Master of Arts (MA)


Geography and Anthropology

Document Type



Standard identification criteria for creating a decedent’s biological profile typically include ancestry, sex, age, and stature, but not body weight. Body weight information may not only assist in creating a more complete biological profile but may also provide insight into other forensic considerations, such as taphonomy and body transport and disposal. The current study seeks to establish multiple regression equations for the prediction of living body weight in skeletal remains. Specifically, the measurements of anterior superior iliac spine (ASIS) breadth and stature are assessed with regard to living weight. Research was carried out on both a skeletal sample and a living population sample of modern black and white Americans. This two-pronged approach was an attempt to identify possible difficulties encountered in using the ASIS/stature technique in a forensic setting. The skeletal sample consisted of 92 individuals with weight data, upon whom ASIS breadth measurements and stature estimations were carried out. Height, weight, and ASIS breadth were subsequently recorded for the living population sample of 85 individuals. Multiple regression analysis was performed on all subsamples showing significant correlations between weight and ASIS breadth and stature variables. Regression equations for weight prediction were then derived from the results of analyses. However, the resulting estimated weight values indicate that ASIS breadth and stature must account for more variation in weight if the technique is to be useful in forensic investigations.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Mary Manhein