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Forensic Science

The BGSU forensic science degree is an undergraduate program designed to provide students the precise education and training crime laboratories require.

BGSU students who earn a Bachelor of Science with a major in Forensic Science will be prepared for immediate employment as forensic scientists or further study.

Three specializations, Forensic DNA Analysis, Forensic Drug Analysis and Forensic Examination, allow students to focus their forensics studies.

BGSU is home to the Ohio Department of Justice Bureau of Criminal Investigation Crime Lab. The nearly 30,000 square-foot, state-of-the-art facility is home to over 40 BCI staff performing investigative and laboratory services.

Unique forensic science student experiences

One of only two programs like it in Ohio, the Bowling Green State University Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science (BSFS) program recently received accreditation from the Forensic Science Education Programs Accreditation Commission (FEPAC).

The College of Arts and Sciences offers a bachelor of science in forensic science (BSFS) degree, offering specializations in Forensic DNA Analysis, Forensic Drug Analysis and Forensic Examination.

The BGSU Forensic Science Program offers students an unparalleled opportunity to prepare for careers as forensic scientists through a unique combination of:

  • An on-campus Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) laboratory
  • Expert faculty with decades of professional crime laboratory work experience
  • newly designed forensic science classroom and laboratory learning spaces
  • Hands-on use of cutting-edge crime laboratory instrumentation
  • 2 mock crime scene houses

Center for the Future of Forensic Science

Through an innovative collaboration, BGSU and the Ohio Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) launched the Center for the Future of Forensic Science to develop leaders who will revolutionize the profession of forensic science.

The Center has two primary goals, establish scholarly research to advance forensic science knowledge and provide a world-class education that trains the next generation of forensic scientists.

BGSU also offers a Master of Science in Forensic Science.

Stand Out in courses like

  • Introduction to Forensic Science
  • Forensic Biology
  • Forensic DNA Analysis
  • Pharm/Toxicology Drugs of Abuse
  • Latent Prints
  • Trace Analysis
  • Principles of Crime Scene Investigation
  • Professional Responsibility


The curriculum of the Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science degree program provides the essential scientific and laboratory problem-solving skills necessary for graduate success in a modern forensic science laboratory. The program combines rigorous scientific study and laboratory training with exposure to the broader unique aspects of the practice of forensic science, including evidence collection, handling, analysis and reporting practices; specific legal and ethical considerations; and expert courtroom testimony.


By offering three distinct forensic science specializations within the Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science degree program (Forensic DNA Analysis, Forensic Drug Analysis and Forensic Examination), BGSU students can select the precise forensic curricula that will prepare them to achieve their career goals.

Forensic DNA Analysis specialization

The BGSU Forensic DNA Analysis specialization provides students with the precise training crime laboratories require in the application of biology and DNA analysis to forensic evidence.

Forensic DNA Analysis Specialization Checksheet

Forensic Drug Analysis specialization

The BGSU Forensic Drug Analysis Specialization is designed for students interested in applying analytical chemistry to forensic evidence to help solve crimes.

Forensic Drug Analysis Specialization Checksheet

Forensic Examination specialization

The BGSU Forensic Examination specialization provides a strong background in both the chemical and biological sciences to gain skills in pattern evidence examination, including: latent print analysis; trace and impression evidence analysis; and recognition and analysis of basic biological evidence such as hair and bodily fluids.

Forensic Examination Specialization Checksheet

BGSU is one of the few universities in the nation that has a criminal investigation lab on the campus.


With a BGSU forensic science degree, you will be well prepared for a career in a local, state, military, or federal crime laboratory. Your choice of career depends on your specialization, your aptitude and your ultimate goals.

The BGSU forensic science faculty and your regular exposure to professionals working at the BCI lab will help you find your forensic career path.

Understanding the different roles in an investigation will help you find where your interests lie. 

For instance, while forensic investigators would identify, sample and record found substances, forensic chemists would analyze a retrieved substance to identify it, forensic toxicologists would study its effect on the body, forensic biologists would study DNA left at the crime scene, and forensic investigators would seek the identity of perpetrators.

Connecting you with opportunities and meeting practicing professionals in those roles is possible through an extensive field-based internship and close contact with professionals from the on-campus Ohio State Crime Lab.

Internships, co-ops and student research

Students are encouraged to pursue work in a lab and to consider research opportunities that are available on campus. The capstone experience involves scholarly research and a written proposal about the student’s research topic.

GO FAR with a career in

  • DNA analyst
  • Drug chemist
  • Forensic toxicologist
  • Trace evidence analysts
  • Latent Fingerprint examiners
  • Firearm and toolmark examiners

Admissions information

Students interested in the forensic science major will be assessed on high school activities, volunteer work and overall academic performance. Admittance to the program will be based on a combined SAT score of 1200 or higher, with at least a 550 score on the math section or an ACT composite and math score of 25 or higher. Students with scores falling below those ranges may be reviewed for acceptance on an individual basis.

Forensic Science Camp

Are you interested in how science is applied to legal investigations? Can you see yourself as a forensic scientist in a courtroom, laboratory, crime scene, classroom, or even morgue? BGSU’s Forensic Science Camp gives high school students classroom, laboratory and field experience in forensics and exposure to various careers in forensics. Learn about this exciting field at BGSU’s cutting-edge forensic science program taught by talented professionals who have even been featured on the hit-show Forensic Files

Forensic Science Learning Community

This community of interest in the forensic sciences is designed for BGSU students to receive targeted support to augment classroom learning and increase academic success.

The Forensic Science Learning Community is for students enrolled in the BGSU Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science degree program, or seeking a pathway to enrollment through either the Biology or Chemistry Department forensic science specializations.

The learning community provides unique opportunities beyond the classroom, including tours of crime laboratories, medical examiner offices and seeing forensic science testimony delivered in court cases.

Residence is optional to being a member of the learning community, but comes with added advantages. Forensic Science Learning Community students live, study and bond together in the Offenhauer Towers residences.

Delta Delta Epsilon

The BGSU chapter of Delta Delta Epsilon (ΔΔE) is an international honor society dedicated to stimulating academic achievement, promoting community understanding and advancing the fields of forensic science wherever possible.  Membership is limited to students within the disciplines of forensic science that meet high academic criteria and are dedicated to the mission of Delta Delta Epsilon.

Learning Outcomes

BGSU Forensic Science graduates are vital members of the criminal justice system and are able to:

  • Think critically and analyze complex data for the benefit of the criminal justice system
  • Apply diverse information and skills toward solving real-world problems associated with solving crimes
  • Utilize laboratory skills with exacting standards and precision of care within the context of solving crimes

Bowling Green State University [BGSU] is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. BGSU has been accredited by the Higher Learning Commission since 01/01/1916. The most recent reaffirmation of accreditation was received in 2012-2013. Questions should be directed to the Office of Institutional Effectiveness.

The BGSU Forensic Science program received accreditation from the Forensic Science Education Programs Accreditation Commission (FEPAC) in 2022.

The Forensic Science program will undergo Program/Cluster Review during the Academic Year 2025-2026.

More information on accreditation.

Bowling Green State University programs leading to licensure, certification and/or endorsement, whether delivered online, face-to-face or in a blended format, satisfy the academic requirements for those credentials set forth by the State of Ohio.

Requirements for licensure, certification and/or endorsement eligibility vary greatly from one profession to another and from state to state. The forensic science program does not lead to professional licensure.

Under the Higher Education Act Title IV disclosure requirements, an institution must provide current and prospective students with information about each of its programs that prepares students for gainful employment in a recognized occupation.

The forensic science program is not a recognized occupation that requires a Gainful Employment disclosure.

* Job placement and salary information was compiled by the Office of Academic Assessment through the Graduation Survey from AY2015-2018. The data are gathered around the time of Commencement and a follow-up survey six months post Commencement. For the salary question, data for programs with fewer than fifteen responses are not included. Salaries for those programs are from the National Association of Colleges and Employers Summer 2019 Survey. For questions regarding the data, contact assessment@bgsu.edu.

Updated: 01/12/2024 10:35AM