Forensic science is an exciting field that is currently seeing growth. Those who work in this field apply science to civil and criminal laws. This is mostly done on the criminal side while criminal investigations are underway. Those who work in forensic science must have a keen understanding of both science and of legal standards. These include what is admissible in terms of evidence and criminal procedures.
What Types of Jobs Are Available to Those With a Masters in Forensic Science?
Students who graduate with a Masters in Forensic Science have many career options. Some possibilities involve working in crime or forensic laboratories, as medicolegal death investigators, forensic microscopists, or for private research companies. Jobs are also available as law enforcement officers, court psychologists, or paralegals. Other possibilities include jobs with security or insurance companies, federal agencies, or academic researchers.
What Types of Schools Offer a Masters in Forensic Science Degree?
There are many options when searching for a school that offers a Masters in Forensic Science. Choose from a small liberal arts college in the Midwest, a large school on the East Coast, or something in between. Some schools have access to some impressive laboratories or connections with big city police departments or coroners.
Which School Has the Best Masters in Forensic Science Program?
We have put together a list of schools that offer a Masters in Forensic Science program. We ranked the top 13 schools. We used tuition cost (lowest is best) and enrollment (highest is best) to give the schools a ranking. Take a look at our rankings of the best schools that offer a Masters in Forensic Science below.
The Top 13 Schools Offering an M.S. in Forensic Science
1. University of Central Florida – Orlando, FL
The University of Central Florida offers three concentrations for their Master of Science in Forensic Science. These include Forensic Analysis, Forensic Biochemistry, and Forensic Professional. The first two require that a written thesis be researched and defended and the Forensic Professional is a non thesis option. The program can be completed by both full-time students or practicing professionals.
Resident Tuition: $6,284 per year
Non-Resident Tuition: $20,299 per year
2. Florida International University – Miami, FL
Florida International University offers an interdisciplinary Master of Science in Forensic Science program. Students who complete the coursework will be prepared to work in local, state, and national forensic science laboratories. Those who hope to continue their education with a PhD can do so after completing this program or go on to obtain a different terminal degree such as a degree in law.
Resident Tuition: $8,202 per year
Non-Resident Tuition: $18,030 per year
3. University of Central Oklahoma – Edmond, OK
There are several degree options for an M.S. in Forensic Science from the University of Central Oklahoma. These include an M.S. in Forensic Science, Forensic Science-Digital Forensics, Forensic Science-Molecular Biology, and Forensic Science-Chemistry. All are research oriented and require a thesis. This program is a part of the Forensic Science Institute, an impressive facility that harbors both undergraduate and graduate programs.
Resident Tuition: $5,250 per year
Non-Resident Tuition: $7,506 per year
4. Marshall University – Huntington, WV
The Forensic Science Graduate Program at Marshall University takes two years to complete. The curriculum is spread over five semesters and there is both a thesis and non-thesis option. One area of emphasis is required, but students can complete all four areas if desired. These four areas are Crime Scene Investigation, Digital Forensics, DNA Analysis, and Forensic Chemistry.
Resident Tuition: $4,414 per year
Non-Resident Tuition: $10,581 per year
5. Michigan State University – East Lansing, MI
Michigan State University has had a criminalistics program since 1947. The Master of Science in Forensic Science program became available in 2002. The program has been accredited by the Forensic Science Education Programs Accreditation Committee (FEPAC) since 2004. Students can study forensic chemistry in depth and also learn about the investigative, legal, and scientific aspects of forensic science, making the program well-rounded.
Resident Tuition: $18,858 per year
Non-Resident Tuition: $37,056 per year
6. University of Florida – Gainesville, FL
Through the University of Florida Health, students can obtain a Masters of Science in Pharmacy with a concentration in Forensic Science. A wide range of forensic disciplines are covered. Those enrolled in the program take courses that focus on such topics as DNA analysis, forensic medicine, blood spatter, forensic anthropology, biological evidence, toxicology, environmental forensics, entomology, and criminalistics.
Resident Tuition: $19,485 per year
Non-Resident Tuition: $36,000 per year
7. Sam Houston State University – Huntsville, TX
The Master of Science in Forensic Science offered at Sam Houston State University is the first of its kind in the state of Texas. Students are taught with a multi-discipline approach. Topics include quality assurance, forensic biology, ethics, forensic toxicology, law and forensic science, controlled substance analysis, pattern evidence, trace evidence and microscopy, crime scene investigation, and instrumental analysis. The program works with both private and public accredited forensic laboratories.
Resident Tuition: $10,438 per year
Non-Resident Tuition: $20,338 per year
8. Bowling Green State University – Bowling Green, OH
The Master of Science in Forensic Science program at Bowling Green State University is located on the main campus. Students seeking this degree have the opportunity to work in a new Bureau of Criminal Investigation crime laboratory and investigations facility. The program also includes opportunities to study alongside real-world practitioners. Students can specialize in Forensic Biology or Forensic Chemistry if they would like to work in a lab setting.
Resident Tuition: $12,249 per year
Non-Resident Tuition: $20,238 per year
9. Nebraska Wesleyan University – Lincoln, NE
Choose from two tracks in the Master of Forensic Science program at Nebraska Wesleyan University. The program generally takes two and a half years to complete. Students can choose from the Investigative Science Track or the Behavioral Science Track. All students complete a two-week internship with a coroner or medical examiner, participate in a yearlong crime scene investigation, and pursue research and internship work.
Tuition: $6,132 per year
10. Syracuse University – Syracuse, NY
Tailor a program to fit your interests and career goals while obtaining your M.S. in Forensic Science at Syracuse University. There are many chances to interact with those who practice in the field. Students have the opportunity to train in world-class facilities that include The Wallie Howard Jr. Center for Forensic Sciences, LGS Bell Lab Innovations, the New York State Police Crime Laboratory, and Brookhaven National Laboratory.
Tuition: $30,294 per year
11. Boston University – Boston, MA
Students who enroll in the program at Boston University will emerge with a M.S. in Biomedical Forensic Sciences. The program is designed for those hoping to go into crime scene investigation and evidence analysis. This program is accredited by the FEPAC. Faculty members continue to be involved in casework and often bring their experience to the classroom. The program is housed at the Boston University School of Medicine.
Tuition: $56,854 per year
12. Pace University – New York City, NY
Students who enroll in the Master of Science in Forensic Science program at Pace University get to work in state-of-the-art facilities. There are facilities that are fully equipped to study forensic chemistry and biology. There is also a DNA sequencing lab as well as laboratories that use forensic microscopy and reconstruction software to construct virtual crime scenes. Students enjoy the opportunity to collaborate with the New York City Police Department, the New York City medical examiner’s office, and the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Tuition: $25,700 per year
13. University of New Haven – West Haven, CT
Join a program with a worldwide reputation when enrolling M.S. in Forensic Science at the University of New Haven. This school has one of the oldest programs in the country and is well-known. The laboratories provide hands on experience that can be applied in your chosen career path. The program consists of coursework as well as electives and students who complete the program find work in a variety of career paths.
Tuition: $20,265 per year
Still undecided about which Masters in Forensic Science program is the right fit for you? Explore our Degree Finder tool to help you decide.
Our Ranking Methodology
We found tuition rates on each school’s website and enrollment data from the National Center for Education Statistics College Navigator. We used the resident tuition rate whenever available. We found the per year cost for tuition, using math when necessary when tuition was listed by semester or credit. Enrollment numbers are based on the campus in which the program takes place.
First we sorted the schools by enrollment, assigning points to each school. We then sorted the schools by tuition and assigned points again. After this process, we added the scores together to get a final score for the ranking.
If you are an employee with one of the schools that we included in our rankings and you notice an error with the information we used, please contact us to let us know so that we may make the correction.