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Caroline Znachko

PhD Student


Subdiscipline: Biological Anthropology


Caroline Znachko is a Ph.D. student in biological anthropology under Dr. Dawnie Steadman. Her research largely focuses on the biological consequences of social inequality. She is interested in how early life adversity becomes biologically embedded and influences health trajectories into adulthood and how these outcomes can serve as biological evidence of structural violence in bioarchaeological and forensic humanitarian contexts.
Caroline graduated from the University of Arizona with a B.S in biological anthropology and a minor in ecology and evolutionary biology. During her time in Tucson, Caroline took part in internship programs with the Bureau of Applied Research in Anthropology as a maternal-fetal health researcher and with the Forensic Anthropology Division of the Pima County Office of the Medical Examiner. She also assisted with the multi-season excavation of Crocifisso del Tufo, an Etruscan necropolis in Orvieto, Italy. Her senior thesis investigated the etiology of Schmorl’s nodes through the comparison of various bioarchaeological, historical, and modern groups.
Caroline received her MA in biological anthropology from Texas State University and was the department’s 2019 Outstanding Anthropology Graduate Student Award recipient. She assisted in the forensic recovery and analysis of unidentified migrant skeletal remains recovered in south Texas as part of the Operation Identification project at the Forensic Anthropology Center at Texas State. She also utilized her graduate training in bioarchaeology and forensic anthropology on various projects in Texas, Belize, Mexico, and Peru. Caroline’s thesis project examined patterns of skeletal stress markers among unidentified migrants recovered along the United States – Mexico border and American nationals to understand how human rights violations experienced by migrants in their homelands are reflected within the body.
During her time at the University of Tennessee, Caroline has worked as the manager of the WM Bass Donated Skeletal Collection, assisted with the recovery and analysis of forensic cases, and taught forensic field methods at the Forensic Anthropology Center. She is also involved with Students for Migrant Justice and the Disasters, Displacement, and Human Rights Program.



Bioarchaeology; Forensic Anthropology; Skeletal Pathology; Health and Disease; DNA Methylation; Early Life Adversity; Structural Violence; Biocultural Approaches


M.A., Texas State University. Anthropology, Biological Anthropology Focus. 2019.

  • Thesis: “Interpreting the skeletal embodiment of vertebral stress among modern Americans and unidentified migrants along the United States – Mexico border: A biocultural approach"


B.S., University of Arizona. Anthropology, Human Biology Emphasis. 2016.

  • Thesis: “Schmorl’s nodes and spinal health of human skeletal remains at Turkey Creek Pueblo"


Professional Service

American Association of Biological Anthropologists, American Academy of Forensic Sciences

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