138 Cordelia Camp Bldg
69 East University Way
Cullowhee, NC 28723
828.227.7397 tel
800.928.4968 toll-free tel
828.227.7115 fax


Bone Identification


May 20-21, 2015 .................... $150

May 20: 3-6pm  |  May 21: 9am-5pm
Add-on to Cadaver Dog Training Level 1 or 2


The bone identification workshop focuses on providing opportunity for participants to handle and view numerous human and non-human skeletons. The goal is to help cadaver dog handlers gain enough experience with bones from mammals, including humans, to begin to be able to distinguish the human remains from all others. This will be accomplished via hands on exercises with guidance from the instructor and by allowing students to try their hand at numerous identifications. The names of bones will not be stressed, but identifying whether they are human or not will be. Participants will learn how to reason their way through an identification as well as how to recognize the limits of their knowledge. Lunch will be provided on Monday 11/3.

A text book will not be provided, but it is recommended that students purchase and bring to the class the following book (available from Amazon):

Recommended Textbook

Comparative Osteology: A Laboratory and Field Guide of Common North American Animals
By Bradley Adams and Pam Crabtree

About the Instructor

Cheryl A. Johnston, Ph.D. is a board certified forensic anthropologist and a fellow of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences. She grew up in Asheville, N.C. and earned her doctoral degree at the Ohio State University in 2002. Dr. Johnston served as the physical anthropologist for the Ohio Historical Society from 1993 until 2002 and was responsible for a collection of over 6000 sets of human remains. In 2005 Dr. Johnston joined the faculty at Western Carolina University. Dr. Johnston has worked as a consultant in forensic anthropology since 1991 for numerous agencies including the Burke, Caldwell, Catawba, Macon, and Clay County (N.C.) Sheriff's Departments, the Ohio Attorney General's Office Consumer Protection Division, the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and numerous Ohio Coroner's and Sheriff's Offices. Her major interests in forensic anthropology are age and sex estimation and taphonomic processes, especially the effects of fire on bone. She designed and is carrying out the human decomposition research program at Western Carolina University's Forensic Osteology Research Station (FOREST), one of only a few outdoor decomposition facilities in the world.


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