Forensic Biology

Program Requirements

Students in this M.S. sequence are instructed by a team of interdisciplinary faculty from the Department of Biological Sciences, the New York State Police Forensic Investigation Center and other departments within the university community.

Students in this program must take a total of 40 credits, 29 of which are required lecture and laboratory course work in Biology. Elective courses in mathematics or statistics, biology, chemistry, anthropology, psychology, computer science, business and criminal justice can be used to satisfy the remaining 3 credits.

Biology (all required)
Course Code Course Title Credits
Bio 514 Methods in Biotechnology 2
Bio 515a Responsible Conduct and Skills in Research 1
Bio 515b Responsible Conduct and Scientific Communication 1
Bio 519/Ant 512 Human Population Genetics 3
Bio 524 Advanced Molecular Biology 3
Bio 650 Graduate Seminar 0

Forensic Biology [all required]:
Course Code Course Title Credits
Bio 517a Current Literature in Forensic Biology I 1
Bio 575 Forensic Biology Laboratory 3
Bio 577 Techniques in Forensic Science 2

Supporting Courses [all required]:
Course Code Course Title Credits
Sta/Epi 552 Principles of Statistical Interference 3
Crj 626 Law and Science in Criminal Justice 3
BITM 510 Advanced Excel and Visual Basic 1
BITM 520 Database Management 1
Bio 627 Courtroom Testimony for Forensic Scientists 1

Elective Core Courses [2 required]:
Course Code Course Title Credits
Bio 504 Cell Biology I 3
Bio 505 Cell Biology II 3
Bio 513 Modern Use of Light Microscopy 3
Bio 521 Cell & Molecular Developmental Neurobiology 3
Bio 523 Biochemistry & Biomolecular Structure 3
Bio 531 Comparative & Evolutionary Immunology 3
Bio 540 Principles of Bioinformatics 3
Bio 541 Molecular Neurobiology 3
Bio 563 Integrative Principles of Evolution 3
Bio 617 Molecular Evolution 3


Program Examination:
Written core examination at the end of first year of required course work (18 credits).

Each student in the sequence is expected to do a 6-credit internship project in a laboratory that offers up-to-date training and laboratory expertise in areas that are potentially applicable to forensic biology. The project selected by the student and the internship advisor should contain an original research component. After completion of the project, a formal written report detailing the project must be submitted to an Internship Committee for review and evaluation. In addition, each student must present the project orally to his/her peers.