How to Become a Forensic Scientist?

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Forensic Scientist

You must have come across forensic experts in crime TV shows or detective series like Sherlock Holmes. A Forensic Scientist plays the indispensable role of finding and analysing evidence at the crime scene so as to direct the investigation in the right direction. They perform scientific analysis on different objects to bring details to the limelight. The role of Forensic Scientists is not limited to criminal cases as they work on civil cases too. Want to know how to become a Forensic Scientist in India? Scroll through this blog to read all about how you can become a Forensic Scientist as well as top courses, universities, salary and career scope in this field. Through this blog, you will see the step by step process you have to learn regarding how to become a Forensic Scientist.

What does a Forensic Scientist do?

Forensic scientists usually gather, preserve and scientifically analyse evidence or objects found during an investigation process. Forensic scientists often visit the scene of the crime to gather evidence and they also work in a medical laboratory to assess the evidence, performing scientific tasks on different objects so as to reveal details hidden to the eye. A career in Forensic Science is intellectually rewarding yet a very demanding job because it involves the person to meticulously work on minute details. It sometimes involves working on things like a corpse that may seem disturbing to many. 

Roles and Responsibilities

Take a look at the key roles and responsibilities of a Forensic Scientist:

  • Probing and gathering evidence and collecting relevant objects from the crime scenes.
  • Drafting comprehensive reports of evidence.
  • Authentication regarding the validity of necessary documents.
  • Testing fluid samples like saliva to see any consumption of drugs or poisonous substances by the victim.
  • Analysing stains and marks on the collected evidence.
  • Presenting and defending the findings regarding the evidence before the judiciary.
  • Retrieving information from devices and gadgets found on a crime scene. 
  • Employing legal and appropriate scientific procedures during evidence analysis.

Skills Required

Since this field demands one to have an exceptional scientific genius, it is necessary for you to be highly interested in science. Furthermore, one should be articulate in explaining even the most intricate scientific details to the people not familiar with science. Here are the most important skills required to become a Forensic Scientist:

  • Rational and highly logical bent of mind
  • Conscientiously attentive to details
  • Exceptional written and oratory skills
  • Discreet and highly objective while dealing with sensitive and secretive content
  • Extraordinarily competent to work in pressure situations
  • Patient to work with consistency throughout the investigation
  • Tenacious to cope with psychological stress
  • Confidence and trust in your own conclusion

How to Become a Forensic Scientist?

Now that you are familiar with what this career entails, let’s explore how you can become a Forensic Scientist in India:

Step 1: Pursue a Bachelor’s Degree in Forensic Science

To pursue your career as a Forensic Scientist, you need to first start with a bachelor’s degree in this field such as BSc Forensic Science. A bachelor’s degree will familiarise you with the intricacies of this field as well as equip you with the skills to assess crime evidence, dissect samples and use corresponding lab technologies. Many students also opt for an MSc Forensic Science afterwards to get a deeper understanding of the domain and explore better opportunities or steer towards a career in research.

Here are the top Forensic Science courses you can choose from:

Bachelor’s Level Courses

Bachelor of Science – Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Bachelor of Forensic Science Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry – Biochemistry
Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Sciences (Honours) Bachelor of Forensic Science (Forensic Biology) Bachelor of Science in Laboratory Technology
BSc (Hons) Genetics and Biochemistry BSc (Hons) Policing Studies and Forensics BSc (Hons) Anatomy and Human Biology

Master’s Level Courses

Master of Science in Forensic Science Master of Science in Forensic Science and Law MSc Human Anatomy with Education
Master of Science in Quantitative Biology and Bioinformatics Master of Medical Laboratory Science Forensic Archaeology and Crime Scene Investigation MSc

Doctorate Courses

Doctor of Philosophy – Forensic Science Analytical Chemistry PhD Doctor of Philosophy in Criminology

Once you have selected the right course to follow the career path of a Forensic Scientist, the next step is to find the right university that can equip you with the best exposure and knowledge. Check out the top universities for Forensic Science courses:

Moreover, here are the general eligibility requirements you must keep in mind while applying for Forensic Science courses in India or abroad.

  • Education in science at 10+2 level if you are applying for an undergraduate program.
  • For PG courses a degree in general science is important.
  • If you are planning to study abroad, you might be required to provide SAT/ACT scores for undergraduate programs and GRE scores for postgraduate courses in Forensic Science. Further, you must also submit language proficiency scores of IELTS/TOEFL, etc. as well as an SOP and LORs.

Step 2: Look for Internship Opportunities 

While studying your undergraduate degree, it is important to pursue suitable internships on the side to put the theoretical knowledge to test as well as gain immense industry exposure. Having a decent experience also eases your process of finding a suitable job at the end of your studies. Here are the top areas offering lucrative internship opportunities to Forensic Science undergraduates and graduates.

  • Private Detective Agencies
  • Central Govt. Forensic Sciences Labs
  • Hospitals
  • Police Department
  • Law Firms
  • Quality Control Bureau
  • Banks
  • Universities
  • FBI
  • Indiana State Police Laboratory Division
  • City of Philadelphia Toxicology Lab

Step 3: Explore Job Opportunities

Since this is a field which throws up myriad career opportunities for a student you just need to explore carefully to find yourself a lucrative job profile. Some of the job opportunities you can look for are: 

Once you have graduated with a degree in Forensic Science and have gained exposure through training and internships, you will be ready to explore job opportunities. Apart from the lucrative career profile of Forensic Scientist, you can also opt for any of the following jobs in Forensic Science:

  • Forensic Pathologist
  • Crime Scene Examiner
  • Forensic IT Specialist
  • Crime Laboratory Analyst
  • Forensic Psychologist

Salary

The salary of a Forensic Scientist in India is somewhere around Rs 7-8 lakh per annum depending whether you’re applying in any state department or a department under the jurisdiction of central government where you comparatively receive a higher salary.

Hopefully, this blog has provided you with comprehensive details regarding how to become a Forensic Scientist. Want to study a degree in Forensic Science abroad? Get in touch with our Leverage Edu experts and we will help you find the right course and university as per your requirements and aspirations! Sign up for a free session with us now!

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