Many would think that the difference between male and female skeletons are significantly different, when in reality, they are more similar than they seem. One way research is done is by the simple statement that a male skeleton is typically smaller than a female skeleton. This isn’t such a reliable method of determining the sex of a skeleton, since as we know there are short males as well as tall females.
One of the most prominent differences between the male and female human skeletons is the variation of the pelvic region. The shape of a female pelvis is flatter, more rounded and larger to allow the head of the fetus to pass. Another differentiating feature of a skeleton is the skull. In a male skull, the cranial mass seems to be larger and more block-like, while a female skull appears rounder and tapers at the top. The temporal ridge, which runs along the outer side of the upper skull giving the square shape of the head, is much more apparent in males than in females. A woman’s supraorbital margin, the region above the eyes, is sharper than the male’s which appears round and dull. The frontal bone of the male skull will appear lower and as if it is slightly slopping. The female frontal bone has more of a soft look, where it will appear more rounded and vertical.
A fact that I found interesting is that when examining the rest of the skeleton, the upper arm in a male will appear shorter than that of a females arm. Also, the ring finger on a male will be longer than the index finger, while a female’s index finger is shorter. Male’s teeth usually are larger than female’s because of their larger cranium which leads to a larger oral area.
So in conclusion, there are many differences between male and female skeletons, but none in particular that would immediately differentiate between the two.