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I want to be a forensic scientist

Find out more about a career as a forensic scientist.

Beware – forensic scientists and scenes of crime officers are not the same. Scenes of crime officers are generally recruited and trained by the police force (although they are civilians, not police officers). You can find out more on the National Careers Service website.

Forensic scientists use their scientific and analytical skills to analyse evidence in the laboratory. This is a competitive field; jobs in forensic science are few and far between. The best route to take is often to do a degree in chemistry, analytical chemistry or biology. These courses give you a firm grounding in laboratory techniques and provide you with the analytical skills required for a career in forensic science. Following a course such as this also keeps many other career options open should you change your mind or find it difficult to become a forensic scientist after graduation.

Forensic scientist     © iStock


Forensic science degree courses are becoming more common but it is important to check that the course content is appropriate for the kind of career you would like to pursue, for example:

  • Does it include enough time in the laboratory to satisfy future employers?
  • What sort of jobs do students who graduate from the course go on to do?

If you are interested in pursuing a career in this area, the Chartered Forensic Science Society can provide further useful information.