Professor Turkel earned a Ph.D. from Cornell University with majors in biological anthropology and archeology, and minors in anatomy, geology, and cultural anthropology. He has been involved in archeological work in the United States, the Middle East, and Europe. For many years, he worked as a Forensic Anthropologist, assisting the judicial system in identifying decomposing or skeletonized remains, and in locating buried remains. This work often required ad hoc research in the reconstruction of life or circumstances of death from the skeleton. Other areas of research involved clinical applications of anatomy. Turkel is currently working on topics related to the history and philosophy of biology.

In addition to teaching and scholarship, Turkel has also held administrative positions at NYIT. He was chair of the Life Sciences Department and assisted in the creation of the School of Health Professions as its director of academic program development.

All Research Activities

Selected Publications

1981: The Stabilizing Mechanisms Preventing Anterior Dislocation of the Glenohumeral Joint. Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery 63A(8):1208‑1217. (with M. Panio, J. Marshall, and F.G. Girgis)

1986: Classification of Spina Bifida Occulta in the Sacrum and Its Application to the Identification of skeletal Remains. Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, Program (with J.V. Taylor).

1997: Making Culture Count: the Evolution of a New Health Professions Curriculum. Proceedings of the Society for Applied Anthropology.(with D. Shapiro)

1989: Congenital Abnormalities in Skeletal Populations, in Mehmet Yasar Iscan and Kenneth A.R. Kennedy, eds.; Reconstruction of Life From the Skeleton. NYC: Alan R. Liss, Inc. pp. 109‑127.

1995: Estimation of Time Elapsed Since Death Through the Use of the Bryophyte Reproductive Cycle. In B. Jacob and W. Bonte, eds., Advances in Forensic Sciences, Proceedings, International Association of Forensic Sciences,  Dusseldorf, Germany. IV: 144-146 (with W.R. Buck and J.V. Taylor).

2000: Unusual Infant Death: Dog Attack or Postmortem Mutilation Following Child Abuse? The American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology 21(4): 389-394 (with L. Buscoli; M. Taff; J. Peterson; J. Taylor)

Honors & Awards

  • 1985-1986: PSC-CUNY, continued osteological analysis of early 19th century Black cemetery populations (with J. Taylor and R. DiBennardo).
  • 1991:  NIH AREA GRANT, Investigation of time of closure of the spinous processes of the sacrum (with R. DiBennardo).
  • 2012   NYIT-College of Osteopathic Medicine, Standard of Excellence Award. This award has been established to acknowledge those faculty and staff members who have repeatedly exhibited excellence in the performance of their responsibilities
  • 2010:  Turkel, et al., 1981 Glenohumeral Joint article recognized as #72 among the 100 classic papers in orthopaedic surgery by J. C. Kelly, et al.; J Bone Joint Surg [Br], 2010;92-B:1338-43.
  • 1998:  President’s Service Award “For Outstanding Record of Long Term Service and Devotion to the NYIT Community”, New York Institute of Technology
  • 1990:  Outstanding Teacher of the Year in the disciplines of Science and Mathematics, School of Arts, Sciences and Communication, New York Institute of Technology

Courses Taught at NYIT

  • Introduction to Anthropology
  • Anthropology of Health
  • Human Anatomy with lab
  • Comparative Anatomy with lab
  • General Biology with lab
  • Histology with lab
  • Pathology with lab
  • Evolutionary Biology
  • Foundations of Inquiry
  • Foundations of Scientific Process

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