Zooarchaeology Short Course

On the 26th-30th January the three of us attended the University of Sheffield’s Zooarchaeology short course. Veronica supervised the learning activities whilst Alice and I attended to gain a greater understanding of animal bones and how to identify them. The course took us through how to identify the bone, which species it belonged to, and provided us with ways to estimate the age and sex of an animal using dental attrition and morphological characteristics. There were interesting talks and seminars from different researchers in the department sharing their work with us which added to the learning experience.


Lots of different practical exercises made it easy to learn how to identify animal bones. Here’s a photo of Alice hard at work!

This course was hugely interesting and was fantastic at teaching the basics in zooarchaeology. As well as the information it provided, it was also a good way of meeting other researchers from different universities, and I found a few people with whom I shared mutual acquaintances.

I’d recommend this for anyone who needs to familiarise themselves with animal bones for the purposes of research or excavation, and it’s particularly good due to the department’s excellent reference collection, knowledgeable academics, and practical hands-on teaching methods.


Group photo at the end of the course. People from all different backgrounds and with different reasons for attending found this course useful.

Here’s the link for the course, which will take place again in 2016:




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