Bone Length vs. Height Lab

Redo the lab on bone length vs. height and do it right this time!  Write up the lab as a Google document that you share with your group and with me.  The write-up should include the following sections: introduction, materials & method, results (including all calculations), and discussion.  The discussion should include your conclusion, interpretations, insights, and the answers to the questions in the lab handout.  The entire document (except results) should be in paragraph form and APA format.

Ballistics Assignment

Firearms Identification

Go to On the left side under ‘classroom’ click on student login. Use the log-in key I told you in class and type in your full name. Click accept. In the classroom area you (each individual) must complete the following tasks:

1. Complete the Cartridge Case ID-VCM (Test 1).  You must score a 75% or better. **
2. Complete the Firearm Identification quiz (50 questions) located here.  You must score an 80% or better.**  Use your real name on the page.  When you score an 80% or better, print the results page as proof and bring it to class to show me.
3. Complete the Bullet ID-VCM (Test 1).  You must score a 75% or better.**
4. Answer the questions below.

** – if you do not obtain the above scores you will receive a zero.  You may take the quiz/VCM more than once until you obtain the necessary score. This is an all or nothing assignment.

To answer the following questions you should read the information on the site. If you click on the Bullet ID-VCM link and the Cartridge Case ID-VCM link the resultant pages list several links to find the necessary information.

1. What does GRC stand for?
2. Give an example of a typical GRC.
3. Do firearms change much over time? Will the 300th bullet have the same marks as the 3rd bullet?
4. What two characteristics do they obtain from a bullet fired from a firearm?
5. What marks do they obtain from a cartridge or cartridge casing?
6. What is meant by a bullets caliber?
7. What is a cartridge?
8. Do all bullets fit in all cartridges?
9. Give 2 examples of named cartridges.
10. What is the difference between your two examples? (advantage/disadvantage of one over the other)
11. What is a rifling impression? What causes it?
12. Why does a barrel have rifling?
13. What are the raised areas between grooves called?
14. If you have a rifling pattern of 6 grooves, how many lands do you have?
15. Why would a firearm examiner use a water tank and how big is a typical tank?
16. What is a comparison microscope?
17. Where on the bullet are the best marks typically seen?
18. What is typically the biggest problem with making an identification of an evidence bullet?
19. What causes Impression Action Marks?
20. Describe what causes each of the 3 impression marks. Which is the most common?
21. Checkout the bullet through gelatin picture from my forensics page. What causes the funnel shape behind the bullet?

Due:  Monday, 2/28/11

Counterfeit Money

Individually, you should complete the correct answers to the Money Facts sheet.

As a group, you should recreate the ‘new’ $100 bill that the US government is releasing.  You must follow the rules and use the paper I gave you in class.

You should label the bill with letters or numbers and create a key. These labels should point out the security and ‘additional’ features of the bill that are used to prevent counterfeiting.  You should have approximately 10-15 ‘features’ noted on the bill.

On the paper with the key, you must also explain how the ‘money pen’ that store clerks use to check for counterfeit money works. What it looks like if the paper is real or counterfeit and why it looks that way.

You can find links to resources here:

Lastly, you should take the interactive quiz located on this page:

Due:  Friday, 2/11/11 at the beginning of class

Forensics Test

On Wednesday, 1/12/10 you will have a test on the case study and associated information.  That includes such things as…

FBI/CIA, product tampering, cyanide, electron transport chain and energy making, odds calculations, circumstantial evidence, polygraph, fingerprints (latent/patent/plastic, fuming), Patriot Act, chromatography and separating things, mass spectrometry and identification, surveillance, and organic chemistry.

Surveillance 2011

Governments and other groups have been trying to track people for generations.  However, with recent world events and ever increasing technological abilities, surveillance powers have reached new heights.  In this assignment you will investigate surveillance technologies over the past ten years.  You will read several articles from the past and the present, and even try to predict the future.  When you read each article, take note of the article date to give you perspective of what the author knew and thought at the time.  After you read all the articles your task is to complete the following by writing your responses in the comment section below.

  1. What technology do you think is the coolest and why?
  2. What technology do you think is the scariest and why?
  3. What technology do you think is the most important to the world today and why?
  4. What new technology do you think we will realistically be able to do by the year 2020? (it does not have to be one mentioned in any of the articles – you can come up with your own)
  5. Create one multiple choice question (with distractors) from your readings that would be something good for people to know and that I should/could ask about on a test.  No two people may create the same question so first-come, first-served.  You will hand in the same question in class with the correct answer identified.
  6. You should also reply to at least one other person’s comment by clicking the ‘reply’ button associated with that comment.  In the reply you should agree or disagree with their answers to questions 1-4 and state why.

Here are the sites you should visit and read.

  • The American Conservative – a 2003 article to set the stage – do you think the Patriot Act is a good or not-so-good thing for America?
  • State of Surveillance – a great 2005 article in Business Week about the surveillance abilities we had in 2005 and what was about to come.  Did they get it right?  Be sure to read the main article and the links on that page for: The Slide Show, Nowhere To Hide, A Dog’s Nose Still Knows Best, and In The Datasphere, No Word Goes Unheard.  They even forecast the airport scanners that are so prevalent in the news today.
  • The State of Surveillance, Britain – This 2009 article gives a little global perspective.
  • Homeland Security Digital Library – This site has articles on current topics in surveillance and security.  Note the links on the left to ‘Identification Systems’ and other categories.  Obviously, you do not have to read everything on this site but you might look around and find some items of interest.
  • What They Know – This Wall Street Journal series tells you all about how the Internet is tracking everything about you.   Again, you don’t have to read everything, but you should find a couple of interesting things to talk about.

Again, read the material above and write your thoughts below in the comment section.  Be sure to reply to another person’s comment too.

Historic Crime

As a group you will…

1. Research an historical crime – no two groups in a class can choose the same crime. You will find a helpful link to true crime stories on my forensics page.

2. Type a one page paper that summarizes the crime/criminal and discusses the forensic evidence that led to their capture. If they were never captured discuss what evidence was missing or what technologies we were lacking that would have caught them today.

3. You will give a class presentation that will be 5-10 minutes (no shorter, no longer) You may use a posterboard, powerpoint presentation, skit, or whatever other method you wish to give the presentation.

You will receive a grade for both the paper and the presentation.

Due date: Tuesday 10/27/10

Job Listings

As a group you will research job listings for your assigned job title as well as find two more job listings for any 2 ’specialist’ we talked about in class and any 1 other job listing you find interesting. For each you will write down the educations requirements, other qualifications, salary and any other pertinent or interesting information. The assigned people are:

911 dispatcher
police officer
coroner/medical examiner

plus any two other specialists or forensic positions not listed above. (DA, detective, anything else you find)

For the specialists, try to find a ‘forensic’ version (forensic anthropologist).  If you can not then just use a ‘regular’ version.  Lastly, find one other related job that you may have come across during your research.  In the end you should have a total of 4 job listings.

Due: Friday 10/1/10