Human Osteology Short Courses


SkullsLed by doctoral researchers in Human Osteology and departmental staff, our Human Osteology short course provides a broad introduction to the skills and techniques of skeletal analysis of archaeological human remains.

Ranging from basic anatomy to skeletal pathology, this course is ideal as a taster for people interested in pursuing further study in biological anthropology/human osteology; a refresher for those who have previously worked with archaeological human remains; or an opportunity for amateur enthusiasts to learn more about what goes on in the osteology lab!

Course participants benefiting from full access to our world-class teaching collections and facilities, along with the expertise of the department’s staff and researchers.

The course balances academic quality with friendly, engaging tuition.

The next course will run in 2018.  If you would like to be added to a mailing list to receive information about future courses or would like any more general information about the course, please contact Lizzy Craig-Atkins at e.craig-atkins@sheffield.ac.uk





Indicative content


Day 1

Human skeletal anatomy

Identifying and siding bones of the human skeleton

Laying out and recording a skeleton

Bone microstructure

Biological sex

Sexual dimorphism in the pelvis and skull

Assessing biological sex

Day 2

Age assessment

Growth and maturation of the skeleton


Degenerative changes in adults

Methods of age assessment

Human skeletal variation

Estimating stature


Ancestry and population affinities

Skeletal variation – nonmetric traits

Day 3

Skeletal pathology

Disease and trauma

Funerary archaeology

A funerary context for human remains

The course will also include opportunities to analyse skeletons from our teaching and research collections, and to assess your own learning in an informal ‘spotter test’!



Cancellations and refunds

Refund requests should be made by email to archaeology@sheffield.ac.uk, no less than 7 days before the start of the course. We will endeavour to fill the course place, and in the event that a replacement is found a full refund will be made. If a replacement cannot be found a refund of 50% of the course fee will be made for cancellations made more than 7 days before the start of the course. No refund will be made for cancellations made less than 7 days before the course start date. At the discretion of the course organisers, and in exceptional circumstances, participants that are unable to attend can defer their enrolment until the next Human Osteology short course.
If you are experiencing any difficulty please contact us as early as possible.