Human Osteoarchaeology at Winchester

*Special Offer* - book your place for the June 1st Study Day by May 25th and receive 10% off the price!

  • Discover the scientific methods used to determine age, sex and stature and disease in skeletal remains and try them for yourself
  • Learn how bone analysis can enhance our understanding of archaeological sites and social history
  • Hands-on session in small group with an extensive skeletal collection

The study of ancient human remains can reveal an astonishing amount about life as it was lived in the distant past. Using scientifi c and medical techniques, archaeologists are able to learn about individuals in incredible detail: age, sex, stature, health status and, occasionally, status and manner of death. From Ötzi the Iceman to Richard III - the science of osteology has been instrumental in adding to our knowledge of some of the greatest archaeological finds of recent years.

This day will introduce the techniques used in the study of archaeological human remains, through introductory lectures and extensive “hands-on” sessions with human remains. A rare opportunity to see a skeletal collection at Winchester Museum stores, led by Dr Katie Tucker from the University of Winchester. Learn basic skeletal anatomy, how to lay out a skeleton, how to determine age and sex and identify evidence of disease and trauma. Privileged encounters with the precious, unique and poignant human remains that have so much to teach us about the past.

"The unique hands-on opportunity [spending] a really good length of time laying out the skeleton and learning how to find out more about what bones can tell us." Guest comment


  • Small Group

Itinerary 2019

Day 1

Morning: 09:30 am start

09:30 - We gather at Winchester Vineyard Church - Unit A, Bar End Industrial Estate SO23 9NP
09:45 - Introduction to bones in the archaeological record.
11:00 - Coffee break.
11:15 - Pathological instruction: basic pathologies and trauma.
12:15 - We break for lunch.


13:30 - We take a short walk to the stores where we have special access to the store room, where we learn how to identify and interpret pathologies and trauma in skeletal material to see how diseases such as tuberculosis and leprosy, common conditions such as arthritis, and fractures and injuries, manifest upon bone. This will be followed by a practical session.
16:15 - Final discussion and questions.
16:30 - Disperse.

What's Included

  1. Expert Guide Lecturer
  2. Lunch - A buffet-style lunch will be provided
  3. Fact Sheet - Including background information about your Guide Lecturer, historical context for the Day, detailed itinerary, a suggested reading list and directions to the venue


Nov 16

The session in the afternoon with the bones was fantastic. I had not imagined that we would get to work on such interesting skeletons. The small group allowed for Katie to spend a good amount of time with each group.

Guest, 2016
Nov 16

I loved the day it was a good balance of theory and practical. It was great to be in a small group it allowed everyone to mix and get the most out of the day.

Guest, 2016
Nov 16

The opportunity to get 'hands on' with skeletal remains was immensely rewarding. Learning about their context added to the experience of building a human story from the evidence of bony pathology and trauma. To be able to determine not only that an individual had been beheaded, but also the angle and direction of the fatal blow was extraordinary.

Guest, 2016
Nov 16

Dr Tucker was an engaging presenter whose knowledge has enormous scope. In a group with a range of previous experience she responded to all questions at the level of the questioner and developed the answer to enable the whole group to understand.

Guest, 2016
Nov 16

We enjoyed every aspect of the day, from the very informative morning lectures by Dr Katy Tucker to the fascinating hands-on examination of skeletons in the afternoon. We really appreciated the chance to hear from someone as expert, well-informed and enthusiastic as Katy. And it was a real and rare privilege to see and handle the bones of three people whose stories came to life for us as Katy helped us to read the clues in the skeletons.

Guest, 2016
Nov 16

On the practical front, all of the staff at the venue were very helpful and enthusiastic and gave us a very nice (and generous) lunch.

Guest, 2016
Nov 1

having a knowledgeable lecturer. It was so much more interesting to work with real skeletons. The main skeleton I wokrd with was that of a woman from a leper hospital. I learnt so much about pathology and the diseases she was suffering from and made understanding her condition more real and allowed me to develop real empathy with her.

Guest, 2015
Nov 1

It was really interesting and a great privilege to be able to handle the skeletons and learn so much about them from an expert. The talks were very clear, but the chance to see things for ourselves was what really made the day special. We also enjoyed the tour of the stores at the end of the day. The lunch was excellent too!

Guest, 2015
Nov 1

I enjoyed the practical element, looking at how the bones can tell a story of a person's life and sometimes death. Katie imparted her knowledge in an enthusiastic, interesting and logical manner, facts intermixed with some anecdotes to illustrate them.

Guest, 2015

Linked Tours

Interested in seeing a little more of the ancient world? We run over 100 tours explore history, archaeology and culture all over the world including... See suggestions below:

See something old in a new way

Andante Study Days offer rare, often unique, insights into the world of working archaeology. All are led by expert guides, and are designed to give guests access to some of the best of British Archaeology... 

What to expect 

  • An expert guide to accompany you throughout the Day
  • A mixture of lectures, practical demonstrations, handling sessions, guided tours and walks
  • Special access to museums, sites and galleries otherwise closed to the general public (where specified)
  • Small Groups 12-25 guests 
  • The company of like-minded people!
Enquire now

Have a question or just want to find out more?

Book now

To book your tour without flights from the US, please call our team on 888 331 3476

2019 Study Day Details

Sun 17th Nov - Sun 17th Nov

Call for Availability


without flights


Led By: Dr Katie Tucker

Managed By: Debbie Paton

Guide Lecturer

Tour Manager

Share study day with friends