Force Science Certification Course

Become a Force Science Analyst

Learn the Science Behind Human Behavior and Performance During Force Encounters.

Participants will uncover the unbiased truth and scientific realities surrounding officer performance under stress, action/reaction time, memory, decision-making, and more during complex, rapidly unfolding encounters.


an understanding of officer performance.


your department's police officer training programs.


community and media relations efforts.


use of force investigative processes and procedures.


departmental policy decisions.


post-event interview procedures.


your agency's tactics and force options.


access to evidence-based research on trending LEO issues.

Course Overview

Encounters involving the use of force are often very brief and violent. Law enforcement officers must give their utmost in response, perception, decision-making, and performance to protect themselves and ensure the public’s safety. Judgments passed on actions in these situations, whether in administrators’ offices, courts, media coverage, or among citizens, are often made quickly before the facts are gathered and without foundation in the science of human behavior or performance under stress.

The Force Science Certification Course uses the combined knowledge of a team of world-class experts to explore the complex mix of human dynamics involved in the often complicated, confusing, and controversial uses of force by law enforcement personnel.

The primary objective of this intensive course is to prepare law enforcement professionals to understand human factor dynamics more thoroughly and completely while investigating cases involving the use of force. Participants will learn to promote peak performance in pressurized situations and understand what actually occurs in tense and emotionally charged use-of-force events. This preparation allows graduates to draw clear, accurate, and concise conclusions in their investigations.

The course will use research and input from a group of experts to teach the following concepts and more:

  • Why individuals may recall facts they believe to be the truth when their accounts conflict with forensic evidence.
  • The advisability of making site visits or video reviews before a video statement is recorded.
  • What sleep and memory research says about timing interviews after significant events.
  • What stress-induced visual and auditory anomalies are, and how to deal with them during interviews.
  • Successful interview techniques for an accurate and thorough recollection of details in force encounters.
  • Whether shots to the back really reflect what shooters saw when they fired.
  • How to avoid critical mistakes during post-incident interviews.
  • The facts about use of force decisions: How long it takes to start and stop actions.
  • How to enhance decision-making through police officer training.

Tuition Fee

Pick how you want to learn!  The Force Science Certification Course is now offered both in-class and online.

In-Person Learning

Hybrid Environment

  • 29 Hours of In-Class Learning (3.5 Days)
  • 11 Hours of Self-Paced Online Learning
  • 40 Total Training Hours
  • 12 Expert Instructors
  • Course Books Provided
  • Q/A Sessions with Experts
  • Group Discussions

Online Learning

Self-paced Learning Environment

  • 29 Hours of HD Videos
  • 7 Expert Instructors
  • Course Books Shipped
  • 12 Month Access
  • Email & Zoom Support Options

There is a tremendous need for the application of human science in force investigations. Without it, controversial officer-involved shootings and other uses of force–even pursuits, which also involve split-second decision-making in highly stressful, rapidly evolving circumstances–can easily be misjudged, with devastating consequences.

Dr. William Lewinski, Ph.D.Force Science Executive Director, Senior Researcher & Instructor

Course Structure

The course materials are delivered through a series of learning blocks, including lectures, visual presentations, and clinical case studies. Expert instructors will help learners identify and understand physical and psychological phenomena associated with human behavior and demonstrate how these can impact performance under stress.  Some of the main learning blocks include:

  • Anatomy & Physiology
  • Psychology of Crisis Encounters
  • Human Performance
  • Arrest Related Death
  • The Cognitive Interview
  • Principles of Biomechanics
  • Officer-Involved Shootings

The certification materials will also explore the latest unique and scientifically based insights on hot law enforcement topics such as:

  • Skill acquisition.
  • Decision-making.
  • Traffic stop attacks.
  • Timing of interviews.
  • Timing and dynamics of attack initiation.
  • Deployment of body-worn cameras (BWC).
  • De-Escalation of potentially violent situations.
  • Safety threats associated with prone subjects.
  • Using vehicles as “mobile weapons of mass destruction.”
  • How exhaustion impacts officer performance in force encounters.

Course Requirement

A participant’s ability to complete this certification course and earn the designation of Force Science Analyst is dependent on their ability to perform satisfactorily the following: 

In-Person Course

  • Full attendance each day.
  • Daily participation in interactive group discussion exercises.
  • Complete 14 self-paced open-book sectional quizzes.
  • Complete a three-part online practical exam using real-life officer-involved shooting incidents.

Online Course

  • Complete and upload the course study guide.
  • Watch all lecture and presentation videos in full (29 hours broken up into 1 hour to 2.5 hours sessions).
  • Complete six self-paced open-book online exams
  • Complete a three-part online practical exam using real-life officer-involved shooting incidents.
Understanding Force Encounters Through Science and Research

Force Science Analyst

What does it mean to be a Force Science Analyst? Individuals who complete all the course requirements receive this certification, which attests that the holder has been trained to recognize and articulate important psychological, biological, and physiological factors that can affect behavior and memory in force encounters and pursuit situations.

Force Science is a science like accident reconstruction or blood-spatter analysis. Professionals certified in Force Science Analysis will have a foundational understanding of human dynamics they can apply to determine how and why a force confrontation proceeded and evolved as it did. Investigators also know how to extract relevant recollections from participants’ and witnesses’ memories. The information produced by these analysts can be vital to administrators, internal affairs personnel, chiefs, review board members, prosecutors, judges, and jurors – all the individuals who must judge the nature of a force incident.

Expert Instructors for Evidence-based Training

A team of staff and partnering experts assembled the Force Science Certification Course curriculum to give participants a window into the latest science on performance and behavior. This group was brought together to deepen the scientific research into the circumstances of force encounters and the psychological and physiological factors that affect them. In addition to leading courses, these experts provide data, resources, and tools to professionals brought in to investigate officer-involved shootings (OIS) and other use of force incidents.

Dr. Lewinski’s groundbreaking work is the foundation for the Force Science Certification Course, and the individuals responsible for the continuation of this program are listed below.