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How to Create a Fingerprint Science Fair Project

Updated on October 15, 2017

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.

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

Comments

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  • profile image

    Demetria Jones 6 years ago

    wow yhats amazing that's great

  • profile image

    sarah green 6 years ago

    this doesn't provide anything!

  • profile image

    john 6 years ago

    it is really fun but hard

  • profile image

    im 6 years ago

    this project helps me to do mi project thanks

  • profile image

    you will never know 6 years ago

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

  • profile image

    you will never know 6 years ago

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

  • profile image

    yoo 6 years ago

    why not imprints

  • profile image

    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

  • profile image

    Brianna 6 years ago

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

  • profile image

    sarh 7 years ago

    cool for kids right back

  • profile image

    amanda 7 years ago

    the best science fair project for kids

  • profile image

    Baby Bunny Ownz 7 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!!! :-)

  • profile image

    sarah 7 years ago

    awesome i can definally use this on my project thx lots

  • profile image

    amanda 7 years ago

    cool, i did this for the school science fair

  • opismedia profile image

    opismedia 7 years ago

    Cool experiment :D thanks for sharing it.

  • profile image

    villam 7 years ago

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

  • profile image

    freaky monkey 7 years ago

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

  • profile image

    ATL IN DA HOUZE 7 years ago

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

  • profile image

    dakota 7 years ago

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

  • profile image

    naynay 7 years ago

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

  • profile image

    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 >:( :)

  • profile image

    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.

  • profile image

    cbears 7 years ago

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

  • profile image

    allison 7 years ago

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

  • profile image

    mommy 7 years ago

    hey this is a cool sience project

  • jessicab profile image

    jessicab 7 years ago from Alabama

    I just love science, very interesting hub.

  • profile image

    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?"

  • profile image

    Launie 7 years ago

    It was very helpful and it can to any one else

  • profile image

    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

  • profile image

    joxdude 7 years ago

    this excperiment lags NOTHING!!!

  • profile image

    joxdude 7 years ago

    this excperiment lags NOTHING!!!

  • profile image

    joxdude 7 years ago

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

  • profile image

    habhbkxh 7 years ago

    this is not that hard but a little cofusing

  • profile image

    GI JOE 7 years ago

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

  • profile image

    vatery 7 years ago

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

  • profile image

    JazZiE 7 years ago

    This Helped A lot..

    But Using A Graph i Really Don't

    Get It..

  • profile image

    LaRiSsA 8 years ago

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

    =) hee hee haa haa!!!

  • profile image

    weirdo 8 years ago

    this thing is so helpful!!!!

  • profile image

    m0nk3y 8 years ago

    this is a very cool science experiment

  • QouSay profile image

    QouSay 8 years ago

    +1 so cool.. hehehe

  • profile image

    angelou 8 years ago

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

  • ScienceFairLady profile image

    ScienceFairLady 8 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.

  • profile image

    CSI Science Fair Projects 8 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.

  • profile image

    SecretMonkeyUnicornPerson 8 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!

  • profile image

    VictoriaKittyLover 8 years ago

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

  • profile image

    raschell 8 years ago

    I am 11 his is goodfor me in science

  • magriet profile image

    magriet 9 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!

  • Annette Rozen profile image

    Ann Martin 9 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!!!

  • donnaleemason profile image

    donnaleemason 9 years ago from North Dakota, USA

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

    Donna