Faculty & Staff

Charles P. Egeland

Charles EgelandProfessor
Paleolithic Archaeology and Paleoanthropology
Ph.D., Indiana University, 2007
Email: cpegelan@uncg.edu
Curriculum Vitae
See my Blog

Research Interests

  • Human Evolution
  • Paleolithic Archaeology
  • Zooarchaeology
  • Vertebrate Taphonomy
  • Paleoenvironmental Studies
  • Hunter-Gatherer Ecology

Courses Taught

  • ATY 153: The Human Species
  • ATY 205: The World of Neaderthals
  • ATY 231:  Race and Human Diversity
  • ATY 341: Paleolithic Archaeology
  • ATY 357:  Monkeys, Apes, and Humans
  • ATY 359: Forensic Anthropology
  • ATY 361: Methods in Biological Anthropology
  • ATY 369: Statistics for Anthropology
  • ATY 453: Human Osteology
  • ATY 455: Human Evolution
  • ATY 457: Primate Behavior
  • ATY 477: Zooarchaeology
  • ATY 479: Analysis of Archaeological Data

Personal Statement

My research program focuses on the behavior of hunter-gatherer cultures between 2.6 million years ago and the end of the last Ice Age some 10,000 years ago. My methodological specialty is zooarchaeology, which is the identification and analysis of animal bones from archaeological sites. Much of my research is grounded in (1) taphonomy, or how bones transition from the biosphere to the lithosphere, and (2) actualism, or how observations of contemporary processes can be used to reconstruct the past. Ultimately, I seek to understand the evolution of the hunter-gatherer adaptation and how it set the stage for humans’ ecological dominance on Earth. As a committed teacher, I regularly include students in research and strive to cultivate life-long learners. 


  • Deconstructing Olduvai: A Taphonomic Study of the Bed I Sites.  (with M. Domínguez-Rodrigo and R. Barba, Springer, 2007)


  • Manuel Dominguez-Rodrigo, CP Egeland, Lucia Cobo-Sanchez, Enrique Baquedano, and Richard C. Hulbert Jr. (2022), Sabertooth Carcass Consumption Behavior and the Dynamics of Pleistocene Large Carnivoran Guilds, Scientific Reports 12:6045 pp1-14 (view PDF)
  • CP Egeland, Cynthia M. Fadem, Ryan M. Byerly, Cory Henderson, Curran Fitzgerald, et al. (2019), Geochemical and Physical Characterization of Lithic Raw Materials in the Olduvai Basin, Tanzania, Quaternary International 526 pp 99-115 (view PDF)
  • CP Egeland, Manuel Dominguez-Rodrigo, Travis Rayne Pickering, Colin G. Menter, and Jason L. Heaton (2018), Hominin Skeletal Part Abundances and Claims of Deliberate Disposal of Corpses in the Middle Pleistocene, Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, 115 pp4601-4606 (view PDF)
  • CP Egeland, Boris Gasparian, Cynthia M. Fadem, Samvel Nahapetyan, Dmitir Arakelyan, and Christopher M. Nicholson (2016), Bagratashen 1, a Stratified Open-Air Middle Paleolithic Site in the Debed River Valley of Northeastern Armenia:  A Preliminary Report, Archaeological Research in Asia 8, pp1-20 (view PDF)
  • CP Egeland (2014), Taphonomic Estimates of Competition and the Role of Carnivore Avoidance in Hominin Site Use Within the Early Pleistocene Olduvai Basin, Quaternary International 322/323, pp95-106 (view PDF)
  • CP Egeland, Kristen R. Welch, and Christopher M. Nicholson (2014),  Experimental Determinations of Cutmark Orientation and the Reconstruction of Prehistoric Butchery Behavior, Journal of Archeological Science, 49, pp126-133 (view PDF)
  • CP Egeland, Boris Gasparian, Dmitri Arakelyan, Christopher M. Nicholson, Artur Petrosyan, Robert Ghurkasyan, and Ryan Byerly (2014), Reconnaissance Survey for Paleolithic Sites in the Debed River Valley, Northern Armenia,  Journal of Field Archaeology 39, pp370-386 (view PDF)

Current Projects

My research revolves around two projects. The first is the excavation of early Pleistocene sites at Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania, which is part of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area UNESCO World Heritage Site and preserves an unprecedented record of human bio-behavioral evolution between one and two million years ago. My current focus is the excavation of BK East, a 1.4-million-year-old site that has produced a rich collection of lithic artifacts, hundreds of well-preserved fossils, and detailed paleoenvironmental information. The second project is a National Science Foundation funded study of the portable art and social networks of late Pleistocene hunter-gatherers in western Europe. This project involves three components: (1) the collection of ~100 digital images of perforated disks, (2) the construction of an image processing algorithm that creates 2D tracings of the engravings on the disks, and (3) the development of an open-source online platform that uses Social Network Analysis (SNA) to visually describe and quantitatively analyze the structure of Magdalenian social space. Visit the project website here.

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