The goal of the final paper is to master the literature as well as gain insight into the role of forensic science, its applications for use within the criminal justice system, and future applications.
Focus of the Final Paper
Students will focus upon one or more specific forensic topics/issues (to be approved by the instructor during Week One) and apply knowledge learned throughout the course to create an eight to ten page paper.
Examples of appropriate topics are:
• DNA Analysis
• Forensic Computer and Digital Analysis
• Fire and arson
The eight to ten page final paper will provide a comprehensive history of forensic science, current analysis, and prediction of the impacts of the chosen topic on criminal investigations. At a minimum, the paper should include the following:
1. General: A detailed history of forensic science from 1950 until the present. This should include important occurrences, events, findings and people that contributed to the development of forensic science.
2. An explanation of the scientific changes and methodologies/theories that have led to significant changes in the chosen forensic science topic. Examples of case studies should be examined.
3. A critical analysis of the successes and failures with regard to the specific topic, within forensic science, for the second half of the 20th century into the 21st century. This should include case studies for examples.
4. A discussion of the advances in technology and the limitations of evidence, as they pertain to the chosen topic, to gain a conviction or an acquittal of a defendant. This can include case studies as examples of research.
5. Predictions on the importance and limitations of forensics to future police work, as they pertain to the topic.
6. Where possible, all analyses should directly reference case studies and provide practical and reasoned approaches to the successes and failures of forensic science as it pertains to the chosen topic.
Students can supplement their papers with interviews of people involved in the field of forensics and provide scientific data and analyses justifying the positions taken in the paper and any other scholarly or practical references which lend credibility to the project and the findings presented.
Writing the Final Paper
The Final Paper:
• Must be eight to ten double spaced pages in length (excluding title and reference page), and formatted according to APA style as outlined in the approved APA style guide.
• Must include a title page with the following:
• Title of paper
• Student’s name
• Course name and number
• Instructor’s name
• Date submitted
• Must begin with an introductory paragraph that has a succinct thesis statement.
• Must address the topic of the paper with critical thought.
• Must end with a conclusion that reaffirms your thesis.
• Must use at least five scholarly resources, including a minimum of two from the Ashford Online Library.
• Must document all sources in APA style, as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.
• Must include a separate reference page, formatted according to APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.
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