Frequently Asked Questions
What are the requirements for admission?
All applicants must possess a baccalaureate degree in a biological, natural or engineering science from an accredited university. If an applicant’s baccalaureate degree is in another discipline, he/she is considered for admission if all of the following courses have been successfully completed:
- 1 semester of General Biology
- 1 semester Cell/Molecular Biology or Biochemistry or Genetics
- 2 semesters of General Chemistry
- 2 semesters of Organic Chemistry
- 1 Biology laboratory course
- 1 Chemistry laboratory course
Is the GRE test required as part of the application?
The general GRE test is optional. We no longer require students to take the GRE test, however, we strongly encourage it for applicants with a GPA below 3.2. The institution code for Boston University School of Medicine is 3087. MCAT scores may be substituted for the GRE.
What are the GRE scores and GPA of a typical applicant who is accepted into the program?
Strong applicants have at least an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 and GRE scores above the 50th percentile, though the averages for our admitted students is significantly higher. The Admissions Committee also takes work experience, internships, and other academic and career achievements into consideration.
What should I include in my personal statement essay?
Include information about:
- your background
- the reasons why you want to pursue a career in forensic science
- research and laboratory experience
- scientific knowledge
- relevant work experience
It is highly recommended that you also include a CV highlighting your education, publications and scientific research projects.
How many letters of recommendation do I need?
A minimum of two letters of recommendation is required, however, three letters from professionals who can speak to the applicant’s scientific capabilities are suggested. At least one recommendation letter should be from university scientific faculty who know the student well. Letters from research/laboratory supervisors are also acceptable.
What is the application deadline?
Priority for admission, potential scholarship awards and graduate assistantships are given to applicants whose completed applications are received by March 1st. Completed applications received on March 2nd through July 31st are considered as they are received.
Is financial assistance available to incoming students?
Work-study, Federal Direct Stafford/Ford loans and other financial aid opportunities are available through the financial aid office in the Graduate Medical Sciences office. Additionally, Provost Scholarships or part-time graduate assistantships may be available to incoming students who have demonstrated outstanding academic conduct in their previous course of study. No application is required for these awards.
What degree is awarded upon completion of the BMFS program?
The degree awarded is a Master of Science (MS) degree in Biomedical Forensic Sciences from the Boston University School of Medicine.
How much is tuition?
For the academic year 2023-24, graduate tuition is $63,798 for the first year. The remaining credits in the second year are billed on a per credit basis, making the total cost of the BMFS program approximately $84,000. See detailed information about tuition, fees, and expected expenses here.
Can I focus my studies in a particular area of forensic science?
If desired, students may tailor their choice of elective courses toward a specialty track: Forensic Biology-DNA Analysis, Forensic Chemistry-Toxicology, or Forensic Medicine-Death Investigation. Students who successfully complete one of these tracks receive an official letter stating such, however, the degree awarded is the same as those awarded students who do not specialize.
What does the program curriculum consist of?
38 credits consisting of 8 core courses, 2 lab courses, 2 to 4 elective courses and a thesis project. Please review the curriculum for more details. In addition, each student is required to pass a competency examination near the end of the program.
How long does it take to complete the program? Can students attend part-time?
Most of our students complete the program in 21 to 24 months. Duration of the program is largely dependent on whether the student takes courses during the summer semester and on the scope of the student’s thesis project. Part-time students generally take about 3 years to graduate.
What employment opportunities are available for recent graduates in forensic sciences? What is the average income for new graduates in this field?
For information about potential salaries and employment opportunities for new graduates in forensic sciences please reference the employment/job listing pages published by:
Does the BMFS program provide any employment opportunities for students?
Opportunities to work part-time as research or laboratory assistants in the fields of forensic chemistry, DNA, biology, crime scene investigation and bloodstain pattern analysis are available throughout the academic year.
Can I visit the campus or meet with the faculty before I apply?
Two comprehensive Open House events are held annually for interested students (fall and winter). Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire about dates and RSVP. Alternatively, an appointment can be made on a mutually convenient date by contacting one of the faculty.
Can I take a class in the BMFS program as a non-degree student?
Students may request approval to take courses as a non-degree student during any semester. Students who apply and are accepted into the BMFS Program for the following fall may transfer up to 8 credits earned during non-degree status.
Who can I contact for more information?
For general questions about the BMFS program: email@example.com 617-358-0176