CSU, Chico News

Summer Course in Forensic Archaeology Offered

Date: 06-05-2008

Joe Wills
Public Affairs
Joe Picard
Regional and Continuing Education

California State University, Chico Continuing Education, in collaboration with CSU, Chico’s Department of Anthropology, is pleased to present Forensic Archaeology: Field Recovery Methods, June 9-13.

This five-day intensive and rarely offered course focuses on the application of archaeology, anthropology, and forensic science to the location and recovery of human remains in the outdoor environment.

Students will learn search strategies for locating clandestine graves and mapping human remains as well as archaeological methods used for excavating, documenting and interpreting grave sites. They will also participate in simulated outdoor forensic scenes. Supplemental course material will include lectures on forensic anthropology, the recovery of burned remains from fire scenes and the role of archaeology and forensic anthropology in large scale investigations.

Field Recovery Methods is being taught by CSU, Chico anthropology faculty members Eric Bartelink, Turhon Murad and Georgia Fox; anthropology graduates Melanie Beasley and Kevin Dalton; and visiting forensic anthropologist Roland Wessling.

Wessling is a research officer in Forensic Archaeology and Anthropology at Cranfield University in the United Kingdom and is the forensic science and operations manager for the Inforce Foundation. He has worked on international cases in Bosnia, Croatia and Iraq, as well as domestic cases in Germany and the United Kingdom.

“This is a unique, affordable opportunity for students interested in forensic anthropology to gain valuable hands-on training from scientists with international experience in mass grave excavations and archaeology. The Department of Anthropology is dedicated to providing distinctive educational opportunities for our students. This is the first university course of its kind on the West Coast,” said Bartelink.

The California State University, Chico Forensic Anthropology Program is recognized internationally for its scholarly contributions to the field. CSU, Chico is one of two universities with three practicing forensic anthropologists and one of a few universities that support two forensic anthropologists that are American Board of Forensic Anthropology certified. For more than 35 years, the CSU, Chico Forensic Anthropology Program has offered its identification services through the Physical Anthropology Human Identification Laboratory (PAHIL). The lab has proven to be a valuable investigative resource for government agencies throughout the country.