Loyola University Maryland

Forensic Studies

Course Descriptions

FO 500 Forensic Studies Seminar

An exploration of various topics in forensic science and related fields through seminar presentations by forensic practitioners, educators, law enforcement and graduate students.  The course may be repeated for credit multiple times. 

Credit = 1.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Fall/spring, Years typically offered: Annually

FO 530 Introduction to Criminalistics 

An introduction to the problems and techniques of scientific examination of forensic physical evidence with emphasis on documentation and interpretation of physical patterns. Emphasis is placed on the theoretical bases of methods of comparison and their influence on scientific interpretation of evidence. Topics include scientific photography, imprints, impressions, tool marks, gunshot residue, cordage and textile examinations. Laboratory exercises include forensic photography, analysis of fingerprints, hair, gunshot residue, and footwear outsole patterns. Offered online only.

Credit = 3.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Fall, summer, Years typically offered: Annually

FO 600 Crime Scene Investigation

An introduction to the basic procedures and practices used in crime scene investigation including documentation and processing, methods for recovery and processing of physical and trace evidence, and procedures for establishing chain of custody and continuity of evidence. Legal and ethical requirements associated with crime scene processing are also examined. Some field trips may be required.

Credit = 4.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Spring, Years typically offered: Annually

FO 610 Introduction to Fingerprints

Introduction to the discovery and historical use of fingerprints, biology of the skin and formation of fingerprints, and fundamentals of how and why fingerprints are used.  Students will learn how latent fingerprints are recovered from items of evidence, the chemical and physical techniques associated with processing different surfaces, as well as learn to recognize various pattern types and the levels of detail and anatomical features of fingerprints and palm prints.

Credit = 4.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Fall, Years typically offered: Annually

FO 630 Biological and Forensic Science Laboratory Quality Assurance

Introduction to theory and practice of quality assurance to include quality control/assurance, management, and application of statics, as applied in bioscience industry and forensic laboratory environments. Standards associated with ALCOA, ASCLD-LAB and ISO accreditation and professional certification procedures are emphasized.

Credit = 3.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Spring, Years typically offered: Annually

FO 650 Forensic Pattern Evidence

Introduction to the documentation, collection, analysis, and interpretation of pattern evidence associated with firearms, toolmarks, bloodstain pattern analysis, questioned documents, footwear and tire tracks.  The laboratory will explore techniques and methodologies for processing and comparisons, with an emphasis on advanced techniques for latent fingerprint development and recovery, and microscopic comparison of firearms and toolmark evidence.

Credit = 4.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Fall, Years typically offered: Annually

FO 675 Mock Trial for Forensic Pattern Evidence

Introduction to the policies, practice, and procedures of a criminal trial.  Students will participate in a mock criminal trial, using live action role play and other techniques to understand the role of the forensic practitioner in evidence presentation in court, learn how to work with statutes and precedents and rules of evidence, and experience direct and cross examination when presenting forensic evidence.

Credit = 3.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Spring, Years typically offered: Annually

FO 690 Topics in Forensic Science

Select topics in forensic science are examined to increase the breadth and depth of understanding of a given subject.  May include student presentations depending on topic.  Course may be repeated one time for credit.

Credit = 3.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Fall/spring/summer, Years typically offered: Annually

FO 710 Advanced Topics and Techniques in Fingerprints

In-depth analysis of latent prints, including pattern and ridge flow, orientation, distortion, and suitability.  The modern methodology used by latent print examiners will be demonstrated, and students will practice comparing latent prints to known prints and rendering conclusions.  Students will also learn about court testimony, important court cases regarding latent prints, as well as different types of bias that affect forensic examinations.

Credit = 4.0, Pre-requisites: FO 610 or written permission from graduate director; Sessions typically offered: Spring, Years typically offered: Annually

FO 750 Forensic Cognitive Psychology

Introduction to the application of cognitive psychology to the improvement of forensic science policy and practice. Students examine current challenges for the forensic science community, including the contribution of forensic science errors to wrongful convictions and the increasing demand for forensic examinations to produce probative results in criminal trials. Offered online only.

Credit = 3.0, Pre-requisites: None; Sessions typically offered: Fall, Years typically offered: Annually

FO 752 Forensic Science Errors and Wrongful Convictions

This course will perform reviews of cases associated with wrongful convictions and elucidate causative factors related to scientific validity, testimony standards, laboratory management, professional development, system issues, and legal professionals and frameworks. Students will learn to analyze common factors across forensic disciplines and jurisdictions, perform root cause analysis, and develop systemic reforms. Offered online only.

Credit = 3.0, Pre-requisites: None; Sessions typically offered: Spring, Years typically offered: Annually

FO 780 Pattern Evidence Recognition and Statistical Methods

An introduction to the current paradigms and statistical methods used or being developed for forensic pattern evidence.  Students will be assigned readings and training through online modules.

Credit = 1.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Fall/spring/summer, Years typically offered: Annually

FO 790 Forensic Pattern Analysis Capstone

A capstone experience in which a student may arrange an internship, independent study, or research experience with a faculty sponsor to engage in an in-depth exploration of a topic associated with forensic or criminal investigation.

Credit = 4.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Fall/spring/summer, Years typically offered: Annually

BL 628 Bioterrorism

A survey of the history and biology of bioterrorism and biowarfare agents. The course focuses on the cellular and molecular biology of organisms identified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as bioweapons. Emphasis is placed on scientific communication (student-led lectures) and reading/understanding of relevant scientific literature.

Credit = 3.00, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Fall, Years typically offered: Annually

BL 651 Forensic Entomology with Lab

Forensic entomology is the application of basic and applied principles of insect biology and the collection of entomological data in such a manner that it can be used as evidence in criminal investigations to aid in resolving legal issues that are either criminal or civil in nature. Lectures explore the use of insects in the science of forensic entomology and its impact on death scene investigation, neglect, or abuse; contamination of food products and other marketable goods; and subsequent litigation. Laboratories focus on techniques associated with death scene investigation, particularly in the collection and identification of arthropods found on a corpse. Some field trips may be associated with the laboratory portion of the course.

Credit = 5.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Spring, Years typically offered: Annually

BL 655 Forensic Biology with Lab

An introduction to the role of biology in forensic sciences. Topics include biological evidence, influences of invertebrates, vertebrates and microorganisms on legal matters, and in-depth discussion of body fluid analyses. Labs examine techniques associated with biological evidence analyses.

Credit = 5.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Fall, Years typically offered: Annually

BL 773 Special Topics in Forensic Biology

An examination of current topics in forensic biology with an emphasis on the use of primary literature. Students lead group discussions and/or make oral presentations. May be repeated once for credit with different topics.

Credit = 3.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Summer, Years typically offered: Annually

PL 611 Bioethics

A study of the moral problems and uncertainties connected with biomedical research. Theoretical questions on the nature of morality and methodological foundations of science lead to a discussion of current topics, such as recombinant DNA, cloning, organ transplants, definitions of death, and death therapy.

Credit = 3.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Spring, Years typically offered: Annually

ST 510 Introduction to Statistics

A non-calculus-based course covering descriptive statistics; regression model fitting; probability; normal, binomial, and sampling distributions; estimation; and hypothesis testing. Degree credit will not be given for more than one of ST 510 or ST 565 or ST 581. Closed to students who have taken ST 565 or ST 581.

Credit = 3.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Fall/spring/summer, Years typically offered: Annually

ST 565 Biostatistics

A non-calculus-based course covering descriptive statistics, regression model fitting, probability, distributions, estimation, and hypothesis testing. Applications are geared toward research and data analysis in biology and medicine. Degree credit will not be given for more than one of ST 510 or ST 565 or ST 581. Closed to students who have taken ST 510 or ST 581.

Credit = 3.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Spring, Years typically offered: Annually

ST 681 Probability and Statistics

Random experiments, probability, random variables, probability density functions, expectation, descriptive statistics, confidence intervals, hypothesis testing, and simple linear regression.

Credit = 3.0, Pre-requisites: None, Sessions typically offered: Fall, Years typically offered: Annually

Rebecca Brogan
Faculty

Rebecca Brogan, Ph.D.

Rebecca Brogan, Ph.D., teaches biology at Loyola and enjoys collaborating with other faculty on research

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