Options in the Master’s program are for individuals already engaged in careers related to the forensic sciences. These options allow professionals to complete an online Master’s degree while remaining active in their careers. Participants typically attend part time, taking 6 credits per semester to complete the program in 3 ½ to 4 years. Two options are available:
- Forensic Document Examination (FDE)
- Forensic Science Administration
The applicant must have a bachelor’s degree and at least one year of professional experience. No particular college major is required, but the professional experience must provide a foundation in support of the option.
The option in Forensic Document Examination (FDE) provides academic studies for individuals pursuing apprenticeship or journeyman programs that prepare document examiners, trainees, and laboratory interns for certification. Because FDE certification involves two years of training under the mentorship of a qualified document examiner, applicants must either have training in or professional experience with FDE. This degree does not result in professional certification.
The option in Forensic Science Administration helps professionals improve job performance, build toward management positions, or expand knowledge of the forensic sciences. This degree works only in conjunction with appropriate experience in the acquisition of skills and knowledge necessary for successful management within a forensic agency, laboratory, or organization.
Each degree option requires satisfactory completion of 39 graduate credit hours, a research project, and a comprehensive examination. The maximum time to complete the degree is 7 years. The student must maintain a 3.0 or better grade point average. Students in these options complete a research project for 1 to 3 course credits, depending on the weight of the project. During the final semester, the student will present information on the project in a public forum, which can be facilitated via videoconference or other electronic means, and will field questions from the audience. Afterward, the student will meet privately to discuss the project with the Graduate Advisory Committee.
See Requirements for complete information on degree requirements by option.