Forensic Science: Crime Scene Investigation and Criminal Justice.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a crime scene investigator like those on popular shows? In our forensic science class, students get hands-on experience with a variety of forensic science techniques, like lifting prints from surfaces, making castings of footprints, analyzing blood spatter, and more!
This course is much more than simple finger printing. We offer an intriguing look at one of the most popular career choices for college students these days. In our course, we delve deeply into the science of crime scene investigation: trajectory analysis, fluid spatter evidence, fluid analysis, and other scientific techniques used by real-life forensic scientists.
Last summer in the forensic science class, they did an experiment where they took samples from all over campus- door knobs in bathrooms, the lake, one from a student’s boot- and put them in Petri dishes to see how much bacteria grew in each of them. They also made imprints of their own shoes and were able to take the casts home with them. Also, each student gets to help create crime scene scenarios and set them up with the appropriate evidence and the other students will have to solve them using the skills they have been building in class. Our talented instructor will create elaborate crime scenes for the class to solve as well. Each crime scene will be different and more complicated than the last. The students will interrogate suspects, investigate the case, and make the final ruling using the lab’s high tech equipment. This class incorporates practical knowledge and new skills for an exciting session.
For our final project, students are presented with a mock crime scene and must use their newly acquired forensic skills to solve the case. It is really fun! We collect evidence look for fingerprints and other organic clues, take photographs, study the location and disposition of evidence, and interview suspects. Writing students often collaborate with this class and will create the back story for the crime, and other students will pose as victims and suspects. It is expected to be one of the most fun parts of the entire program.
Class discussions include crime scene analysis, case studies of crime scenes, proper investigation techniques, and the history of forensic science. We have had lively discussions about facts and fallacies revolving around major cases in the media and on TV. We study and analyze the factors of science in prosecution. The course culminates with a class investigation of mock crime scenes – collecting evidence, lifting prints, photographing and sketching the scene, and interviewing suspects to solve the crime. In the past other students have served as criminals, victims, judge and jury.
Instructor: Katie Malewich
Katie Malewich has an academic background in Criminal Justice. She received her B.S. in Criminal Justice from St. John’s University her M.A. in Criminal Justice from John Jay College of Criminal Justice, and she hopes to one day became a police officer. Having previously worked at a summer camp, she knows the value of summer learning, and she is excited to join the Centenary Summer Scholars Team. Outside of criminal justice she enjoys running, reading and knitting.