Announcements & News

July 2009

Marshall University Forensic Science Graduate Program ranks number one in the nation on national assessment test scores

The Marshall University Forensic Science Graduate Program is ranked number one in the country for its students receiving the highest overall test scores on a national assessment test.

Five Marshall graduate students earned the Forensic Science Program highest honors on the Forensic Science Assessment Test, a qualifying test offered each year by the American Board of Criminalistics. One of Marshall’s students ranked second in overall test results among students from nine other forensic science programs.

Dr. Terry W. Fenger, director of the program, said the test is useful for assessing the program’s strengths and demonstrating to prospective students and the general public its ability to meet national standards. “Support obtained by U.S. Sen. Robert C. Byrd enabled the Marshall University Forensic Science Center to build its infrastructure and develop the academic program,” he said.

Dr. Pamela Staton, program coordinator, said the test scores are evidence of the high quality education the program provides. “The quality of an academic program can be measured by a program’s achievement of national accreditation and how well its students perform on national board examinations,” she said. “The Forensic Science Program at Marshall University has achieved both of these honorable distinctions. This translates to high quality forensic science services to law enforcement, the legal profession, and the public as graduates of this program become forensic scientists in the field.”

Marshall’s Forensic Science Graduate Program is one of only a few such programs in the country that is Forensic Science Education Programs Accreditation Commission (FEPAC)-accredited by the American Academy of Forensic Sciences.

The students who participated in the test are now graduates of the nationally recognized Forensic Science Program. They demonstrated their knowledge in disciplines including forensic biology, controlled substances, trace analysis, toxicology, latent prints, questioned documents, fire debris, and firearms/tool marks.

The test is offered to students in their last semester of an academic forensic science program. While seeking their first job, recent college graduates may use their test results to demonstrate their knowledge across a broad range of forensic science disciplines.

The nine forensic science programs that participated in the exam included Marshall University, Arcadia University, Cedar Crest College, Duquesne University, Ohio University, Penn State University, Sam Houston University, University of Illinois at Chicago and the University of North Texas.

The American Board of Criminalistics offers a wide array of testing and certification services that focus on the forensic sciences.