: BIOL 1065 or BIOL 1075/1175 and CHEM 1010/1110 or CHEM 1001/1002, or permission of instructor.


FSC 2710 - Forensic Science II - 4 credits

Spring Semester

This course will cover a variety of subjects within the field of forensic science and lab activities will focus on the collection and processing of evidence; the scientific methods used to identify items of evidence, Lectures will focus on scientific analysis and the application of forensic techniques to actual casework. Relevant lab activities will focus on presented lectures and complimentary lab exercises focusing on identification of human remains, ballistics comparisons, fingerprint techniques, biometrics, drug identification, documentation and preparation for court testimony as well as expert witness qualification. This course meets for two hours of lecture and two hours of lab per week.

Prerequisite: FSC 2700, FSC 2701.


FSC 3500 - Junior Seminar - 1 credit

Spring semester

This course design is to further foster the development of knowledge and skills used by professional scientists. The main goal is the production and delivery of professional quality written reports on current research. The knowledge discussed and accumulated in this course continues to enhance students’ awareness and understanding of scientific inquiry. Extensive analysis of primary scientific literature is central to this course and provides practical experience in developing the skills of written communication used by all scientists.

Prerequisite: Junior standing


FSC 3700 - Forensics Advanced Case Investigations - 4 credits

Every Year

This course, a continuation from Forensic Science I and II will emphasize the theories and fundamentals of the forensic investigative process. Topics include detailed crime scene and complex incident processing, information gathering techniques, collection and presentation of evidence, preparation of appropriate reports, court presentations, laboratory analysis of evidentiary items and other related topics. Upon completion students will be able to identify, explain and demonstrate the techniques of the investigative process, analysis and examination of evidentiary items, report preparation and courtroom presentation. This course closely examines the theories and fundamentals of the investigative process through case studies and practical exercises. This course also covers professional standards and ethics. Upon completion students should be able to identify, explain and demonstrate the application of investigative principles and professional standards and ethics.

Prerequisites: FSC 1700, FSC 2700/2701, and FSC 2710, and instructor permission.


FSC 3900 - Senior Seminar in Forensic Science - 1 credit

Fall Semester

This course design is to further foster the development of knowledge and skills used by professional scientists and engage in career preparation activities for Science Majors. The main goal is the production and delivery of professional quality oral presentations on current research. Extensive analysis of primary scientific literature is central to this course as it provides practical experience in developing the skills in oral communication used by all scientists. Students engaged in research projects also discuss their work/progress and problems that may be arising.

Prerequisite: 65 earned credits in the Forensic Science major


FSC 4000 - Research Communication - 1 credit

Fall and Spring Semesters

Consists of supervised preparation, by the student, of a written report and an oral presentation based on their independent research.

Prerequisite: Permission of area instructor. Signature of faculty supervisor and Department Chair required. Strongly recommended that this be taken the semester after Independent Research 4010 but may be completed concurrently. 

This course meets the General Education Active Learning requirement.


FSC 4000-H - Honors Thesis - 1 credit

Fall & Spring Semesters

This course will give students an overview of the relevant scientific literature relating to their research project with an emphasis on evaluating, analyzing and reporting their research findings. After completion of authentic research on a question/problem, either in the field, or in a lab on campus or off campus; or in libraries/internet; students will write-up research report and give a public oral presentation to the Science Department and others. Signature of faculty supervisor and Department Chair required.

Prerequisite: Honors Research. Ideally this course will be taken in the spring semester of the student’s senior year. This course can serve as a substitute for BIOL/CHEM/ENVS/FSC 4000 for Honors candidates. 


FSC 4010 - Independent Research in Forensic Science Research I - 1-3 credits

Fall & Spring Semester

Independent research on a topic of current interest.  Principles of both literature and experimental (field or laboratory) and/or theoretical research are performed under a faculty member’s supervision.  The student will be required to investigate literature in the field and gain understanding of the nature of the problem/question and methodology that will be used in investigation.  Student will be required to do actual research in libraries or labs, on- or off-campus.  Signature of faculty supervisor and department chair required. This course meets the General Education Active Learning requirement. 

Pre-requisites: Permission of area instructor.  The project must begin no later than the fall of the student’s senior year. 


FSC 4010-H - Honors Independent Research - 3 credits

Fall and Spring Semester

Familiar with relevant research in the discipline, an ability to identify valid data and the use to data to drive decisions will be achieved through independent research on a topic of current interest. Principles of both literature and experimental (field or laboratory) and/or theoretical research are performed under a faculty member’s supervision. The student will be required to do authentic research on a question/problem, either in the field, or in a lab on campus or off campus.  Signature of faculty supervisor and Department Chair required. Students may not take this course more than one time for credit. This course can serve as a substitute for BIOL/CHEM/ENVS/FSC 4010 for Honors candidates. 

Prerequisite: Honors candidate and permission of advisor. The project must begin no later than the fall of the student’s senior year.