Accuracy and Reliability of the Klales et al. (2012) Morphoscopic Pelvic Sexing Method

Kate M. Lesciotto, Lily J. Doershuk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Klales et al. (2012) devised an ordinal scoring system for the morphoscopic pelvic traits described by Phenice (1969) and used for sex estimation of skeletal remains. The aim of this study was to test the accuracy and reliability of the Klales method using a large sample from the Hamann-Todd collection (n = 279). Two observers were blinded to sex, ancestry, and age and used the Klales et al. method to estimate the sex of each individual. Sex was correctly estimated for females with over 95% accuracy; however, the male allocation accuracy was approximately 50%. Weighted Cohen's kappa and intraclass correlation coefficient analysis for evaluating intra- and interobserver error showed moderate to substantial agreement for all traits. Although each trait can be reliably scored using the Klales method, low accuracy rates and high sex bias indicate better trait descriptions and visual guides are necessary to more accurately reflect the range of morphological variation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)214-220
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Forensic Sciences
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2018


  • biological profile
  • forensic anthropology
  • forensic science
  • innominate
  • reliability
  • sex estimation


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