Host: Melissa Taylor
The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), through its Organization of Scientific Area Committees (OSAC), has been working with practitioners in various forensic science disciplines to produce process maps that identify key decision points in the forensic evidence examination process. Process mapping visually represents the critical steps and decision points of a workflow, allowing others to understand a process and its components more clearly, and revealing areas of improvement.
These process maps are intended to be used to help improve efficiencies while reducing errors, highlight gaps where further research or standardization would be beneficial, facilitate root cause analyses, and assist with training new investigators. It may also be used by laboratory managers to better understand how their protocols compare with those of other laboratories and provide a framework for developing standard operating procedures, best practice documents, and quality assurance measures.
In this workshop, we will discuss the development process and guide the participants through the steps involved in three forensic disciplines: latent print examination, handwriting examination, and firearms examination.
At the end of the workshop, participants will understand the purpose and value of process mapping, how process maps can be used to inform contextual information management and cognitive bias reduction strategies, and how they can aid in the standardization of forensic processes and terminology.