Forensic Photography Certification Requirements

Forensic Photography Certification home page

  1. General Requirements
    1. An applicant for certification must possess a high ethical and professional standing.
    2. An applicant for certification must be primarily employed in the field of Forensic Science whose duties include forensic photography.
  2. Education and Experience Requirements

    An applicant must have a minimum of three (3) years of experience working in the area of photography and/or digital imaging.

  3. Training Requirements

    An applicant must have satisfactorily completed a minimum of forty (40) classroom hours of photography courses, either police academy, or college level. Examples of qualified training may include college photography, or digital imaging courses, IAI conference classes or workshops, training in photography, image analysis and/or digital imaging through the FBI, state and local academies, or other forensic imaging workshops.

  4. Endorsements

    All applicants must submit two letters of endorsement, one of which must be from an individual actively working in the area of photography and/or digital imaging. One of which must be from the individual's immediate supervisor. These should be addressed to the Secretary of the Certification Board and attached to your application.

  5. Examinations
    1. Certification shall be determined by testing and meeting the above qualifications. The certification test was developed and is maintained by the IAI Forensic Photography and Digital Imaging Certification Board. Applicants have three (3) hours to complete the written examination and forty-five (45) days from receipt of certified mail to work and return the practical test.
      1. The written test consists of 100 multiple choice, true/false and narrative questions, including, but not limited to, history of photography, cameras, lenses, film, exposure, depth of field, light and color theory, lighting, filters, close-up photography, presentation and digital imaging. Passing grade is 75%. The test questions are from the texts listed at the bottom of the requirements.
      2. The practical test shall consist of submission of ten (10) assignments prepared by the applicant, seven (7) of which are from a required list and three (3) from a list of optional assignments.
        1. Evaluation of the submitted images is based on a pass/fail basis, using the following factors:
          1. Compliance with requirements
          2. Utilization of proper photographic techniques
          3. Overall image quality
          4. Compliance with SWGIT guidelines/best practices regarding photographic techniques.
        2. Images are to be submitted in a digital format. The image quality and resolution must be adequate to show the required detail for the assignment.
  6. General Provisions Concerning Certification
    1. The right to deny certification is reserved by the Forensic Photography Certification Board.
    2. Applicants who are denied certification by the Forensic Photography and Digital Imaging Certification Board may appeal such action in writing to the IAI Board of Directors within sixty (60) days of such notification.
    3. The certificate issued by the IAI are non-transferable. They remain the property of the IAI. However, every person to whom a certificate has been issued shall be entitled to its continued possession unless, or until, such certificate is revoked.
    4. Certificates are issued for a period of five (5) years, subject to renewal upon application by a member. Such application for renewal shall be subject to standards in effect at the time of the request for renewal and payment of the established fee.
    5. Membership in the IAI, or any of its state or regional divisions, is not mandatory for certification.
    6. Certificates may be suspended or revoked by the Forensic Photography and Digital Imaging Certification Board for any of the following reasons:
      1. Violation of the IAI, or, Forensic Photography and Digital imaging Certification Board code of ethics.
      2. A misstatement, misrepresentation, concealment, or omission of a material fact or facts in an application or any other communication related to certification.
      3. Conviction of an applicant for IAI certification, or holder of an IAI certification, by a court of competent jurisdiction of a felony, or any crime involving moral turpitude.
      4. Issuance of a certificate contrary to, or in violation of, any of the laws, standards, rules, or regulations, of the IAI; or determination that the person certified was not, in fact, eligible to receive such certificate at the time of its issuance.
      5. Unethical conduct, or other conduct, by a holder of a certificate that brings the specialty of forensic photography and digital imaging into dispute.
  7. Certification - Grandfathering

    No waivers or Grandfather provisions are in this program.

Test questions are taken from the following publications: