After high school, a lot of students tend to go with the flow and choose to pursue courses like engineering, medical, CA, or law as they are quite popular and usually referred to as good career options as per the stereotypical standards of society.
But we must not forget that beyond these 4 pillars of education, there are literally hundreds of other courses that the students can go after and one such course in forensic science. This is one of the very courses that only a few students prefer to pursue after their higher secondary education.
Many students who happen to be good at chemistry and are quite interested in pursuing forensic science courses after completion of their higher secondary education look for details of such courses on the web.
The information on the web is quite scattered and available in bits and pieces which makes it difficult for the students to understand the requirements, eligibility, and other details of the forensic science courses.
However, those who are looking forward to having a career in the forensic department must know that there are plenty of courses to guide them through. Not many students aspire to pursue forensic science courses after their higher secondary education. Therefore, the stream is not very crowded and there are good numbers of opportunities available in the industry for forensic experts.
So, for all the aspirants who are looking forward to having a career as a forensic professional, this article will guide you through every detail of the forensic science courses available out there and the career opportunities after you complete the courses.
Let’s first begin with what is forensics. Growing up, we all must have seen in movies that after a crime scene the cops need the help of forensic experts to carry forward the investigation and figure out something. Well, the actual forensics is somewhat similar but not exactly that dramatic.
So, in simple words, forensic science refers to the science of studying and observing a subject using scientific knowledge that is the combination of chemistry, biology, and physics. This form of observation is usually required in investigating crime where the evidence is not very easy to find.
Many students from the very beginning make up their minds to become forensic professionals while for many others it’s a conscious choice as they come across subjects like chemistry, biology, and more.
Although schools do not have forensics as a part of their academic curriculum, the students may take forensic science courses after their 12th standard. However, the forensic science courses also have certain requirements, eligibility criteria that the students shall consider before going for such courses.
In this article, you’ll learn about those requirements, eligibility criteria, career scope, course fees, salary, and more about all the forensic courses available out there. These details will help you understand which course suits you the best.
So, let’s dive into the topic and see what the different courses are for aspiring forensic professionals and what the career prospects in it are.
What is the Meaning of Forensic?
If you browse through good for the term forensic, it will show that the application of scientific knowledge for the investigation of a crime. Well, the definition is just right, and now that we know what forensic means, it’s no rocket science to understand what forensic science means.
So basically the science of applying certain techniques and scientific knowledge to figure out the root cause of a certain incident usually related to crime is called forensic science. It deals with quite some serious things which is why the professionals are required to have a good level of expertise in their craft.
Forensic science requires good use of knowledge from all domains of science that is biology, chemistry, physics, and more. Although not many students go after such courses, the skill is heavily required across the globe.
India alone is a wildly populated country and a lot of crimes happen. Every day at some corner of the country there is a need for investigation around some criminal activity and usually, the evidence is not very easily available. That is when the investigating authority seeks the help of forensic professionals to look into the scene and see if they can find anything.
The little revelations from forensic investigations speak a lot about the crime. One such example is examining the liquid droplets at the crime spot to see if it is alcohol or not could lead to the fact that someone was consuming alcohol at the place of crime.
This little analysis and investigations can then lead the investigating authorities in the right direction to find the culprit or reach a conclusion. There are a lot of techniques and methods that forensic experts and professionals learn when they take formal education in this field that later allows them to help the police and investigating authorities with the investigation.
Starting from examining the dead body, trying to figure out the cause of death, time of death and many other things of that nature has been proven very helpful to the police in concluding.
So, if you’re planning to become a forensic professional then there is definitely a need for such professionals in the department of police, crime investigating agencies, and more. Many times chemical companies recruit students with formal education in forensic science because a good part of their training deals with the study of chemistry.
Let’s now dive a little bit deeper into the topic and learn about how interested students can learn forensic science.
Forensic Science Courses: Forensic Science Courses: Details, Eligibility, Fees, and Career
Bachelor of Forensic Science
Clearly, as the name suggests it is a bachelor’s degree with forensic science as the primary subject. This course guides the students through the very fundamentals to extreme professional knowledge in the domain of forensic science.
The students will get to engage with the practical aspects of forensic science and learn how exactly it is used to investigate a subject. The duration of the course is 3 years and in this period of time, the students go through the very concepts, theories, and practices involved in forensic science.
The students learn about the methods and techniques exercised to conduct necessary investigations and come up with analogies backed with proper scientific facts.
The students are required to have completed their 12th standard or +2 in the science background to be able to get admission in this course. Different colleges might have different eligibility criteria in terms of how many marks a candidate should have scored to be able to find a seat in the college but on average the student is required to have secured at least 60% throughout their academic career.
There is a good scope for the students who have completed their bachelor’s in forensic science. They might as well apply for the vacancies in the govt department such as police and other crime investigating agencies, or they might as well find jobs at companies that deal with the production of chemicals such as drug production companies and more.
Master in Forensic Science
For students who wish to specialize in a particular subject of forensic science may then pursue the master’s program in forensic science. This course is definitely for those who have a background in forensic science and want to specialize in a particular practice of forensic science. Unlike the bachelor’s degree, the master’s program doesn’t have a vast syllabus rather the student will get to learn more in-depth about the subject that he prefers to choose.
The course is very much practical-oriented and allows the student to learn about the practical and professional aspects of forensic science. The students get to learn their p[preferred subject more deeply. Moreover, the students also have to write research papers and theories in this course.
The students are required to have completed their graduation or Bachelor’s in forensic science to be able to get admission for the master’s program in forensic science. Along with this, certain other requirements vary depending upon the college offering the forensic science course.
One such requirement is that the student will have to appear for the entrance exam and the other requirement is that the student must have maintained a certain percentage throughout their academic career. Some colleges even interview the students before deciding if they’ll allow them to get a seat or not.
Forensic science is a very specialized subject and not a lot of people opt for this. So having a master’s degree will give you an upper hand in career-wise. The benefit of having a master’s degree in forensic science is that you can easily apply for senior positions and you can also hold senior roles in the forensic department of government or private firms.
PG Diploma in Forensic Science
The next course in the lineup is the PG Diploma in Forensic Science. This is a post-graduation diploma course and its duration is about 2 years. This course is very similar to MSc in Forensic Science as a lot of the syllabus, curriculum, and other things are quite similar to the master’s course. However, the course is quite different when it comes to the scope which we will also discuss and take a look at.
As mentioned earlier, this course has a duration of 2 years. One of the main thoughts that bother a lot of people is picking between PG Diploma in Forensic Science or to go with MSc in Forensic Science after their undergraduate degree completion. Both of the courses are quite good as they have a lot of scopes and are quite interesting to pursue. You see there are a lot of specialization branches of Forensic Science like biology, serology, chemistry, toxicology, and a lot more. With PG Diploma in Forensic science, one can actually learn in-depth about a particular specialization. so if you want to go into a particular discipline of forensics, you should opt for PG Diploma in Forensic Science.
So in order to do this PG Diploma, one must complete his/her graduation and only then he/she will be eligible for this course. The admission procedure is quite simple and standard. if you want to do this course, you will have to appear in the entrance exam of the course conducted by the college/institute that is offering this course, and then you will have to pass both the entrance exam and an interview session to get admission in the college/institute for this course.
Talking about the scope, having a PG Diploma in Forensic Science can open up a lot of gates for you career-wise. You can get a lot of high-paying jobs that require specialization in some forensic areas. You can get jobs in Government sectors, private sectors and you can even become a detective too.
Ph.D. in Forensic Science
Now we are talking about becoming a research scholar in Forensic Science. Well, this is a very high-level specialization course that you should only take if you have a pure passion for the field of Forensic Science. After completing the Ph.D. Course in Forensic Science, you will be awarded the title of Dr. which is a great achievement in itself. This is the highest level of qualification you can have academic wise in any subject. The only thing that you should pay attention to is that only take this if you are truly passionate and can handle the long-term research work which has a lot of challenges on its own.
This is a doctoral course and it can easily take anywhere from 3 to 5 years to get awarded with a Ph.D. degree and it is just very time-consuming and stressful. The thing is that a person must have a post-graduation degree and working experience before he/she could enroll for a Ph.D. in Forensic Science.
For the people who love forensic science, you will absolutely love this course as you will learn so much about the field of forensic science that a normal person can’t even imagine. You will learn about all the different fields of forensic science like botany, biology, chemistry, toxicology, data, network, etc. Having a Ph.D. will give you an edge over the peers.
The student must have completed the post-graduation degree in the same field and then he/she can apply for a doctoral program. Along with the post-graduation, the individual is also supposed to have some working experience in the field of Forensic Science.
Talking about scope, as mentioned earlier, this is the highest level of degree you can earn in the field of Forensic science academically and after completing the Ph.D., you will automatically have the most advanced level of skillset and knowledge which will make you a top priority in any government sector or private firm that needs a forensic expert. Having a Ph.D. in the team of forensics department is something every organization wants.
M.Phil in Forensic Science
Last on the list is another doctoral-level course which is especially for people who have a very keen interest in forensic science. You see there is a strong need for experts in the field of forensic science as this is a very important field in solving homicides and giving a broader perspective in the field of investigation. So there is a Ph.D. in Forensic Sciences of course which we have already discussed and then there is M.Phil in Forensic Science.
M.Phil in Forensic Science is also a doctoral-level program that has a duration of 3 years. This program focuses more on the practical application of the scientific methodology that helps in case solving and improving the methods of investigation. In this course, one learns how to practically implement the knowledge of forensics and how to obtain, analyze, and drive results in the field of forensics.
This is a doctoral-level course so one must have completed the post-graduation in Forensic Science and also have some working experience in the field. This course is available in a lot of major universities and one has to take pass the entrance test in order to get enrolled and for some cases, an interview is also taken.
As mentioned earlier, this course will give you more practical skills related to forensic science than any other course on the list and it is also a doctoral-level course. This will help you in becoming a forensics expert, forensic scientist, etc. So overall, this is very beneficial
These were some of the very details that you must know about the forensic science courses. Being aware of these details will help you choose the best course for you and have a rewarding career ahead. If you aspire to become a forensic professional then consider going through each of the mentioned courses and based on your qualification and the eligibility criteria of the course, choose the one that fits best for your requirements.
There is good scope for forensic professionals in the near future and they are more likely to find a government job as compared to students from other streams of education. The salaries offered are quite good and there are several drug manufacturing companies that also hire forensic professionals.
It takes a good academic performance in your +2 science to land a good college for pursuing bachelors in forensic science. The subject itself demands good knowledge in chemistry and biology. So, the students with a good hold over the subjects like chemistry and biology may prefer to pursue such forensic science courses.
Similarly for those who wish to pursue the master’s program in a good or reputed college will have to perform well and maintain a good score throughout their academic career to be able to find a seat in a good college. However, some colleges may conduct separate entrance tests and even interviews as well.
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