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M.S. in Forensic Science (Nuclear Forensics)


Key Benefits of our program:

  • Optimal training opportunities and direct interaction with practitioners in the field
  • Faculty mentor, teach, and advise students, paying close attention to their development
  • Experiential training opportunities at Brookhaven National Laboratory, where students gain hands-on experience through research and close interaction with technical experts in nuclear forensics 
  • Gateway courses in "Research and Career Resources" and "Quality Assurance and Ethics"

Career Paths: Graduates may obtain positions in:

  • Federal agencies (monitoring and analyzing nuclear materials)
  • National laboratories (nuclear detection and analysis research)
  • Security (emergency management, intelligence operations, nuclear materials transportation)
  • Business (project management, program analysis, quality assurance, training instruction)

Consult the Course Catalog for specific requirements

Sample Program Requirements

The Nuclear Forensics Track involves Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) on Long Island. This 36-credit-hour track trains students in methodologies in a variety of areas, including bioterrorism threats, chemical detection and analysis, and sample provenance and origin. Students take two semesters at SU followed by a semester and summer internship, where they work alongside scientists in both the Nonproliferation and National Security Department and the Nuclear Science and Technology Department.


I. GATEWAY COURSES - 22 Credits Required

  • FSC 606 Advanced Forensic Science (3 credits)
  • FSC 631 Statistics for the Forensic Sciences (3)
  • FSC 632 Research and Career Resources (3)
  • FSC 633 Quality Assurance & Ethics (3)
  • FSC 644 Forensic Chemical Analysis (4)
  • FSC 654 Nuclear Forensics (3)
  • NUC 520 Radiochemistry, Nuclear Fuel Reprocessing and Nonproliferation (3)


II. Electives - 5 Credits Required

At least 9 elective credits must be part of a designated concentration. Student-specific concentrations, potentially including FSC 690, may be allowed by petition.

  • ANT 600 Reading the Body (3)
  • ANT 633 Human Osteology (3)
  • ANT 634 Anthropology of Death (3)
  • ANT 636 Forensic Anthropology (3)
  • BIO 575 Biochemistry I (3)
  • BIO 576 Biochemistry II (3)
  • BIO 631 Population Genetics (3)
  • BIO 632 Molecular Genetics (3)
  • BIO 663 Molecular Biotechnology (3)
  • BIO 665 Molecular Biology Laboratory (3)
  • BIO 675 Biochemistry Laboratory (3)
  • CHE 575 Organic Spectroscopy (3)
  • CHE/BCM 677 Prep & Analysis of Proteins & Nucleic Acids (3)
  • FSC 553 Principles of Toxicology (3)
  • FSC 635 Medicolegal Death Investigation I (3)
  • FSC 636 Medicolegal Death Investigation II (3)
  • FSC 637 Medicolegal Death Investigation for Emergency Responders (3)
  • FSC 640 Selected Topics in Advanced Forensic Science (3)
  • FSC 651 Forensic Pathology (3)
  • FSC 652 Forensic Mental Health (3)
  • FSC 653 Forensic Toxicology (3)
  • FSC 654 Nuclear Forensics (3)
  • FSC 661 Firearms & Impression Evidence (3)
  • FSC 662 Forensic Entomology (3)
  • FSC 664 Forensic Biochemical Analysis (3)
  • FSC 665 Latent Prints (3)
  • FSC 667 Forensic Photography (3)
  • FSC 668 Crime Scene Investigation (3)
  • FSC 669 Science of Countering WMDs (3)
  • FSC 671 Firearms and Impression Evidence II (3)
  • FSC 672 Advanced Light Microscopy (3)
  • FSC 676 Cold Cases (3)
  • FSC 690 Independent Study or Internship in Forensic Science (1 - 9)
  • IST 602 Digital Forensics (3)
  • LAW 604 Criminal Law (3)
  • LAW 708 Constitutional Criminal Procedure Investigation (3)
  • LAW 718 Evidence (4)
  • LAW 719 Psychology & the Law (3)
  • LAW 759 Computer Crimes (3)
  • LAW 781 Forensic Evidence (2)
  • LIN 601 Introductory to Linguistic Analysis (3)
  • LIN 631 Phonological Analysis (3)
  • LIN 671 Dimension of Bilingualism & Multiculturalism (3)
  • LIN 675 Forensic Linguistics (3)
  • PSY 674 Advanced Social Psychology (3)
  • SWK 724 Psychopathology (3)
  • SWK/WGS 626 Persons in Social Context (3)


III. Internship or Independent Study Research - at least 3 credits required

Each student is required to participate in original research, write a detailed report of publishable quality, and successfully defend the results in front of a committee of three faculty members in a public seminar. This research will be conducted as part of the Brookhaven internship. Additional credits of independant study or internship may be used to satisfy elective credit or concentration credit by petition.

  • FSC 690 Independent Study in Forensic Science (1-9)


Total Credits for Degree - 36