The Master of Science in Forensic Science Program includes courses in criminal justice, forensic science, and law, with a focus on forensic chemistry. Throughout the program, students are required to take core classes in both forensic science and chemistry. This allows students to further their knowledge of chemistry while using that knowledge in forensic applications.

Research in the forensic sciences takes place throughout a student's time in the program. We place a strong emphasis on research, with each student conducting an independent research project that culminates in a written thesis and oral defense. Conducting research allows students to develop the independence and critical thinking skills that are essential for any forensic scientist.

Students are provided with funding to present their research at local and national forensic science conferences, giving them public speaking and networking opportunities. In addition, students are strongly encouraged to publish their research in peer-reviewed journals.

Although not required, internships are strongly encouraged to provide students the opportunity to gain first-hand experience in the day-to-day workings of forensic laboratories. In recent years, students have conducted internships with the Michigan State Police Forensic Science Division, the State of Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, and the Kalamazoo County Sheriff Department.


The mission of the Master of Science in Forensic Science Program at Michigan State University is to bring together the University's varied forensic science resources in order to provide a state of the art graduate level education in forensic science to outstanding students who have achieved a bachelors degree in a natural or physical science and who are highly motivated to enter a career in forensic science.

Goals and Objectives

  1. To take advantage of the many diverse forensic science faculty and laboratory resources available at MSU in order to develop an intellectual environment that will promote the growth of education and research in forensic science
  2. To provide a hands-on, research-intensive experience for students that will better prepare them for a career in laboratory-based science
  3. To facilitate the attainment of a comprehensive and contemporary Master of Science in Forensic Science degree by graduate students at MSU
  4. To prepare graduate students for their future professional responsibilities