There are four items to consider when choosing the best computer forensics school: education level, hands-on training, equipment, and admissions requirements. A computer forensics school can be part of a larger university or college, or a separate school. The best computer forensics schools are typically affiliated with law enforcement agencies or associations that specialize in computer crimes. These programs typically receive significant financial support from computer software companies.
There are two types of programs available from computer forensics school: investigative technician and computer forensics professional. The computer forensics professional is responsible for evaluating the original request, determining the techniques and methodologies that should be used, and identifying the time required to complete the task. The investigative technician is responsible for actually applying the techniques, using the forensics tools and documenting the results.
The program to become an investigative technician is typically completed at a community or career college. Two to three years in length, this training program is very hands-on, providing opportunities to practice techniques, retrieve important data, and comply with evidence handling procedures. The computer forensics professional program requires a university degree in computer forensics, which is typically available at a master's level.
Selecting the best school should be based on your own goals, achievements and skill levels. An honest review of your high school marks, level of effort and dedication is a strong indicator to help you decide which school is best for you. Select a school where you will be both challenged and successful.
The best computer forensics school should provide each student with a laptop, and have computer workstations available in most classrooms. The most recent versions of forensic programs, malware, and a dedicated testing environment is a core requirement of this program. Only through testing and actual experience dealing with computer viruses and data masking programs can the students gain the skills required for this job.
In order to qualify for admission to computer forensics school, you must have high school courses in technology, calculus, English, and computers. Some schools have standardized tests in different computer environments to determine level of computer knowledge. Communication skills are often a point of weakness for computer forensic program applicants. Increase your written and oral skills through focused training courses before you apply.
If you are looking at the best computer forensics school in the country or state, take note that the admissions standard is higher to reflect the increased demand. These schools often require students to have a combination of high marks, letters of recommendation, and to have developed computer applications on their own. It is important to note that being in the lowest quarter of your class at the best school does not help either your career or quality of education you are receiving.