Fingerprint Identification

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In this activity (on page 2) about fingerprint analysis, learners use graphite from a pencil and scotch tape to capture their fingerprints. Learners stick the tape to paper and analyze their fingerprints with magnifying glasses. This resource includes a couple of types of prints for comparison, both between fingers, and to other people's fingers. [Activity is publicly available through a web crawler capture on]

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$1 - $5 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 4 - 14

Resource Type:


Materials List (per group of students)

  • Pencil
  • Clear Tape
  • White Paper
  • Magnifying Glass


  • Engineering and Technology
    • Technology
  • Life Sciences
    • Human Body
      • Muscles and Skin
  • The Nature of Science
    • Science and Society
      • Risks and Benefits
      • Ethics
  • The Nature of Technology
    • Technology and Society
      • Impacts of Technology

Informal Categories

  • Crime Science


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Includes alignment to state and/or national standards:

Access Rights:

  • Free access



Funding Source:

  • National Science Foundation, ESI-0206403