The Office of Career Services
Library Building, Room 429 & 430
222-05 56th Avenue
Bayside, NY 11364
Phone: (718) 631-6297
|Overview:||Ballistics experts test guns and spent bullets in criminal cases to prove guilt or innocence of crime suspects. They make microscopic comparisons between gun barrel flaws and the bullets found at a crime scene. They analyze bullet shots, angles and gun powder to determine their source.|
|Duties:||Ballistics experts examine bullets, bullet fragments, cartridge clips, gun powder stains, shot patterns and firearms evidence found at the scene of a crime or in a suspect's possession.
They test fire weapons to determine if a specific weapon was used in a crime by microscopic comparisons of test bullets with bullets found at the crime scene.
They conduct experiments with weapons to determine the location from which bullets were fired by studying the angle at which a bullet hit a person or an object.
Ballistics experts prepare reports and testify in court as expert witnesses using artwork, photographs and examples of how a weapon was used by the suspect during the crime.
|Degree(s):||A.S./B.S. QCC/John Jay Dual/Joint Sciences for Forensics
|Job Outlook:||Employment of ballistics experts is expected to grow much faster than average through 2018 due to the technological advances in forensics.|
|Salary Range (National Average):||$38,000 to $42,000|
|Education Level:||Typically, a Bachelor’s Degree from a 4-year college (some are 5 years) is required to be considered for this occupation.|
|Additional Training/Education:||A bachelor's degree in physics coupled with an interest and additional coursework in chemistry and criminal justice is the appropriate educational preparation for this occupation. An associate degree may qualify you for assistant positions. Specialized training programs in ballistics must also be completed which are offered by Federal law enforcement agencies such as the FBI and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and also in state crime laboratories.|
|Advancement Info:||Advancement depends on experience and knowledge of forensic testing. Law enforcement agencies have designated levels for promotion. Technicians begin at a trainee level and advance as they gain skills. Experienced technicians can advance to lead worker or supervisor. Some may advance to an administrative position as director of a crime lab. A master's degree in criminalistics or forensic science may be required for administrative jobs.|
Understanding acquiring positions in this field may be enhanced through continuing academic study (i.e. earning a baccalaureate or a master's degree) and/or work experience in the field, Queensborough Community College has established transfer agreements with other institutions for students who wish to further pursue their educational goals. Students are highly encouraged to meet with one of our Career Services to fully understand the opportunities available through study in their degree program.