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You've probably seen a crime scene technician on a TV show or movie milling about in the background of a crime scene. But unlike their seemingly passive roles in media, crime scene technicians have significant responsibilities in law enforcement. They are in charge of collecting evidence on a crime scene, analyzing collected data, and providing detailed reports on their findings to officers and detectives.

In more detail, the tasks of a crime scene technician include processing fingerprints, analyzing physical evidence such as DNA, taking photographs of the crime scene, creating crime scene sketches, and ensuring all collected evidence is safely transferred to the crime lab.

Many crime scene technicians have a bachelor's degree in criminal justice or a similar field, but it is possible to attain this role with a high school diploma or GED. More than that, a crime scene technician must have excellent analytical skills, a keen eye for detail, and a strong grasp of forensics and critical thinking. Above all, they must have a strong stomach to analyze any type of crime scene in a professional manner--but this skill often comes with experience on the job.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a crime scene technician. For example, did you know that they make an average of $24.98 an hour? That's $51,968 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 14% and produce 2,400 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Crime Scene Technician Do

There are certain skills that many crime scene technicians have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed detail oriented, math and science skills and problem-solving skills.

How To Become a Crime Scene Technician

If you're interested in becoming a crime scene technician, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 52.3% of crime scene technicians have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 6.4% of crime scene technicians have master's degrees. Even though most crime scene technicians have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a crime scene technician. When we researched the most common majors for a crime scene technician, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or associate degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on crime scene technician resumes include high school diploma degrees or master's degree degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a crime scene technician. In fact, many crime scene technician jobs require experience in a role such as police officer. Meanwhile, many crime scene technicians also have previous career experience in roles such as correction officer or patrol officer.

Crime Scene Technician Career Paths

Top Careers Before Crime Scene Technician

Top Careers After Crime Scene Technician

Average Salary for a Crime Scene Technician

Crime Scene Technicians in America make an average salary of $51,968 per year or $25 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $85,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $31,000 per year.
Average Crime Scene Technician Salary
$51,968 Yearly
$24.98 hourly
$31,000
10 %
$51,000
Median
$85,000
90 %

What Am I Worth?

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Crime Scene Technician Education

Crime Scene Technician Majors

5.3 %

Crime Scene Technician Degrees

Bachelors

52.3 %

Associate

25.7 %

High School Diploma

9.6 %

Top Colleges for Crime Scene Technicians

1. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,354
Enrollment
7,083

2. California State University - Bakersfield

Bakersfield, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,309
Enrollment
9,142

3. SUNY at Binghamton

Vestal, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$9,808
Enrollment
13,990

4. San Diego State University

San Diego, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,488
Enrollment
30,018

5. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

6. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$8,987
Enrollment
18,946

7. Boston University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,948
Enrollment
17,238

8. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

9. University of Chicago

Chicago, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$58,230
Enrollment
6,600

10. Howard University

Washington, DC • Private

In-State Tuition
$26,756
Enrollment
6,166

Top Skills For a Crime Scene Technician

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 41.0% of crime scene technicians listed biohazard on their resume, but soft skills such as detail oriented and math and science skills are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Crime Scene Technician Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Crime Scene Technician templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Crime Scene Technician resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Crime Scene Technician Demographics

Crime Scene Technician Gender Distribution

Male
Male
51%
Female
Female
49%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among crime scene technicians, 49.4% of them are women, while 50.6% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among crime scene technicians is White, which makes up 63.3% of all crime scene technicians.

  • The most common foreign language among crime scene technicians is Spanish at 85.7%.

Online Courses For Crime Scene Technician That You May Like

Advertising Disclosure  The courses listed below are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the course, we may receive a commission.
International Law In Action: Investigating and Prosecuting International Crimes
coursera

'Investigating and Prosecuting International Crimes' is the second course in Leiden University's new series on International Law in Action. The first course covered international courts and tribunals in The Hague in general. This second course provides an insider perspective into the work of international criminal courts and tribunals. You will learn about the investigation and prosecution of international crimes in The Hague. Atrocities produce unspeakable forms of violence. We will explore whe...

Introduction to Criminology: Explaining Crime
udemy
4.6
(1,527)

Learn to Speak About Criminal Psychology and the Sociology of Crime Like an Expert...

Computer Forensics Fundamentals
udemy
4.4
(7,344)

An introduction to Computer Forensics, to demonstrate the process of going from the crime scene to the court room...

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Top Crime Scene Technician Employers

Most Common Employers For Crime Scene Technician

Rank  Company  Average Salary  Hourly Rate  Job Openings  
1Baltimore City Public Schools$70,551$33.921
2Gwinnett County$68,714$33.043
3Aftermath Services$67,510$32.4619
4Community Home Health & Hospice$65,169$31.331
5Polk County Sheriff's Office$63,046$30.313
6Puerto Rico Supplies$61,481$29.562
7Gainesville Regional Utilities$61,473$29.551
8City of Orlando$57,390$27.592
9NOPD$54,256$26.082
10City of Tacoma$53,362$25.652

Becoming a Crime Scene Technician FAQs

Crime Scene Technician vs. Crime Scene Investigator

A crime scene technician mostly focuses their time on analyzing crime scene evidence in a lab setting, while a crime scene investigator works the crime scene to find all of the evidence possible.

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