Transitioning a mock crime scene for remote learning


  • Kimberly Farah Lasell University
  • Leanna Farnam


Forensic science, Teaching methods, Remote Instruction, Case Studies


The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in transitioning an in-person introductory forensic science course to an online version of the course. Typically, the culminating experience in the course was a mock crime scene setup that required students to collect trace evidence, analyze trace evidence, analyze provided toxicology/autopsy reports, and present their results to others. The transition to the online learning environment required a new approach to the mock crime scene scenario, while still achieving the same learning objectives. In lieu of an actual mock crime scene, photographic evidence and police reports were provided so students could determine relevant evidence that needed to be collected from the crime scene and submit their evidence log. After that activity, students were provided a formal evidence analysis report, allowing students to interpret the evidence in an online learning environment. Finally, students completed a written report summarizing their findings. According to survey results, students gained confidence in their analysis skills and in their understanding of the course material. We believe that other online crime scene scenarios can be developed for upper level courses to support the continuation of remote or hybrid learning environments, and as a preparation for online certification examinations.






Activity or Laboratory Experiment: College Educators