You've followed forensic investigators as they solve crimes in novels, movies, and TV shows, unearthing facts hidden from the normal human eye. And now you want forensics to play a starring role in your fiction, but you need a quick education on the subject. This course will reveal all the secrets you need to know in order to craft a gripping and realistic work of fiction. During this six-week course, we'll explore how investigators analyze physical evidence, including blood, DNA, fingerprints, hair, documents, ammunition, and corpses. From the code-breaking tricks of the cyber-sleuth to the traditional procedures of the autopsy room, we'll look at the strengths and weaknesses of forensic technology. And we'll cover common misconceptions about forensic analysis found in films and novels, errors that you'll want to avoid in your own writing. This course will also introduce you to the major players of a criminal investigation--the first responder, the lead investigator, and the crime scene experts--just the sort of people who make great characters. You'll meet forensic pioneers who can provide role models for fictional investigators. And you'll explore historical highlights of forensic crime detection, which will prove helpful when you write about historical periods other than our own. Requirements A basic knowledge of high school science, Internet access, e-mail, the Microsoft Internet Explorer or Mozilla Firefox Web browser, and the Adobe Flash and PDF plug-ins (two free and simple downloads you obtain at http://www.adobe.com/downloads by clicking Get Adobe Flash Player and Get Adobe Reader).