Are you looking to write your perfect forensic scientist CV?
A career in forensic science is both fascinating and crucial, with professionals working to solve complex mysteries through scientific analysis.
Your CV is your first impression on potential employers, and for a forensic scientist, it’s your chance to showcase your qualifications, experience, and achievements in this specialised field.
In this article, we’ll provide you with a complete step-by-step guide, useful tips and examples to help you create a great CV that opens doors to exciting opportunities in the world of forensic science.
I am a very meticulous, committed and dynamic Forensic Scientist with a keen eye for detail as well as an unquenchable thirst for research and investigations. I have excellent communication skills which I used to good effect in several courtroom appearances as an expert witness. I can confidently undertake joint examinations with other evidence types, and I have a sound understanding of evidence recovery and preservation. This position would maintain my interest in the science industry as well as provide me with the opportunity to develop further experiences in the field.
My findings have resulted in the capture and prosecution of individuals who have committed serious criminal offences
First class honours degree in Forensic Science
Five journals published in the Journal of Forensic Science
2010 – 2013
BSc (Hons) Forensic Science
University of Derby
Grade achieved: First Class Degree
Law, Criminology and Criminal Justice
Crime Scene to Court
Serious & Organised Crime
2006 – 2008 Results: English: A Maths: B Biology: A
Jan 2015 – Present
Forensic Scientist Metropolitan Police Service
Main duties performed:
Attending and investigating scenes of crimes of varying complexity from burglaries and drugs offences to rapes and murders
Liaising with team members and the police to establish forensic strategies
Recording findings, taking photographs and collecting trace evidence from scenes of crimes and accidents
Determining the best order of examination for the exhibits to obtain biological material for DNA analysis without compromising other evidence types
Screening of blood, semen, saliva, and other biological material for DNA analysis
Performing microscopy and chemical analysis on bodily fluid stains
Presenting complex scientific evidence at court in layman’s terms to aid comprehension
Producing accurate and concise notes and reports, suitable for use in court
Providing evidence and testifying in court
Justifying findings under cross-examination in courts of law
Using digital photography, computer systems and scientific equipment on a daily basis
Tracking evidence via the LIMS system
Correctly inputting and extracting data and information from medical databases
Performing fingerprint analysis
Adhering to the health and safety standards and laboratory procedures, including ISO/IEC 17025
Coordinating with outside agencies on a case-by-case basis
Researching and developing new techniques
Performing general quality control duties
Sept 2013 – Dec 2014
Lab Technician National Health Service
Main duties performed:
Setting up all equipment required for forensic investigations
Collecting and analysing samples, including blood and saliva
Ensuring equipment is sterile for use and in a serviceable condition
Monitoring equipment levels and ordering more stock when needed
Presenting findings and reports to supervisors
Writing laboratory reports so that experiments could be replicated by other medical professionals when required
Liaising with NHS staff and private sector companies on a regular basis
Performing general admin duties, including printing and filing documents
Professional Member of the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences – 2016
Accredited in LabCollector (laboratory management software) – 2014
Emergency First Aid at Work qualification
Forensic Techniques: I have knowledge and experience in various forensic methods including examination of evidence for hairs, fibres, cellular material and body fluids, including blood, semen and saliva, performing fingerprint analysis, conducting footwear & tire track examination and tracing evidence by performing pattern and fibre analysis.
Problem-solving: I have achieved a high level of proficiency in dealing with a wide range of marks and trace evidence types; glass, paint, fibres, footwear impression evidence and fire scene investigation.
Attention to detail: Adept at seeking out the tiniest of clues during investigations, including in outdoor crime scenes which are the most difficult to investigate.
Organisational skills: Ability to work under pressure, deliver urgent casework on time and prioritise own workload.
Hobbies and interests
In my free time, I enjoy going out and spending time with my family and friends. I also like watching crime investigation TV shows, which have positively contributed to my understanding of investigating crime scenes.
Mr Nathan White Consultant, National Health Service Address: 2 Roundabout Rd, Kent, KP10 3FJ Tel: 0733 5679 9022 Email:[email protected]
What makes this CV good and effective?
Personal details: Includes essential contact information: full name, phone number, home address and a professional email address. It does not contain any irrelevant details such as nationality, age or marital status.
Expertise: The applicant has done a good job of portraying themselves as an expert in forensic science. Their work experience section contains detailed information on their job’s duties, responsibilities and achievements in the field. They have used the right keywords and terminology relevant to the job they are applying for, making the CV more impactful and targeted.
Content and layout: The layout of the CV is professional, easy to follow and does not obscure important information. It has clear headings that differentiate the different sections of the CV. It utilises bullet points and short sentences to enhance readability, making it easy for employers to scan for key information.
Overall, this CV is effective because it’s well-structured, tailored to the forensic science role and concisely presents the candidate’s qualifications and achievements. It effectively communicates the candidate’s expertise, making a strong case for their suitability for the position.
Incorporate clear headings: Use distinct headings for each section of your CV, such as “Personal Details” “Professional Profile” “Work Experience” “Education” and “Skills.” To make the sections stand out properly, use a bigger font size (e.g. 16) for the headings and a smaller font size (e.g. 12) for the main text of the document. You may also use very minimal design features, such as horizontal lines below the section news. All of this will help the employer quickly locate relevant information that they need.
Use bullet points: Employ bullet points to highlight key achievements and responsibilities in your work experience. For instance, “Conducted forensic analysis on over 100 criminal cases, leading to a 20% increase in successful convictions.” Never use big paragraphs or long sentences, they won’t be read!
Use facts and figures: Include quantifiable data to showcase your impact, such as “Analysed DNA samples with a 99% accuracy rate.”
Include relevant keywords: Incorporate industry-specific and job-related keywords to increase the visibility of your CV in applicant tracking systems. For instance, use terms like “forensic analysis”, “crime scene investigation” and “chain of custody.” Using terms like these will make your CV appear more targeted and tailored to the job.
Maintain a professional tone: Use a formal and professional tone throughout your CV, avoiding slang or casual language.
A highly experienced forensic scientist with a proven track record in solving complex cases through meticulous analysis of evidence. Recognized for successfully analysing DNA samples in high-profile criminal investigations, leading to convictions in over 20 cases. Skilled in using cutting-edge laboratory techniques and maintaining the chain of custody to ensure the integrity of evidence. Committed to upholding the highest ethical standards in forensic science.
The achievements section of your CV is where you showcase your standout moments and successes.
Here you can highlight your awards, promotions, exceptional grades or any remarkable accomplishments that demonstrate your skills and value as a job candidate.
This section helps employers quickly see the impact you’ve had in your previous roles and why you’re a top-notch choice for the advertised role.
Conducting forensic analysis of evidence, such as DNA, fingerprints, and firearms, to aid in criminal investigations.
Maintaining strict chain of custody procedures to preserve the integrity of evidence.
Preparing detailed reports and documentation of forensic findings for use in legal proceedings.
Collaborating with law enforcement agencies to provide expert testimony in court.
Utilising advanced laboratory equipment and techniques for evidence analysis.
Developing and implementing improved evidence handling and processing protocols.
Participating in crime scene investigations to collect and preserve evidence.
Maintaining and calibrating forensic equipment for accurate analysis.
This section is all about showcasing your academic achievements, so be sure to include your degrees, A-levels, diplomas and any other relevant qualifications you’ve earned.
2014 – 2018
BSc in Forensic Science
University of Forensics, London
Degree Classification: Second Class Honours (Upper Division).
Molecular Biology and Genetics
Crime Scene Investigation
Analytical Techniques in Forensics
Ethical Issues in Forensics
2012 – 2014 Results: Chemistry: A, Biology: A, Mathematics: B.
City College London
Qualifications and training
The professional qualifications section of your CV contains details of any other qualifications that are relevant to the job and could strengthen your application.
What to Include in this section:
Industry-specific certifications, licenses and degrees.
Specialised training and technical qualifications.
Any other relevant qualifications showcasing expertise.
Diploma in Forensic Photography – Forensic Training Institute
Certificate in Crime Scene Analysis – Institute of Forensic Sciences
Level 3 NVQ Diploma in Laboratory and Associated Technical Activities – The Open University
Certified Fingerprint Examiner – National Association of Certified Examiners
The core competencies section of your CV is a concise list of your key skills, strengths and attributes that are directly relevant to the job, providing a quick overview of what you bring to the table.
Forensic laboratory techniques: Proficient in DNA analysis, fingerprint identification and ballistics, with a track record of solving complex cases, including a high-profile murder investigation.
Crime scene processing: Experienced in collecting, preserving, and analysing physical evidence from crime scenes, ensuring proper chain of custody and adherence to legal procedures.
Advanced data analysis: Skilled in utilising specialised software for data analysis, resulting in the successful identification of crucial patterns and evidence in cybercrime investigations.
DNA analysis: Proficient in the extraction, amplification and interpretation of DNA evidence, critical for identifying suspects and victims.
Fingerprint identification: Skilled in comparing and matching fingerprint patterns, a fundamental skill in forensic investigations.
Crime scene processing: Experienced in collecting, preserving, and documenting physical evidence at crime scenes in compliance with legal standards.
Firearm analysis: Competent in examining firearms, ammunition and tool marks to link weapons to crimes.
Bloodstain pattern analysis: Proficient in analysing bloodstain patterns to reconstruct crime scenes and identify potential assailants.
Toxicology: Skilled in identifying and quantifying toxins and drugs in biological samples for poisoning investigations.
Serology: Knowledgeable in analysing body fluids, such as blood and semen, to establish links between suspects and crime scenes.
Digital forensics: Competent in recovering and analysing digital evidence from computers and electronic devices in cybercrime investigations.
Expert witness testimony: Able to provide clear and credible testimony in court, explaining forensic findings to a jury.
Hobbies and interests (optional)
The hobbies and interests section of your CV provides a glimpse into your personality and can make you more relatable to potential employers.
It should contain activities that showcase your well-rounded nature, interests that demonstrate qualities like attention to detail, problem-solving or teamwork and any relevant hobbies that align with the role, such as participating in forensic science organisations, attending science seminars or even highlighting a hobby that requires precision, like model building or photography.
These personal interests can complement your professional qualifications and provide a well-rounded picture of who you are.
Passionate about continuous learning and staying up-to-date with the latest advancements in forensic science. Enjoy participating in local crime scene analysis workshops and contributing to the field’s growth through research and publications.
The referees section of a CV is where you list individuals who can vouch for your qualifications and character, typically for the purpose of validating your suitability for a job.
It’s an optional section, and if you choose to include it, it’s advisable to ask permission from your chosen referees beforehand to ensure their willingness to be contacted by potential employers.
Highlight key skills: Showcase your expertise in laboratory techniques, evidence collection and data analysis on your CV. Use action verbs like “utilise” to demonstrate your practical abilities in processing crime scene evidence and conducting forensic analysis.
Tailor to the job: Customise your CV for each application by aligning your qualifications with the specific job requirements. For example, if the job demands expertise in DNA analysis, emphasise your experience in DNA profiling and its applications.
Focus on technical proficiency: Forensic science relies heavily on technology. Highlight your proficiency with specific instruments or software relevant to the field, such as mass spectrometers, DNA sequencers or crime scene reconstruction software.
Demonstrate attention to detail: Employers in forensic science value meticulous work. Provide examples of how your attention to detail contributed to accurate findings or court-admissible reports.
Showcase multidisciplinary knowledge: Emphasise your cross-disciplinary skills, such as biology, chemistry and law, to demonstrate your ability to work across various areas of forensic science.
Written by Sobhan Mohmand Sobhan is a qualified Careers Advisor and Professional CV Writer with over 10 years of experience in helping job seekers get a job. He is a Member of the Careers Development Institute (CDI) and is listed on the official UK Register of Career Development Professionals. He holds a Level 6 Diploma in Career Guidance and Development (QCF).
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