Whether by immersing ourselves in another culture or by turning a critical eye on our own, anthropologists and sociologists seek to denaturalize the social forces that shape our individual lives. Our majors learn to appreciate how they have been shaped by their culture. They also learn to practice cultural relativism — the ability to suspend moral judgment to understand another culture on its own terms. Finally, our students grapple with the issue of social inequality; they examine how race, class, gender, sexuality, and other social categories intersect in ways that privilege some and disadvantage others.
In-depth study in a particular discipline is a key component of a liberal education. The mission of our department is to provide students with an opportunity for in-depth study in the disciplines of anthropology and sociology. Drawing on the American Sociological Association’s most recent report on liberal learning, we define in-depth study as “a process of intellectual development where students become increasingly independent participants in the discourse of the sociological [and anthropological] communit[ies].” In keeping with this definition, we aim to produce graduates who are capable not just of learning existing knowledge but of producing new knowledge, too. Our curriculum has been designed with this goal in mind. With its focus on sequential learning opportunities that, at each step of the way, encourage students to integrate empirical research with theoretical reflection, the curriculum is designed to produce students who are capable of doing, not just learning, anthropology and sociology.
Requirements for Majors
We offer a single, interdisciplinary major: Anthropology and Sociology. All majors must take the following:
- Four credits in 200-level ANTH courses;
- Four credits in 200-level SOC courses;
- Eight additional credits in 200-level ANTH or SOC courses;
- ANTH-390, ANTH-491, SOC-391, or SOC-491; and
- ANSO-460W, ANTH-492W, or SOC-492W.
Students interested in teaching certification in Social Studies should consult with the Education Department.
Anthropology and Sociology majors can fulfill the College writing requirement, along with the capstone and oral presentation requirements, by taking ANSO-460W, ANTH-492W, or SOC-492W.
Requirements for Minors
Students may minor in either Anthropology or Sociology.
I. Anthropology Minor
Students minoring in Anthropology must take ANTH-100 and at least 16 credits in either ANSO courses, 200-level ANTH courses, or both.
II. Sociology Minor
Students minoring in Sociology must take SOC-100 and at least 16 credits in either ANSO courses, 200-level SOC courses, or both.