Pre-Forensic and Investigative Science

Degree Awarded

  • Associate of Arts

Nature of Program

The associate degree program in pre-forensic and investigative science fulfills the first two years of undergraduate study required for admittance into the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences Forensic and Investigative Science program. Once admitted to the Forensic and Investigative Science program at WVU, students select an emphasis in one of the following: Forensic Biology, Forensic Chemistry, or Forensic Examiner.

Courses within the associates program provide a foundation in biology, chemistry,physics, math and statistics needed to be successful in the Forensic and Investigative Science bachelor program.

Career Opportunities

A bachelor’s degree in Forensic Science & Investigation prepares students for opportunities in fields such as Forensic Biology, Forensic Chemistry, or Forensic Examiner. Forensic examiners can be crime scene analysts, latent fingerprint examiners, forensic photographers, evidence technicians, investigators, and law enforcement officers and agents. Working conditions are typically field and/or office-based rather than laboratory-based. Crime scene analysts are often part of major crime scene squads that collect and document evidence, but they rarely participate in the scientific examination of the evidence in the laboratory. Forensic biologists become DNA analysts or enter into graduate work. Forensic DNA work is a laboratory-based profession with employment opportunities in local, state, federal, and private laboratories. Forensic chemists can work in crime labs and/or as an arson analyst and investigators, forensic toxicologists, and trace evidence examiners. Like forensic biologists, foresnics chemists may work immediately in a laboratory-based profession with employment opportunities in local, state, federal, and private laboratories or enter into graduate studies. Forensic biologists and and chemists typically do not do crime scene work on a routine basis, but may occasionally be called to a scene.

General Education FOUNDATIONS

Please use this link to view a list of courses that meet each GEF requirement.

NOTE: Some major requirements will fulfill specific GEF requirements. Please see the curriculum requirements listed below for details on which GEFs you will need to select.

General Education Foundations
F1 - Composition & Rhetoric3-6
Introduction to Composition and Rhetoric
and Composition, Rhetoric, and Research
Accelerated Academic Writing
F2A/F2B - Science & Technology4-6
F3 - Math & Quantitative Skills3-4
F4 - Society & Connections3
F5 - Human Inquiry & the Past3
F6 - The Arts & Creativity3
F7 - Global Studies & Diversity3
F8 - Focus (may be satisfied by completion of a minor, double major, or dual degree)9
Total Hours31-37

Please note that not all of the GEF courses are offered at all campuses. Students should consult with their advisor or academic department regarding the GEF course offerings available at their campus.

Curriculum Requirements

ENGL 101
ENGL 102
Introduction to Composition and Rhetoric
and Composition, Rhetoric, and Research (GEF 1)
6
MATH 155Calculus 1 (GEF 3)4
MATH 156Calculus 2 (GEF 8)4
STAT 215Introduction to Probability and Statistics3
CSAD 270Effective Public Speaking (GEF 4)3
WVUE 191First Year Seminar1
BIOL 115Principles of Biology (GEF 8)4
BIOL 117Introductory Physiology4
BIOL 219The Living Cell4
CHEM 115Fundamentals of Chemistry (GEF 2)4
CHEM 116Fundamentals of Chemistry (GEF 8)4
CHEM 233
CHEM 235
Organic Chemistry
and Organic Chemistry Laboratory
4
CHEM 234
CHEM 236
Organic Chemistry
and Organic Chemistry Laboratory
4
PHYS 101Introductory Physics4
or PHYS 111 General Physics
PHYS 102Introductory Physics4
or PHYS 112 General Physics
FIS 201Introduction to Forensic Identification3
Total Hours60

Suggested Plan of Study

First Year
FallHoursSpringHoursSummerHours
BIOL 115 (GEF 8)4BIOL 1174STAT 2153
CHEM 115 (GEF 2)4CHEM 116 (GEF 8)4 
CSAD 270 (GEF 4)3ENGL 101 (GEF 1)3 
MATH 155 (GEF 3)4MATH 156 (GEF 8)4 
WVUE 1911  
 16 15 3
Second Year
FallHoursSpringHours 
BIOL 2194CHEM 234
CHEM 236
4 
CHEM 233
CHEM 235
4FIS 2013 
PHYS 101 or 1114ENGL 102 (GEF 1)3 
 PHYS 102 or 1124 
 12 14
Total credit hours: 60

Major Learning Goals

pre-forensic and investigative science

Upon completion of the associates in pre-forensic and investigative science program, students will be able to:

  1. Apply the scientific method to solving problem by formulating a hypothesis, design effective laboratory experiments, perform laboratory experiments, collect and analyze data statistically and graphically, interpret data, arrive at a conclusion, and report their results utilizing scientific writing.
  2. Describe the relationship between the structure and function of cells and investigate cellular properties through various laboratory techniques.
  3. Use chemical principles and laboratory techniques to describe and analyze the chemical structure and reactivity of organic molecules.  
  4. Apply for admission into the forensic and investigative science program on the Morgantown campus or an equivalent program.