Latin American Association of Forensic Anthropology

Certification Process

This guide provides guidelines for candidates for the ALAF Forensic Anthropology certification process. This certification means the adhesion of the candidate to the Latin American Directory of Forensic Anthropology (DLAF) attached to the ALAF.


The Latin American Directory of Forensic Anthropology (DLAF) is a mechanism derived from the Latin American Association of Forensic Anthropology (ALAF) whose mission is to disseminate international standards and recommendations of best practices for the recovery and analysis of bone remains in forensic investigations, promoting their use by experts in criminal and civil cases.


DLAF will strengthen forensic anthropological practice by ensuring, through a certification process, the application of standards and best practices in the field of study to guarantee the right to truth, access to justice and due process. DLAF promote the institutional and social framework where the scientific analysis of forensic evidence is one of the main guiding criteria of judgments.

The Cert-DLAF

The certification (Cert-DLAF) is based on the education and experience of the candidates, as well as in the adoption of a rigorous theoretical-practical examination. Therefore, the Cert-DLAF must not only demonstrate its competence in the area, but also its adherence to the guidelines of good practices essential in the application of Forensic Anthropology.


  1. 1. The DLAF certification committee in charge is responsible for: receiving applications, evaluating applications, preparing and conducting theoretical and practical tests, making recommendations for candidate certification and responding to possible appeals of results.

  2. 2. The committee shall publish the bases and requirements of the certification process on the ALAF website, indicating in opportunely the deadlines for the application.

  3. 3. Candidates for DLAF membership must be full or adherent active members of the ALAF and demonstrate work experience in the field of Forensic Anthropology in the last 5 years or more.

  4. 4. Candidates must undergo a certification process that includes both professional justification and face-to-face examination.

  5. 5. There will be an annual quota of up to 10 applications. The process of selection the candidates is done in strict order of reception of requests.

  6. 6. The candidate will be informed by letter from the DLAF committee about the state of its application and, if it surpass the requested requirements, the dates and annual place for the face-to-face examination.

  7. 7. This examination will take place at the where the ALAF Congress is held annually, immediately before or after. DLAF reserves the right to organize the examination at a specific site if it does not meet the minimum requirements for materials (cases) to be used in the practical exam.

  8. 8. Once the certification process is successfully completed, a certificate is issued and registration is made to DLAF with a membership number in the Directory of professional certificates in the field of Forensic Anthropology in Latin America.

  9. 9. The DLAF certification is valid for a period of 3 years from the date of registration. In order to renew the membership, the Cert-DLAF must not again go through the complete certification process, but must send to the DLAF committee an updated CV of their professional activity as well as three (3) expert forensic anthropological research reports in the last three (3) years. These documents must be sent to the DLAF committee at least four months before the 3 years of certification. For example, if the certification notification was made on October 21, 2014, you will send the documents before June 1, 2017.

  10. 10. In order for certification to take effect, the Cert-DLAF (person certified by DLAF) must remain a member of the ALAF for the duration of the certificate.

  11. 11. Failure to comply with these requirements will result in the cessation of certification and active membership of DLAF.

  12. 12. The DLAF certification committee will be renewed periodically with new members.


Steps to apply for certification exam

  1. 1. To be considered for the ALAF certification exam, the candidate must:

  2. 1.1. Fill and send the application form published on the ALAF website and an updated copy of your CV to the DLAF certification committee.

  3. 1.2. In order to prove your experience practicing the discipline, you must attach to the previous documents, five (5) previous reports of research or anthropological research, carried out in the last five (5) years before the date of application. For reasons of confidentiality, the codes, details or contextual information of the case should be encrypted.

  4. 1.3. Present 3 letters of reference regarding the professional performance of the applicant.

  5. 1.4. Although it is not an exclusive requirement, the submission of 3 recent publications in the field where the applicant appears as author will be positively valued.

  6. 1.5. Pay the amount corresponding to the application fees and certification examination. The quota will be updated periodically and published on the ALAF website and will be equivalent to the annual fee.

  7. 2. Exame

  8. 2.1. After the candidate has passed the prerequisites of application, he must pass a face-to-face examination.

  9. 2.2. The exam will be in Spanish.

  10. 2.3. The examination will be developed, performed and corrected by the DLAF certification committee.

  11. 2.4. The exams will have a theoretical and a practical component.

  12. 2.5. Both theoretical and practical examination will cover all areas related to discipline. The list of topics will be indicated in the bases that will be published in the ALAF.

  13. 2.6 The theoretical-practical examination will be carried out in the same day, with a maximum duration of six (6) hours (three for each block).

  14. 2.7 If the documentation sent to be chosen as a candidate is insufficient or if the examination fails, the candidate will have a new opportunity to apply again the year following the one he applied for the first time. If it fails again, must wait for a period of three (3) years to reapply to the certification process. In no case, the amount paid for exam fees will be refunded.

  15. 2.8. The candidate will receive communication of the results of the examination from DLAF within one month after its completion.

  16. 2.9. The candidate has the right to appeal the test result. All appeals must be in writing, including documentation and / or evidence. Appeals must be received within one month of notification of the certification exam qualification.


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Applications are open until July 31

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In compliance with one of the objectives of the association, in 2012 the ALAF certification process was undertaken. This has been supported by the education, experience and career of the candidates, as well as by passing a rigorous theoretical and practical examination. Applicants must demonstrate their competence in the area and their adherence to guidelines of good practices, essential in the application of forensic anthropology. Currently, there is a directory of 11 professionals from different countries. Applications are open until July 31, 2017 Send your request to