How to Become a Forensic Toxicologist

Shiza Sana
Post Category : Science

5/11/2019 11:10:04 AM

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How to Become a Forensic Toxicologist

Forensic science largely depends on ones area of specialisation. There are various career options to choose from. Forensic science is a field of science that deals with solving criminal investigation with the help of civil laws by governing and examining the evidence by using scientific methods and following a correct procedure.

The area of forensic science is not limited to one strict type of work, it has different roles and responsibilities to offer. The various career option it offers are related to working directly on the crime scene, some in laboratory, others focus on data/ evidence collection and analysis and research work.

 

One of the specialised fields of Forensic science is:

Forensic Toxicologist analyse the type of drug, poison or any other chemical involved in the crime; by performing various tests on body fluids and tissue samples. It is a laboratory based field i.e., most of the work is done in a lab. They can detect the presence of drugs or alcohol in a suspect or victim’s body. They also collect and test for harmful contaminants which can be present in food and surrounding environment.

Forensic toxicology uses/encompasses other disciples of toxicology as well such as, analytical chemistry, pharmacology and clinical chemistry to aid the investigation.

They must have a keen eye for any kind of evidence such as pill bottles, syringes, residue, powder, blood and urine samples, hair sample, gastric contents or other physical symptoms. Through the provided evidence the forensic toxicologist determine which substances were used, in what amount and how it affected the victim.

They work with the medical examiners and coroners to help establish the role of substances related to the cause of death.

 

SKILLS REQUIRED:

  • For someone who wants to pursue forensic toxicology must have an expertise in chemistry, biology, maths and computer science.
  • Must have good communication skills, as they will be working with different agencies and are required to give detailed account for their discoveries in the case, or during court room testimonies if they are called.
  • Leadership and team building and managing skills
  • An investigatory background as a research assistant will help in the future references.
  • Should be highly analytical to determine accurate findings
  • Patient, effective and focused under pressure and long working hours

 

ELIGIBILITY FOR FORENSIC SCIENCE COURSES:

  • 10+2 or equivalent from a recognised board with Physics, chemistry, biology or Maths as main subjects.
  • A minimum aggregate of 55%.
  • Some universities conduct their own entrance exams.
  • Forensic toxicologists must complete their Bachelor’s degree in Forensic science, Chemistry, Clinical Chemistry or a related field, from a recognised university.

 

COLLEGES FOR FORENSIC SCIENCE COURSES: