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OSU Forensics Day 8

Day 8: Bone Histology and Mapping Systems

“Today was a long, but informative day. I found histology very difficult. All of the topics we have gone over so far I have had some background in, but histology is usually something we fly through at the beginning of the semester in some of my classes. I have never had the opportunity to sit down, and really examine the cellular structure of the bone. Although I thought the histology module was difficult, I learned a lot today. I think histology is extremely important for any carrier involving bone, because in order to understand something on a macro-scale it is important to understand it on a micro-scale. There is a reason chemistry starts off with the atom, and biology with the cell. Every hard science builds upon itself, and it is important to have a strong foundation to start with. I also am really glad we went over mapping coordinate systems. I have never had to do anything like that ever before. I know these systems will be necessary at the indoor and outdoor crime scene. It is important in a forensic context to be able to accurately reconstruct a scene for a jury. Today was definitely the day I had learned the most, and I feel confident that I have the tools to go to the crime scene and get some work done. I am so excited to go to the indoor crime scene, and put all of my new skills to work!”

Sarah L. – Participant


“Today, we spent the morning in the bioarchaeology lab learning about bone histology. The lecture was followed by three different lab stations, at which we prepared specimens for slides, estimated age, and identified human osseous material vs. non-human osseous material. I found estimating age via counting osteons to be challenging because it was difficult to discern which osteons were complete and which were fragmentary. I wasn’t aware that some non-human bone material can also have osteons present, so I definitely learned something new today. After lunch, we went outside and did some mapping exercises. Mapping is a lot harder than I thought it would be! We learned about three different types of mapping techniques, and I found Cartesian coordinate mapping to be the hardest. Who knew that making a perfect square would be so hard?! The other two techniques, polar coordinates and triangular coordinates, were difficult because we had to rely on a tape measure and hand-held compass to get accurate measurements and bearings. I have not had any mapping experience so this afternoon was full of new and exciting things. I am excited for tomorrow because I get to tour of the Franklin County Coroner’s office and view an autopsy.​”

Leann R. – Participant

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