Heather Garvin-Elling, Ph.D.

Heather Garvin-Elling, Des Moines University Master of Science in Anatomy

Heather Garvin-Elling, Ph.D.

Additional Roles
Associate Professor, Anatomy

515-271-1694 (Office Phone)

Areas of Expertise

Dr. Heather Garvin joined DMU from Mercyhurst University where she taught undergraduate and graduate students in their Forensic Anthropology, Anthropology, and Physician’s Assistant programs. Her research interests focus on human skeletal variation, and she has worked on everything from modern forensic anthropology cases to hominin fossil remains. She was involved in the discovery and analysis of a new species of human ancestor, Homo naledi, from fossil remains discovered in South Africa in 2014. She is also one of only 79 active board-certified forensic anthropologists (D-ABFA) in the U.S., and continues to be involved in forensic anthropology cases. Dr. Garvin is also a Co-PI on an NIJ grant working towards develoing improved subadult sex and estimation standards from a large collection of postmortem subadult CT scans. Ultimately, Dr. Garvin strives to understand human skeletal variation in terms of functional, evolutionary, and environmental influences and much of her research entails using 3D imaging and geometric morphometric methods to analyze variation in skeletal morphology.

CV available upon request.

Education:
Ph.D., Functional Anatomy & Evolution., Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
M.S., Biological and Forensic Anthropology, Mercyhurst College
B.S., Zoology, University of Florida
B.A. Anthropology, University of Florida

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