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Frankie L. West

Frankie West

Assistant Professor, Frankie L. West

College of Arts and Sciences

Chemistry and Physics

Contact Information

Phone: 828.227.3970
Office: 136C Stillwell Building


Frankie West is an Assistant Professor of Forensic Science at Western Carolina University. A National Geographic Explorer, West recently worked on expeditions to find Amelia Earhart and on DNA analysis for the slave ship Clotilda. A broadly trained biological anthropologist with a focus on degraded DNA analysis, she has conducted fieldwork globally. West has published on both forensic DNA and ancient DNA research, including articles in Forensic Science International: Synergy and Human Biology, among others. She is interested in uses of DNA analysis in human identification, nondestructive DNA analysis, DNA analysis of soil, and ancestry and population genetics approaches to both ancient and forensic DNA. West holds a Ph.D. from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville with a focus on molecular anthropology.


  • Ph D, University of Tennessee Knoxville, Molecular Anthropology
  • ABD, University of Tennessee Knoxville
  • BA, Baylor University

Teaching Interests

Forensic Biology FS/BIOL 422/522<br>Population Genetics for Forensic Science FS/BIOL 330<br>Physical Methods in Forensic Science FS 466<br>Survey of Forensic Science FS 293

Research Interests

Forensic biology, forensic genetics, genetics of ancestry estimation, molecular anthropology, ancient DNA, degraded DNA analysis

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