Training Update: Commonly Asked Questions FY 2001 Specialized Forensic Science Training Program (FSC, October 2000)
October 2000 - Volume 2 - Number 4
FY2001 Specialized Forensic Science Training Program
Question: Do the distance learning courses count as training slots allotted to my agency?
Answer: Yes. We are still working on establishing our distance learning effort. A significant part of the program plan is to implement a Virtual Academy. We are currently evaluating student-tracking software and server hardware that will provide the infrastructure required to accomplish this goal. Until this online stage has been completed, we do not have the resources to consider providing the distance learning courses in unlimited numbers.
Also, it is important to understand our training philosophy and how we envision incorporating online and CD-ROM-based training to expand training and improve learning. Throughout the past year, our experience with distance learning has provided an opportunity to refine our ideas of how to use this exciting new tool most effectively.
As we embark on new distance learning course development, the focus will be to train and test on the fundamentals of a discipline. Students applying for training will have to successfully complete a computer-based course as a prerequisite for earning additional face-to-face training at the FBI Academy or at a host site.
We realize that some students will not be able to attend this additional training for a variety of reasons. Therefore, once the Virtual Academy has been implemented, the distance learning courses will be available to these students without counting as a training slot.
We appreciate your patience as we move to developing more rigorous and complete training programs (fundamental, intermediate, and advanced level courses in each discipline) in forensic science and crime scene technology!
Question: Can I request my own copy of the catalog? I never get to see the one mailed to my boss.
Answer: No. Currently, we mail one catalog to each police agency and crime laboratory in our database. (In addition, we will be sending the catalog this year to each FBI field office training coordinator and Legal Attaché.) It is not possible, nor is it necessary, to expand this mailing list to each potential student because we accept only one application submission from an agency.
However, we do realize that communication in large organizations may not always be timely. Subsequently, the training program is published on the Internet in Forensic Science Communications, the quarterly online journal published by FBI Laboratory personnel.
Question: How do I get a training class to be held at my agency’s facilities?
Answer: Indicate on the application that your agency would like to be considered as a host site and for which course(s). Agencies should volunteer on the basis of the suitability of their facilities to a particular class (e.g., classroom size, laboratory, firing range, and instrumentation). Please call if you have questions regarding facility requirements for a class.
Agencies are selected as host sites primarily on the basis of geographic distribution of applicants and the facilities available. In appreciation for being a host site, you will have the opportunity to place at least five additional students of your choice in the class.
Question: What is the cost to attend the schools?
Answer: There is no tuition cost for any of the Specialized Forensic Science Training Program schools. In addition, travel, lodging, and meals are fully covered by the FBI for all U.S. students attending classes at the FBI Academy.
International students and students from other federal agencies will be responsible for their own travel expenses.
Also, the FBI does not generally pay for travel, lodging, and meals for students attending a road school because students are typically selected for road schools on the basis of their close geographic proximity to the host facility.