Anthropology is the study of what it means to be human based on an integrated approach to human biological, cultural, material and linguistic capacities . Anthropologists study culture and cultural diversity in all of its past and present manifestations .
Students may pursue classroom, laboratory, and field studies in sociocultural anthropology, biological anthropology, archaeology, and linguistics. Students are not expected to concentrate in a particular sub-field, but may decide to do so as their interests develop. The Anthropology major is designed to prepare students for entry level work in areas that require understanding of cultural difference and diversity and for graduate study at the Master's level.
The Museum Studies program is a minor within the Anthropology Department that is open to all students and includes internship opportunities at the Museum of Culture and Environment and elsewhere.
Central Washington Anthropological Survey (CWAS,) a service and research facility associated with the Department, conducts archaeological research in the central counties of the state and the greater Northwest,and promotes public involvement in the protection of local archaeological resources. It provides students with opportunities for hands-on experience in contract archaeology.
The Anthropology Student Association sponsors academic and social events generated by students' interests, such as conference participation, preparation for graduate school, professional presentations, and visits to museum exhibitions, archaeological sites and film screenings.
Classes at the 100 level within Anthropology include a general survey of the field (107) and major sub-fields. 300 level classes focus on selected sub-fields in Anthropology; upper division standing or relevant lower division anthropology courses are desirable. 400 level classes are directed to students with previous background in Anthropology. With the exception of variable-credit classes (490, 491, 496, 498), other 400 level classes assume completion of at least three introductory level classes (ANTH 110, 120, 130 or 180), plus 15 credits in Anthropology or permission of the instructor.
Regular advisement is important for Anthropology majors. Consultation with an assigned advisor is especially important for transfer students and those wishing to integrate intensive experiences such as study abroad, field schools, and special projects (e.g., honors) into their major program. All majors must fill out a major application form (available in the Department office) and meet with the department chair, who will consult with the student to assign an appropriate advisor. The student should meet at least quarterly with his or her advisor to design an effective and efficient program based on the student's interests and goals.
The honors program is designed to facilitate individualized research and study in a sub-area of Anthropology. It is open to junior and senior students; honors students are eligible to graduate "with honors in Anthropology." Programs of study must be developed in consultation with an advisor and approved by Department faculty. Normally such programs include at least 10 credits of directed individual study for the honors thesis, as well as focused research in connection with regular departmental coursework. Further information on the program is available from the Department Chair.
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