Fees: $15

Learning Recommendations:

General Description: This lab-based course explores the scientific basis of forensics. Forensics is the application of science to solving crimes. This is a rich, cross-disciplinary class that utilizes the scientific method and knowledge from diverse fields such as physics, chemistry, and biology to collect and analyze evidence, re-create the crime scene, and determine the perpetrator. In this course, you will study a number of sub-fields within forensics in order to examine a wide variety of crimes.  This is a class that will cover mature themes such as murder, and as such will required the student to examine images and scenarios that could be considered graphic. Please keep in mind the mature nature of the course when signing up.

This course fulfills college prep requirements as outlined by the Washington Student Achievement Council (WSAC) as a lab-based science course.    

Content:

  • History of forensics
  • Crime scene and physical evidence
  • Drugs and forensic toxicology
  • Forensic serology
  • DNA evidence
  • Hair and fiber analysis
  • Fingerprints & other impressions
  • Document examination
  • Blood and blood spatter analysis
  • Firearms, ballistics, and arson
  • Death and the body as evidence

Strategies:

Students learn through a combination of:

  • Inquiry activities using laboratory investigation and crime scene re-creation with an emphasis on critical analysis and interpretation of data
  • Use of electronic tools for data collection and manipulation
  • Demonstrations of scientific principles (teacher- and student-led)
  • Student projects research and presentations
  • Cooperative learning groups
  • Lecture/discussion
  • Guest speakers
  • Communication through scientific writing
  • Critical thinking exercises

Equipment to be provided by Student: lab notebook, writing utensil

The Washington State Technology Standards addressed in this course include: