Careers in Forensic Science

Careers in Forensic Science

Medical science students have higher advantage in becoming forensic scientists, as a significant part is related to medical science.

Forensic science is the application of science for the investigation of crime. Using the latest technology, forensic scientists convert the clues collected from a crime scene into evidence admissible in a court of law.

It is a challenging and interesting career for those who have an inquisitive mind and are adventurous by nature. It is essentially a crime laboratory-based profession. But the expertise of a forensic professional is also used in civil cases for issues like proving the validity of a signature on a will or forgery of cheques.

Collecting materials from the crime spot and taking the same to crime laboratory, gathering all clues and converting them into evidences which are admissible in court is the crucial job of a forensic scientist.

He may be asked to collect physical evidences like blood, saliva, hair, impressions of tyres or shoes, finger prints and foot prints relating to a crime.

Forensic science is also an umbrella term for many distinct disciplines.  It is broadly grouped into three: medical, laboratory, and field science. Forensic medicine is a broad medical subject which includes forensic pathology, psychiatry, psychology, forensic medicine and odontology (dentistry).

Laboratory sciences include chemistry, biology, toxicology, ballistics, fingerprints, questioned documents and marks and impressions. Field sciences include crime scene investigation which incorporates areas such as fire and explosion scenes and clandestine drug laboratories.

Medical science students have higher advantage in becoming forensic scientists as a significant part or portion of the subject is related to medical science and analysis.

However, a postgraduate course in forensic science is also open for students of BA and BSc. MBBS graduates can specialise in forensic science and become eligible for conducting post mortem. Law students can do various diploma or certificate courses offered in forensic science and can work in search and Analysis Wing, or crime branch of state police or CBI or Intelligence Bureau.


The fees for a specialisation course in forensic science may be on the higher side com compared to other courses as most of it is paid towards laboratory fee. Forensic Science courses in Central Universities are offered at low fees. Various merit based scholarships or discounts on fees are offered to outstanding students studying forensic science.

Besides there is fellowship program offered to students interested in studying forensic science which is sponsored by the Bureau of Police Research and Development and lasts for three years. The eligibility criterion for the fellowship is that  candidates should either have a 1st or 2nd class Master's Degree in Science or should have passed the UGC conducted CSIR examination.

Additionally, the candidate should either be registered or get themselves registered in a course in an Indian University of repute and that too within three months of the announcement of the fellowship.

Job Prospects

Most of the job prospects for forensic scientists are in government sector, particularly in various law enforcement agencies such as police, legal system, the investigative services of the central government and state governments. However, some private agencies too offer job opportunities to those who have some qualification in the field. A major chunk of trained forensic scientists are hired by the Intelligence Bureau (IB), the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), etc. Another interesting career, rather the most attractive option for forensic scientists is teaching in institutes which impart education in forensic science.

Pay Packet

As most of the jobs in forensic science are in government sector salaries are strictly based on the structure and pay scale. Those who have postgraduate qualification in forensic science earn very high salaries. Private laboratories offer handsome salaries to experienced candidates.


Depending on qualifications and area of expertise jobs are in various categories and include Forensic Pathologists, Forensic Anthropologists, Forensic Psychologists, Clinical Forensic Medicine Experts, Forensic Serology Experts, Forensic Chemists, Dactyloscopists (study of fingerprints), Forensic Linguists and Toxicologist

Forensic Science Colleges in India

* School of Forensic Sciences, Sam Higginbottom Institute, Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh

* All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi

* Institute of Criminology & Forensic Science, New Delhi

* Lok Nayak Jayaprakash Narayan National Institute of Criminology and Forensic Science, Delhi

* Central Forensic Science Laboratory, Hyderabad

* Central Forensic Science Laboratory, Chandigarh,

* Central Forensic Laboratory, Kolkata

* Grant Medical College & Sir J J Group of Hospitals, Mumbai

* St Xavier's College, Mumbai, Mumbai, Maharashtra

*Graphic Era University, Dehradun, Uttarakhand (Uttaranchal)

* Maharshi Dayanand Law PG College, Ajmer, Rajasthan

* New Law College, Pune, Maharashtra

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