Even if you’re familiar with some of the different careers in forensics, you may not know the specific paths that lead to them, or the options and decision points that present themselves along the way. So, we’ve carved out a section of our blog to provide very detailed, step-by-step, descriptions of how to become everything from a forensic accountant to a forensic psychologist. Like many career paths, forensics career paths can be complex and nuanced, and are rarely “one size fits all”, so we’ve attempted to break down the major decision points, and clarify the essential component skills, experiences, and educational qualifications for each path, along with the personality traits, likes and dislikes that might make one career a better fit than another.
Fire investigators, also known as arson investigators, perform an invaluable service to society: they determine the causes of fires, and when necessary, whether a criminal act of arson was involved. These professionals employ both the skills of a scientist and those of a detective in their investigations.
For people seeking careers that are simultaneously challenging, meaningful, and exciting, it is tough to beat becoming a crime scene technician. These professionals, also known as forensic science technicians or crime scene analysts, have inspired a number of popular television programs such as CSI and Dexter.
Fraud investigation is the research of intentional criminal deception and involves civil and criminal methods of examination. Professional fraud investigators have a variety of job responsibilities in corporate or government-based institutions.
Forensic science technicians have a regular presence at crime scenes, aiding in the process of criminal investigations under a crime scene leader or field supervisor. The role involves helping to collect, document and analyze evidence and submitting it to the crime laboratory.
Forensic toxicologists work in laboratories, often those operated by government agencies or law enforcement, to identify chemicals and compounds that could have contributed to crimes or have other administrative or legal consequences. This can include identifying illicit substances in bodies that may have been the victims of foul play, performing administrative drug testing, or identifying hazardous chemicals in the environment.
For those with the intelligence and focus to complete the steps to become a medical doctor and then complete residencies and fellowships that lead to the forensic psychiatrist specialty, this is a fascinating career. Keep reading to learn how one can become a forensic psychiatrist.
The crime scene investigator, also called a CSI, will come to crime scenes in order to conduct an investigation and to collect evidence, and although there are varied paths to becoming a crime scene investigator, they typically involve a mix of rigorous coursework and empirical training.
The term 'detective' may summon up images of the fast-moving, sleekly-dressed characters of James "Sonny" Crockett (Don Johnson) and Ricardo "Rico" Thomas (Philip Michael Thomas) from Miami Vice or the equally adept, somewhat charming and insightful Jessica Fletcher (Angela Lansbury) from "Murder, She Wrote."