The list of reasons to pursue a degree in crime scene investigation is truly endless. While it’s possible that an employer will require little to no formal education for a job as a crime scene investigator, it is highly unlikely. Rather, the more experience and education you have, the better your chances will be at landing a job in CSI. Moreover, the expert training and experience you will gain during the course of your study will be invaluable—to both you and your prospective employer—when you’re finally out on the market.
Crime scene investigation, analysis, and forensics are just a few blanket terms applied to the wide variety of jobs available to those with a degree. Your specific degree program will help you to narrow down your options, decide what you’d like to do, and develop the skills you’ll need to do it.
What are the Requirements for a Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) Degree?
Requirements for a CSI degree vary from program to program. The requirements for employment also vary from agency to agency. Therefore, it is important that you discuss with an academic advisor exactly what you plan to do with your degree, and how best to achieve your goals with a career in mind. Some of the courses you will likely need to take include basic biology, physiology, and chemistry.
It is possible that some social sciences, such as psychology and sociology, will also be required for your degree. As crime scene investigators work closely with law enforcement (in fact, some agencies require you to be a law enforcement officer), you will be required to take a number of criminal justice classes to learn how criminal justice works in the United States. Beyond these basics, you will be able to choose courses that focus specifically on the area in which you want to be employed.
How Do I Get a Degree in Crime Scene Investigation
In order to obtain a degree in crime scene investigation, you will need to apply to a school that offers a CSI program. It is likely that the CSI program will be competitive due to the current high level of interest in the field, so your high school grades and work experience will likely have an impact as to whether or not you’re accepted. Once you are accepted, you will simply need to complete the coursework, which is usually divided into a number of credits.
What to Look for Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) Schools
Unlike many jobs that simply require a basic degree, occupation in the crime scene investigation field is contingent upon the specifics of your coursework. Begin by calling or e-mailing some of the agencies in which you are interested and asking them what their minimum requirements are for employment.
With these in mind, begin applying to schools that offer the requisite coursework. Online is a great place to start, but many of the best programs are offered at colleges and universities where actual class instruction takes precedence over online instruction. Many crime scene investigation degrees can be obtained from a university that works in conjunction with a specific agency.