Anthropology is the study of humans through various comparative and holistic approaches that include past and present populations.


The four fields of anthropology include biological, cultural, linguistics and archaeology. Each of these fields studies different and overlapping aspects of what it means to be human.

Biological anthropology explores this question focusing mainly on biological traits such as physical features, genes, and DNA and how these interact with our environment. This includes the study of evolution and fossils along with contemporary human traits.

Archaeological anthropology studies cultural change over time through the examination of material culture including architecture, human remains and other artifacts.

Linguistic anthropology investigates verbal and non-verbal communication in humans and non-human primates in order to understand how language has developed in human groups both historically and physically, along with how it continues to change in modern populations. The connection between language and culture is also explored to understand how various variables such as gender, class and race/ethnicity affect language.

Cultural anthropology analyzes contemporary people's behaviors and beliefs/ideas to understand human diversity and the similarities that we all share. Using a cross-cultural approach, this subfield compares and contrasts various cultural components such as economics, politics, religion, gender and race/ethnicity to better understand what people do and why they do what they do in a variety of cultural settings. The goal is to increase our understanding of the human experience.

Anthropology courses satisfy general education requirements for an associate degree, an associate degree in liberal arts with an emphasis in social and behavioral sciences, and lower division transfer. Courses in anthropology include introductory courses in cultural anthropology, linguistics, archaeology and biological anthropology. Additionally, there are courses on the Anthropology of Religion, Magic and Witchcraft, and Sex and Gender in Cross-Cultural Perspectives.

The Honors Program includes three anthropology courses: ANTH 201H Introduction to Cultural Anthropology – Honors, ANTH 216H Sex and Gender in a Cross Cultural Perspective – Honors and ANTH 218H Honors Presentation Seminar.

Anthropology Courses and Descriptions

Anthropology Instructor: Anne Bennett, Ph.D.
Anthropology Instructor: Jennifer Miller-Thayer, Ph.D.
Anthropology Instructor: Wesley Nielson, MA
Anthropology Instructor: Laura Willis, MA, MSW
Former Anthropology Instructor: Brandon Fryman, MA

Anthropology Courses Student Learning Outcomes

Grants, Funding and Fellowships in Anthropology
Careers in Anthropology
Anthropological Association Websites