Jun 20, 2024  
OHIO University Undergraduate Catalog 2020-21 
OHIO University Undergraduate Catalog 2020-21 [Archived Catalog]

Forensics Studies Certificate

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Certificate code CTFSTC

College of Arts and Sciences
Gordy Hall 383
Phone: 740.593.4564
Fax: 740.593.2967

David Bell, belld@ohio.edu  Chair

Michelle H. O’Malley, haugh@ohio.edu Certificate Director


Program Overview

This certificate will provide an interdisciplinary overview of forensic studies, exploring scientific components of criminal investigation and criminal justice processes through a multi-disciplinary lens. A wide range of readings in criminology, psychology, sociology, biology, business, linguistics, political science, law enforcement technology, accounting, chemistry, and cyber/data security, and other relevant disciplines will give students the opportunity to learn about various notions, methods, and approaches behind criminal investigation. This certificate is designed, as well, to provide a space for conversation and support among undergraduates representing different colleges/majors while also providing immediate application for students pursuing forensics at the graduate level. The interdisciplinary nature of this certificate will make it attractive to students from disparate academic backgrounds while also attracting students who have grown up locally and who may plan to remain living and working in the Central Appalachian region. The content training will create professionals with skills needed in local police stations, municipal offices, social support settings and places of business while also preparing them to focus later (graduate) work on specific aspects of forensic studies. According to Career One Stop, which is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor, 32 percent of reporting forensic scientists reported having a bachelor’s degree, 14 percent had associate degrees, and 21 percent had some college. The BLS (2017) notes that there may be exceptions for these basic educational requirements, especially in rural areas where there is a high demand. This high demand could be met by students at Ohio University who have completed an undergraduate degree along with a certificate in Forensic Studies that places them in a position for immediate hire and/or for advanced, graduate-level study.

Admissions Information

Freshman/First-Year Admission

No requirements beyond University admission requirements.

Change of Program Policy

No selective or limited admission requirements.

External Transfer Admission

No requirements beyond University admission requirements.

Opportunities Upon Graduation

For students interested in further specializing or enhancing the skills/knowledge gained at Ohio University via undergraduate study and the forensic studies certificate, there will now be an option to pursue a post-baccalaureate degree in forensics or even in law school or advanced academic programs aligned with the student’s undergraduate major. A significant percentage of forensic practitioners have advanced degrees (e.g., master’s, professional, or doctoral) and the certificate in forensic studies places our graduates in the best space possible for these post-baccalaureate opportunities. Again, while graduate work and registering as a forensic scientist are not required for practice in the state of Ohio, these steps may be required elsewhere and may be desirable to enhance one’s credentials at various employing organizations. By passing aptitude tests or fulfilling membership criteria in professional organizations, candidates may enhance their candidacy for various jobs. The certificate in forensic studies contributes to our graduates’ prospects in this regard. According to the American Academy of Forensic Sciences (AAFS), there are a number of specialized disciplines within forensic science, including the following: Anthropology Criminalistics Digital & Multimedia Sciences Engineering Sciences Language and Document Analysis General Jurisprudence Odontology Pathology/Biology/Chemistry Psychiatry & Behavioral Science Toxicology Each of the above specializations is addressed via coursework accepted toward completion of the proposed Certificate in Forensic Studies. Taking electives in any of the subjects listed above may help forensic practitioners secure jobs with more specific skill requirements.


Certificate Hours Requirement

The certificate program requires a minimum of 18 credit hours.

Required Courses

Complete the following courses:

Elective Courses

Take nine credits from the following list of courses. At least two courses at the 3000 level or above and all three courses must represent, minimally, two different programs.

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