Differences Between The Three Classes Of Fingerprints

Differences Between The Three Classes Of FingerprintsDescribing the differences between the three classes of fingerprints. Which class does the fingerprint you photographed fall into? Justify your reasoning.Fingerprints are patterns that develop on the fingers on an individual in the second trimester during foetal development. Unless one experiences serious burns they stay the same for a lifetime and they are distinct from person to another. According to the New Mexico Department of Health, (2008), there are three classes of fingerprints namely; whorls, arches and loops.

Whorls are the common types of fingerprints as it is approximated that 35% of all world’s population are whorls. In a whorl fingerprint, the ridges that form the fingerprints, there must be at least one that forms a complete circle. There should also be several oval and triangular shapes. There are two types of whorls, the central pocket whorl and the double loop whorl. The double loop whorl usually has two centric circles, while the central pocket whorl has one centric circle that forms the shape of a delta. The next class of fingerprints is the arches, these are the least common types of fingerprints in the world. This is because it is estimated that only 5% of the world’s population has this type of fingerprint. The distinct feature of arches fingerprint is that it has all the ridges flowing towards one direction without turning to either make a circular or oval shape. There are two types of arch; a plain arch or a tented arch. The plain arch all the ridges head toward one direction in smooth and almost uniform gradients. The tented arch the ridges are steeper and head either towards the thump or the little finger.

The last class of fingerprints is the loops. It has to be the most common of them all fingerprints, this is because it is estimated that 60% of the world’s population have this type of fingerprint. The ridges in the fingerprints flow into a loop and then continue to the centre of the finger to form a delta like shape. The loops are divided into two, the thump loops and the ulna loops. Those fingerprints whose radical flow towards the thump form the thump loops while those that flow towards the smallest finger are called the ulna loops.

The fingerprints that was photographed was the loops, this is because it had all the features of the loops. This is because at least a ridge had entered into the loop and later would flow toward the delta formation. This can also be because it is the most common type of fingerprint in the world and is therefore easy to find and with the classification it becomes even easier to identify.


New Mexico Department of Health Publications, (2008), Fingerprint Techniques Manual, Government Print, Washington D.C