AbstractsBiology & Animal Science

A test of the Calce method for acetabular aging with a North American sample

by Janel Dyan Thompson

Institution: California State University – Sacramento
Year: 2016
Keywords: Skeletal aging technique; Human skeletal analysis; Forensic aging methods
Posted: 02/05/2017
Record ID: 2133856
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/10211.3/172698


Accurate determinations of age at death from adult human skeletal remains is highly problematic due to various influences (e.g., rates of growth and degeneration, environment, genetics, disease, activity level, etc.). Therefore, critical testing and analysis of aging methods is essential to increase accuracy for age at death estimations. A recent method developed by Calce (2012) to estimate age at death using acetabular morphology places individuals into three broadly defined age classes of young, middle, and old (17-39, 40-64, 65 and up). The Calce (2012) method was used on a well documented North American sample (N = 952) of whites and blacks of known age at death housed at the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. (Terry Collection). Tests of bias and inaccuracy and percentages of individuals correctly assigned to age class were conducted. Results showed that 61% were correctly assigned to the correct age class using this method. This compares with 81% correctly assigned reported by Calce (2012) and 45% reported by Mays (2014). Results of bias and inaccuracy were calculated separately for whites and blacks. Overall for both groups, bias ranged from 0.3 - 1.7 years and inaccuracy ranged from 6.4 - 7.3 years. These results fall below reports for bias and inaccuracy using pubic symphysis and auricular surface aging methods. The Calce (2012) acetabular aging method shows promise for use in forensic and paleodemographic contexts. This aging method is still new and needs further testing to determine its potential utility in other human skeletal analyses. Advisors/Committee Members: Strasser, Elizabeth.