Crime Scene Technician Certificate

Police and other law enforcement agencies depend on the expertise of professional crime scene technicians to uncover evidence that will stand up in a court of law. This meticulous process requires a keen eye, an analytical mind, and dedication to cracking the case.

Crime Scene Technician Certificate Program Highlights

When you enroll in the Crime Scene Technician Certificate online program at Kaplan University, you can attend classes on your own schedule, any time of the day or night. Study to acquire the practical skills required to pursue a career in crime scene investigation, such as:

  • Applying ethical investigative methods used in forensic science
  • Observing minute details at the scene and relating them to the crime; visually identifying and describing persons, vehicles, and locations; and giving expert testimony about evidence in criminal court cases
  • Overseeing investigations of homicides, sexual assaults, robberies, home invasions, and burglaries
  • Securing crime scenes; gathering, processing, photographing, and preserving evidence in support of law enforcement; and preparing written reports detailing the crime scene

Admissions Requirements

Students who do not possess an associate's or bachelor's degree within the criminal justice field from an accredited institution at the time of admission may be admitted to the program after providing proof that they have been employed in law enforcement, the military, or an associated area of criminal justice within the last 18 months prior to enrollment. Admission to the program is at the discretion of the Dean based on a review of work experience and other relevant criteria.

Higher Education at the Highest Standards

Kaplan University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and committed to the highest standards. Our specific programs hold additional industry-relevant approvals and accreditations.

What are the Career Opportunities?

Along with those just starting out, career-changers often choose to become crime scene technicians, transitioning from fields such as allied health, law, and science. Qualified crime scene technicians can seek employment opportunities in insurance companies, law enforcement agencies, laboratories, large law firms, and medical examiners' offices.*†

How Do I Get Started?

Kaplan University offers multiple start dates, giving you greater flexibility with your education, life, and work schedules. Certain start dates may not be available at all ground locations; speak with an advisor for additional information.

07

Dec

Online Start Date

December 07, 2016

04

Jan

Online and Campus Start Date

January 04, 2017

01

Feb

Online Start Date

February 01, 2017

01

Mar

Online and Campus Start Date

March 01, 2017

22

Mar

Online and Campus Start Date

March 22, 2017

19

Apr

Online Start Date

April 19, 2017

17

May

Online and Campus Start Date

May 17, 2017

07

Jun

Online and Campus Start Date

June 07, 2017

05

Jul

Online Start Date

July 05, 2017

02

Aug

Online and Campus Start Date

August 02, 2017

23

Aug

Online and Campus Start Date

August 23, 2017

20

Sep

Online Start Date

September 20, 2017

18

Oct

Online and Campus Start Date

October 18, 2017

08

Nov

Online and Campus Start Date

November 08, 2017

06

Dec

Online Start Date

December 06, 2017

Curriculum: All Tracks

  • Prerequisite

    Total Prerequisite Credits: 25

    Total Program Credits: 41

    • CJ 101: INTRODUCTION TO THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM Change

      This course provides an overview of the criminal justice system in the United States. Students gain an understanding of the philosophy and development of the criminal justice system, the current state of the criminal justice agencies and institutions, and the issues and challenges facing them.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

    • CJ 102: CRIMINOLOGY I Change

      This course presents a framework for studying the nature and causes of crime and antisocial behavior. It focuses on explanations provided through criminal topologies and criminological theories, using a variety of multidisciplinary perspectives. Topics range from crime causation to the extent of crime, victimization, social and psychological theories, and various types of criminality including violent, property, and public order offenses.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      CJ 101

    • 100/ 200 LEVEL: COMPOSITION COURSE Change

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      N/A
    • 200 LEVEL OR ABOVE: PHYSICAL/BIOLOGICAL SCIENCE COURSE Change

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      N/A

    Choose one:

    • MM 212: COLLEGE ALGEBRA Change

      This course covers topics of algebra including linear functions, equations, and inequalities, systems of equations with two variables, polynomial functions, rational and radical equations and inequalities, exponential and logarithmic functions, ratios, proportions, variation, and graphing.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

    • MM 150: SURVEY OF MATHEMATICS Change

      Students will improve their background in mathematical concepts and skills utilizing real-world scenarios to solve math problems. Students will also enhance their own knowledge by demonstrating the ability to explain and interpret concepts, which is a valued skill in many fields. The topics may include sets, variables, measurement, and statistics.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

  • Certificate Requirements

    Total Certificate Requirements Credits: 41

    Total Program Credits: 41

    • CJ 210: CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION Change

      This course explains the importance and legal significance of evidence. It demonstrates how the investigative process works, from crime scene preservation to case preparation and courtroom presentation. It also examines various techniques used during criminal investigations, such as photography, interviewing, evidence handling, and scene reconstruction, and how each applies to specific types of crimes.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      CJ 101

    • CJ 328: FORENSIC FINGERPRINT ANALYSIS Change

      This course provides the student with a historical view of the science of fingerprints, as well as a look at the struggle to develop a universal classification system. It will discuss the basic fundamentals of the formation of friction ridge skin and the functions of the different layers of human skin. As the course explores the systematic approach to processing crime scenes for latent fingerprints, the student will experience hands-on fingerprint processing techniques. In addition, various types of computer software and photography equipment will be evaluated as latent print enhancement and documentary tools. In summation, the course will delve into the actual evaluation and comparison of latent prints, ending with a discussion of the latent print examiner as an expert witness in court.

      Credits:

      6

      Prerequisites Required:

      CJ 101

    • CJ 345: SUPERVISORY PRACTICES IN CRIMINAL JUSTICE Change

      This course combines state-of-the-art behavioral theory with numerous cases that allow you to identify and resolve personnel and organizational problems. It prepares you for effective police management and supervision.

      Credits:

      6

      Prerequisites Required:

      CJ 101

    • CJ 355: HOMELAND SECURITY Change

      The course provides an introduction to homeland security and the agency role in preparing national security for threats of domestic and international terrorism. This role ensures homeland security management and operational assistance for federal, state, and local agencies. The goal of this course is to ensure students develop an understanding of how the Department of Homeland Security prepares and addresses domestic and international terrorism. The student should be able to apply this knowledge from both an academic and practitioner perspective. Students will demonstrate the ability to apply this knowledge by identifying and applying homeland security management principles and practices.

      Credits:

      6

      Prerequisites Required:

      CJ 101

    • CJ 370: CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION II Change

      This course provides students with a general overview of crime scene techniques for a basic understanding of how to process crime scenes. Students will also learn the importance of evaluating and processing evidence in order to assist crime laboratory experts.

      Credits:

      6

      Prerequisites Required:

      CJ 101

    • CJ 385: FORENSIC CHEMISTRY AND TRACE EVIDENCE ANALYSIS Change

      This course enhances the student's understanding of forensic science and its application to criminal investigations. It examines the history and development of the crime laboratory, forensic services provided to the law enforcement community, and the function of the forensic scientist. It provides an overview of the various types of physical evidence commonly submitted to the forensic laboratory for analysis. Students will explore how the forensic scientist uses analytical instruments and microscopes to examine, identify, and compare chemical and physical properties of suspected drug and toxicology samples, and trace evidence (e.g., glass, soil, metal, hair, fibers, paint, flammable liquids, and explosives).

      Credits:

      6

      Prerequisites Required:

      CJ 370

    • CJ 444: MANAGING CRIMINAL JUSTICE ORGANIZATIONS Change

      This course deals with concepts and theory in the field of organizational behavior. The course focuses on the historical perspectives of organizational theorists, theories of motivations and leadership, and future trends and developments in modern organizations.

      Credits:

      6

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

Curriculum: Concentration

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*Local, state, and federal law enforcement jobs may require additional training or education including additional state-approved higher education beyond Kaplan University's degree. You should fully research the requirements of any such position you intend to seek prior to enrolling in your program. Graduates of Kaplan University criminal justice programs are not eligible to attend police academies in Minnesota.

Kaplan University cannot guarantee employment or career advancement.