One of ASCLD’s primary goals is to promote quality operations. Universal accreditation has been identified as an important initiative to achieve this goal. ASCLD is committed to advocate for funding streams to assist agencies pursuing accreditation. ASCLD partners with forensic science organizations, accrediting bodies, and other domestic and international stakeholders to promote the value of accreditation.

Accreditation represents the commitment of the laboratory to ensure standardization and improvement in all forensic operations, engage in strategic risk management, and ensure the technical competency of personnel necessary to produce reliable and defensible work products used in the criminal justice system.

Views of the National Commission on Forensic Science Regarding Accreditation

What is the Accreditation Initiative?

The ASCLD Domestic Accreditation Taskforce, (ADATF) was established to partner with labs that have committed, through an agreement, to pursue accreditation. The ADATF is comprised of laboratory directors, quality assurance managers and technical subject matter experts that have been trained and certified as Assessors by an accrediting organization and have served in the role as an Assessor for an accreditation program. The ADATF is designed to work in a mentoring and advisory capacity with a laboratory as the laboratory takes critical steps to achieve International accreditation. This taskforce reports to the Board of Directors and the Executive Director who has general oversight of ASCLD initiatives.

Accreditation Roadmap

  • Overview of ASCLD Program

  • Application for Assistance

  • Notice of Acceptance

  • Mentor Assigned

  • Accreditation Program Review

  • Laboratory Training

  • Mentor Visit and Analysis

  • Mentor Prepares Lab for Internal Audit

  • Lab Internal Audit

  • Mentor Preassessment

  • Lab Application Submitted

  • Assessment and Results

  • ACCREDITATION ACHIEVED!

  • ASCLD Surveys Lab

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Accredited Network of Forensic Science Service Providers

ASCLD is working hand-in-hand with accrediting organizations, labs, industry and ASCLD members to create a network of experts willing to help other labs achieve accreditation.

ASCLD continues to collaborate with organizations that have published toolkits designed to assist customers in creating systems and operational documents that standardize operations. The goal of the ADATF is to ensure customers receive relevant and innovative strategies designed to improve efficiency and promote repeatable and accepted practices. ASCLD has a Forensic Managers Toolkit and intends to enhance and expand upon this concept in partnership with the National Institute of Justice's Forensic Technology Center of Excellence (FTCoE), led by RTI International. https://forensiccoe.org/

The Forensic Technology Center of Excellence (FTCoE), led by RTI International, is supported through a Cooperative Agreement from the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice (awards 2016-MU-BX-K110 and 2011-DN-BX-K564). The FTCoE supports the implementation of new forensic technology and best practices by end users and is dedicated to elevating the status of forensic science through advancing technology, sharing knowledge, and addressing challenges. The FTCoE bridges the gap between the scientific and the justice communities.

As labs become accredited through the ASCLD Accreditation Initiative, they are invited to join the ASCLD network to support other labs achieve accreditation.