A Master's Program in Forensic Science and Law

The Master's degree in Forensic Science and Law is a graduate level program that combines the study of forensic science techniques and principles with the legal system. Students in this program learn about the collection, analysis, and interpretation of physical evidence, as well as the legal and ethical considerations involved in handling such evidence. They also gain a deep understanding of the criminal justice system and the role of forensic science within it. Graduates of this program are well-prepared for careers in forensic science, law enforcement, crime laboratories, or other related fields. Additionally, many graduates of this program pursue advanced degrees in forensic science, law or related fields.

Apply for Admission

Phi Sigma Lambda 2023 Summer Workshop

Phi Sigma Lambda invites you to apply for the Nineteenth Annual Forensic Science and Law Workshop!

Faculty and Staff

Pamela Marshall, Ph.D.

Pamela Marshall, Ph.D.

Director and Associate Professor, Forensic Science and Law

Lyndsie Ferrara, Ph.D.

Lyndsie Ferrara, Ph.D.

Teaching Assistant Professor, Forensic Science and Law

Lisa Ludvico, Ph.D.

Lisa Ludvico, Ph.D.

Teaching Assistant Professor, Forensic Science and Law

Benjamin Wecht, M.A.

Benjamin Wecht, M.A.

Program Administrator for the Cyril H. Wecht Institute of Forensic Science and Law, Forensic Science and Law

girls in lab


As a student in our five-year program you will receive the best forensic science education possible. Our mission is to provide you with a high quality education in the natural and forensic sciences, and to advance scientific knowledge and improve society through research and education, thereby contributing to the mission of Duquesne University.

professor and student


You will learn laboratory-based natural biology and biochemistry as well as forensic scientific and legal foundations. By the time you enter the workplace you will be prepared to start your career with an excellent background and knowledge base in the forensic sciences. You will also have a comprehensive knowledge of the applicable principles of the law as it pertains to forensic science.

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As a student in our program, you will: Have an appreciation of professional and ethical concepts early in your college education, gain an understanding of the nexus that forensic science has with the law, have a comprehensive science and math educational background in order to be successful in upper level courses, be able to apply scientific principles to forensic problems in a laboratory setting, experience the broad diverse nature of the forensic community by participating in local, regional and national professional organizations and/or meetings, have an appreciation of the advances and changes in the forensic sciences and be able to adapt to those changes and have skills and a level of knowledge that will allow you to be a significant contributor to furthering the science of forensics upon graduation.

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Cyril H. Wecht Institute of Forensic Science and Law

The Cyril H. Wecht Institute of Forensic Science and Law is a premier educational and research institution that offers a variety of programs for students and professionals in the forensic science and legal communities. The Institute is named after Dr. Cyril Wecht, a renowned forensic pathologist, lawyer, and educator. The Institute offers undergraduate and graduate programs in forensic science, as well as a variety of professional development courses and workshops for forensic scientists, attorneys, and other legal professionals. It focuses on providing students with a thorough understanding of the principles and practices of forensic science, and the legal system, as well as the ethical and cultural issues that arise in forensic science and law.

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Student Organizations

Join a MFSL student organization- Phi Sigma Lambda and Delta Delta Epsilon. Participate in community service while building a network of peers in the forensic community. 

Phi Sigma Lambda

Phi Sigma Lambda is a professional fraternity dedicated to scholarship and civic duty. The organization attracts analytical, forward-thinking minds in a setting that fosters intellectual growth and professional development. Associate yourself with students who have a collective interest in forensic science and start building your network of peers. 

Delta Delta Epsilon

Delta Delta Epsilon is an international honor society dedicated to academic achievement. The chapter promotes community service, and advancing the fields of forensic science through community engagement.


As an extension of our curriculum, we connect students to Internships that provide professional experience and potential connections for future jobs. Internships provide meaningful experience related to your area of concentration. Participation will give insight into the forensic field, and help you identify areas of interest. Internships are not required of students in the Forensic Science and Law program, but are strongly encouraged due to the valuable real-world experience and connections they provide.


  • Allegheny County Medical Examiner's Office
  • Allegheny County Mobile Crime Unit
  • Allegheny County Forensic Laboratory Division
  • Cybergenetics; RJ Lee Group
  • Erie County Department of Health Medical Examiner's Office
  • SciTech Initiative at the Carnegie Science Center
  • Allegheny County Public Defenders Office
  • Brook's Army Medical Hospital in San Antonio, TX
  • University Of Pittsburgh Medical Centers Clinical Genomics Facility
  • National Audubon Society
  • Bexar County Criminal Investigations Laboratory in San Antonio, TX
  • The Law Firm of Bartel, Rudolf, and Associates.
  • FBI honors internship

Employment Rates for the Program

Year of Graduation

Percentage of Students employed between 12-18 months in a forensic science and/or science-related position

Percentage of students continuing their education in law, medicine, or research

Total %

2021 93% 7% 100%
2020 81% 13% 94%
2019 89% 6% 95%
2018 69% 31% 100%
2017 95% 5% 100%
2016 90% 0% 90%
2015 88% 12% 100%
2014 90% 10% 100%
2013 70% 30% 100%
2012 57% 14% 71%
2011 86% 14% 100%
2010 84% 16% 100%
2009 77% 15% 92%
2008 76% 21% 97%
2007 55% 21% 76%
2006 78% 22% 100%

Graduation Rates for the Program

Year of Graduation Number of students entering the 3rd year Number of students graduating the 5th year Percentage of students earning the Master of Science Degree
2022 32 25 78%
2021 17 15 88%
2020 21 16 76%
2019 20 18 90%
2018 19 16 84%
2017 25 21 84%
2016 15 10 67%
2015 23 17 74%
2014 12 10 83%
2013 11 10 91%
2012 17 14 83%
2011 14 14 100%
2010 22 19 86%
2009 30 26 84%
2008 35 29 81%
2007 44 42 95%
2006 12 9 75%




Accredited by the Forensic Science Education Programs Accreditation Commission.

  • The Forensic Science and Law Master Degree Program is fully accredited by the Forensic Science Education Programs Accreditation Commission. Our program is one of an elite group of forensic science programs to be accredited at the master's level. First obtained in 2009, our accreditation has been renewed twice.
  • FEPAC is sponsored by the American Academy of Forensic Sciences (AAFS), which awards the designation after a strict evaluation every five years. FEPAC-accredited programs have been rigorously reviewed and found to meet the standards for high quality forensic science education.
  • By choosing our accredited program, you will have the added assurance that your education will assist you in establishing a career in forensic sciences.

Questions? Contact Us!

Pamela Marshall, Ph.D.

Director and Associate Professor, Forensic Science and Law

Pamela Marshall headshot