WHAT IS FORENSIC SCIENCE?
Forensic science is the application of science to the law. Forensic scientists analyze and classify physical evidence related to criminal investigations, and the forensic science community seeks highly trained professionals that possess the required skills. Forensic scientists play an integral role in the judiciary system as advocates for the evidence, and some serve as specialists in an area of expertise, such as toxicology, ignitable liquids, explosives and fingerprints.
Forensic Science in the Department of Chemistry at UCF
The UCF Forensic Science Program welcomes you as an undergraduate major in either the forensic chemistry or the forensic biochemistry track. The baccalaureate degree program, started in 1974, has common entry, general education, science and forensic discipline subjects, differing only in the upper level classes. The forensic chemistry track emphasizes the application of modern chromatographic, spectroscopic and micro-analytical techniques to problems in forensic science. The forensic biochemistry track has a strong biochemistry-DNA focus to serve the needs of supervisory personnel in DNA sections of crime laboratories.
The mission of the UCF Forensic Science B.S. Program is to provide a high-quality and well-rounded experience for its students that will allow them to compete for positions in forensic science and/or to prepare them for education at the graduate level.
Programs, Goals and Objectives
For an overview of Undergraduate Degree Requirements see the Undergraduate Catalog. Degree requirements may change from year to year. To insure that you are receiving accurate information, please choose your appropriate catalog year, then look up your degree requirements.
Forensic Science, B.S. – Chemistry Track Requirements
This track is designed to allow students the flexibility to prepare for multiple careers in forensics through selection of restricted elective courses. Students should be advised that background checks similar to those required for law enforcement officers are likely to be a condition of employment (Reference: NIJ Report NCJ 203099).Forensic Chemistry Catalog
Forensic Science, B.S. – Biochemistry Track Requirements
This track is designed to align students with specific courses necessary for the examination of DNA and other biochemical evidence. Students should be advised that background checks similar to those required for law enforcement officers are likely to be a condition of employment (Reference: NIJ Report NCJ 203099).Forensic Biochemistry Catalog
The objectives of the Forensic Science B.S. programs are to graduate students who:
- Are competent in the theory, operation, and data interpretation for instruments used in forensic laboratories
- Have an in-depth understanding of Chemistry and the ability to apply this information to the field of forensics
- Are able to plan, conduct, and evaluate scientific investigations
- Demonstrate proficiency in scientific writing
- Effectively present scientific information
- Demonstrate an understanding of ethical and legal issues essential to the field of forensic science
- Have engaged in high impact practices and integrative experiences that support lifelong learning
The UCF Forensic Science baccalaureate program began in 1974 with the first degree awarded in 1977. Since the program began, 569 B.S. degrees have been awarded. Over the past five years, our graduates have reported employment in various field. From Fall 2013 -2017, responding graduates report: employment at crime labs (32%), attendance at a graduate or professional program (28%), employment in crime scene (16%), employment at a laboratory other than forensic science related (13%), employment in the military or law enforcement (5%), and other employment (5%).
Undergraduate Forensic Science Advising
The College of Sciences Advising Services (“COSAS”) is the primary office charged with providing academic assistance to undergraduate students within the College of Sciences. They help students with matters concerning college and university requirements, transfer credit course evaluation, general education program, Gordon Rule, foreign language, policies, and procedures, how to apply as transient, review of various forms (SAP, URA, ARC, ROTC, University Waiver, etc.). Students use their services primarily by walk-in, or by appointment for advising and special problems.More Information
Forensic Science Undergraduate Coordinator
Forensic Science majors can access advising information and drop-in advising times (no appointment needed) with Dr. Rodriguez through this Webcourse: https://webcourses.ucf.edu/courses/1376705
Prospective students can email questions to ChemForensicsAdvise@ucf.edu.
Forensic Science students can also seek advise from the Departmental Advisor (Dr. Rodriguez). Please visit your Departmental Advisor for:
- Major Specific Questions
- Class Scheduling
- Course Content Questions
- Independent Studies
Students seeking support in pursing careers in the health professions can visit the Office of Pre-Health and Pre-Law Advising.More Information