Bone identification course

Western Carolina’s forensic anthropology program along with the Division of Educational Outreach, will be offering a comparative osteology (bone identification) course from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. June 3-5, at WCU. Pictured are participants from a previous course.

Western Carolina University’s forensic anthropology program and the Division of Educational Outreach will be offering a comparative osteology (bone identification) course from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. June 3-5, at WCU.

This course introduces participants to the field of osteology, or the study of the skeleton.

“When a bone is discovered, the first question you have to answer is, ‘Is it human?’” said Christine Bailey, one of the instructors for the course and instructor in anthropology and the forensic anthropology facilities curator at WCU. “This course provides law enforcement and future anthropologists the skills to make this determination.”

During this course, participants will learn various methods for distinguishing human bone from non-human bone, using both human and non-human skeletons as hands-on teaching tools.

This course is geared towards law enforcement, medicolegal professionals and undergraduate and graduate-level university students. No previous knowledge is required.

The registration fee is $199.

There will be optional on-campus accommodations and meals package available. The three-night plan includes single or double occupancy in a WCU residence hall with all meals starting with breakfast on Monday through lunch on Wednesday. Check-in will be from 4-6 p.m. on Sunday, June 2.

The recommended text for the course is “Comparative Osteology: A Laboratory and Field Guide of Common North American Animals, 1st Edition” by Brad Adams and Pam Crabtree.

For more information and to register, visit or call 227-7397.