Forensic Science (B.S.)

Forensic Science (B.S.)
Holding a fingerprint

A collaborative and adaptable program.

The word “forensic” relates the application of scientific methods and techniques to the investigation of a crime. Plymouth State’s forensic program is geared to both science and non-science students who love investigation and problem-solving. Plymouth State Forensic is the first baccalaureate degree program from a public university in New Hampshire.

The collaborative and project-based emphasis of Plymouth State’s Cluster Learning model combined with core program studies in Criminal Justice and Chemistry along with specialized course work from Psychology, Computer Science, Biology, and Anthropology gives our students unmatched opportunity to excel in this field.  Professionals and distinguished faculty from each field will be involved in training our students. The BS in forensic science is a STEM-orientated program that emphasizes a solid theoretical foundation and laboratory skills while cultivating a critical, detail-oriented approach to investigations. The curriculum features modern laboratory setups and instrumentation.  An important consideration is given the huge surge in interest in careers that are experiencing exponential occupational growth, including forensic laboratory specialty, forensic psychology, and computer information security.

As a Forensic scientist, you can work in laboratories or at crime scenes. You may work as a private investigator, insurance officer, a cyber security analyst. You may choose to work for private and public offices or laboratories.

The curriculum is adaptable enough for students to obtain additional specialties and/or minors in Chemistry, Psychology, Criminal Justice, and Biology with few additional courses using their free electives.


Academic Operations Manager
Phone: (603) 535-2325
Office: Exploration & Discovery, Boyd Science Center Rm 122, MSC 48, Plymouth, NH 03264

Program Coordinator of Biochemistry, Chemistry, & Forensic Science
Phone: (603) 535-3243
Office: Exploration & Discovery, Boyd Science Center Rm 102, MSC 48, Plymouth, NH 03264

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Curriculum & Requirements

Course Title Credits
Major Requirements
FS 1200Majoring and Working in Forensic Science1
CJ 1020Criminal Justice in Action4
CJ 2045Criminal Procedure4
CH 2255Techniques in Laboratory3
CH 2335General Chemistry I (QRCO)4
CJ 3005Criminal Investigation4
CJ 3025Forensic Science4
CH 3550Instrumental Analysis (TECO,WRCO)4
FS 4100Forensic Science Capstone Project3
Math Foundation Skills
Take one of the following:3-4
MA 2300
Statistics I (QRCO)
MA 2130
Precalculus (QRCO)
MA 2550
Calculus I (QRCO)
Interdisciplinary Focus Areas
Take at least 9 credits of (1000/2000) courses and at least 15 credits of (3000/4000) courses 1,224-32
===Forensic Lab Analysis Specialty===
BI 1110
Biological Science I (TECO)
BI 1120
Biological Science II
BI 2030
Invertebrate Zoology
CH 2340
General Chemistry II
BI 3060
CH 3370
Organic Chemistry I
CH 3380
Organic Chemistry II
CH 3410
Physical Chemistry: Thermodynamics and Kinetics (WRCO)
AN 3605
Forensic Anthropology
CH 4600
===Digital Forensic Specialty===
CS 2010
Computing Fundamentals (TECO)
MA 2550
Calculus I (QRCO)
MA 2560
Calculus II (QRCO)
CJ 3015
CS 3420
Introduction to Cybersecurity
CS 4500
Topics in Computer Science and Technology
CS 4420
Computer Security
CS 4520
CyberEthics (DICO,INCO,WRCO)
===Forensic Psychology Specialty===
PS 2015
Introduction to General Psychology
PS 2055
Life-Span Developmental Psychology
PS 3035
Social Psychology
PS 3115
Research Methods and Statistics I (QRCO,TECO)
PS 3125
Research Methods and Statistics II (WRCO)
PS 3220
Cognitive Psychology
PS 3325
Abnormal Psychology
PS 3705
Psychology and Law
PS 4365
Internship in Psychology
PS 4945
Independent Research in Psychology
General Education Requirements
EN 1400Composition4
IS 1115Tackling a Wicked Problem4
CTDICreative Thought Direction3-4
PPDIPast and Present Direction3-4
SIDIScientific Inquiry Direction3-4
SSDISelf and Society Direction3-4
Directions (choose from CTDI, PPDI, SIDI, SSDI) 34-8
DICODiversity Connection3-4
WECOWellness Connection3-4
INCPIntegrated Capstone4
GACOGlobal Awareness Connection3-4
Total Credits120

To enhance career opportunities students may choose one or two interdisciplinary specialties as long as they take two lower-level and five upper-level courses. One thing students must be aware of is the courses in some specialties may have lower-level prerequisites associated with the same specialty. Students may use their free electives to choose additional courses to get a minor or a second major.


The courses from the Interdisciplinary Specialty can be applied towards one or more minor requirements. Possible minors of interest: Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Criminal Justice, Mathematics, Psychology. 


Directions should total 20 credits (unless the major has a waiver for a specific Direction).

Plan of Study Grid
Year OneCredits
IS 1115 Tackling a Wicked Problem 4
EN 1400 Composition 4
FS 1200 Majoring and Working in Forensic Science 1
CH 1050 Laboratory Safety 1
CJ 1020 Criminal Justice in Action 4
CH 2255 Techniques in Laboratory 3
MA 2300 Statistics I (QRCO) 3
PPDIPast and Present Direction 3-4
SIDIScientific Inquiry Direction 3-4
One 1000/2000 level specialty course 4
Year Two
CJ 2045 Criminal Procedure 4
MA 2130 Precalculus (QRCO) 4
Two 1000/2000 level specialty course 8
CTDICreative Thought Direction 3-4
SSDISelf and Society Direction 3-4
Directions (choose from CTDI, PPDI, SIDI, SSDI) 4-8
Electives 3-4
Year Three
CJ 3005 Criminal Investigation 4
CJ 3025 Forensic Science 4
Two Connections courses 8
Three 3000/4000 level specialty course 12
Electives 3-4
Year Four
FS 4100 Forensic Science Capstone Project 3
CH 3550 Instrumental Analysis (TECO,WRCO) 4
Two 3000/4000 level specialty courses
WECOWellness Connection 3-4
DICODiversity Connection 3-4
Electives 6-8
 Total Credits120

  • Detail-oriented approach and ability to Validate sources and origins of error in crime investigations
  • Purposeful communication: Demonstrate ability to interpret evidence and communicate results in both written and oral format.
  • Integrated perspective: Work collaboratively with members of a team with diverse backgrounds.
  • Professionalism: Even during a violent crime or chaotic conditions maintain composure and objectivity.
  • Math and science skills: Forensic science technicians need a solid understanding of statistics and natural sciences to be able to analyze crime scene evidence.

As a Forensic scientist, you can work in laboratories or at crime scenes. You may work as a private investigator, insurance officer, a cyber security analyst. You may choose to work for private and public offices or laboratories. Careers in Forensic Science: Cybersecurity Analyst, Forensic Life Scientist, Information Security Specialist, Insurance Officer, Private Investigator.

Explore Program Details

Boyd Science Center
Boyd Science Center

The heart of scientific research and study at PSU is the Boyd Science Center. The University’s proximity to the lakes, rivers and mountains of New Hampshire gives students access to a unique natural laboratory. Resources at Boyd provide students with a place to explore nature’s questions, generated in the great outdoors or under the microscope.

Resources at Boyd

  • Climate-controlled chambers for whole organism research
  • Dedicated spaces for student research
  • PCR, Rt-PCR, Western blotting, Immunohistochemistry
  • Animal behavior lab with advanced video tracking
  • BSL-2 Microbiology lab
  • Six 300-liter marine aquariums
  • Human physiology lab
  • Collection of bird specimens
  • Dedicated tissue culture facility
  • Rooftop greenhouse with computerized temperature controls and separate areas for preparation and growing
  • PSH, an herbarium of 20K preserved and mounted specimens
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