A career in the field of forensic science is exciting and preparing for the profession requires an understanding of the criminal justice system, science, and technology. Gaining the knowledge required to qualify for employment in the field is attainable through hard work, determination, and completion of formal education. As many individuals propel their professional goals or advance their existing careers while meeting work and family obligations, the popularity of online colleges has increased dramatically. Selecting an online forensic science program which meets the educational, financial, and personal needs best suited to each individual is crucial to acquiring necessary knowledge and refined skills. To assist in that process, we have created a list of the Best Online Forensic Science Degree Programs based upon accredited, high ranking, and reputable online colleges and universities.
Here are the 10 top colleges for online forensic science degrees:
1. Walden University
Founded during 1970, Walden’s history of academic excellence is based upon eradicating the barrier between working professionals and educational goals. U.S. News and World Report lists Walden University as one of the most well “respected virtual institutions” and as a “well regarded” research institution, this University provides some of the best online instruction available. Since 1995, Walden’s unique and flexible online programs have been delivered through online, print, or electronic formats. Students can complete bachelor or master’s level programs online based in forensic psychology and counseling with a number of specialization options to maximize their knowledge base. Bachelor level degree programs give students the ability to analyze and improve criminal law, criminal defence, law enforcement systems, and corrections systems by learning the psychological theories and impact of legal processes. Students in undergraduate programs may personalize their degree through self designed programs or concentrations in forensics and the law, victims and justice, or community settings. Master’s level programs instill the skills necessary to conduct forensic assessments, understand forensic populations, and develop means of improving the systems and programs for offenders and those who are incarcerated. Students within graduate programs may specialize their studies in concentrations based in: planning and evaluation, psychology and legal systems, forensic counseling, or general forensic psychology fields. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools and belonging to the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Walden is a top choice for many students as they expand their educational foundation. As an award winning institution ranked within the top 7% of over 20,000 post secondary institutions world wide by Webometrics, the University’s tradition in distance learning stands for itself.
For more information regarding Walden’s online forensic science degree programs, go here
2. The University of Liverpool
The University of Liverpool is a world renowned school with a strong history and reputation for innovation, research, and academic excellence. Founded during 1881, as one of the six original “red brick” universities and as a member of the Russell and N8 Group, the University is one of the most prominent international research organizations. Highly ranked by Times Higher Education, Times Good University Guide, the Sunday Times, and the QS World University Rankings, the University of Liverpool is a lead educational center for on campus and online studies. The University’s online Master of Science in Forensic Psychology and Criminal Investigation program is one of the very best available. Featuring an interactive e- learning format using multimedia, this program is certain to provide online students the educational basis necessary to understand professional, ethical, and legal issues involved in criminal investigations and forensic psychology. Graduates from this program (which is recognized by the UK’s Division of Forensic Psychology) gain the refined skills and high quality experiences required to perform as vital professionals within the criminal justice, law, corrections, and psychology systems.
For more information regarding The University of Liverpool’s online forensic science degree programs, go here
3. UMass Amherst Online
The University of Massachusetts is a public university system made of five campuses including UMass Amherst, UMass Boston, UMass Dartmouth, UMass Lowell, and the UMass Medical School. Ranked as the 56th university in the world during 2010 by the Times World University Rankings, UMass has offered a number of degree options since 1863. Well known internationally as providers of academic excellence, UMass Online offers graduate level certificate offerings in Forensic Criminology, law, psychology, social work, nursing and public health professionals, and criminal justice professionals. Students may participate in online studies offered by a joint effort of the University’s Department Justice and the Division of Continuing Studies and Corporate Education to may increase their level of expertise through a program based in understanding state and federal courts, corrections, law enforcement, mental health, and juvenile systems. Programs offered through UMass are accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges and feature academic excellence recognized among the Highest Rated Universities worldwide by the Times of London, Get Educated, U.S. World Reports, the United States Distance Learning Association, and Online Degree Reviews.com.
For more information regarding UMass Amherst’s online forensic science degree programs, go here
4. Loyola University New Orleans
Loyola University is a private Jesuit university established as Loyola College during 1904. As one of the 28 institutions belonging to the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities, the school is ranked among the top five best institutions among Southern regional universities. Listed as of of America’s Best Colleges by the U.S. News & World Report and one of The Best 371 Colleges by the Princeton Review, Loyola offers online students an outstanding education experience. Its master’s degree in Forensic Science Administration blends specialized information based in innovative criminal justice, corporate investigations, technology, and advanced management practices within quickly evolving fields. Graduates from Loyola’s Forensic Science Administration program gain the critical skills necessary to understand the ethics, laws, and requirements of the criminal justice and forensic science systems to act as vital professionals in dynamic positions.
For more information regarding Loyola’s online forensic science degree programs, go here
5. Kaplan University
Kaplan University was founded as the American Institute of Commerce during 1937 and was later renamed as Quest College. With a dedication to support, integrity, and advancing educational goals, the University began originally offering only undergraduate degrees to students and successfully grew to offer masters degrees by 2004. That same year the school assumed its present name to honor Stanley H. Kaplan, creator of the Kaplan Test Prep and began offering its first online degrees in numerous fields. As a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Kaplan’s standard of academic excellence is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. The University offers instruction to over 66.000 students from ten campuses and online programs, including the discipline of forensic science. Students can pursue a Bachelor of Science or Master of Science degree within Forensic Psychology or Auditing/Forensic Accountancy to gain the specialized knowledge required to understand the criminal justice and information technology systems, the motivations of and effects of criminal behaviors, and the means of collecting, investigating, analyzing, and evaluating fraud.
For more information regarding Kaplan’s online Forensic Science programs, go here
6. Southern New Hampshire University
Harry A.B. and Gertrude Crockett Shapiro founded Southern New Hampshire University during 1932 as the New Hampshire School of Accounting and Secretarial Science. The school underwent a period of growth and change, when it became a nonprofit institution and began conferring undergraduate degrees. During 1969, the school was renamed, and five years later began offering its first Master of Business Administration degree programs. With award winning, highly recognized programs accredited by the Commission on Institutions of Higher Education of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, students may complete undergraduate studies in psychology programs with a forensic psychology concentration to gain the expertise necessary to advance to the field. Graduate students may complete studies within the University’s School Of Business MBA program with a specialization in Forensic Accounting, a program ranked as one of The Best Online Degree programs by the New Hampshire Business Review. The University provides one of the most versatile and innovative educational foundations available to students as they expand their knowledge in the field of forensic science. Additionally, as one of the Best Regional Universities within the U.S. per the US News & World Report, Southern New Hampshire University offers one of the best educational paths to students interested in completing studies within forensic science programs.
For more information regarding Southern New Hampshire University’s online forensic science degree programs, go here
7. Oklahoma State University
Oklahoma State University was founded during 1890 as a public research university as part of the Morrill Act. Originally the Oklahoma Agricultural and Mechanical College, the University has grown to be recognized as one of the 120 Best Western Colleges by the Princeton Review, one of the 100 Best Values In Public Education by Kiplinger, and ranked as the Top Public Schools: National Universities by U.S. News & World Report. With offerings in today’s most innovative disciplines which transcend traditional campus boundaries and include some of the best online degree programs, Oklahoma State University offers accredited courses led by a distinguished faculty. Students with an interest in Forensic Science may pursue an undergraduate studies within a Bachelor of Technology Information Assurance and Forensics program. This program features all of the information technology, security, and forensics knowledge needed to identify, preserve, document, and collect computer evidence needed to identify various criminal activities. Those seeking graduate degrees may complete studies within the Forensic Science Administration program to gain the refined skills and qualifications necessary to act as leadership professionals with a broad understanding of ethics, forensic toxicology, criminalistics, organizational development, and fraud investigation.
For more information regarding Oklahoma State University’s online forensic science programs, go here:
8. University of Florida
With an internationally renown distance education program designed explicitly for working professionals, The University of Florida’s online Forensic Science Master’s degree programs offer a standard of excellence unlike other programs. As pioneers of one of the world’s largest and most prestigious online education programs, the University offers a range of certificate and graduate level forensic science degrees to students who have completed their bachelors. Students may specialize studies within master’s level Forensic Toxicology, Drug Chemistry, Forensic DNA and Serology, and Forensic Science fields. Those seeking certification may complete programs based in Environmental Forensics, Forensic Death Investigation, Forensic Toxicology, Drug Chemistry, Forensic DNA and Serology, and Veterinary Forensic Sciences. The University’s forensic science programs are highly regarded, having earned the Award of Excellence Winner In Distance Education in 2006 from the American Distance Education Consortium. Additionally, as the fourth largest academic institution within the U.S., all programs are accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. As a member of the Association of American Universities, the University of Florida’s Master’s Degree and Certificate programs feature the most current information available.
For more information regarding The University of Florida’s online forensic science degree programs, go here
9. American Intercontinential University
American Intercontinential University was founded in Lucerne, Switzerland during 1970 by Jack and Helen Barnette. Formerly known as the American Fashion College of Switzerland, the institution began offering associate and bachelor degrees within a number of fields and grew to become of the top worldwide online universities. With a far range of degree options, the University has a present enrollment of 24,000 students and seven campuses in cities throughout the globe. Online courses offered through American Intercontinental University feature unique interactive online learning environments accredited by The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association. Ranked as one of the Best Online Universities by the Online Education Database, the University’s history of providing personalized and flexible education to busy students is exceptional. Individuals with an interest in the field of Forensic Science may complete studies within a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice degree program with a specialization in Forensic Science. The program features the combination of scientific and criminal justice procedures required to develop an understanding of the criminal justice system and its theories, techniques for collecting, analyzing, and conducting investigations, and the motivations behind and effects of crime.
For more information regarding American Intercontinental University’s online forensic science programs, go here
10. Devry University
Dedicated to advancing the careers of working adults since 1931 and originally founded as the DeForest Training School by Herman A. DeVry, Devry University has offered a number of flexible degree options via on-campus, online, or a combination of course formats. As providers of affordable and personalized access to higher education, by 1953 the University assumed its present name and steadily grew to offer instruction to over 237,000 students through more than 90 North American campuses. Students interested in forensic science may choose to concentrate studies within a Computer Forensic specialization based in their Criminal Justice, Computer Information Systems, or Business Administration online degree program. This specialization provides students with the refined skills necessary to collect information, identify and analyze evidence, and gain the technical expertise necessary to establish careers using technology, criminal science, and business theories to solve crimes. All programs offered at Devry are accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and the University is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
For more information regarding Devry’s online forensic science degree programs, go here
And that rounds out our list of the top 10 colleges and universities with online forensic science programs for 2012.