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Goals and Learning Outcomes

Students majoring in Anthropology will be prepared to:

  • pursue graduate study and scholarly careers in anthropology;
  • apply knowledge and perspectives gained from the study of anthropology to the solution of problems of a theoretical and practical nature;
  • pursue a range of careers in various fields, including education, health and medicine, government, policy-making, business, law, the arts, journalism, international development, and human rights.

To meet these general goals, the Department of Anthropology has developed the following Learning Outcomes for all our majors organized into four broad content areas.


1: The Foundations of American Four-Field Anthropology

Students will:                                                      

  1. Understand the principles and research methods of cultural anthropology, linguistic anthropology, biological anthropology and archaeology.
  2. Critically appraise the broad scope of the history of anthropology as a discipline
  3.  Demonstrate knowledge of the intellectual and cultural traditions of several non-Western societies through exposure to ethnographic analysis in coursework.

2: The Scientific Study of Humanity

Students will:

  1. Understand and debate the basic principles of the scientific method, especially as applied to human evolution and variation.
  2. Acquire competence in qualitative and quantitative methods for the analysis of anthropological problems.
  3. Critically evaluate ethnographic methods as practiced in anthropology, from scientific and ethical standpoints.

3: The Application of Anthropological Theory and Method to Practical Problems in a Global Context

Students will:

  1. Compare a variety of viewpoints in order to contextualize differences in cultural values and practices.
  2. Examine the relevant cultural factors for analysis of race prejudice and gender roles in comparative perspective.                         
  3. Analyze and debate the application of anthropological theory and knowledge in specific case studies from around the world, in such fields as medicine, law, human rights, conservation, and the environment.

4: The Development of Critical Communication Skills

Students will:

  1. Demonstrate the ability to develop critical arguments in writing
  2. Acquire mastery of proper social-science formatting for the citation of quoted material
  3. Demonstrate effective oral communication skills for informing, persuading or debating issues.


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