Forensic Science

Course Descriptions

2200 Basic Sciences for Forensics I
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: acceptance into Diploma in Forensic Sciences Program.

This course is an introduction to the biology, physics, anthropology, pathology, and psychology that forms the basic scientific background applicable to the study of forensic science. 

Note:  Please note that this course may not be used by B.Sc. students to satisfy the requirement of a science elective under regulations 3.e., 6.e., 10.c., and 12.b. for B.Sc. degrees.


2201 Basic Sciences for Forensics II
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: acceptance into Diploma in Forensic Sciences Program.

This course is a continuation of Basic Sciences for Forensics I. Topics covered may include: principles of biology, chemistry, genetics, psychology, statistics, and toxicology, relevant to Forensics.

Note:  Please note that this course may not be used by B. Sc. students to satisfy the requirement of a science elective under regulations 3.e., 6.e., 10.c., and 12.b. for B.Sc. degrees.


3007 Forensic DNA Typing [BIOL 3007] (formerly FRSC 4001 [BIOL 4001])
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: BIOL 2307

Students study all aspects of forensic DNA typing protocols, and interpretation. Lectures focus on theory and laboratory sessions involve actual DNA typing, where students work with their own DNA. These skills are highly transferrable, and are applicable to the genetic analysis of populations in general.


3300 Application of Forensic Techniques
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: FRSC 2200 and 2201.

This course will provide students with an introduction to the procedures for conducting a forensic investigation. Students will learn how to retrieve and document potential evidence and identify victims and suspects. Topics such as fingerprinting, forensic odontology and entomology, bloodstain pattern analysis, DNA collection, toxicology, and non-biological trace evidence collection will be included.


3350 Recent Advancement in Forensic Sciences
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: FRSC 2200 and 2201

The aim of this course is to provide students with an opportunity to discover and understand the founding principles of Forensic Sciences. Topics include a timeline of the discipline to the present day, current trends and recent advances in the field.


3800-49 Special Topics in Forensic Science
3 credit hours


3876-99 Directed Studies in Forensic Science
3 credit hours


4002 Wildlife Forensics
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: BIOL 2307

The goals of this course are for students to learn about the techniques involved in wildlife forensics, how the resulting data are interpreted, and how this information is used in a legal setting.  Although many aspects of wildlife forensics will be covered, there will be a focus on DNA methods.  

Classes 3 hrs. and lab 3 hrs. a week.


Certificate in Forensic Sciences - Requirements

The twenty-four (24) credit hours used to satisfy the requirements for the Certificate in Forensic Sciences are listed below. A minimum GPA of 3.00 must be achieved in the courses used to satisfy these twenty-four credit hours. Students must complete any prerequisites for these courses.

 Required Courses [eighteen (18)]

  • FRSC 2200 Basic Sciences for Forensics I 
  • FRSC 2201 Basic Sciences for Forensics II
  • FRSC 3300 Application of Forensic Techniques 
  • One of: CHEM 1211 General Chemistry II for Physical Sciences, OR CHEM 1212 General Chemistry II for Life Sciences, OR CHEM 1213 General Chemistry II for Engineering (note MATH pre-reqs for these courses)
  • BIOL 2307 Genetics
  • One of: FRSC 3007 Forensic DNA Typing OR BIOL3419 Molecular Biology

 Science-Electives [six (6) credit hours] from:

The following courses are resricted to those students accepted into the Certificate in Forensic Sciences Program at Saint Mary’s University.  Courses in Forensic Science cannot be used to satisfy course requirements for the major or honours in Biology.

All the following courses have 3 hour classes and 3 hour lab/tutorial per week.