Chemical Spot Tests for Illicit Drugs


Chemical Spot Tests for Illicit Drugs discusses testing procedures, methods, and instrumentation used when performing chemical spot tests on illicit drugs. The course will review a number of common chemical spot tests used in the forensic field to presumptively test for illicit drugs, as well as the mechanisms behind the tests. The course is intended for anyone working in the forensic science or law enforcement field who is interested in learning more about chemical spot tests and how they are used.

Cost: $99.00. This class takes 5 hours to complete, on average.


Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  • Explain what chemical spot tests are and why they are used
  • Explain what chemical spot tests should be used to detect specific drugs
  • Describe the steps used when performing chemical spot tests
  • Explain what colors indicate presumptive positive results for each test

Course Structure and Schedule

This is a non-credit course offering 2.1 ILUs. (What is ILU?) Average completion time for the course is 5 hours.  The course cost is $99.00 per registration. A certificate of completion will be issued to students successfully meeting course requirements.


Table of Contents:

  • Unit 1: Introduction
  • Unit 2: The Chemistry of Color
  • Unit 3: Characteristics of Illicit Drugs
  • Unit 4: Chemical Spot Tests for Illicit Drugs
  • Unit 5: Mechanisms of Chemical Spot Tests


There are no prerequisites for this class. A printable version of the course content is available in PDF format in the course library for future reference. Course readings are also available in PDF format.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Do I need to know how to perform chemical spot tests in order to take this course?
    Answer: No, it is not necessary to have knowledge of chemical spot tests to take this course. This course is designed for any level of forensic or law enforcement professional so those working with chemical spot tests on a regular basis may find this course to be very basic.
  • Is knowledge of chemistry required for this course?
    Answer: No it is not required, but this course will discuss some chemistry elements involved with chemical spot tests.
  • I answered a question with the correct answer, why was it marked incorrect?
    Answer: All quizzes are reviewed and manually graded by the instructor which can take up to 72 hours after the quiz is submitted. Keep in mind grading is not performed on weekends, holidays, or after close of business. The updated grade will appear in the “my grades” tab in the course once it has been updated.

Computer Requirements

  • Mozilla Firefox
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader
  • Quicktime
  • Adobe Flash Player
  • Java

There are free software plug-ins available in the Getting Started area of the course.

Basic computer skills required (i.e. turning on your computer, navigating to websites, etc.). The course is user-friendly but support is available if needed.

All Students: Using Internet Explorer (IE) 10? Read info on eCampus Main Page

Instructor Information

Samantha Neal is the Instructional Coordinator for the Forensic Science Initiative, a program that develops research, scientific resources, and professional training for forensic scientists and related professionals. Her primary responsibilities are the development and coordination of online continuing education courses in forensic science and continuing education programs. She has undergraduate degrees in both Forensic and Investigative Sciences and Chemistry.
Contact:, 304-293-5836

Brianne Miller is an Instructional Coordinator for the Forensic and Investigative Science Outreach program. Brianne earned her Bachelors of Science Degree in Forensic Science from Waynesburg University in 2011. In 2013, she also earned her Masters of Science degree from the Forensic and Investigate Science Program here at West Virginia University. Prior to joining the Outreach program, Brianne worked as an adjunct Chemistry Professor at Waynesburg University where she taught Organic Chemistry lab and lecture. Brianne is an online instructor for Biological Evidence, Bloodstain Pattern, Chemical Spot Testing, DNA Analysis of Forensic Based Evidence, Evidence Analysis, Forensic Toxicology and Hair Evaluation.

Registration Information 

Click on the "Register Now" button at the top to register online through our secure server. You will be receiving email with your online course access information within five working days. Please check your spam or junk folder in case the confirmation email was misplaced there. Call 1-800-253-2762, or email if you have any questions. Major credit cards are accepted.

Check our FAQ page for refund policy and class access information.

Group Discount

We offer discounts for groups over 10. All individuals in the group need to register for the same course to take advantage of the discount. Discount rates vary by group size as follows:

  • 10-20 people 10% off
  • 21-30 people 15% off
  • 31-40 people 20% off
  • Above 40, contact for special pricing

Interested in a group discount?  Please contact the Continuing & Professional Education office at (304) 293-7570 or email us at for a coupon code.

Check our FAQ and Refund Policy for refund and class access information.