Topic // Critical Thinking in Forensic Anthropology
• Evaluate methods, theories, published articles, find out the
• With regards to evidence we want to evaluate the significance of
it because it can have serious consequences if MISTAKES are
• FOR THE PAPER – show your line of thinking and explain a chain
of evidence strong enough to provide a solution for!
• we use critical thinking skills to evaluate the quality, reliability
and the value of our information
• we want to be able to detect flaws in our own or someone else’s
argument of methodology
• Critical thinking is used to evaluate articles, documents,
witnesses and websites
• It is also used to distinguish good versus bad sources and
• Critical thinking forms a logical basis for ALL decisions and for
F.Anthropoogists use critical thinking to design search strategies and
every situation is UNIQUE. Critical thinking for Forensic Anthropologists
is used to determine the best way to recover remains. i.e – conducting
an excavation. This has to be done without damaging or LOSING any
evidence. . It is imperative to recover ALL types of evidence even in
time sensitive situations. Forensic Anthropologists use critical thinking
for FORENSIC SIGNIFICANCE + to evaluate methods of sex, age,
ancestry and stature. This is because you MUST BE ABLE to JUSTIFY
which methods you used in court and to people who have never done
this before aka a jury. Critical thinking is done to confirm or refute
identification for hard evidence purposes. It is also done to interpret
evidence at a scene.
Criticcal thinking for Forensic Anthropologists:
• helps analyze a death accident
• analyze the burial or deposition incident i.e – how much work did
the person who killed someone put into the killing to begin with?
This adds up to intent and allows F.As to figure out if the murder
was intentional or not. • It uses to look at subsequent events, meaning what has
happened to a body AFTER it has been disposed.
• To evaluate bone damage
• To establish the mode and manner of a death
Exam Question: how does a forensic anthropologist use critical
thinking? Provide an example from the readings or the lecture.
The Introduction of the paper is worth 5%
1. “The purpose of this paper is to”
- must be clear, concise nothing flowery
2. Methods – how are you going to carry out the statement of
purpose for this paper.
- What is the purpose? What methods will be used to critically
evaluate, what sources will be used?
The methods used for this paper will be through the triangulation
of data sources: peer review journal articles, lecture notes, books
3. State your position
- is this episode realistic or not?
- Why or why not?
- “The television show Bones is not a realistic portrayal of
Forensic Anthropology because:
- Brief synopsis of the episode in less than 3 sentences that is
RELATED to the paper.
- all aspects UST be linked to the purpose of the paper
- how does each aspect of the paper help to contribute to the
evaluation of the episode
- We can critically evaluate Dr. Brennans behavior or Booth’s
behavior relative to the crime scene
- Take a FIRM stand in opinion
- No assumptions, facts only, be SPECIFIC - Make ideas and random shit CONCRETE. Define your terms