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Graduate Course Proposal Form Submission Detail - ANG6741
Tracking Number - 2635

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Current Status: Approved by SCNS - 2015-01-01
Campus: Tampa
Submission Type: New
Course Change Information (for course changes only):
Comments: to GC 5/6/13; object need revision; Faculty emailed 5/10/13; course put in queue for revision. Emailed 12/5/13. updatd 1/28/14. Approved 3/4/14. To USF Sys 3/19. to SCNS 3/27/14. Nmbr 6515 approved as 6741. Effective 1/1/15

Detail Information

  1. Date & Time Submitted: 2011-10-05
  2. Department: Anthropology
  3. College: AS
  4. Budget Account Number: 120500000
  5. Contact Person: Heide Castaneda
  6. Phone: 8130742138
  7. Email:
  8. Prefix: ANG
  9. Number: 6741
  10. Full Title: Introduction to Forensic Sciences
  11. Credit Hours: 3
  12. Section Type: C - Class Lecture (Primarily)
  13. Is the course title variable?: N
  14. Is a permit required for registration?: N
  15. Are the credit hours variable?: N
  16. Is this course repeatable?: N
  17. If repeatable, how many times?: 0
  18. Abbreviated Title (30 characters maximum): FORENSIC SCIENCES
  19. Course Online?: C - Face-to-face (0% online)
  20. Percentage Online: 0
  21. Grading Option: R - Regular
  22. Prerequisites: none
  23. Corequisites: none
  24. Course Description: Provides a general introduction to the methods and techniques used in the interdisciplinary field of forensic sciences.

  25. Please briefly explain why it is necessary and/or desirable to add this course: Replacing Selected Topics with Permanent number; already listed in program
  26. What is the need or demand for this course? (Indicate if this course is part of a required sequence in the major.) What other programs would this course service? This course is an elective for students in anthropology (both MA and PhD), and can also serve as an elective for students in criminology. In addition, this course would be central to the department of anthropology's proposed concentration in archaeology and forensic sciences

    Average student enrollment in past semesters has been 5-7 graduate students. This is a cross-listed course that also includes undergraduates for a maximum of 55 students. The proposal is requesting permanent number for the graduate listing.

  27. Has this course been offered as Selected Topics/Experimental Topics course? If yes, how many times? Yes, 3 or more times
  28. What qualifications for training and/or experience are necessary to teach this course? (List minimum qualifications for the instructor.) Extensive theoretical and methodological knowledge in forensic anthropology and bio-archaeology in general, and in criminal investigation, specifically

    The instructor teaching the course needs a PhD degree.

  29. Objectives: 1) To introduce students to the range of applied forensic sciences relevant to violent crimes.

    2) To develop analytical skills for applying various forensic methods to different case scenarios.

    3) To apply appropriate methods to a specific, original research problem.

    4) To apply critical thinking skills through reading and discussion of literature.

    5) To develop academic writing skills through writing of a research paper on a focused topic & weekly essays.

  30. Learning Outcomes: At the end of the course students will have

    1. An appreciation for the aplication of the physical, medical, natural and engineering sciences to specialized legal contexts in forensic sciences

    2. Familiarity with methods and techniques for the conduct of investigation of a crime scene.

    3. An understanding of the role of law enforcement crime labs in forensic investigations.

  31. Major Topics: Introduction to forensic sciences; the role of forensic pathologists; Medico-legal death investigations; Forensic Toxicology; Forensic Anthropology & Taphonomy; Forensic Odontology; Forensic Entomology; Crime Scene Investigation;

    Crime Scene Processing; Criminal Investigations; Forensic Psychology; The Crime Lab; Mass Atrocities and Crime Scenes;

    Bloodstain patterns;Introduction to DNA & How blood is tested at the scene and in the lab; DNA fingerprinting and analysis in forensic contexts;Trace evidence I: glass, hair, fibers, paint, tape, gunshot residue; fingerprinting

    Trace evidence II: footwear, tire impressions;Trace evidence III: tool marks, firearms questioned documents

    Vehicular scene Reconstruction; Arson, fire and explosions

    Ethical Issues in Forensics and the Legal System: The Scientist as a Witness; Criminal Profiling; Prosecuting Criminal Cases;

  32. Textbooks: James, Stuart H. and Jon J. Nordby (eds.) Forensic Science: An Introduction to Scientific and Investigative Techniques. 2nd Edition. Boca Raton: CRC Press, 2005. ISBN: 0849327474.
  33. Course Readings, Online Resources, and Other Purchases: Additional set of articles and book chapters
  34. Student Expectations/Requirements and Grading Policy: Mid-term and Final Exam = 100 points each

    Book Review = 50 points

    Forensic Case Report = 50 points

    Research Paper = 100 points

    Attendance, participation and discussion = 10 points

  35. Assignments, Exams and Tests: Book Review:

    Each student is required to write a review of a book exploring the forensic sciences. Book reviews should include both a summary and thoughtful commentary. (Book reviews are not book reports.) Books must be pre-approved by the instructor and the review is to be 5-7 pages in length. No late book reviews will be accepted.

    Forensic Investigation Report:

    Each student is required to write a 4-5 page report highlighting the circumstances, background and specific forensic tools and evidence used to investigate a modern crime. Appropriate topics include: Lindbergh Kidnapping, Jean Benet Ramsey, O.J. Simpson, Oklahoma City Bombing, etc. Forensic report topics must be approved by the instructor

    Research Project:

    Research topics need to be pre-approved by instructor and need to include original ideas and thoughts. Topics can vary but should stem from course topics. Research papers may be original, stem from a case study or include significant literature review. Papers should follow format of articles published in the Journal of Forensic Sciences, including the following sections: an abstract, introduction, materials and methods, results, discussion and works cited. Additional figures or tables should be attached at the end of the paper. Graduate students are encourages to develop these projects into presentations at professional scientific meetings or for publication.

  36. Attendance Policy: Course Attendance at First Class Meeting Policy for Graduate Students: For structured courses, 6000 and above, the College/Campus Dean will set the first-day class attendance requirement. Check with the College for specific information. This policy is not applicable to courses in the following categories: Educational Outreach, Open University (TV), FEEDS Program, Community Experiential Learning (CEL), Cooperative Education Training, and courses that do not have regularly scheduled meeting days/times (such as, directed reading/research or study, individual research, thesis, dissertation, internship, practica, etc.). Students are responsible for dropping undesired courses in these categories by the 5th day of classes to avoid fee liability and academic penalty. (See USF Regulation Registration - 4.0101,

    Attendance Policy for the Observance of Religious Days by Students: In accordance with Sections 1006.53 and 1001.74(10)(g) Florida Statutes and Board of Governors Regulation 6C-6.0115, the University of South Florida (University/USF) has established the following policy regarding religious observances: (

    In the event of an emergency, it may be necessary for USF to suspend normal operations. During this time, USF may opt to continue delivery of instruction through methods that include but are not limited to: Blackboard, Elluminate, Skype, and email messaging and/or an alternate schedule. Its the responsibility of the student to monitor Blackboard site for each class for course specific communication, and the main USF, College, and department websites, emails, and MoBull messages for important general information.

  37. Policy on Make-up Work: Make up work will only be available in cases of 1) a documented medical emergency or 2) major religious observances that necessitate absence from class. In the case of the latter, the student must present notice in writing to the instructor by the next class meeting.
  38. Program This Course Supports: MA, PhD, and Dual degree programs in Applied Anthropology
  39. Course Concurrence Information:

- if you have questions about any of these fields, please contact or