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Department of Archaeology



Ashleigh completed her MA(Hons) Archaeology at the University of Edinburgh in 2014, and her MSc in Human Anatomy and Evolution at the Hull York Medical School, where she was involved in a project analysing craniodental biomechanics of primate mastication. Her interest in biomechanics led her to pursue a PhD in evolutionary biomechanics of locomotion in hominins at Liverpool John Moores University, whereby she reconstructed hominin limb posture from fossilised footprints. Ashleigh’s first postdoc was based at the Royal Veterinary College working on evolutionary biomechanics and computational simulations of archosaur locomotion. She is particularly interested in simulating locomotion from fossil data.


My research investigates how hominins moved using computational simulations of subject specific musculoskeletal models. This follows on from my first postdoc which was based at the Royal Veterinary College, in which I investigated archosaur locomotion.

Additionally, I am actively involved in several external projects, such as research/fieldwork on fossil footprints at White Sands National Park, New Mexico, funded by a BA/Leverhulme Small Research Grant. I am also involved in excavations in Normandy, France on Neanderthal footprints. Finally, I am still actively involved in the DAWNDINOS project on which I was previously a postdoctoral researcher (2019-2021).


Key publications: 

Bennett, M.R., Budka, M., Wiseman, A. L. A., Belvedere, M. 2021. When is enough, enough? Questions of sampling in vertebrate ichnology. Accepted in Palaeontology.

Wiseman, A. L. A., Bishop, P. J., Demuth, O. E., Cuff, A. R., Michel, K. B., Hutchinson, J. R. 2021. Musculoskeletal modelling of the Nile crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) hindlimb: Effects of limb posture on leverage during terrestrial locomotion. Journal of Anatomy, 1-21.

Bennett*, M.R., … Wiseman, A. L. A., … Reynolds, S. C. 2020. Walking in mud: remarkable Pleistocene human trackway from White Sands National Park (New Mexico). Quaternary Science Reviews, 106610.

Wiseman, A. L. A., Stringer, C. B., Ashton, N. Bennett M. R., Hatala, K. G., Duffy, S., O’Brien, T., De Groote, I. E. 2020. The morphological affinity of the early Pleistocene footprints from Happisburgh, England with other footprints of Pliocene, Pleistocene and Holocene age. Journal of Human Evolution, 144, 102776.

Wiseman, A. L. A., Bezombes, F., Moore, A. J. & De Groote, I. E. 2020. Non-invasive recording methods: the applicability of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) technology for recording fossilised footprints. Digital Applications in Archaeology and Cultural Heritage, 16, e00137.

Wiseman, A. L. A., De Groote, I. E. 2018. A three-dimensional geometric morphometric study of the effects of erosion on the morphologies of modern and prehistoric footprints. Journal of Archaeological Science Reports, 17, 93-102

Falkingham, P. L., … Wiseman, A.L.A., … Belvedere, M., 2018. A standard protocol for documenting modern and fossil ichnological data. Palaeontology 61(4):469-480.

Job Titles

Research Associate, McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research

General Info

Not available for consultancy
Research Expertise / Fields of study: 
Human Evolutionary and Behavioural Ecology
Human Evolution
Computational and Quantitative Archaeology

Contact Details

McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research


Person keywords: 
Biological Anthropology
Biological Anthropology
Human Evolutionary Studies
Geographical areas: 
Periods of interest: 
Other Prehistory