Starting this fall, Carlow University in Pittsburgh will offer a new master of science degree in fraud and forensics that will focus on the detection, investigation and prevention of white-collar crime.

Carlow developed the program with the help of licensed experts from law enforcement, government agencies, accounting firms and the corporate community. The first of its kind in the tri-state region and one of the few in the country, according to the university, the program can be completed entirely online.

“Carlow University developed this program to meet 'the next great need': preventing, investigating, and finding solutions to white collar crime,” said Carlow University President Dr. Mary Hines, in a statement. “With the guidance of experts in the field from across the United States, faculty worked diligently and rapidly to provide a broad-based, learner-centered, accessible and short-term program which can be completed online in a year.”

Organizations lose 5 percent of annual revenues—or more than an estimated $2.9 trillion of the Gross World Product—to occupational fraud, according to the 2010 Report to the Nations on Occupational Fraud and Abuse from the Academy of Certified Fraud Examiners.

“Carlow is offering a program that helps students join the frontline in uncovering and preventing fraud like Ponzi schemes, identity theft, misuse of funds, hidden assets, and other white-collar crimes,” said Diane Matthews, PhD, director of the fraud and forensics program and associate dean of the school of management at Carlow, in a statement. “At the completion of the degree, students will be prepared to work for organizations that investigate fraudulent activities.”

The program emphasizes ethical conduct while aiming to develop skills in investigation, behavioral analysis, management and leadership.

The curriculum includes 11 courses that, if taken in five-week intervals, can be completed in one year. Two of the courses are real-time online seminars.

More information about the program can be found at