Questioned Documents Associate Member Requirements

AAFS Requirements:

The entry level at which most applicants enter the AAFS (with the exception of Trainee Affiliate and Student Affiliate).  Advancement to Member and then to Fellow is accomplished by meeting additional criteria established by each section.  Associate Member status is granted to individuals:

  1. Who are actively engaged in the field of forensic sciences and who have made some significant contribution to the literature of forensic science, or
  2. Who have advanced the cause of the forensic science in some other significant manner, and
  3. Who satisfy the requirements for membership of the section applied to or recommended for, and
  4. Who have earned a baccalaureate or higher academic degree from a U.S. college or university accredited by one of the regional accrediting bodies recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation or the United States Department of Education, or from a non-U.S. college or university bearing equivalent accreditation.

Questioned Documents Requirements:

  1. Must have an earned baccalaureate or higher academic degree from an accredited college or university; and
  2. Have successfully completed and documented formalized training in the field of questioned document examination for at least two (2) years duration from a recognized questioned document laboratory or under the direct supervision of document examiners who are Members or Fellows of the Questioned Documents Section of the Academy, or a voting member of ASQDE, or who are Diplomates of the ABFDE (the section recognizes ASTM 2388-11 and the Scientific Working Group for Forensic Document Examination ((SWGDOC Standard for Minimum Training Requirements for Forensic Document Examiners)) as the basic guides for fundamental training in the field); and
  3. Be actively engaged or employed full-time in the examination of questioned documents for at least two (2) years, independent of any program of training, and for that period must be personally responsible for conducting and reporting such examinations without technical supervision; and
  4. Two (2) letters of reference. References must be full Members or Fellows of the Questioned Documents Section of the AAFS and must be able to comment knowledgeably on the applicant’s qualifications. Exceptions to this requirement may be considered for applicants residing outside of the United States and Canada, in which case, one or both references may be from persons other than Members or Fellows of the Academy. These references will be evaluated and will be accepted if approved by a majority vote of the members present at an annual business meeting of the section. Since the AAFS Board of Directors approval occurs before the section business meetings, those seeking a waiver of requirements will be delayed approval of the application for one (1) year.

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