Examining the Evidence: Classroom as a Crime Lab I


This interdisciplinary course will serve as an introduction to the incorporation of forensics into a science curriculum and will cover those topic most often covered in a basic forensic course. Part I of this course will focus on the content areas most commonly covered in a one semester course including the following topics: observational skills, crime scene investigation, hair and fibers, fingerprints, toxicology, serology and blood spatter.  

Participants will be exposed to both the science content as well as the methodologies commonly used in the classroom in teaching forensics. Lab activities will accompany each topic. Guest speakers will be used to enhance the workshop experience where appropriate. Each participant will receive a comprehensive resource CD.

Course Reading:

Text: Forensic Science: Fundamentals and Investigations,  Anthony J. Bertino South-Western Cengage Publishing ISBN #0-538-73155-9

This is the premier high school text and will provide the participants with a resourse that they can use both in the workshop as well as in their classroom.  This textbook will be provided to the workshop participants.

Course Packet Readings: A list of articles which focus on the analysis of evidence and the reliability and validity of these conclusions will be sent to workshop participants prior their arrival.  These articles will serve as the backbone for our discussions as we examine how forensics fits in a science curriculum.

Crime Scene, Larry Ragle, Avon Books, ISBN #0-380-77379-1

Will provide the reader with an introduction to the field of forensic investigation. Can be used as a text in schools where budgets might not provide for the use of traditional textbook.  Should be available at local bookstores such as Barnes and Noble, Amazon.com (True Crime section).

Bone Collector  Jeffrey Deaver, Penguin Putman Books, ISBN # 0451188454

Story of serial killer that leaves forensic clues at each murder scene, that if analyzed correctly and quickly enough, will allow the next victim to be saved. 

Graduate Credit:
Participants wishing to earn graduate credit will create

•    Personal Evidence Portfolio.  This evidence portfolio will provide the basis for the creation of mock crime scenes. Guidelines will be provided.

•    Lesson/Lab: Develop or design a forensics lab activity or classroom lesson.

Tentative Schedule:

Monday:          AM        Introduction/History/Observational Skills
                           PM        Crime Scene Investigation

Tuesday:          AM        Hair Analysis and Lab
                            PM        Fiber Analysis and Lab

Wednesday:    AM        Toxicology and Lab
                            PM        Serology and Lab

Thursday:        AM        Sheriff Steve McFarland
                            PM        Blood Spatter and Lab

Friday               AM        Fingerprints
                            PM        Slime 9 and Deathboat Cases

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