This course provides postgraduate education in the discipline of Forensic Anthropology. This course provides intensive training in human osteology and the techniques used by Forensic Anthropologists to build osteological profiles of unknown skeletonised human remains. The first half of the taught phase provides you with a solid foundation in the core skills of forensic science, such as crime scene examination and interpretation and presentation of evidence, using our crime scene facilities and real crime scene expertise and casework. The second half of the taught phase includes specialised modules on human osteology, and techniques of estimation of sex, age, stature and ethnic ancestry in skeletal remains, as well as distinguishing between animal and human bones. It also includes topics such as skeletal development, trauma and pathology; forensic taphonomy (decomposition and decay); and post-mortem interval estimation. The course is very practically and vocationally-focused, and provides hands-on experience of dealing with skeletonised and decomposed human (and animal) remains.
In the last third of the course, you are given the opportunity to pursue an original research project, on a topic provided by supervisors or of a relevant topic of your choice. This requires 50 days of laboratory work, and takes place in the summer term.
There may be the opportunity for some students to carry out their research project in a relevant academic, commercial or industrial setting, such as a museum or archaeological unit. Placements are normally a minimum of eight weeks in the period between June and September.