Master of Science In Forensic Science

Forensic science is a broad, interdisciplinary field in which the natural sciences are employed to analyze and evaluate physical evidence in matters of the law.

We have a reputation

The master’s program in forensic science at the University of New Haven has a worldwide reputation for preparing top-quality professional forensic scientists. One of the original forensic science programs in the country, our master’s program in forensic science will provide you with the theoretical and practical knowledge necessary to apply analytical and scientific methods to criminal investigation.

Through concentrated study in our laboratories, you will obtain unparalleled hands-on experience that you can apply immediately in your chosen career. In addition to a sequence of core coursework, you will complete a series of electives.

Program Mission

To thoroughly prepare forensic science majors for careers in forensic science, natural sciences, and criminal justice professions, as well as post-graduate educational or training opportunities.

Program Outcomes

  • Students can demonstrate proficiency in the proper use of various instruments, equipment, or technical procedures.
  • Students recognize and identify common forms of physical and pattern evidence, and can properly interpret related examinations of this evidence.
  • Students can describe major ethical and professional guidelines and principles.

Important note for all interested applicants: "Those seeking careers in this field should be aware that background checks similar to those required for law enforcement officers are likely to be a condition of employment."

- Education and Training in Forensic Science: A Guide for Forensic Science Laboratories, Educational Institutions, and Students, page 7.
Read this document here.

Program-Specific Admissions Requirements

In addition to the general University application requirements, prospective M.S. Forensic Science students are required to meet the following criteria:

  • Possession of an undergraduate degree in a natural science or a recognized forensic science program, with a preference for completion from a FEPAC-accredited program. Candidates should have completed two semesters of lab-based general chemistry, two semesters of lab-based organic chemistry, and instrumental analysis. Additionally, completing at least one semester of biochemistry, physics, and an upper-level math course is highly recommended.
  • A minimum GPA of 3.3 is expected, with occasional exceptions considered based on the student's degree program, undergraduate institution, and the quality of grades achieved in science and mathematics courses.
  • Successful completion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) with scores at or above the 50th percentile and quantitative/analytical scores at or above the 70th percentile.
  • Submission of at least two letters of recommendation is mandatory. These letters should preferably be from science professors who can speak to the student's academic and laboratory capabilities and assess the potential for success in a graduate program with a required thesis component.

Student Success and Outcomes

If you are a scholar or professional who is determined to excel, the University of New Haven is the place for you. Click here to see where those who earned a master’s degree in forensic science are employed.

Other highlights of the program include:
  • Accredited by the Forensic Science Education Programs Accreditation Commission (FEPAC)
  • Expert faculty with professional experience in key positions such as lab directors, supervisors, and crime-scene bench analysts.
  • A four-semester program with flexible class times and offerings
  • Thesis required
Thesis Research

The Thesis Researchers in the University of New Haven’s M.S. Forensic Science program have persevered and continued their thesis research even through the hardships brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The following are some of the thesis research topics that has been conducted by students in the program:

  • 2021 Graduate Research Award Recipient: Correlation Between Tooth Translucency, Crystallinity, and DNA Preservation in Teeth for Unidentifiede Huan Remains (UHR) Investigations – Paul M. Yount
  • 2020 Graduate Research Award Recipient: A Sine-Based Human-Dog QPCR Assay For Species Identification and DNA Quantification – James Liang
  • 2019 Graduate Research Award Recipient: Construction of a Reference Allelic Ladder for Odocoileus STR Multiplex – Jolene Strand
  • Determining the interference of Lactate and Lactate Dehydrogenase in an Ethanol Enzyme Assay – Julia Liebl
  • Small RNA Sequencing and RT-qPCR Validation of Forensically Relevant Body Fluids – Karly Johannsen
  • Multiple Contacts of Drug contaminated Fingermarks and Their Analysis with Raman Microspectroscopy – Victoria DePrimo
  • 2019 Graduate Research Award Recipient: Construction of a Reference Allelic Ladder for Odocoileus STR Multiplex – Jolene Strand
  • Forensic Characterization and Discrimination of Manila Envelopes – Maria Isabel Sanchez Melo

You can read all the current and past research that UNH Graduate Students have been working on at:

Envision Your Future

The information below is designed to show the many possible careers you could pursue with your major. The research is provided by Encoura, the leading research and advisory firm focused exclusively on higher education. It includes median national salaries and industry growth projections over the next decade. Click here to view the full report.


Detectives and Criminal Investigators

2% Growth 2021-2030


Forensic Science Technicians

10% Growth 2021-2030


Clinical Laboratory Technologists and Technicians

9% Growth 2021-2030

Selected Courses and Programs
  • This course will provide information related to the various aspects of expert witness testimony, from "marketing" skills and good communication techniques to managing difficult questions and ethical issues. The expectations of the legal and scientific communities will be explored using case examples and exercises that point to the conflicts that sometimes may arise from these different perspectives. Students will participate in a moot court testimony session in which they will demonstrate their expert witness knowledge and ability to effectively communicate in a court setting.

  • The comparison and individualization of physical evidence are presented in lectures and carried out in the laboratory. The theories and practice of microscopic, biological, immunological, and chemical analysis are applied to the examination of blood, semen, and other body fluids.

  • Methods of modern biochemistry, genetics and molecular biology as applied to the examination and individualization of biological evidence in forensic science. Includes discussion of prior methods up to the most current used today in forensic biology.

  • This course is one in a series of offerings designed to meet the changing educational needs in specialized areas of forensic technology. It addresses theoretical and practical aspects of capillary electrophoresis as a new tool applied to the forensic sciences. The course will cover the theoretical principles of capillary electrophoresis, how to use and troubleshoot the instrumentation as well as the analysis of different types of samples commonly found as evidence in forensic laboratories. This course typically runs on an accelerated schedule and includes a significant laboratory component.

  • The University of New Haven offers a wide variety of in-depth courses that create a transformational educational experience for our students. To view the complete list of courses you'll take while pursuing a Masters of Science in Forensic Science, check out the Academic Catalog:

    Forensic Science, M.S.

    Forensic Investigative Genetic Genealogy Certificate

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