Crime scene investigators are core components of the criminal justice system, involved in analyzing, documenting, preserving, and assessing the evidence at play at scenes of criminal activity. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, their importance in the field is why jobs in this area are projected to grow twice as fast as average over the next decade.

About Salem’s Crime Scene Investigation Bachelor’s Degree

Salem University’s Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice with a concentration in Crime Scene Investigation is designed to prepare you for a role in the complex criminal justice field. Building upon core foundational knowledge, our crime scene investigator degree specialization folds into practical training in areas like analyzing crime scenes, gathering evidence, performing tests, and providing written and spoken testimony in court cases. A Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice degree can also be a great stepping stone toward getting your Master of Science in Criminal Justice.

We’ve designed our bachelor’s crime scene investigation degree curriculum with the goal of providing a high-quality education that prepares you for lifelong learning. We aim to develop your leadership and problem-solving skills and encourage all of our students to read critically, ask appropriate questions, gather information, and apply critical analysis. And we do all of this within a framework that fits into your current life and responsibilities with our unique, one-course-a-month schedule.

What Can I Do With a Bachelor’s Degree in Crime Scene Investigation?

A bachelor’s degree in criminal justice with an emphasis in crime scene investigation can help you prepare for entry-level employment in careers like:

  • Police Officer (State, County or Local)
  • Private Detective
  • Fish and Game Warden
  • Crime Scene Investigator
  • Crime Victims Service
  • Child Protective Services
  • Fraud Investigator
  • U.S. Postal Inspector

You could also qualify for a position as an agent with various federal agencies like the FBI, DEA, ATF, Secret Service, US Marshals, and Immigration & Customs Enforcement. Many of these agencies have specialized crime scene investigations units that may have positions suitable for our graduates.

What Will I Learn in Salem’s Bachelor’s Degree in Crime Scene Investigation?

Our online forensic science degree with a crime scene investigation specialization will teach you the foundational knowledge you need to contribute to the safety and security of your community, using concrete science, methodology, and best practices. Our crime scene investigator degree curriculum focuses on critical thinking and ethical decision making within the context of crisis intervention, evidence and procedure, investigation and forensics, and more. We want you to understand not just the basics, but also the history and philosophy behind the criminal justice system and where it can grow and evolve in the future. All of this is brought together in a capstone course that gives you the opportunity to set up and manage an actual sporting event.

In your specialized crime scene investigator degree courses, you’ll cover topics like:

  • Basic crime scene photography skills, like camera operation and exposure control, relational photos and flash control, and evidentiary documentation
  • The techniques of pattern recognition, preservation and classification involved in gathering impression evidence, including fingerprints, tire marks, tool marks, bite marks, and shoe prints
  • The forensic value, handling, preservation, testing, and documentation of biological evidence, including safety issues and blood splatter patterns
  • Forensic firearms identification, lab analysis of firearms and ammunition evidence, and the basic skills in the investigation of firearms-related crimes
  • The numerous ways in which technology is used by criminals and forensics investigators, recognizing digital evidence and its importance to an investigation, and how to collect and preserve useful evidence

What Crime Scene Investigation Classes Will I Take?

The Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice degree program with a specialization in Crime Scene Investigation requires the completion of 75 foundational and elective credits, as well as 30 core criminal justice credits that include:

  • CJU205 Criminal Law
  • CJU210 Criminal Evidence and Constitutional Procedure
  • CJU230 Criminal Investigation and Forensics
  • CJU233 Crisis Intervention
  • CJU242 Domestic Violence
  • CJU270 Terrorism
  • CJU405 Constitutional Law
  • CJU408 Criminal Justice Research and Statistics
  • CJU440 Ethics in Criminal Justice
  • CJU499 Capstone

You’ll also take 15 credits in the Crime Scene Investigation specialization:

  • CJU441 Introduction to Crime Scene Photography
  • CJU442 Fingerprints and Impression Evidence
  • CJU443 Crime Scenes Management
  • CJU444 Ballistics and Firearm Identification
  • CJU446 Digital Evidence

How Long Will It Take to Get My Crime Scene Investigation Bachelor’s Degree?

On average, a full-time student can earn their Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice degree with a specialization in Crime Scene Investigation in approximately 40 months. However, we recognize every student is different, with different circumstances. It’d be best to contact one of our admissions advisors to discuss your specific questions and goals.

Why Should I Choose Salem University?

Since 1888, Salem University has built upon our tradition of accessible, affordable higher education by constantly innovating and looking to the future. We aim to develop lifelong learners who embrace problem-solving with a global perspective. We offer:

  • Accelerated undergraduate and graduate programs of study with continuous enrollment via distance education or on-campus
  • A unique one-course-a-month format that allows students to focus on a single subject at a time and build their knowledge in a way that feels natural
  • Online courses are structured to work within the constraints of full-time employment, allowing you to earn your degree with minimum disruption to your busy schedule
  • Supportive faculty and staff who serve as thought leaders and mentors
  • A beautiful 100-acre campus situated in the Smoky Mountains where programs of study are available for campus residents and commuter students

Admission Requirements

Admission to Salem is open to all qualified applicants regardless of race, color, creed, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, or ability/disability. Anyone wishing to attend Salem can obtain the necessary application from the Office of Admissions or apply online. The completed application should be submitted to the Office of Admissions at the earliest possible date. The University admits students on a rolling, monthly start basis. Acceptance is within the discretion of Salem University; some programs have additional admissions requirements.

Take the Next Step

If you’re interested in getting started on your degree from Salem University, request more information today!