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Criminal Investigator Schools

Are you interested in becoming a criminal investigator? Hit TV shows like the ever-popular CSI series, along with its spinoffs, have generated interest in the field. The good news is that the United States Department of Labor predicts higher than average industry growth in this decade. Continuing scientific advances make criminal investigation a hot career for those who see a crime as a puzzle to solve, and who have the patience to build a case, sometimes with little physical evidence. The less the investigator has to work with, the more technical expertise is needed to make the most of the clues available.

What exactly does a criminal investigator do, and what are the educational requirements for becoming one? Criminal investigators solve crimes by utilizing the latest in technological advances. Murders have been solved with a single drop of blood or small amount of saliva left at the scene. Shoe or tire prints can be cast in plaster and later matched to those owned by the perpetrator. Latent fingerprints can be lifted and matched to various national databases. Some positions require more education than others, but most require, at minimum, a bachelor's degree in a relevant field.

Criminal investigation positions you may want to consider are forensic science technician, crime scene technician, identification technician and latent print technician. The word 'technician' in these job titles indicate a need for in-depth science and computer knowledge. Many workers in these fields have a four-year degree in chemistry or biology. Some have opted for criminal justice degrees. Holding a master's degree will give you a leg up. There are numerous criminal investigator colleges and other criminal investigator schools. If you live in a city of any size, the chances are you can find a program to meet your needs and obtain an education without leaving your home town.

Obviously the higher you plan to climb this career ladder, the more education you'll need. If you aspire to a management or supervisory position, a master's degree will prove helpful. At the very top are the medical examiners who gather information while performing autopsies. These people are physicians and need medical degrees.

Other industry specialties include crime scene photography, computer forensics, cyber crime, and forensic psychology, to name a few. You can work for the FBI, the CIA, the DEA, or one of the other alphabet soup agencies of the federal government. Each has its own requirements, and some may require that you first be a police officer.

If this is your career choice, either as a first post-college job, or as an adult seeking vocational change, start by comparing various criminal investigator colleges. It's also possible to earn an online degree from one of the many criminal investigator schools. If you choose anything other than a traditional college or university program, first ascertain that it is fully accredited.

Top Criminal Investigator Schools
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