teacher activity information
The Student Handouts that relate to these Method activities are found in FSP25 – Personal Dossier
under the section Anthropometry Table. The students should work in groups of 3, all
taking a turn at the 3 roles: What are anthropometric measurements?
They are simply body dimensions. ; subject – the person being measured The main thing about making anthropometric ; anthropometrist (measurer) – the person
doing the measuring measurements is that the students must be
consistent. This means that if a student ; recorder – the person writing down the measures Person X on Monday and then takes measurements
the same measurements from Person X on When a student is the anthropometrist, they Tuesday (under the same conditions) they will should complete all of the measurements in get a very similar result. the order that is on the worksheet. When they
have taken the measurement, they call out to They must also be accurate. This means that if the recorder, who then repeats what was said a student measures Person X on Monday, and and writes it down. another student also measures Person X on
Monday, they would both get very similar For example, the anthropometrist says, results. “twenty two point zero centimetres”, and the
recorder repeats, “twenty two point zero To do this the students MUST follow a centimetres” and writes it down on the procedure so everyone is taking the subject’s worksheet. measurements the same way. See below.
After the anthropometrist has completed one Equipment round of all of the measurements, they repeat
them all again from the beginning. Tape measure (the Lufkin tapes are the best as
they have even pressure and don’t stretch). The recorders do NOT tell the anthropometrist
if their second measurement is close or far ; 1 meter ruler apart from their first measurement. ; 30 cm ruler
; marking chalk - a make-up eyebrow pencil If the second measurement is a lot different
is good – students can mark the sites to (1cm or greater difference) than the first
measure from (optional) measurement, the anthropometrist should do
a third measure after they have completed the ; pen and worksheet to record results
second round of measurements. ;(FSP25 Anthropometry Table handout)
; height chart – attached to a wall (pre- prepared)
; arm span chart attached to a wall (pre-
Forensic investigations: Anthropometry (teacher activity information) FSP19 | revised May 2013 | ? The University of Western Australia page 1 Licensed for NEALS
Average of the measurements
Work out the average measurement by adding
measure 1 and measure 2 and dividing by two.
If you have taken three measurements, you DO
NOT average the three measurements but add
together the two closest measurements and
divide by two.
Eg: length lower arm
measure 1 = 20 cm
measure 2 = 19 cm
measure 3 = 19.5 cm
Add 19 + 19.5 and divide by 2.
Average length = 19.25 cm
In the Personal Dossier, students are asked to
decide on a uniform and consistent method
taking ALL of the measures.
The techniques below are a guide as to what is
NB: These are NOT techniques as accredited
by ISAK but are modified for this activity. The
most important thing is that ALL students take
the measurements the same way.
Anthropometric measures Suggested Technique
Standing height Feet together, heels, buttocks and upper part of back touching
the wall. The head should not tilt upwards – check that the A chart with accurately marked subject is looking straight ahead (chin slightly tucked in). intervals or a tape needs to be
secured to the wall. The subject should breathe in (keep heels on ground).
The measurer places a ruler at on the top of the head with
firm pressure and holds the ruler in place as the subject slips
out from their position. The measurer reads the score to the
Arm span The subject stands with the back to the wall with the arms as
horizontal as possible, palms facing forward, fingers fully It is useful to use a corner of the extended. Measure from tip to tip of the third fingers. room so only one mark needs to be
Length lower arm The measurement should be taken from the upper edge of the
elbow bone to the wrist bone on the thumb side of the hand. Elbow to wrist
Length lower leg Subject should be seated, with their right ankle resting on
their left knee. Measure from the fold of skin at the crease of Knee to ankle the upper leg and lower leg and the ankle bone.
Length of foot This should be the distance from the longest toe to the most
posterior point on the heel of the foot while the subject is Heel to longest toe standing with their weight evenly distributed.
Circumference of head Tape should be just above the eyebrows, above the ears and
pulled fairly tight to compress the hair.
Forensic investigations: Anthropometry (teacher activity information) FSP19 | revised May 2013 | ? The University of Western Australia page 2
Making the measurement charts
A piece of paper with 0.5 cm intervals marked can be taped to the wall.
Rather than writing in all the intervals, determine the general range of heights within the class and complete a 30 to 40 cm wall chart.
The arm span measurement will be similar to the height of the students. Create an interval chart and attach to the wall 1 meter from a corner.
Students will stand with their fingertip of the third finger on the wall.
Forensic investigations: Anthropometry (teacher activity information) FSP19 | revised May 2013 | ? The University of Western Australia page 3