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AN 111 Los Angeles Valley College Wk 6 Comparing Early Hominin Skulls Wroksheet


Use the modules and review resources to complete the chart on this handout comparing skull features of the chimp, human, Australopithecus afarensis, and Paranthropus boisei. Refer to the module page for images of skulls of the four species.


Refer to the module page Week 6 – Skull Images for the Assignments for images and 3-D rotations of the four skulls you need to describe and compare.

Open the worksheet



  1. Present or absent: When a feature is either there or not, you can use a + for present and – for absent. For example, “presence of sagittal crest” can be answered + or –.
  2. Describe: When you are asked to describe a feature, do so with a few words or short phrase. For example, “shape of dental arcade” can be answered “U-shaped.”
  3. Compare: When you are asked to compare, you need to ask “compare to what?” If there are three skulls being compared, you might say X and Y are smaller than Z. Or X is smaller than Y and Y is larger than Z.
  4. Measure: Use the measurements you collected in the Early Hominin Skull Measurements Assignment to complete this row and compare the index across species.

Alternately, you may use these measurements gathered from teaching materials at LAVC. All measurements are in millimeters

Chimpanzee (male) Human (euro male) A. afarensis P. boisei
basion to opisthicranion


92 71 75
basion to prosthion


94 129 135
nasion to prosthion


70 84 110
basion to bregma


132 91 92


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