Introduction to Fish and Wildlife Investigation

Overview

This is an introductory level course exploring the area of fish and wildlife forensic sciences. Fish and wildlife forensic science is the application of the principles of science to collecting, analyzing, and interpreting relevant evidence related to the protection of fish and wildlife resources in a manner suitable for presentation in a court of law. This course covers taxonomy, basic characteristics of fish and wildlife species, laws regarding their protection, how to process fish and wildlife crime scenes, and collecting, packaging and analysis of evidence.

Cost: $125.00. This course takes 16 hours to complete, on average.

Objectives

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

  • Define fish and wildlife forensic science and explain how it is different from traditional forensic investigations
  • Explain characteristics of fish, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and birds
  • Discuss federal and state laws regarding wildlife species
  • Explain how to manage and process crime scenes
  • Explain common forms of evidence found in wildlife investigation scenes, including how to collect, preserve, and analyze.

Course Structure and Schedule

This is a non-credit course offering 3.58 ILUs. (What is ILU?) Average completion time for the course is 16 hours. The course cost is $125.00 per registration. A certificate of completion will be issued to students successfully meeting course requirements.


Table of Contents

Unit 1: Introduction to Fish and Wildlife

Unit 2: Taxonomic Identifications

Unit 3: Marine and Freshwater Fish

Unit 4: Inland Species

Unit 5: Crime Scene Investigation

Unit 6: Crime Scene Investigation Techniques

Unit 7: Wildlife Poisonings

Unit 8: Biological Evidence

Unit 9: Projectile, Impression, Pattern and Trace Evidence

Unit 10: Endangered and Threatened Species

Unit 11: Case Studies

Unit 12: Resources

Prerequisites

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

Why was a correct answer on a quiz, marked incorrect?

Answer: Quizzes are graded automatically by the computer. However each quiz will be reviewed by the instructor in order to double check the system. The instructor is able to update your grade if necessary.

Do I have to respond to the discussion questions?

Answer: Yes, all discussion questions for this course are required and are graded.

Who do I contact if I’m having problems with the course?

Answer: If you are having trouble with registration or accessing the online course, please call OIT at 304-293-4444. Make sure you state that you are a non-credit eCampus student.

If the problem is related to the course material, please email the instructor who will respond to your email as soon as possible.

Can I look at the material while taking the quiz?

Answer: Yes, the quiz open in a new window so you can review the course information.

Computer Requirements

  • Mozilla Firefox (recommended) or Internet Explorer
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader
  • QuickTime
  • Macromedia Flash Player
  • Java

(Free software plug-ins are 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 https://ecampus.wvu.edu/

Instructor Information

Robin Bowen is the Assistant Director for the Forensic Science Initiative, a program that develops scientific resources, outreach opportunities, and professional training for forensic scientists and related professionals. Her primary responsibilities include coordination of continuing education programs, management of grant funded projects, and correspondence of progress to the National Institute of Justice. Bowen is the author of Ethics and the Practice of Forensic Science. She is a former advisory member of the Outreach and Communication Interagency Working Group (IWG) under the National Science and Technology Council Subcommittee (NSTC) on Forensic Science. She is also on the Editorial Advisory Board for the revised edition of Encyclopedia of Forensic Sciences. Bowen is the primary developer of the Forensic Educational Alliance, an initiative to offer a variety of forensic science continuing education courses online. She has an undergraduate degree in Forensic and Investigative Sciences and a graduate degree in Secondary Science Education. Robin is the online course instructor for Ethics in Forensic Science, Fibers and Textiles for Forensic Science, and Transition to Leadership. Contact: Robin.Bowen@mail.wvu.edu, 304-293-6214


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:  samantha.neal@mail.wvu.edu, 304-293-5836

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 WVUEnrich@mail.wvu.edu 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 fsi@mail.wvu.edu for special pricing

How to register for a group discount:

  1. One contact person for each group registers.
  2. Click on “Register Now” button at the top of the page.
  3. Click on “add to cart” to add course to cart.
  4. Sign into online registration system with existing account.
  5. If not, click on “Create New Profile.”  Choose “Create a Student Profile (single user).”  Create your profile.
  6. How many students to register?  Enter total number of students in your group.
  7. Checkout with credit card.
  8. Send a list of each student(s) contact information to fsi@mail.wvu.edu  (Include full name, email, phone, date of birth).
  9. Course access instructions will be sent by email within 5 business days.


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