Forensic Science, BS


The Forensic Science program at San José State University is housed within the Department of Justice Studies, and aims to produce professional forensic scientists, with adaptable scientific skills accompanied by a thorough grounding in theory and practice. We offer students hands-on training in crime laboratory methodologies and crime scene investigation techniques to prepare them for a career in federal or state police services, national and international forensic institutions, government laboratories, and private organizations. Students can obtain a Bachelor of Science with a concentration in Biology, Chemistry, Digital Evidence, or Crime Scene Investigation and the curricula of each major concentration meet the American Academy of Forensic Sciences Forensic Education Program Accreditation standards.

We value student engagement in the program, with other students, faculty, and community organizations. We have a robust Forensic Science Students organization, which can provide plenty of information on navigating the forensic science program, finding internships, and preparing for your career. Our forensic science faculty routinely provide opportunities to students to participate in research conducted within our lab. Through the internship, students gain first-hand experience in the day-to-day working of forensic laboratories with our faculty or with one of our many community partners, including the Santa Clara County District Attorney Crime Lab, Coroner’s Office, or local law enforcement.

Learn the Theory and Practical Application

The topics in the Forensic Science program include: 

  • Crime Scene Investigation
  • Human anatomy and physiology
  • Forensic photography
  • Organic chemistry
  • Forensic Entomology
  • Pathophysiology
  • Principals of biochemistry
  • Physical evidence analysis
  • Instrumental analysis
  • Toxicology
  • Body fluid and DNA analysis

Curriculum and Requirements

Tentative Semester Course Schedule

Each semester, we offer a series of core forensic science classes, along with several specialized courses via FS 160 or program electives. Below is our tenative course scheduling each semester.



Summer & Winter

Note: schedule subject to change due to student demand and faculty availability.

Visit the catalog website for current degree requirements

Contact Information

For any questions regarding your application to the Forensic Science Programs, please contact the Forensic Science Coordinators, Dr. Mark Barash or Dr. Shawna Bolton.

Meet with an Advisor

Visit the Academic Advising page for current advising office hours.

Apply to the Forensic Science Major

Visit the Admissions website for more information on how to apply for enrollment to San José State University.

For currently admitted students, visit the Declare Major page to learn more about how to apply to this major.