Anthropology Learning Outcomes

  1. A familiarity with and knowledge in the four subfields of Anthropology (archaeology, biological anthropology, cultural anthropology, and linguistic anthropology) including but not limited to:
    • The basics of evolutionary theory and key developments in human evolution
    • The lack of a scientific basis for the concept of biological human races and recognition of race as a social construct
    • The relationship between material culture and behavior
    • The relationship between cultural and natural (or ecological) systems
    • Processes of culture change and key transitions in history
    • Diversity and similarities across and within cultures/societies, including across time
    • Language as a rule-governed and symbolic system
  2. A familiarity with Anthropological theories and the history of the discipline:
    • A familiarity with key theories, research, themes, and concepts prominent in anthropological thought across the subfields
    • An understanding of multiple ways in which power, hierarchy and identity shape social interactions and outcomes
    • An understanding that ideas, theories and methods were shaped and changed over time in particular historical contexts
    • Familiarity with historical works of theory by anthropologists of diverse backgrounds
    • An understanding of the reciprocal relationship between theory and method
    • A critical understanding of modernist epistemology and the existence of alternative epistemologies.
  3. Knowledge and practice in Anthropological methods and research:
    • A familiarity with the multiple ways that anthropologists apply their knowledge and skills as professionals inside and outside the academy
    • The ability to find previous scholarship and data relevant to a research question and design a research strategy that takes such work into account and is appropriate to the specific context of the research site
    • Competence in the collection and analysis of quantitative and qualitative data related to human behavior and culture and a recognition of the strengths and limitations of both.
  4. General academic/scholarly skills (reading, writing, presentation, research). Students should gain the following abilities:
    • To express complex ideas in writing and orally
    • To effectively use graphs, charts, maps, illustrations, flow diagrams, and other visuals when appropriate
    • To critically evaluate others’ research by examining the relationship between theory, hypothesis, and evidence
    • To be critical and informed consumers of both scientific and popular research and media
  5. An “Anthropological Perspective,” including
    • An appreciation for the importance of an interdisciplinary approach (natural and social sciences and humanistic; four field) to understand human culture/society/behavior
    • A valuing of different sources of knowledge
    • The recognition of a diversity of cultural practices and belief systems
    • The skills and desire to be engaged and informed global citizens and apply our anthropological training and perspective to life’s challenges.