Anthropology is the study of human groups, both ancient and modern, in their cultural and biological context. The field takes a global look at human cultures from prehistoric times to the present, integrating findings from the social sciences, natural sciences, and humanities. Although anthropology is related to subjects like biology, classics, geography, history, psychology, and sociology, the discipline is unique in its attempt to synthesize and compare knowledge about the human experience.

The anthropology program leads to a bachelor of arts (B.A.) degree. Through the study of anthropology, you will learn about the variety of cultures throughout human history, as well as in the present, and the meaning of human biological and cultural development. The various fields of anthropology—archaeology, cultural anthropology, and physical anthropology—can prepare you for advanced study or for a variety of careers that make use of knowledge of people and cultures.

Basic coursework for the major begins with three courses that introduce the principles of anthropology, including Introduction to Archaeology, Introduction to Physical Anthropology, and Frontiers of Cultural Anthropology.

After fulfilling these required courses and upper-division requirements for the major, you may choose courses according to your individual interests. Among the numerous upper-division offerings are courses on contemporary peoples and cultures from different regions of the world, religious and symbolic systems, historical analysis and ethnography, tourism and globalization, culture and power, human ecology and nutrition, medical anthropology, comparative primate behavior, hominid evolution, archaeological methods, and the prehistory of human civilizations.

Laboratory work is an optional component of the program. In the physical anthropology laboratory setting, you’ll be exposed to accurate reproductions of physical specimens as a means of comparing primate morphology and adaptation.

Archaeology laboratory courses and a summer field school offer opportunities to learn hands-on skills and methods in the study of prehistoric societies.

 

Anthropology offers you perspectives and knowledge for a variety of careers. As a graduate in anthropology your academic background may be useful in positions that require an understanding of cultures and subcultures that exist in contemporary society. Career options include entry-level positions in fields such as education, city management, health care delivery, advertising, market research, foreign service, journalism, public relations, library work, government service, and personnel management.

In the long run, an anthropology background will provide you with the breadth and flexibility required to respond positively to career changes that you may face in your professional life. If you plan to pursue a graduate or professional degree, undergraduate work in anthropology is excellent preparation for advanced degrees in the social sciences, environmental studies, ecology, conservation, law, medicine, dentistry, and business.

Career Services (www.colorado.edu/career) helps students discover who they are, what they want to do, and how to get there. They are the bridge between academics and the world of work.

Career Services offers free services for all CU-Boulder degree-seeking students, and alumni up to one year after graduation. Meet individually the staff to discuss major and career exploration, internship or job searching, and graduate school preparation.

Departmental resources and facilities that support the educational process include well-equipped laboratories and access to the University of Colorado Museum of Natural History - a primary resource for teaching and research. The museum houses extensive collections from the American Southwest and other areas of the world.

Students have the opportunity to earn course credit while doing field work in the areas of archaeology, physical anthropology and cultural anthropology. For instance, you may earn up to 6 credits for ANTH 4350 (Archaeological Field and Laboratory Research) during the summer.

This field school uses sites throughout the southwestern U.S. and the Great Plains. The department sponsors other opportunities for students at the undergraduate level such as a club, internships, credit for teaching anthropology and graduating with honors in the major.

The Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) offers students a chance to work alongside a faculty sponsor on original research. Learn to write proposals, conduct research, pursue creative work, analyze data, and present the results. For more information, call UROP at 303-492-2596, and be sure to ask the department about other research opportunities too. The experience of studying abroad can prove invaluable for you as an anthropology major. Your first-hand experience abroad can provide you with insights into the culture, cultural history, and human biological diversity of another country or world region by allowing you to immerse yourself in another culture and learn about it from the perspective of your host country instructors. The university offers more than 300 programs throughout the world, all of which qualify for course credit and in some cases also fulfill major requirements. Prior language study or other prerequisites are necessary for some programs, so early planning for study abroad is essential. Further information about study abroad is available from the Office of International Education located in the Center for Community.

Please speak with your advisor for specific recommendations; the following is intended to be a general outline only and there may be flexibility to this plan.
 

Anthropology Major, 4-Year Plan

NOTE: This example will outline the major requirements, but the order of some of your classes can vary greatly.  It is important to check your Degree Audit and work with your major advisor each semester to make sure you are aware of your requirements and graduation timeline.  This is especially true of students with added majors, minors, or certificates.

 

First Year – Fall Semester
ANTH 2010
(3): Intro to Phys. Anthropology (Also fulfills Natural Science Core requirements)
ANTH 2100 (3): Frontiers to Cultural Anthropology (fulfills Core Human Diversity)
ANTH 2030 (1) (or 2040 in Spring): (either would fulfill the Natural Science Core lab requirement)
CORE (3): Skills Acquisition (suggested: Lower Division Written Communication)
CORE (3): Content Area of Study (see Degree Audit for options)
Elective or MAPS if needed (3)   

First Year – Spring Semester
ANTH 2020
(3): (Fulfills lower-division major elective as well as Natural Science Core requirements)
ANTH 2200 (3): Intro to Archaeology (fulfills Core Historical Context; may be taken sophomore year)
CORE (3): Skills Acquisition (suggested: Quantitative Reasoning & Mathematical Skills)
CORE (3): Content Area of Study (see Degree Audit for options)
Elective or MAPS if needed (3)


Second Year – Fall Semester
CORE
(3): Content Area of Study (see Degree Audit for options)
CORE (3): Content Area of Study (see Degree Audit for options)
CORE (3): Natural Science (http://www.colorado.edu/artsandsciences/student-resources/core-curriculum/natural-science)
Elective (3)
Elective (3)

Second Year – Spring Semester
ANTH
(3): Upper-Division Elective (57 credits completed or in-progress required)
Elective (3)
Elective (3)
Elective (3)
Elective (3)


Third Year – Fall Semester
CORE
(3): Skills Acquisitions (example: Upper-Division Written Communication)
ANTH (3): Upper-Division (Topical Cultural area)
ANTH (3): Upper-Division (Physical/Biological area; ANTH 3000 & 3010 fulfill CORE Natural Science)
ANTH (3): Upper-Division Elective
Elective (3): Upper-Division

Third Year – Spring Semester
ANTH
(3): Upper-Division (Ethnographic area)
ANTH (3): Upper-Division (Archaeology area)
CORE (3): Content Area (example: Upper-Division Literature and Arts)
Elective (3): Upper-Division
Elective (3): Upper-Division


Fourth Year – Fall Semester
Elective
(3): Upper-Division
Elective (3): Upper-Division
Elective (3)
Elective (3)
Elective (3)

Fourth Year – Spring Semester
Elective
(3): Upper-Division
Elective (3): Upper-Division
Elective (3)
Elective (3)
Elective (3)