Forensic Technology

Course Descriptions

For course descriptions, please see the college catalog.

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Green River is proud to be one of the first colleges in the state of Washington to offer a forensic course of study. Learn from expert criminalists in areas of study such as crime scene investigation, DNA, toxicology, serial killer investigation and autopsy procedures. The demand for crime scene investigators continues to grow.

Forensic science is the application of science to those criminal and civil laws that are enforced by police agencies in a criminal justice system. Graduates of this program will be advised to continue their education at the university level or to seek immediate limited employment in the crime scene investigation area.

Areas of employment

Crime Scene Investigators or other forensic specialists, with education beyond the AAS degree, may work for:

  • Local Police Crime Scene Units/Labs
  • County Sheriffs' Crime Scene Units/Labs
  • City Police Department Crime Scene Units/Labs
  • State Highway Patrol Crime Laboratories
  • Federal Law Enforcement Crime Laboratories
  • Private Crime Laboratories
  • Private Investigators

When can new students enroll?

You may enroll in the Forensic Technology program prior to the beginning of any quarter.


Complete an application to Green River College, complete the COMPASS assessment, and attend a quarterly Criminal Justice/Forensic Technology advising session.

How long does the program take?

It depends on you. If you attend Green River full time, the degree requirements can be completed in about 6 quarters. The certificate may be completed in two quarters depending on when classes are scheduled. If you attend part-time, it will depend on how many credits you complete each quarter.

The program can be completed in the evening. However, it will take substantially longer. Evening classes with low enrollment have a greater chance of being canceled, delaying the completion of your degree or certificate.

Special fees

Each Forensic Technology class requires a fee to help defray costs of equipment and supplies.

What will contribute to success in the program?

A person working in the forensic science field must be dedicated and, possess sound judgment, integrity and a genuine interest in the quality application of science to criminal and civil laws. Forensic Technology students should have above average grades and do well in the hard science classes such as biology, chemistry, anatomy/physiology and physics.

Does the program transfer to four-year schools?

The Associate in Applied Science degree may be transferred to four-year institutions. However, all transferability is at the discretion of the receiving institution. Careful planning with an advisor and coordination of courses with the college or university of your choice is advised.

The Associate in Applied Science degree parallels our transferable Associate in Arts degree; students may apply to be awarded both degrees.

Employment outlook

This is a brand new degree and certificate; therefore specific employment data are not available for the forensic technology field. We believe career prospects in criminal justice have never been stronger. However, if you have a prior felony or domestic violence conviction, job opportunities are very limited. Some positions require drug testing and polygraph examinations. As competition for jobs is fierce, education is important.

Advanced opportunities

Advancement in the criminal justice field is a real possibility. We recommend that you optimize your chances for advancement by obtaining a four-year degree. Positions are limited for those with the two-year degree

Salary range

Depending on the job type, salary expectations can range from $25,000 to over $50,000 per year for full time employment.