Here’s a fantastic resource for high school students who are interested in criminology and forensic sciences. Forensics Illustrated is an eleven-unit forensics course for high school students that is offered in its entirely online, free.
The author explains:
Forensics Illustrated is comprehensive collection of all the resources collected, manufactured, and utilized by Brennon Sapp during his nine years of teaching Forensic Science to high school students. This information was published in its entirety in the fall of 2004 by EOA Scientific. Now this information is available to anyone for free.
Forensics Illustrated: Step Under the Tape includes online text, labs, projects, worksheets, tests, photos and sketches, powerpoint presentations, posters and more.
The units include:
- Physical Evidence
- Glass & Soil
- Hair & Fiber
- Ammunition & Ballistics
- Drugs & Paraphernalia
- Chemical Analysis
- Bodies & Autopsies
- DNA Typing
Powerpoint presentations that accompany each unit go into more detail, with presentations about subjects such as chromatography, hair analysis, soil labs and such. Worksheets also accompany each unit, as do tests and additional materials.
There are labs for some units. These are a soil lab, a developing fingerprints lab, a bullet striation analysis, a chromatography lab, a poison lab and DNA spooling where DNA is extracted from a strawberry. Worksheets and tests are available in .doc form, with a few available in PDF form. Note that the answer keys to the tests are password protected, so you will need to email the author if you have questions about any of the test answers.
You can read about Mr. Sapp and his classes at the Louisville Courier-Journal.
It is important for parents to preview the materials for suitability for their children. This is a class that was given to many high school students over the years and it is a high school level curriculum, but that does not mean it is suitable for all students. The materials, content and subject matter will not be suitable for younger children and may not be suitable for all teens. While this is a well-crafted forensic science course, it does deal with subjects such as death, violence, drug use and sexual assault. Copies of actual autopsy reports for Ron Goldman and JonBenet Ramsey are included, for instance, along with photographs of autopsy equipment, skin contusions and such. Parents may wish to omit certain resources, units or materials.
You can find more forensic science resources for further studies here.