Academic Learning Compact – Anthropology

Mission of Anthropology Program

It is the mission of this program to educate students in the field of Anthropology which is the global, comparative study of human biological variation and cultural systems over all periods, from the prehistoric to the present.  Our undergraduate program is designed to give students a sound intellectual grounding in the discipline’s four main areas of research: Biological Anthropology; Archaeology; Cultural Anthropology; and Linguistics. Our perspectives are worldwide, but we also study nearby communities in trying to understand patters of human physical differences, language, religion, marriage customs, conflict resolution or the evolution of societies themselves. Students completing the undergraduate degree are prepared to enter graduate programs in Anthropology but also find employment in a wide variety of settings including archaeological contract companies; conducting research on urban community development; studying immigrant populations and how best to serve the health, social, and educational needs of our increasingly diverse society.

Content/discipline knowledge and skills

Students will be able to

  1. Master concepts central to the anthropological perspective i.e. culture; human evolution, diversity of culture, physical type, language, gender/sex, cultural relativism, holism, historical and cross-cultural comparisons, kinship, globalism
  2. Identify major figures in the history of anthropology, the major schools/orientation of anthropological theory, and important trends in contemporary anthropological theory and methods

Content /Discipline knowledge and skills are assessed in the program through exams and discussion papers that will demonstrate students’ knowledge and understanding of the central concepts, prominent scholars and theories, and the history of anthropology through completion of two upper division courses.  All anthropology students will be assessed for their Content/Discipline Knowledge and skill through completing the required course ANT 4034 Theories of Culture.  In addition, they will be assessed through their completion of one of the three required capstone courses: ANT 4935 Rethinking Anthropology, ANT 4302 Gender in Cross-Cultural Perspective, or 4312 North American Indians.

Communication skills

Students will be able to

  1. create and deliver effective oral presentations
  2. develop effective written presentations
  3. contribute effectively to group discussions

Communication skills are assessed in the program through student oral presentations in class, contributions to class group discussion, and written works in three upper division courses.  All anthropology students will be assessed for their communication skills through completing the required course ANT 4034 Theories of Culture.  Students will also be assessed through their completion of one of the three required method courses: ANT 4495 Methods in Cultural Research,  ANT 4930 Archaeological Method and Theory, or ANT 442 Urban Life & Culture.  Third students will be assessed concerning their communication skills through completing one of the three required capstone courses: ANT 4935 Rethinking Anthropology, ANT 4302 Gender in Cross-Cultural Perspective, or 4312 North American Indians.

Critical thinking skills

Students will be able to

  1. demonstrate critical thinking and analytical abilities, and construct sound arguments regarding global human diversity as well as commonality
  2. demonstrate familiarity with the standards of professional ethics espoused by the discipline of anthropology

Critical thinking skills and familiarity with the standards of professional ethics are assessed in the program through student discussion or research papers and class discussions.  Students will be assessed concerning their critical thinking skills and familiarity with the standards of professional ethics through completing one of the three required capstone courses: ANT 4935 Rethinking Anthropology, ANT 4302 Gender in Cross-Cultural Perspective, or 4312 North American Indians. Students also will be assessed concerning their familiarity with the standards of professional ethics through completing one of  three required method courses: ANT  4495 Methods in Cultural Research,  ANT 4930 Archaeological Method and Theory, or ANT 442 Urban Life & Culture.

Civic engagement

Students will be able to

  1. approach the solution of human problems through anthropological methods
  2. show ability to conduct basic anthropological research, under the supervision of faculty, involving research in the local community and/or analysis of existing scholarly resources

Civic Engagement Skills are assessed in the program through critical essays and actual student research under faculty supervision to explore the solutions of human problems through anthropological methods.  All students will also be assessed through their completion of one of the three required method courses: ANT 4495 Methods in Cultural Research, ANT 4930 Archaeological Method and Theory, or ANT 442 Urban Life & Culture.