Exploring Various Disciplines in Forensic Science

Exploring Various Disciplines in Forensic Science

What is Forensic Science?

Forensic Science is the application of science for the purpose of justice. Forensics itself is a multidisciplinary field which involves the application of the principles and methodologies of various disciplines of science to legal matters.  It provides an essential link that helps to hold together all kinds of evidence present on the crime scene. In practice, it utilises physics, chemistry, biology and other scientific principles & methods to recognise, identify and evaluate the physical evidence. Some of the best forensic science colleges in Nashik include these branches of forensic science in the curriculum to adequately train future professionals in this field.

These are the different branches of forensic science and their applications:

Diverse Branches of Forensic Science

Forensic Psychology:

The application of psychological principles to legal and criminal situations is known as forensic psychology. To help with criminal profiling, forensic psychologists examine offenders and their offences in order to make inferences about the characteristics of the offenders’ personalities. Providing a thorough description of the perpetrator’s personality and behavioural characteristics is known as criminal profiling.

Trace Evidence Analysis:

As the Locard’s Principle says ‘Every contact leaves a trace’, trace evidence analysis provides crucial links to the perpetrator. Anything that is transmitted during the commission of a crime is considered trace evidence. Examples include hair from humans and animals, rope, mud, fabric fibres, feathers, and building materials. Trace evidence analysis is the process of gathering such evidence and having it forensically examined in order to gather data that can be utilised in court to support a case or provide answers to other legal questions.

Forensic Toxicology:

The study of harmful substances found inside bodies and their effects on living things is known as forensic toxicology. It includes techniques and protocols from several fields, including pharmacology and analytical chemistry, to support the medical and legal examination of drug-related or poisoning-related deaths. In cases of poisoning, sexual assault, and auto accidents, this area of forensic science is crucial.

Forensic Pathology:

Forensic pathology is the area of pathology that deals with examining a corpse to ascertain the cause of death. Through the collection and examination of medical samples, it entails the deduction of facts admissible in a court of law. A forensic pathologist, for instance, can study a wound to determine the weapon that caused it. As a result, forensic pathology plays a critical role in determining whether a death was accidental, criminal, or natural.

Forensic Odontology:

When it comes to any type of dental evidence that can be used as evidence in court, forensic dentistry and forensic orthodontology handle, analyse, and evaluate the evidence with care. When a victim’s body is rendered unrecognisable, forensic odontology frequently aids in the identification of the deceased. In criminal investigations including bite marks, forensic orthodontia plays a major role.

Forensic Linguistics:

Forensic Linguistics includes the application of linguistic knowledge and principles to criminal investigations and judicial proceedings. Generally linguistic experts are skilled at analysing the perpetrator’s written and spoken language to draw significant inferences about the offender’s age, gender, age, education level, culture, ethnicity, socio-economic and geographical background. It basically covers careful examination of forensic texts such as emergency calls, demands of ransom, suicide notes, social media and death row statements.

Forensic Geology:

Examination of evidence related to materials found in the Earth such as oil, petroleum, minerals, soil, rocks come under Forensic Geology or Geoforensics. To provide valid proof against the suspect, forensic geologists analyse the earth materials recovered from the incident scene, victim or suspect draw inferences about the time, location, cause of the crime and other important clues that make up the investigation.

Forensic Entomology:

Forensic entomology is the observation of the biology of living things such as insects, and other organisms to solve crime. Such organisms are present in decomposing ruins, and can help investigators figure out aspects of the crime such as time of death, place of death, level of decomposition, etc. This branch of forensics is a major part of postmortem investigation of a body.

DNA Analysis in Forensics:

DNA makes up a large part of crime scene investigation to catch and convict criminals. DNA profiling is used by investigators to identify the perpetrators who have left behind DNA components like blood, semen, urine, skin fragments, hair, etc. which contains their unique DNA ID. This forensic technique helps investigators catch criminals and prevent innocent persons from being convicted due to circumstantial evidence.

Forensic Botany:

Forensic Botany is the study and examination of plant-based evidence (leaves, flowers, wood, fruits, seeds, pollen) for criminal investigations. Application of botany in criminal investigations has helped investigators in the past to ascertain the manner and time of death in certain complex cases. Evidence of botanical importance recovered from an incident scene play important role to establish the link between suspect & crime scene.

Forensic Anthropology:

Due to the passage of time, sometimes bodies are really difficult to recognise due to mutilation, burning, natural degradation etc. In such cases, Forensic Anthropology comes to the frame. Forensic anthropologists can examine skeletons/ human bodies to know the identity of the individuals and find out the cause of death. In addition, they can point out the manner of death (suicide, accidental or due to disease),along with if a bone any injury found was before, during or after the death.

Digital Forensics:

The crime which involves the internet & electronic medium is known as cyber-crimes. Extraction of data and thorough analysis of digital evidence (such as computers, hard disks, USB drives, mobile phones etc.) comes under Digital Forensics. Digital Forensics deals with the investigation & analysis of cybercrimes and related evidence.

Forensic Ballistics:

Analysis of any evidence related to firearms (bullets, bullet marks, shell casings, gunpowder residue etc.) forensic ballistics. It is particularly used in the investigation of incidents involving the use of a firearm, to track down the inferences on the exact weapon used, the distance, velocity, and angle of firing, and ultimately the shooter.


Forensic Science is itself an emerging field. Due to increased globalisation, crime rates are increasing day by day which is the reason why scenarios of forensic science are developing in upcoming time. There are many positive changes in the field which are directing towards the growth of forensic science in India. Now each sub-field of forensic science is getting limelight so here forensic enthusiasts are provided with the detailed study of each field, so they can get knowledge about their field of interest.


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