Loyola University Chicago

Forensic Science Program

BS in Forensic Science

Students pursuing the BS in Forensic Science degree gain:

  • A broad range of knowledge and skills in chemistry and biology
  • An understanding of the criminal justice system and rules of evidence
  • Strong writing and speaking skills
  • Technical expertise and analytic reasoning abilities

Loyola's strong reputation in the sciences, along with its successful track record in preparing students for the health professions, enables forensic science graduates to begin highly successful careers in this dynamic field.

The Program is fully accredited by The Forensic Education Programs Accreditation Commission (FEPAC).  Learn more about FEPAC on their website.

This major combines coursework from biology, chemistry, criminal justice, mathematics, physics, in addition to forensic science courses.


Program Content and Sensitive Topics

The Forensic Science Program curriculum, by its very nature, includes sensitive topics such as drug overdose, drug-facilitated sexual assault, sexual violence, domestic violence, postmortem forensic toxicology, homicides, and other violent crime.  Our faculty endeavor to handle these topics with the appropriate respect, professionalism, gravity, and discretion.  However, students should be aware that these and other topics involving criminal behavior are covered in numerous courses throughout the curriculum.  Some courses also include in-depth discussion and case studies.


Degree Requirements

The forensic science major requires 86-89 credit hours of coursework.  The curriculum delivers a broad knowledge base and covers the three major areas in forensic science laboratories: pattern, biology-DNA, and chemistry.  Students in this program are required to include the following classes in their curriculum:

Laboratory Science Courses 

  • BIOL 101, 111, 102, 112: General Biology I and II with labs (eight credit hours)
  • BIOL 282, 283: Genetics with lab (four credit hours)
  • BIOL 366 or CHEM 361, BIOL 366L: Biochemistry with lab (five credit hours)
  • CHEM 101, 111, 102, 112:  General Chemistry I and II with labs (eight credit hours)
  • CHEM 212/214:  Quantitative Analysis with lab (four credit hours)
  • CHEM 223, 225, 224, 226:  Organic Chemistry I and II with labs (eight credit hours)
  • PHYS 111/111L, 112/112L: College Physics I and II with labs (eight credit hours)

Forensic Science and Criminal Justice Courses 

  • CRMJ 101:  The Criminal Justice System (three credit hours)
  • FRSC 340:  Introduction to Forensic Science (three credit hours)
  • FRSC 341:  Forensic Science Ethics and Professional Practice (three credit hours)
  • FRSC 342:  Expert Witness Testimony and Court Room Demeanor (three credit hours)
  • FRSC 343: Physical Organic Chemistry for the Forensic Sciences (three credit hours)
  • FRSC 350/350L:  Pattern Evidence I and lab (four credit hours)
  • FRSC 360W/360L:  Forensic Drug Chemistry I with Lab (five credit hours)
  • FRSC 370/370L:  Forensic Biology with Lab (four credit hours)

Forensic Capstone (Choose one of the following) 

  • FRSC 361/361L:  Forensic Toxicology I with Lab (four credit hours)
  • FRSC 371: Forensic Molecular Biology with Lab (five credit hours)
  • ANTH 396: Anthropology Internship (three credit hours)
    • Requires ANTH 326 as a prerequisite

Ancillary Courses  

  • MATH 131, 132:  Applied Calculus I and II (six credit hours)
  • BIOL 335 or STAT 335: Introduction to Biostatistics (four credit hours)


Students in this program are encouraged, but not required, to select elective courses from the following list:

  • ANTH 324: Human Evolution (three credit hours)
  • ANTH 326:  Human Osteology (four credit hours)
  • ANTH/BIOL 369: Paleopathology (three credit hours)
  • BIOL 242: Human Structure and Function I (four credit hours)
  • BIOL 243: Human Structure and Function II (four credit hours
  • BIOL 251:   Cell Biology (three credit hours)
  • BIOL 341:   Histology Lecture/Lab (four credit hours)
  • BIOL 342:   Human Anatomy (four credit hours)
  • BIOL 363: Entomology (four credit hours)
  • BIOL 389: Introduction to Pharmacology (three credit hours)
  • FRSC 390:  Forensic Science Internship (three to four credit hours)
  • FRSC 392:  Forensic Science Seminar (one credit hour)
  • FRSC 394:  Forensic Science Research (one to four credit hours) 
  • FRSC 395:  Special Topics in Forensic Science (three to four credit hours)
  • CJC 201:    Theories of Criminal Behavior (three credit hours)
  • CJC 202:    Criminal Courts (three credit hours)
  • CJC 203:    Policing (three credit hours)
  • CJC 322:    Criminal Law (three credit hours)
  • CJC 323:    Criminal Procedure (three credit hours)
  • CJC 371:    Victimology (three credit hours)

In addition to fulfilling major requirements to earn an undergraduate degree, students are required to complete Loyola's Core Curriculum, which teaches them important skills and values. Students also develop their own interests by taking general electives.

                                                                                                                                           Updated 20 April 21