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Advance Your Research Skills

CSAFE, a NIST Center of Excellence, values talented young scientists interested in partnering with us to improve the United States criminal justice system. Our team is increasing the scientific foundations of pattern and digital evidence through innovative research and training opportunities. Alongside contributing to the fair administration of justice, our dynamic community is passionate about mentoring the next generation of leading researchers. 

With CSAFE, students gain valuable professional experience and prepare for a career in the criminal justice, forensic science, judicial and related fields. We invite students committed to innovation and excellence to inquire about our available opportunities.

Upcoming Events

Registration is now open for these available events.

There are no upcoming events.

Summer Opportunities

Are you looking for an internship this summer? Here are four programs accepting applications now! 

CSAFE REU at Iowa State University

DSPG Young Scholars Program

CSAFE REU AT IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY

REU, or Research Experience for Undergraduates, is CSAFE’s ten-week, immersive summer internship program where students discover how statistical and computational concepts apply to CSAFE’s key research areas in pattern or digital evidence. REU students work toward achieving CSAFE’s core mission of building a statistically sound and scientifically solid foundation for the analysis and interpretation of forensic evidence.

NIST SUMMER UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH FELLOWSHIP (SURF)

CSAFE partner, NIST, operates A summer program called SURF. The SURF program is designed to inspire undergraduate students to pursue careers in STEM through a unique research experience that supports the NIST mission. For 11 weeks, SURF students contribute to the ongoing research of one of the six NIST facilities. Students work under the mentorship of a NIST scientist or engineer.

DATA SCIENCE FOR THE PUBLIC GOOD YOUNG SCHOLARS PROGRAM

The Data Science for the Public Good (DSPG) Young Scholars program is an immersive summer program that engages students from across Iowa to work together on projects that address local and state government challenges around critical social issues relevant in the world today. DSPG resident scholars conduct research at the intersection of statistics, computation and the social sciences to determine how information generated within every community can be leveraged to improve quality of life and inform public policy.

RESEARCH OPPORTUNITIES AT CSAFE

CSAFE undergraduate research positions will advance your problem solving, professional communication and research skills. You will work alongside our team of statisticians, scientists, post-doctoral scholars and graduate students on complex and challenging projects in areas such as firearms, handwriting, bloodspatter and shoeprint analysis. These academic initiatives provide future forensic science professionals with hands-on opportunities to learn about the roles statistics and computational analysis play in both research and the field.

Available Resources
For Students

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Found 198 Results
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A Data-Driven Approach to Model the Generation Process of Bloodstain Patterns

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2022 | By: Tong Zou

This poster was presented at the 106th International Association for Identification

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A Pipeline for Cartridge Case Comparisons

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2022 | By: Joseph Zemmels

We introduce novel sub-procedures in the pre-processing, comparison and similarity feature steps. The sub-procedures result in an improved error rate compared to our implementation of the CMC method while also requiring fewer parameters. The fitted Decision tree model is easily…

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Reply to Response to Vacuous standards – Subversion of the OSAC standards-development process

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2021 | By: Geoffrey Stewart Morrison

This Letter to the Editor is a reply to Mohammed et al. (2021) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.fsisyn.2021.100145, which in turn is a response to Morrison et al. (2020) “Vacuous standards – subversion of the OSAC standards-development process” https://doi.org/10.1016/j.fsisyn.2020.06.005.

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LibDroid: Summarizing information flow of Android Native Libraries via Static Analysis

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2022 | By: Chen Shi

With advancements in technology, people are taking advantage of mobile devices to access e-mails, search the web, and video chat. Therefore, extracting evidence from mobile phones is an important component of the investigation process. As Android app developers could leverage…

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Jury Perception of Bullet Matching Algorithms and Demonstrative Evidence

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2022 | By: Rachel Rogers

Presented at Joint Statistical Meetings

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Comparing handwriter and FLASH ID®, Two Handwriting Analysis Programs

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2022 | By: Stephanie Reinders

FLASH ID and handwriter are computer programs that compare questioned handwritten documents against handwritten samples from known writers. FLASH ID was developed by Sciometrics and is used by the FBI, Handwriter is an open-source R package designed by CSAFE. We…

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Evaluating Reference Sets for Score-Based Likelihood Ratios for Camera Device Identification

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2022 | By: Stephanie Reinders

An investigator wants to know if an illicit image captured by an unknown camera was taken by a person of interest’s (POI’s) phone. Score-based likelihood ratios (SLRs) have been used to answer this question in previous research. We explore whether…

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Error Rate Methods for Forensic Handwriting Identification

Type: Research Area(s): ,

Published: 2022 | By: Danica Ommen

Presentation is from the 106th International Association for Identification (IAI) Annual Educational Conference

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Modeling Covarying Responses in Complex Tasks

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2022 | By: Amanda Luby

In testing situations, participants are often asked for supplementary re- sponses in addition to the primary response of interest, which may in- clude quantities like confidence or reported difficulty. These additional responses can be incorporated into a psychometric model either…

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Analyzing spatial responses: A comparison of IRT- based approaches, Conference Presentation

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2022 | By: Amanda Luby

We investigate two approaches for analyzing spatial coordinate responses using models inspired by Item Response Theory (IRT). In the first, we use a two-stage approach to first construct a pseudoresponse matrix using the spatial information and then apply standard IRT…

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Characterizing Variability in Forensic Decision-Making with Item Response Theory

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2022 | By: Amanda Luby

This presentation is from the 2022 Joint Statistical Meetings

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Measuring Proficiency among Latent Print Examiners: A Statistical Approach from Standardized Testing

Type: Research Area(s): ,

Published: 2022 | By: Amanda Luby

This presentation is from the 74th Annual Scientific Conference of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences

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Ensemble of SLR systems for forensic evidence

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2022 | By: Federico Veneri

Machine learning-based Score Likelihood Ratios have been proposed as an alternative to traditional Likelihood Ratio and Bayes Factor to quantify the value of forensic evidence. Scores allow formulating comparisons using a lower-dimensional metric, which becomes relevant for complex evidence where…

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Likelihood Ratios for Categorical Evidence with Applications to Digital Forensics

Type: Research Area(s): ,

Published: 2022 | By: Rachel Longjohn

In forensic investigations, the goal of evidence evaluation is often to address source-/identity-based questions in which the evidence consists of two sets of observations: one from an unknown source tied to a crime and the other from a known source.…

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Twin Convolutional Neural Networks to Classify Writers Using Handwriting Data

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2022 | By: Andrew Lim

Primary goals are to examine: 1. Write diversification versus representation. 2. Preservation of handwriting structure versus image density. 3. Input size versus training size. 4. Writer identification complexity assessment using various test sites.

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A New Algorithm for Source Identification of Look-alike Footwear Impressions Based on Automatic Alignment

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2022 | By: Hana Lee

Presentation at the International Association for Identification

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Affect of Manufacturer Finishing Methods on Subclass Characteristics Production on Breech Faces

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2022 | By: Veronica Franklin

The following is a presentation given at Association for Firearms and Toolmarks (AFTE) (2022).

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An Algorithm for Forensic Toolmark Comparisons

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2022 | By: Maria Cuellar

Forensic handheld toolmark examiners currently compare toolmarks (e.g. scratch marks on wire found as part of an explosive device, or on a door frame after someone broke into a house) by observing 2D images and subjectively deciding whether two marks…

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Automatic Detection of Android Steganography Apps via Symbolic Execution and Tree Matching

Type: Research Area(s):

Published: 2021 | By: Wenhao Chen

The recent focus of cyber security on automated detection of malware for Android apps has omitted the study of some apps used for “legitimate” purposes, such as steganography apps. Mobile steganography apps can be used for delivering harmful messages, and…

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Center for Statistics and Application in Forensic Evidence Update

Type: Research Area(s): ,,

Published: 2022 | By: Alicia Carriquiry

The information below highlights a sample of current research initiatives led by the CSAFE team. Additional accomplishments in other forensic science disciplines will be discussed in subsequent issues of Forensic Science Review. Visit the CSAFE website www.forensicstats.org to learn more…

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