The adult human occipital bone offers opportunities to develop measurements that can aid in the identification of human remains, particularly as it tends to survive inhumation and physical insults more readily than many other bones of the skull. The occiput has a number of anatomical features, some of which have been evaluated for sex and ancestry differences including the occipital condyles and the foramen magnum. Using these features, ten measurements of the occipital region were chosen from past publications. In addition, the position of the hypoglossal canals offered an opportunity to develop two new measurements. Twenty skulls of unknown sex and ethnicity were obtained, their occipital regions examined, and a number of measurements performed. Twelve measurements were recorded to two decimal places using digital (Mitutoyo) sliding calipers. Parts A, B and C of this experiment examined intraobserver error, multiobserver error and variation between twenty skulls by using the coefficient of variation. This study aimed to define and evaluate measurements that may be used in identification of human cranial remains, and forms part of a wider study on sexual differences of the condylar region of the human occipital bone. These initial results indicate that while all measurements have the potential to prove useful, the bicondylar breadth, the distance between the external hypoglossal canals, the length of the foramen magnum and the width of the foramen magnum are the most clearly defined, and may offer greater potential in sex identification.