Forensic scientists are a cross between forensic laboratory technicians and law enforcement investigators; with many specialties and subfields within the field of forensic science, one can find a unique and broad range of career options as a forensic scientist. Employees in this field will find themselves in charge of the collection of evidence, examination of evidence, analysis of physical evidence, as well as specialties such as document examination, biological analyses, crime scene reconstruction, toxicology, trace evidence, photography, bloodstain analysis, and even medicolegal death investigation.
Skills and Duties
- Crime scene investigation
- Crime scene reconstruction
- Evaluation of physical, biological, and other evidence
- Photographing crime scene
- Collection of evidence, proper labeling of evidence, and securing evidence for law enforcement and laboratory testing
- Testing and analysis of evidence (based on forensic specialty)
- Biological Analyses
- Physical Analyses
- Communicate with law enforcement, investigators, federal agents
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median salary for forensic scientists is around $56,750 as of 2016, with a salary range between $33,860 to $97,400¹.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that employment of forensic scientists is expected to grow 17% by 2026, which is quicker than the average of all U.S. occupations¹.
¹ Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Forensic Science Technicians, on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/life-physical-and-social-science/forensic-science-technicians.htm (visited October 27, 2017).