7 Skills of a Crime Scene Investigator

Do you think you have what it takes to become a Crime Scene Investigator? Due to the nature of CSI work, specific character traits are necessary to succeed in this line of work. Check out the seven must-have skills of a CSI and then plan your next step.

  1. A Methodical ApproachThe scientific method demands a linear, methodical, step-by-step approach to crime scene investigation. Strict protocols must be rigidly adhered to in the collection and preservation of evidence.
  2. PatienceCrime scene analysis can be a tedious process, but to be thorough, the process cannot be hurried. Once the initial crime scene investigation is concluded, returning for additional tests includes the possibility of encountering contaminated evidence.
  3. Attention to DetailSince no two crime scenes are the same, sharp observation and logic must be employed at every new crime scene. The CSI’s responsibility is to observe the details of a crime scene and to spot logical inconsistencies.
  4. A Logical and Deductive MindGiven the evidence gathered at the scene, the CSI should be able to reconstruct the commission of the crime using reason and logical deduction. For a closer look into the life of a Crime Scene Investigator, see our article Profile of a CSI Career.
  5. Communication SkillsOne of the responsibilities of a CSI is to take detailed and thorough notes at the scene, which will later be used to write comprehensive reports concerning the investigation. The Crime Scene Investigator might also be required to testify in court as an expert witness.
  6. A Team Attitude Crime scene investigation is a team effort, and the CSI must be able to give and to take orders to support the lead investigator.
  7. A Strong StomachA CSI must often be present at autopsies to assist the pathologist in collecting physical evidence from the body.


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