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Important Update:

Through Jan. 28, the university is operating at Level 2. For classes, this means faculty will have the discretion to choose a fully remote, hybrid, extended classroom or fully in-person format. Masks will be mandatory for in-person classes.

Visit the COVID-19 website to report a positive test, symptoms or exposure, for vaccine and testing information and for other COVID-19 resources.

The M.S. Forensic Science - Molecular Biology degree is a research-oriented, thesis-required graduate degree program. Students must complete a minimum of 36 hours of graduate level work consisting of: A core of 30 hours--which includes six hours of thesis research or three hours of graduate capstone plus an additional three hour guided elective.

Students who successfully obtain a M.S. in Forensic Science - Molecular Biology will apply the scientific method to forensic science problems, critically review and interpret forensic science literature, develop well-reasoned, scientifically sound hypotheses, design experiments to test hypotheses, statistically analyze and interpret data, and communicate forensic science information clearly, concisely, logically and accurately to the general public both orally and in writing.


Forensic Science Requirements for Admission

  1. Completed UCO Graduate Application;
  2. Official paper copies of undergraduate and graduate transcripts from each institution attended with all degrees posted. The bachelor's degree must be from an accredited institution. Transcripts must show a minimum 3.0 overall undergraduate GPA and completion of nine undergraduate hours and other prerequisites (if any), as determined by the graduate program adviser: FRSC 3043 Crime Scene Processing; STAT 2103 Introduction to Statistics for the Sciences; and FRSC 2503 Introduction to Forensic Science. In addition, in order to meet the FBI Quality Assurance Standards for Forensic DNA Testing Laboratories, students will be required to complete (if not already completed) course work in Genetics and Biochemistry. These courses may be completed during the first year of the graduate program; and,
  3. Applicants must satisfy one of the following to be considered for admission: 1) A GRE score with a preferred minimum 50th percentile ranking (quantitative and verbal sections), 2) 2+ years of professional experience in Forensic Science or similar field, or 3) An undergraduate GPA of 3.5 or greater in a relevant degree program.
  4. A 1-page description of an area of interest in forensic science research.

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Other Requirements

  1. Plan of Study. File a Plan of Study with your advisor and the Jackson College of Graduate Studies by the end of the first semester during which you will complete your 12th hour of graduate work. The plan must be signed and dated by the student and the graduate advisor before it can be considered official;
  2. Academic Standards. Meet the following course work standards: (a) Overall GPA of 3.00 or higher; (b) no more than six hours of "C;" and, (c) no more than six advisor-approved hours from traditional correspondence courses; and,
  3. Thesis or Capstone Project. Enroll in six hours of Thesis (FRSC 5990) and complete an acceptable thesis and successfully defend it in public, two paper copies of the thesis and one electronic copy to the library through Proquest and the thesis’ title page, original signature page, summary and abstract page to the JCGS or enroll in three hours of Graduate Capstone (FRSC 5930) plus an additional three hour guided elective. 
  4. Final Requirements. Apply for graduation through the JCGS by advertising deadline.

Career Opportunities

Forensic Science career opportunities include: 

  • Forensic DNA Analyst
  • Wildlife Forensic DNA Analyst