How to Create a Fingerprint Science Fair Project

See Also:

Fingerprint Science Project For Kids

Application For Fingerprints By the FBI and Law Enforcement

How to Create a Fingerprint Science Fair Project

Fingerprinting Your Kids at School

All About Fingerprints

Fingerprint Classification Project

When I Grow Up: Jobs With the FBI


Fingerprints can be a fascinating subject for a science fair project. There are several different aspects of fingerprints to explore in a science fair format. Fingerprints make a great visual for a science fair trifold and the subject gets even young kids engaged. Everyone can relate to fingerprints.

Designing the Project

The first thing you'll need to determine is what kind of fingerprint experiment you want to conduct. Some possible topics include:

  • Fingerprint similarity between family and non-related people
  • Percentage of different fingerprint patterns in a random sample
  • Readability of latent fingerprints left by different mediums (ie. sweat, blood, mud)

It's helpful to think about and articulate what first interested you in the topic and also what could be some results of your experiment. In other words, why do you care - and why should anyone else care?

Once you know what you're going to explore, create your hypothesis, or assumption about what you expect the results of your fingerprint science project to reveal. Make sure to state the basis of your expectations.

Collecting Fingerprints

Fingerprints can be recorded by applying special ink to the fingers and pressing down on a white card. This produces a copy of the fingerprints. (At crime scenes, fingerprints may be visible because he criminals fingers were soiled with blood, dirt, or other substances. Non-visible prints (latent) are left by perspiration or oils on the fingers.) For the purposes of a science project, regular ink will do the job.

Printable Fingerprint Card

You will only need a few household items for this project:

  • Ink pad
  • Magnifying glass
  • Paper
  • Ink pen

Label paper with the child's name. If you don't mind a mess, let the kids take each other's prints. But if you have nice fabric close by, let a parent help. Starting with the pinky finger of the left hand, press fingers into ink then touch to the paper. (Experts roll each finger from left to right to get a more thorough print.) Let the prints dry, then observe with the magnifying glass.

Presenting Results

When it's time to present your results, the more visual the better. Be sure to include graphs, pictures, and a sample of your experiment materials (ie. the fingerprints!)

Analyze your results, paying special attention to surprises and thing you learned or would have done differently.

Many science projects include a research component. There is a vast amount of information available on the history of the use of fingerprints by law enforcement.

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Comments 50 comments

Demetria Jones 5 years ago

wow yhats amazing that's great

sarah green 5 years ago

this doesn't provide anything!

john 5 years ago

it is really fun but hard

im 5 years ago

this project helps me to do mi project thanks

you will never know 5 years ago

hi hobnockers i am sam off of i carly if you what to talk to me call 5755384 thnks

you will never know 5 years ago

hi hobnockers i am sam off of i carly if you what to talk to me call 5755384 thnks

yoo 5 years ago

why not imprints

Shannon 6 years ago

(: thanks so much! everything i read before was so dull. i couldn't find anything that wasn't boring in my view. but then i read this and i didn't stop until i finished. either this is a really great project or im desperate. either way.. im totally using this. thank you again. :D

Brianna 6 years ago

AMAZiNG!!!!! Lots of help!! thanks!

sarh 6 years ago

cool for kids right back

amanda 6 years ago

the best science fair project for kids

Baby Bunny Ownz 6 years ago

I loved this science fair project!!! I'm going to change it a bit to use it for my science fair project this year!!! :-)

sarah 6 years ago

awesome i can definally use this on my project thx lots

amanda 6 years ago

cool, i did this for the school science fair

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opismedia 6 years ago

Cool experiment :D thanks for sharing it.

villam 6 years ago

Great info! Very useful! This will help my child do her project

freaky monkey 6 years ago

My partner and I got everything done just from this website!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

ATL IN DA HOUZE 6 years ago

My qurstion to yall is: do you need water to do a finger print experiment with real fingerprint powder???

dakota 6 years ago

thanks a lot this helped me very much i got ewnough info for my 6th grade project

naynay 6 years ago

thanks my lil bro was doin a project and this was like so perfect!!!!!

Marissia Bibbo 7 years ago

This is really good for me i am in 7th grade and i picked fingerprints and heredity :P YAHH ME >:( :)

Daddy 7 years ago

Thanks!!! This helped me so much!!! VERY ENTERESTING!!!

frogyfish profile image

frogyfish 7 years ago from Central United States of America

This would be a great shared fun project for class science or just kid-share fun! Great idea and simple to do.

cbears 7 years ago

I love this! it's going to help me with my project a lot!

allison 7 years ago

this is so cool i love this lol,im at school right now but i am doing science but i love this website,im in loooooooooooooooooooooooooove.

mommy 7 years ago

hey this is a cool sience project

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jessicab 7 years ago from Alabama

I just love science, very interesting hub.

future C.S.I 7 years ago

thnks loads i read this and now i figured mine out:)

"Does T.V. criminal science effect your original thinking & is it good or bad?"

Launie 7 years ago

It was very helpful and it can to any one else

hate joxdude 7 years ago

hey joxdude u don't know how to spell

EXPIREMENT my little sister can but not u that's lame and ur lame!!!!! hahaha

joxdude 7 years ago

this excperiment lags NOTHING!!!

joxdude 7 years ago

this excperiment lags NOTHING!!!

joxdude 7 years ago

Awsomest excperiment!!!!!!!!!LOL

habhbkxh 7 years ago

this is not that hard but a little cofusing

GI JOE 7 years ago

This is and good project but i just don't get it. And this has to be easy?

vatery 7 years ago

tis project is very hard and i have to finish it by tomorrow

JazZiE 7 years ago

This Helped A lot..

But Using A Graph i Really Don't

Get It..

LaRiSsA 7 years ago

hi!!!! this thing is so helpful and easy!!!!! I love it!!!!

=) hee hee haa haa!!!

weirdo 7 years ago

this thing is so helpful!!!!

m0nk3y 7 years ago

this is a very cool science experiment

QouSay profile image

QouSay 7 years ago

+1 so cool.. hehehe

angelou 7 years ago

it is veryyyyyyyyyyyyy coollllll i hope there is more nicer than this

ScienceFairLady profile image

ScienceFairLady 7 years ago

Excellent fun science fair project. What I like about this particular experiment is that it is easy, not expensive and can involve the whole family.

CSI Science Fair Projects 7 years ago

Fun and interesting science fair projects like the fingerprint science fair projects you mention are great for exciting kids about science. Other fun topics include: blood typing, biometrics and dna extraction.

SecretMonkeyUnicornPerson 7 years ago

How come all of these websites have the SAME THING that I just cant put in my own words? I'LL TELL YOU WHY!!! THE WORLD IS RUN BY THE MAN, AND THE MAN HATES ME!

VictoriaKittyLover 7 years ago

I am doing my 5th grade science fair project on this! Thanks 4 the help!

raschell 8 years ago

I am 11 his is goodfor me in science

magriet profile image

magriet 8 years ago

Very interesting, thanks. Would not have thought to use it, at all. I knew the basics but I did not think it would be enough to do an actual project. Was I wrong!

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Annette Rozen 8 years ago

i liked reading your bio so i clicked on this site. I see that motherhood has provided you with a wealth of useful information - good for you for sharing!!!

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donnaleemason 8 years ago from North Dakota, USA

Interesting, I would never have thought of using it, how creative.


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