Skip Navigation

Vacancy Questions Preview

Vacancy Questions Preview

Grade: 02
* 1.Select the statement that best describes your qualifications for this position:
  1. I have earned a Ph.D. or equivalent doctoral degree in physical and biological sciences, graphic arts, police science, criminology or law OR I have 3 full years of progressively higher level graduate education in physical and biological sciences, graphic arts, police science, criminology or law or LL.M., if related or have at least one year of specialized experience at the GS-9 level.
  2. I have one year of specialized experience, equivalent to at least the GS-11 level or pay band.
  3. I do not meet the requirements as described above.


* 2.Select the statement that best describes your knowledge and experience with firearm and toolmark evidence.
  1. I have mastered the theory, principles and practice of firearm and toolmark identification. I am routinely assigned complex firearm-related casework and have casework experience in non-firearm toolmark analysis and comparative examination. I have testified in criminal proceedings to include trials and/or evidentiary hearings involving casework for which I was responsible.
  2. I am knowledgeable with regard to the theory, principles and practice of firearm and toolmark identification. I regularly perform routine casework involving firearm-related evidence and/or non-firearm toolmark analysis and comparative examination. If not having provided actual testimony, I have at least participated in a court testimony related exercise related to firearm and toolmark identification.
  3. I have completed training in firearm and toolmark identification and have performed some routine casework related to firearm-related evidence.
  4. I am or have completed training to become a firearm and toolmark examiner.
  5. None of the above.


* 3.Select the statement that best describes your training as a Firearm and Toolmark Examiner.
  1. I have completed a fully documented and laboratory approved Firearm and toolmark examiner syllabus.
  2. I am currently training and completing a fully documented and laboratory approved firearms and toolmark examiner syllabus.
  3. I am currently training in the field to become a firearms and toolmark examiner.
  4. I am currently not training in the field of firearms and toolmark examiner.


* 4.Select those examinations/techniques related to non-firearm toolmark related evidence that you have performed in actual casework beyond training and apart from competency/proficiency testing.
  1. Examination of tools, assessing them for the potential of subclass characteristics, and preparing test marks for comparison with toolmarks on evidence.
  2. Examination of evidence for the presence of toolmarks and classifying those toolmarks with regard to potential for identification and possible tool type that produced such marks.
  3. Casting of toolmarks for microscopic examination using casting material such as Mikrosil or ForensicSil.
  4. Comparative examination of toolmarks to determine the possibility of a common source.
  5. Examination of toolmark related evidence for other types of evidence (such as trace and biological evidence), properly collect and preserve such evidence or arrange for its collection and preservation.
  6. I have performed no examinations/techniques related to non-firearm toolmark evidence beyond training but have received training and/or been tested to competency in non-firearm toolmark evidence.
  7. None of the above


* 5.Select those procedures and techniques that you have used in the restoration of obliterated serial numbers on firearms in actual casework beyond training and apart from competency/proficiency testing.
  1. Evaluation of obliterated areas for the method of obliteration.
  2. Evaluation of toolmarks associated with obliterations for potential for identification to a tool.
  3. Casting of toolmarks associated with obliterations for later comparisons using casting material such as Mikrosil or ForensicSil.
  4. Use of Magnetic Particle Inspection (MPI) for restoration of obliterated serial numbers.
  5. Use of chemical etchants for restoration of obliterated serial numbers.
  6. None of the above


* 6.Select the statement that best reflects your experience with writing reports dealing with firearm and toolmark examinations.
  1. I routinely produce reports reflecting the results and interpretation of firearm/toolmark evidence that I examine. These reports involve not only basic functioning of firearms but also detail the results of comparative microscopic examinations. These reports require minimal change during technical and administrative reviews.
  2. I routinely produce reports reflecting the results and interpretations of firearm/toolmark evidence I examine. These reports require minimal change during technical and administrative reviews.
  3. I routinely produce reports reflecting evidence I have examined. These reports require minimal change during technical and administrative reviews.
  4. I produce reports of some of the examinations I perform. These reports require some supervision.
  5. None of the above


* 7.Select the statements that best describes your ability to prepare written communications for variety of audiences in an organized, concise and rational manner to communicate sound technical advice to others, both within and external to the organization.
  1. I published in a recognized professional journal or scientific textbook, or symposium proceeding.
  2. I am primary author of more than one method, procedure, order, protocol and/or manual.
  3. I have prepared written material to explain technical programs, projects, or situations to facilitate understanding and exchange of information.
  4. I have prepared written reports, written letters, memorandums, and other routine correspondence to manager, peers and customers to exchange information regarding status of project, deadlines or other general issues
  5. None of the above


* 8.Have you reported an annual proficiency test result (e.g., Collaborative Testing Services) dealing with firearm identification and/or toolmark identification in which you produced an analytical conclusion that was outside manufacturer specifications?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 9.Select the statement that best describes your experience in testifying in court.
  1. I have been qualified in a criminal court of law as a firearm and toolmark examiner expert witness and given testimony in State and/or Federal Court
  2. I have been qualified in a criminal court of law as a firearm and toolmark examiner expert witness but have not given testimony in State and/or Federal Court.
  3. I have never been qualified in a criminal court of law as a firearm and toolmark examiner expert but have received training and participated in moot court.
  4. None of the above.


* 10.Select the statement that best describes your experience training and mentoring less experienced examiners and trainees in the area of firearm and toolmark identification.
  1. I have regular experience assisting in the training/mentoring of less experienced examiners/trainees in routine and basic procedures in firearm and non-firearm toolmark related evidence examination and identification.
  2. I have some experience in the training/mentoring of less experienced examiners/trainees in routine and basic procedures in firearm evidence examination and identification.
  3. I have limited experience in the training/mentoring of less experienced examiners focused to one or two routine areas covered in training related to firearm related evidence and examination, such as test firing of firearms casting of markings.
  4. None of the above.


* 11.Select the statement that best describes your experience in the review, revision and development of laboratory technical procedures related to firearm and toolmark identification:
  1. I regularly assist in the review, revision and development of technical procedures. I have been responsible for assisting in the development of at least one technical procedure or the assisted in the testing and validation of a method or procedure within the laboratory.
  2. I have assisted others in the review, revision and development of technical procedures. I have assisted others in the development of technical procedures or the testing and validation of a method or procedure within the laboratory.
  3. I am familiar with ASCLD/LAB ISO guidelines as they pertain to the review, revision and development of technical procedures and the testing and validation of methods or procedures within a forensic science laboratory.
  4. None of the above.


* 12.Select the statement that best describes your ability to work with others, to use diplomacy, to successfully and proactively enlist the support of peers, and representatives from other organizations; and to mentor, guide or develop members of a technical staff.
  1. I have successfully worked with senior level representatives (i.e., senior scientists, supervisors, managers, etc.) in situations that required diplomacy. I succeeded in obtaining their support and cooperation to achieve a goal. This is demonstrated by a letter of commendation, award, and/or highly ranked evaluation.
  2. I have successfully worked with others from outside my organization (e.g., agents, officers, inspectors, prosecutors, etc.). I have served successfully as a technical/administrative representative for the agency in situations that required diplomacy.
  3. I have successfully worked with others within my organization to achieve goals and objectives.
  4. None of the above.


* 13.Select the statement that best describes your experience in making an oral technical presentation at a regional or national professional forensic science related meeting.
  1. I have made at least one presentation on a topic related to an aspect of firearm/toolmark evidence examination and identification.
  2. I have made at least one presentation on a topic related to some aspect of forensic science.
  3. I have assisted a more senior examiner in the research and preparation of a presentation but, have not made such a presentation.
  4. None of the above.


* 14.Select the statement that best describes your experience in performing research dealing with a topic in firearm and toolmark identification.
  1. I have been the lead/sole author of a paper published in a peer reviewed journal.
  2. I have been a co-author of a paper published in a peer reviewed journal.
  3. I have assisted others in the research needed for a paper that was published in a peer reviewed journal, but was not identified as an author.
  4. None of the above.


* 15.Select the statement that best describes your membership in a professional organization related to firearm and toolmark examination/forensic science.
  1. I am at least a regular member of the Association of Firearm and Toolmark Examiners (AFTE).
  2. I am a provisional member of the AFTE.
  3. I am a member of another international, national or regional forensic science organization.
  4. None of the above.


* 16.Select the statement that best describes your knowledge and experience with ASCLD/LAB Legacy and/or ISO accreditation policies and guidelines.
  1. I have been employed in a laboratory under ASCLD/LAB Legacy and/or ISO guidelines. In addition, I was employed during at least one external accreditation inspection.
  2. I have work experience in a forensic science laboratory that was accredited under ASCLD/LAB Legacy and/or ISO guidelines.
  3. I have knowledge of ASCLD/LAB Legacy and/or ISO guidelines.
  4. None of the above.


Grade: All Grades
* 1.Federal Regulations state that all persons privileged to be employed in the Federal government, shall be reliable, trustworthy, of good conduct and character, and of complete and unswerving loyalty to the United States. Prior to appointment to an ATF position, you may be required to undergo a background investigation. The scope of the investigation will vary, depending upon the position. Are you willing to submit to this background investigation process?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 2.The background investigation may consist of a review of your past and present claims of education; a review of your past and present employment records; a review of your financial and criminal history; a review of your past and present involvement/use of drugs and alcohol; and extensive interviews with former and current supervisors, colleagues, neighbors, friends, professors, etc. Are you willing to provide written authorization for release of this personal information?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 3.The Department of Justice requires that you provide proof that for 3 out of the last 5 years you have resided in the United States, worked for the United States in a foreign country in a Federal or U.S. military capacity for 3 out of the last 5 years, and/or been a dependent of a Federal or U.S. military employee in a foreign country for 3 out of the last 5 years. Are you able to provide sufficient documentation to meet this residency requirement?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 4.You will be required to complete and sign a “Drug Use Questionnaire”. This questionnaire addresses lifetime use of illegal drugs and narcotics (including circumstances, dates, associates, types/quantities of substances, locations used, and any law enforcement actions including arrests, convictions, and other court actions). It also addresses activities involving the sale of illegal drugs and abuse of prescription drugs. Are you willing to complete and sign the "Drug Use Questionnaire"?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 5.Federal Regulations state that employees of the Federal government shall satisfy in good faith all just financial obligations, especially those imposed by law (e.g. court imposed judgments; Federal, state or local taxes; child support payments). You must be able to provide resolution of all delinquent just debt(s) by timely submission of proof of payment, proof of participation in a payment plan, or proof of legal remedy. If you have delinquent debt(s), can you provide proof of resolution?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 6.Federal Regulations state that no ATF employee or his/her spouse or minor child shall have, directly or indirectly, any financial interest, including compensated employment, stock, or proprietary interest in the alcohol, tobacco, firearms or explosives industries. If you have a financial or proprietary interest in any of these industries, you may be required to relinquish it. Would you be willing to relinquish your interest?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 7.Federal Regulations state that no ATF employee can hold a Federal Firearms License or Federal Explosives License or Permit. If you currently hold a Federal Firearms License or Federal Explosives License or Permit, would you be willing to relinquish your license/permit?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 8.Federal Regulations require that all prospective employees to the Federal government present two forms of acceptable personal identification prior to being granted unescorted access to facilities and/or information technology systems. One identification document must be state or Federally-issued and contain a photograph. Are you able to provide this required identification?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 9.How did you hear about this vacancy?
  1. ATF Website
  2. USAJOBS
  3. ATF Office or Recruiter
  4. Magazine Ad
  5. Other (Recruitment event, Job/Career Fair, etc)


Please be sure to allow yourself adequate time to apply for this vacancy. We recommend that you review the questions for this announcement before you start the application process. The system will not save your responses unless you finish all of the questions for the specific grade level for which you are applying. If you wish to save your answers and return to your application at a later time, then you must respond to all of the questions for the specific grade level.

HOW TO SAVE YOUR ANSWERS: CareerConnector only saves responses on a screen-by-screen basis. What does that mean? Each time you reach AND select a "Continue" or "Finish" button at the bottom of the page, the system saves the answers on that screen. All questions up to that button must have an answer, or an error message will be created. WHAT IF YOU EXIT THE APPLICATION AND DON'T ANSWER ALL OF THE QUESTIONS BEFORE THE "CONTINUE" OR "FINISH" BUTTON? Those answers on that screen will not be saved!!

REMINDER - YOUR RESUME MUST BE ESTABLISHED IN YOUR ACCOUNT. YOUR APPLICATION WILL BE RATED AS INELIGIBLE IF YOU HAVE NOT SET UP YOUR RESUME IN YOUR ACCOUNT. YOU MUST ESTABLISH IT BEFORE THE JOB ANNOUNCEMENT CLOSES.

This is a Federal job application system. Providing false information, creating fake IDs, or failing to answer all questions truthfully and completely may be grounds for not hiring, or disbarment from Federal employment, or for dismissal after the applicant begins work. Falsifying a Federal job application, attempting to violate the privacy of others, or attempting to compromise the operation of this system may be punishable by fine or imprisonment (US Code, Title 18, section 1001). Applicants who provide inaccurate information within the application process (i.e., performance, awards, etc.) may be removed from future consideration under this vacancy.

* 10.Federal law states that it is illegal for a person who has been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence or who has a qualifying order of protection against him/her to possess a firearm or ammunition. The law also prohibits these persons from shipping, transporting, or receiving firearms and/or ammunition. Can you legally possess, transport, ship, and receive firearms and ammunition?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 11.Federal law prohibits the possession of firearms, ammunition, and explosives by a person who has been convicted of a crime punishable by a term of imprisonment exceeding one year. Can you legally possess a firearm, ammunition, and explosives?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 12.Federal law prohibits the possession of firearms, ammunition, and explosives by a person who is a fugitive from justice; is an unlawful user of a controlled substance; has been adjudicated as a mental defective or committed to a mental institution; is an illegal alien or non-immigrant alien; has been discharged from the military under dishonorable conditions; or has renounced his/her U.S. citizenship. Can you legally possess a firearm, ammunition, and explosives?
  1. Yes
  2. No


* 13.Federal law prohibits the receipt of firearms and ammunition, and the receipt or possession of explosives by a person who is under indictment for a crime punishable by a term of imprisonment exceeding one year. Can you legally receive firearms and ammunition? Can you legally receive and possess explosives?
  1. Yes
  2. No






This is a Federal job application system. Providing false information, creating fake IDs, or failing to answer all questions truthfully and completely may be grounds for not hiring, for disbarment from Federal employment, or for dismissal after the applicant begins work. Falsifying a Federal job application, attempting to violate the privacy of others, or attempting to compromise the operation of this system may be punishable by fine or imprisonment (US Code, Title 18, section 1001).