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Masters of Professional Studies in Forensic Science

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Both cottages - JoeThe master's program in Forensic Science is an exciting and innovative curriculum that offers students advanced, hands-on training in crime scene investigation techniques and crime laboratory methodologies.  State-of-the-art crime scene training facilities and crime laboratories are used to train students in the practices of modern forensics.  Students practicing modern forensics in classStudents will conduct research relevant to the field of forensic science working under the guidance of the program's faculty. 

The Penn State master of professional studies in Forensic Science is rooted in scientific methodology and concepts.  You may choose an area of emphasis for your degree: biology, chemistry, or criminalistics.  These rigorous programs incorporate a comprehensive knowledge of criminalistics and an abundance of hands-on training in our state-of-the-art facilities and labs.

Students will learn the fundamentals of crime scene investigation and reconstruction along with practicing analysis, comparison, and evaluation of pattern and trace evidence.  These courses provide a crucial underpinning to either scientific focus that a student chooses.

Keeping the above in mind to be successful in this program a strong science background is required.

Requirement for Entrance
To be accepted into the Master’s Forensic Program biology emphasis, applicants are required to have completed biochemistry, molecular biology, genetics and statistic courses.  For the chemistry emphasis, students are required to have completed undergraduate class work in general chemistry and organic chemistry with quantitative analysis/analytical chemistry preferred.

Professional Science Masters LogoThe Forensic Science MPS is a unique program developed with support from the Sloan Foundation and is one of five Forensic Science Professional Master's Programs (PSM programs) in the country.  The Masters program is also accredited by the American Academy of Forensic Science (AAFS).  This prestigious achievement makes Penn State's program one of only two programs in the country to hold both accreditations.


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"The Penn State Forensic Science program has provided me with the critical thinking and problem solving skills necessary for the forensic field.  The hands-on experience from mock crime scene labs in the campus Victorian cottages truly prepared me for real world forensic situations.  Other schools do not offer such opportunities.  Intensive instructional courses, research presentations, and course projects make us very well rounded.  Other universities require strict course work, but the flexibility of Penn State State scheduling allows students to pursue their own special areas of interest.  Ultimately, this program transforms us into the best candidates for forensic scientist positions in America."  Sharyn Miller, Chemistry 2012