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Monday, November 14, 2011

Enter Criminal Justice Careers To Serve And Protect

By Michelle Conner

Forensic science encompasses a whole range of different practices that use science to examine palpable, organic, and other forms of data for criminal and judicial purposes. We commonly think of forensic science as a method used by those in law enforcement when trying to prove guilt or innocence. If processing a crime scene and analyzing evidence appeals to you, then you should consider a degree in forensic science.

You would not be entering a new field, however, as forensic science has been around for centuries and brought to the forefront by the FBI. Even with the FBI endorsement we would not be as familiar with forensic practices if not for television programs that graphically take us through their processes. Not only does the forensic scientist prepare and conduct analyses for the district attorney's office, but he or she testifies in the courtroom. Once you've looked at all your Bachelor's degree forensic science options, you can begin learning the necessary skills to track the scene of a crime.

Let's take a look at the different levels available in this most fascinating field. An Associate's degree in the field will give you the basic knowledge and skill sets to further your schooling or to get a job in some capacity. You will find that programs such as these are offered by most community colleges, and the curriculum covers all of the sciences needed as well as the subjects necessary to earn a two-year degree.

If earning an Associate's degree is your goal, you will be happy to learn that your employment will be in an assistant role of investigation in a laboratory or possibly in technological forensics. However, if you are looking for more in the way of responsibilities, you will need a Bachelor's degree to advance to a forensic scientist position. A four-year degree allows for more employment options such as, working in a crime lab; involvement in medical inquiry; and behavioral profiling. While reading more on accredited criminal justice degree resources, decide which role you want to play in forensic science and what you need to do to get there.

If you have already completed your undergraduate degree and are still interested in furthering your education, then a Master's degree program is a good choice for advancement in the field. Graduate school applicants should have a science degree of some sort, and as is the case with most grad schools, you will need letters of recommendation. Students in a Master's level program will continue study in science disciplines and other required classes that make up the principles of forensic science.

A Master's degree in this field focuses on many different aspects of research and discovery, and students have the opportunity to learn from professionals in various settings. There are a number of forensic careers open to those who complete a Master's program, including pathology. There is a national certification awarded by the American Board of Criminologists; however, it is not something you will need for employment, but it is viewed favorably by potential employers.

Job opportunities in this field are expected to increase, and employment looks promising. The growth will most likely affect forensic science teachers and the services offered by scientists. "Going green" is a phase that most of us understand as being environmentally responsible, and this too will pave the way for increased scientists to analyze and identify pollutants, contaminants, and other harmful chemicals.

About the Author:

If you love science and want to contribute to the solving of crimes, then forensic science is a career you need to consider. There are several levels of education to choose from, and each offers different employment opportunities and responsibilities. Taking online classes allows you to learn at your own pace. can assist you in finding a college that fits around your schedule.

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