Pamela Mayne Correia, MA


Faculty of Arts - Anthropology Dept



PAMELA MAYNE CORREIA completed her M.A. at the University of Alberta. Upon completion of the M.A. degree in 1990, she assumed the position of osteology technologist for the Department of Anthropology, the position she held for 18 years. In 2009 she joined the Department as academic faculty in the role of Faculty Service Officer II and was promoted in 2015 to level III. Her research interests are in the area of the analysis of cremated human skeletal material, trauma analysis, bone taphonomy and in human identification problems related to mass disasters and genocide. She is Curator for the three museum collections managed by the Department of Anthropology. Pamela continues to teach biological anthropology, skeletal trauma analysis, and forensic anthropology. She has supervised the completion of two Masters students within the department of Anthropology, as well as mentored numerous Honours theses. Within the University Mayne Correia has participated on the Executive committee for the Repatriation of Sharphead, and as a member of the Curator’s committee, Policy and Planning Committee, AASUA Bylaws Review Committee, and FSO Constituency committee. She is the consulting forensic anthropologist for the Medical Examiner’s Office and has contributed to numerous cases for the RCMP, Medical Examiner, and Archaeological Survey since 1989. As part of this work, Mayne Correia is involved in the Missing Children/Persons and Unidentified Human Remains project, as well as ongoing identification of human remains. Since 2014 Ms. Mayne Correia has been on the editorial board for the Canadian Society of Forensic Sciences Journal. She is the Chair of the Anthropology/Medical/Odontology Section of the Canadian Society of Forensic Sciences and a member of the Canadian Association of Physical Anthropology. Ms. Mayne Correia has received several awards in her position here at the University of Alberta, including the J.Lawrence Angel Award (1990), Sigma Xi Nat Rutter Outstanding Technician of the Year Award (2005), the Curator Hall of Fame Award (2015),  and most recently Greatest Supervisor (FGSR, 2019).


Themes: Applied forensic anthropology; trauma, cremated human remains; human identification problems, bone curatorial issues. Current research: bone diagenesis, including fungal, heat and traumatic damage.

Research Projects

Unidentified Human Remains Project (2015-present)

As a coordinated project between the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner and RCMP, all the outstanding human remains cases in the province of Alberta are being reviewed and CPIC Missing persons files are being updated with additional information. One aspect of this project has been the production of 3D digital files to enable facial reconstructions in the future. 

Biofilm Growth in a Human Skeletal Collection: Challenging current Museum Standards (2009 – present)

This project is a long term study on biofilm growth in bone tissue under differing museum/laboratory storage conditions.

Bone Biodeterioration (2009 to present)

Dr. Pitre and I are continuing to examine the presence, development, and description of biofilm as identified for the first time in human archaeological bone.

Comparative Histology of Burned Mammals (2012 – present)

Horocholyn, Pointer and I are looking at how bone histology is affected by heat in four mammals. The goal is to assess the viability of methods designed to distinguish between the species when unburned, when applied to cremated bone. Cow, Pig, Deer, and Human tissue is compared at 600C, 800C, and 1000C.

A New Method for Transporting and Storing Fragmentary Human Remains (2012 – present)

Sawchuk, Willoughby and I have initiated a 10yr experiment testing a method of storing human remains which may limit biofilm growth (fungal or bacterial) in a collection stored in Africa.

Examination of Pre-cremation Trauma in Cremated Bone (1989 – 1997)

This research assessed the ability to identify traumatic (peri-mortem) fractures in burned bone tissue. Research results produced 1) way to describe the amount of cremation viewed in the remains, 2) a description of the heat fractures identified in the animal model at various temperatures, 3) the conclusion that traumatic fractures can be identified at lower temperatures, but when fragmentation and calcination have progressed, there is a reduced chance of identifying pre-cremation trauma.


Forensic anthropology, human osteology, biological anthropology

Anthropology 101            Introduction to Anthropology (lecture, Winter session, 1991)

Anthropology 110            Gender, Age and Culture (lecture course; Spring session 1991)

Anthropology 301            Topics and Issues in Anthropology (lecture, Spring session, 1990)

Anthropology 309            Physical Anthropology (TA Winter 1988, lecture course no labs, Summer and Fall sessions, 1991)

Anthropology 209            Introduction to Biological Anthropology (lecture/lab course, Fall 1997, Winter, 1998, Fall 2000, Winter 2001, Fall 2002, Winter 2003, Fall and Winter 2005, Winter 2010, Winter 2011, Winter 2012, Fall 2013, Winter 2015, Fall 2015)

Anthropology 390            Human Osteology (lab section Fall 1989, Fall 2003, 2004, lecture Fall 2005, Fall 2010, Fall 2015, Fall 2017)

Anthropology 571           Forensic Taphonomy (reading course Fall 2015, Winter 2016, Winter 2017, Winter 2019)

Anthropology 572           Internship in Forensic Anthropology (Winter 2019)

Anthropology 490/584      Human Osteoarchaeology (Fall 2017)

Anthropology 494/586     Forensic Anthropology (seminar Winter 2010, Winter 2011, Winter 2012, Winter 2013, Winter 2014, Winter 2016, Winter 2018, Winter 2019, Winter 2020)

Anthropology 484/586     Skeletal Trauma Analysis (seminar Fall 2014, Fall 2015, Winter 2017, Fall 2018)

Workshops                   Human Osteology Workshops for Forensic Investigators (2012, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018)

                                  Sudden Death Investigation I and Sudden Death Investigation II : Anthropology component - Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (Feb. and March 2003)

Program for Older Adults,  Forensic Anthropology, Special Sessions, University of Alberta (Sept-Nov, 2000)

Summer Youth University (Grades 8-12) - Instructor, University of Alberta, Faculty of Extension (July, 1989)