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Foundational Report

In 2005, the SWGGUN formed a Science Committee that was tasked to conduct a comprehensive review of all pertinent and related documents in the toolmark identification discipline in order to determine the reliability of their conclusions in judicial proceedings. 

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Systemic Report

The Scientific Working Groups have been tasked by the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in the report entitled Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States: A Path Forward with directing the forensic science communities in the establishment of standardized procedures and protocols. The following document is in response to this request...  

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The purpose of SWGGUN is to develop a series of consensus guidelines for the firearm and toolmark discipline and to disseminate SWGGUN guidelines, studies, and other findings that may be of benefit to the forensic community. The SWG meets twice annually.

Calling Forensic Scientists: Apply Now to Join the NIST Organization of Scientific Area Committees


The application process for positions in the new NIST Organization of Scientific Area Committees (OSAC) is now open. NIST is welcoming members of the forensic science, criminal justice and academic research communities to serve as committee and subcommittee members. Applications will be accepted through an online form until 11:59 PM EDT, Sunday, May 11, 2014.

NIST is establishing OSAC to strengthen forensic science by supporting the development of standards and guidelines to ensure accuracy of methods and practices in the nation's crime laboratories.

OSAC will consist of a Forensic Science Standards Board, three resource committees, five scientific area committees and 23 subcommittees. NIST needs between 500 and 600 subject matter experts representing a balance of experience and perspectives to serve on OSAC. An OSAC term will be three years, although the initial appointees will serve terms of two, three or four years so that subsequent members are appointed on a staggered basis.

Please go to the OSAC Roles and Responsibilities page to review the roles and responsibilities of each membership category of OSAC. Please go to the application form to apply for membership.

For more information about OSAC, go to the main OSAC webpage on the NIST Forensic Science website. 


U.S. Departments of Justice and Commerce Name Experts to First-ever National Commission on Forensic Science


The U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) today announced appointments to a newly created National Commission on Forensic Science.

Members of the commission will work to improve the practice of forensic science by developing guidance concerning the intersections between forensic science and the criminal justice system.  The commission also will work to develop policy recommendations for the U.S. Attorney General, including uniform codes for professional responsibility and requirements for formal training and certification...

Read full announcement by clicking here.


New Guidelines

Committee Documents - Committee Documents

On 12/4/2013 SWGGUN adopted two new guidelines titled,

Guidelines for the Documentation of the Examination of Tools and Toolmarks and

Guidelines for the Documentation of the Examination of Ammunition and Ammunition Components"

In addition a third guideline was adopted on 9/26/2013 titled,

Guidelines for Barrel and Overall Length Measurements for Firearms

View these new guidelines by clicking their titles.  Also, visit the guidelines section to view a list of all adopted SWGGUN guidelines by clicking here.