The Master of Science in Forensic Science is one of the first of its kind in the State of Texas and one of only a handful of such programs in North America. The forensic science program is designed to provide both classroom and laboratory exposure for students. This degree seeks to apply the principles of the physical sciences, chemistry, and biology to the purposes of law. A formal internship, conducted in a forensic laboratory, provides students with hands-on training in the areas of forensic DNA, forensic toxicology, firearms and ballistics, trace evidence analysis, and controlled substance analysis. Many students in the MSFS program go on to work for both public and private forensic laboratories, federal, state and local governments, hospitals, colleges, and toxicology laboratories.
Unique to the College of Criminal Justice at SHSU is the Southeast Texas Applied Forensic Science (STAFS) facility. The STAFS facility is a research facility recognized by the Anatomical Board of Texas as a willed-body donor facility, and accepts human body donations for the purposes of scientific research. The goal of the research facility is to advance academic and technical knowledge in the application of a variety of forensic science disciplines in solving crimes, particularly evidence found on, within, or around the human body. A predominant focus of research at STAFS is forensic anthropology.
Access to a contemporary human skeletal collection, experienced faculty, and a laboratory equipped with state-of-the-art equipment assists students in the successful completion of research projects.