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Printed on 5/27/2018

Forensic Science

10-504-4 Associate Degree (AAS) 61 Credits Financial Aid Eligible Locations*: Appleton, Online

*Some general education courses may be available at multiple locations.

Forensic science is a fascinating field where law enforcement meets scientific investigation. Your training will introduce you to crime scene management, criminal law and constitutional law. You will learn how to identify, document, collect, preserve and analyze physical evidence. Gain experience with biological evidence such as DNA, as well as fingerprints and footwear impressions, trace evidence, tool marks and more. You’ll also develop skills for crash scene investigation, and property and evidence management. Then you can enhance your credentials with a concentration in either physical evidence or digital evidence. An internship gives you hands-on, real-world experience to help you prepare for entry-level positions in the forensic science field.


*Course list for reference only. Current students please refer to your individualized program plan or see your advisor.

Technical Studies (35 Credits)

Course Title
Course Number
Prior Learning Credit
Eligibility Options
Introduction to Forensic Science
Explores the applications of science in the field of crime scene management from the crime scene to the courtroom and beyond. Students will focus on the examination and reconstruction of various crime scenes with the emphasis on the identification, collection, documentation and preservation of physical evidence.
Prereq: ACCUPLACER Sentence Skills score 83 or greater and Reading score 54 or greater or completion of program prep courses OR not pursuing a degree. Coreq: A.C.E. (94900315) for Forensic Science students only
Property/Evidence Management
Focuses on the applications of all forms of property and evidence management systems that include a number of key stages from the piece of property/evidence's acquisition to its eventual disposal. Students will learn versatile time saving tools for managing property, evidence, and equipment through warehousing and inventory control. Develop formal standards for the management, administration, handling of property/evidence and benchmark references specific to the initial property/evidence handling procedures and life time standards for an organization. This course is offered online in fall term and on-campus in spring term.
Basic Crime Scene Photography
Designed to develop basic skills in preparing effective crime scene photographs and to instruct the student in the type of photographs necessary, as well as the lighting needed for good crime scene photography. This course will educate the crime scene investigator, homicide detective, sworn law enforcement officer, rape detective, arson investigator, domestic violence investigator, and other law enforcement personnel in the aspects of photography and provide the skills needed to apply this technology in the crime scene investigation field and/or related areas. This course is offered online in fall term and on-campus in spring term.
Coreq: Introduction to Forensic Science (10504110)
Impression Evidence
Focuses on the many different types of two/three dimensional impression evidence (footwear, fingerprints, tool marks, tire tread, etc.) found at crime scenes, detection/recovery techniques in the field and examinations in the lab and beyond to include the courtroom. Students will have practical hands-on applications (casting, lifts, etc.) with the collection techniques used in the field and lab environment. This will aid the student in developing tools and technologies to enhance their abilities to identify, document, collect and preserve impression evidence. This course is offered online in fall term and on-campus in spring term.
Prereq: Introduction to Forensic Science (10504110)
Criminal Procedures
Identify basic concepts of criminal law; analyze facts, circumstances, and situations and determine which crimes against persons have been committed; analyze facts, circumstances, and situations and determine which crimes against property have been committed; and analyze facts, circumstances, and situations and determine which crimes involving drugs, alcohol or other criminal activity have been committed.
Prereq: Criminal Justice System (10504204) OR Intro to Corrections (10504201) OR enrolled in Forensic Science plan
Biological & Trace Evidence
Provides the student with the knowledge of protecting, recognizing, documenting, collecting, preserving and analysis of biological and trace evidence. Students will learn about the different types of biological evidence and trace evidence that can be used to assist in criminal investigations. This course deals with the real science and myths of DNA along with the identifying suitable types of evidence for DNA analysis. This course is offered on-campus in fall term and online in spring term.
Prereq: General Biology (10806114) and Basic Crime Scene photography (10504131) or enrolled in Evidence Technician certificate
Crash Scene Investigation
Teaches the importance of crash scene management as a crime scene management application. Students are exposed to response, recognition, documentation, collection and preservation of evidence techniques. Topics include reports, legal aspects, manual and laser measuring techniques, plotting methods, manual and computer-aided diagramming, evidence collection, approach speed, approach angle, crush evaluation, departure angle, drag factor, percent braking, post-collision speed, scrape, skid, test skids, etc.
Prereq: College Tech Math 1A (10804113) and Basic Crime Scene Photography (10504131)
Forensic Science Capstone
Integrates all the individual skills students learned in previous classes to allow them to process a crime scene. Students will be expected to achieve a basic knowledge of how to record and document, collect, protect and defend the credibility of evidence.
Prereq: Biological and Trace Evidence (10504122) and Impression Evidence (10504146)
Constitutional Principles
Diagram the structure of the criminal justice system; identify when constitutional rules apply; identify the elements of a lawful arrest; identify the requirements for search warrants, and when warrantless searches are permitted; identify the requirements governing confessions and statements; and analyze the requirements for evidence to be admissible in court.
Prereq: Criminal Procedures (10504208) or active in Financial Fraud Detection Certificate
Select a total of 9 credits from these options
Introduction to Digital Video Evidence
Provides an in-depth analysis of how video works, including the uses and evidentiary value of digital video evidence. The latest freeware video analysis technologies will be explored in detail. Students will receive comprehensive information on freeware video imaging and analysis tools available for handling digital video evidence files from the field into the technician and analytical levels of analysis. Students will develop skills to recover reliable detail from their digital video evidence.
Forensic Anthropology, Intro to
Provides the student with information regarding forensic anthropology as it applies to the science of physical anthropology and the legal process. Students will learn how forensic anthropologists apply standard scientific techniques developed in physical anthropology to identify human remains, and to assist in the detection of crime. Students will be exposed to how the forensic anthropologists assist in locating and recovering suspicious remains, establish if the bones are human, how to determine the sex, race, age, stature, weight, and any pathology of the newly acquired skeleton, determine manner and cause of death and, if homicide, identify the murderer.
Prereq: General Biology (10806114)
Quality Assurance, Evidence
Provides an in depth analysis of the quality assurance goals of agencies involved in all aspects crime scene evidence management activities to include law enforcement agencies, laboratories and related others. Students will be exposed to developing, maintaining and monitoring policies and procedures developed to produce the best quality standards and controls to accomplish an atmosphere with the highest quality of work. The course emphasizes validation of scientific methods prior to implementation, and delivering quality and safe services in a cost effective manner and provide directions for making decisions for services without compromising quality and safety.
Prereq: Introduction to Forensic Science (10504110)
CCI: Basic Data Recovery
Provides students with a basic understanding of how forensic evidence is recovered from a computer or similar device. Students will learn the necessary steps involved in preserving, authenticating, and analyzing data stored on computing devices, while maintaining the integrity of evidence found on these devices.
CCI: Investigating Internet Crime
Provides students with an understanding of the nature of crimes being committed on the Internet and the skills necessary to successfully investigate Internet-related crime. Students will learn various investigative techniques, protocols and technical tools necessary to identify offenders and acquire evidence to build a prosecutable case.
CCI: Computer Crime Investigation
Provides students with the skills, knowledge and ability to conduct computer crime investigations. Students will learn investigative protocols that can be applied to various types of computer crimes, focusing on the collection of evidence to initiate a criminal prosecution.
Interview & Interrogation
Covers legal issues and a working knowledge of interview and interrogation techniques in agreement with current legal stipulations. Learn various forms of communications including verbal and nonverbal, as well as written statement analysis. Students will be instructed in appropriate interview techniques, the interviewing of victims and witnesses and interrogation techniques. Characteristics of the sociopath/psychopathic personality types will be examined. Students will also learn how to prepare for and testify in a court of law.
Prereq: Report Writing (10504905), OR active in Forensic Science degree, OR Criminal Investigator Certificate, OR enrolled in any Criminal Justice-related ITS degree.
Forensic Entomology, Intro to
Provides the student with the applications and the study of insect and other arthropod biology to criminal matters. Defines how it is primarily associated with death investigations, how it can be used to detect drugs and poisons, determine the location of an incident, detect the length of a period of neglect in the elderly or children, and find the presence and time of the infliction of wounds. Students will be introduced to the structure and biology of insects and other similar creatures associated with entomology. Students will be led through standard death scene investigative procedures, the collection and field processing of entomological evidence, at the scene or at autopsy, and the lab processing and analysis of this evidence.
Prereq: General Biology (10806114)
Forensic Science Internship
Exposes the student to on-the-job situations and experiences in the forensic science arena that is dedicated to the education, enrichment and development of emerging forensic scientists and future leaders of the field. This provides an avenue for new forensic technicians to interact with and become part of the established forensic science community through placement locations in private; state and federal crime labs; and with local, state and federal law enforcement and corrections agencies.
Prereq: Criminal History Check; Introduction to Forensic Science (10504110); Impression Evidence (10504146); Biological and Trace Evidence (10504122)

General Studies (26 Credits)

Course Title
Course Number
Prior Learning Credit
Eligibility Options
English Composition 1
Designed for learners to develop knowledge and skills in all aspects of the writing process. Planning, organizing, writing, editing and revising are applied through a variety of activities. Students will analyze audience and purpose, use elements of research and format documents using standard guidelines. Individuals will develop critical reading skills through analysis of various written documents.
Prereq: ACCPL Reading >= 54 & Sentence >= 83 OR ACT (Read/English) >= 18 OR Program Prep OR not pursuing a degree.
College Technical Math 1A
Included topics are solving linear equations; graphing; percent; proportions; measurement systems; computational geometry; and right triangle trigonometry. Emphasis will be on the application of skills to technical problems. Successful completion of College Technical Math 1A and College Technical Math 1B is the equivalent of College Technical Math 1.
Prereq: ACCPL Arithmetic >= 65 OR ACT Math >= 18 OR Program Prep OR Not pursuing a degree.
Think Critically & Creatively
Provides instruction in the vital, realistic and practical methods of thinking which are in high demand in all occupations of substance today. Decision making, problem solving, detailed analysis of ideas, troubleshooting, argumentation, persuasion, creativity, setting goals and objectives, and more are considered in-depth as the student applies specific thinking strategies and tools to situations in a wide variety of workplace, personal, academic and cultural situations.
Prereq: ACCPL Reading >= 54 & Sentence >= 83 OR ACT (Read/Engl) >= 18 OR Program Prep OR Not pursuing a degree.
Introductory Statistics
Teaches students to display data with graphics, describe distributions with numbers, perform correlation and regression analyses, and design experiments. Students use probability and distributions to make predictions, estimate parameters and test hypotheses. They also draw inferences about relationships including ANOVA.
Prereq: ACCPL Arithmetic >= 65 OR ACT Math >= 18 OR Program Prep OR Not enrolled in a program.
General Biology
Introduces general biological concepts and principles. Emphasis is on cell structure and function, genetics, evolution and taxonomical relationships. Consideration is also given to diversity among the various kingdoms. This course emphasizes an environmental perspective and is suitable for students in Natural Resources, Early Childhood Education, Laboratory Science, Forensic Science and others interested in environmental biology.
Prereq: ACCPL Reading >= 54 & Sentence >= 83 OR ACT (Read/Engl) >= 18 OR Program Prep OR Not pursuing a degree.
Technical Reporting
Focuses on the preparation and presentation of a variety of oral and written technical reports. This course is designed as an advanced communication course for students who have completed at least the prerequisite writing course and a minimum of two semesters of relevant program course work.
Prereq: Written Comm or English Comp 1 with a C or better and a minimum of 24 college credits OR active in UW-O Cert. AODA students have additional coreq of Assessment & Diagnosis of Substance Abuse. OTA students have prereq of Intro to OT.
General Chemistry
Covers inorganic chemistry and basic organic chemistry. Topics include metrics, problem solving, atomic structure, chemical reactions, solutions and concentrations, ionization, pH and organic compounds.
Prereq: ACCPL Algebra >= 51 OR ACT(Math) >=18 OR Program Prep with a C or better OR College Math 1 (10804115/113) OR Algebra (10804109) OR Tech Math (10804121) OR Math Tech Basic (10804125) OR College Math (10804107) OR Math Common Topics (10804117)
Intro to Psychology
Focuses on the theoretical foundation of human functioning and looks at learning, motivation, emotions, personality, deviance and pathology, physiological factors and social influences. Students consider the complexities of human relationships in personal, social and vocational settings.
Prereq: ACCPL Reading >= 54 & Sentence >= 83 OR ACT (Read/Engl) >= 18 OR Program Prep OR Not pursuing a degree.

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