Anthropologists study everything humans do and create – be it social organization, medicine and healing systems, economics, science, technology, literature and film, philosophy, indigenous knowledge systems and more. Anthropologists aim to better understand what it means to be human. Sociocultural anthropology focuses more specifically on the study of culture and society in cross-cultural contexts and looks at how people in various parts of the world organize themselves and understand their world.
In Appalachian’s Anthropology (BA) - Sociocultural Anthropology degree program, you will study with faculty who work in and teach on the cultures of India, Latin America, China, Native America, The Philippines, Appalachia, and the United States. Topics of specialization include medical anthropology, political anthropology, environmental anthropology, visual anthropology, and anthropological approaches to film, religion, social violence and more.
Classes are small, so you will receive individualized attention and mentorship from professors who include field trips as a regular form of study. There are opportunities to serve as research or teaching assistants at the undergraduate level – giving you the chance to publish and gain practical experience.
Employment: Many students receive job offers after graduation. Employers include the Clinton Global Initiative and the Department of Applied Linguistics at UNC Chapel Hill. See more >>
Graduate School: Students regularly receive acceptance to prestigious graduate programs including: London School of Economics, Vanderbilt University, University of Denver, Tulane University, Arizona State University, University of Lethbridge, Yale and University of Alban. See more >>
Core courses are Cultural Anthropology, Archaeology, Biological Anthropology and History of Anthropology Ideas. Students seeking a degree in Sociocultural Anthropology also must complete courses studying:
- Geographic areas such as south Asia, Latin American and Native America
- Ethnographic research methods
- Topical Specialization areas which include medical anthropology, political anthropology and economic anthropology
A minor is required for this degree. Popular minors include:
- A language (since students are already required to take some language classes)
- Global Studies
- Sustainable Development
- Religious Studies
Engagement Outside the Classroom
Appalachian State University Anthropology Club – ASUAC works to cultivate and advance interest in anthropological ideas, research, and the understanding of cross-cultural and multidisciplinary relationships.
Appalachian is committed to introducing students to different cultures and teaching them how to live and interact in a global society.
The Department of Anthropology regularly offers field schools in Ecuador, Costa Rica and Wales, as well as areas of North America.
There are no admission requirements beyond admission to Appalachian State University.
- Internship sites with service agencies and archeological projects include Appalachian Voices (environment); High Country Amigos (Hispanics); Laboratories of Archeological Science; Sustainable Communities; Legal Services of the Blue Ridge; Watauga Medical Center Forensic Pathology Lab; Hunger Coalition; Appalachian Cultural Museum; Student Action with Farmworkers, English as a Second Language and more.
- Department of Anthropology students are known for their ability to analyze complex cultural and social situations, and find employment in many fields, including marketing, research and development, community and international development, law, and more.
- The department houses state-of-the-art lab equipment including a 3D scanner, metallurgical and stereo microscopes, and film and audio equipment in a newly developed ethnography lab.
- Faculty members have received prestigious fellowships from the Fulbright Program, National Science Foundation, National Endowment for the Humanities, Princeton University and others to pursue their research.
- The department houses large vertebrate and human osteological comparative collection as well as archaeological research collections from excavations of prehistoric and historic sites in western North Carolina and adjacent regions.
- The department offers scholarships and awards.
Number of Students
40-50, with more than 150 majors in the Department of Anthropology
Method of Delivery
On campus only
Dr. Timothy J. Smith