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Overview of Anthropology
Anthropology is the study of man and society. Individuals in this field try to understand the various dynamics that control behavior and interaction, and how societies and societal norms develop. Anthropologists utilize a variety of research techniques and analyses tools in order to better understand respective societies, either for comparison or context.
What is Anthropology?
Anthropology is a course of study that analyzes humans and human behavior from a variety of perspectives to better understand where we came from, how we have changed through time and influences that caused change. Students studying anthropology will utilize a historical lens of humans, their decedents and related taxonomic classifications (domain, kingdom, phylum, class, order, family, genus, species) coupled with behavioral, social, and cultural impacts across time.
Students majoring in anthropology will develop a variety of transferable skills while in school that apply directly to a broad spectrum of jobs. Skills an anthropology major will develop include a curiosity about others and other cultures, empathy, social-self confidence, persuasiveness, zeal for learning, decision making, analytic skills, ideals, and a healthy world-view.
What Classes Do You Take in Anthropology?
The exact classes taken while matriculating in an anthropology degree program will vary by program and school and specific area of emphasis within anthropology. A swath of classes you may register for while in an anthropology program may include the following classes: cultural anthropology, forensic anthropology, archaeology, diversity studies, philosophy, biological anthropology, sociology, paleontology, cultural anthropology, evolution, physical anthropology, linguistics, psychology, ethnology, biology, human behavior, genetics, legal anthropology, medical anthropology, world politics, urban studies, and research methods.
What Colleges Offer an Anthropology Degree Online?
A number of regionally and nationally accredited colleges and universities offer degree programs online and on-site in anthropology. The fastest growing segment of higher education in the last decade has been online learning and online degrees given the benefits to the students, colleges, and employers. Benefits of earning a degree online include: cost savings, flexibility, access, accreditation, curriculum, and pace. Additional information on online college programs can be found through our online learning portal here.
To find the best college program for you, it is important to understand your priorities and educational objectives. To create a working list of priorities, invest the time to read our books The Complete Guide to the College Admissions Process and Crush the Odds and Reducing the Cost of College. The combination of resources, tools, and data will help you immensely along your college research journey. With your goals and priorities established, you can simply request information from a number of accredited colleges and universities from across the country with a few clicks on this resource page or our matching tool to help you determine which anthropology program is best for you.
Why Major in Anthropology?
The reasons to study anthropology in college are quite vast from one person to another; however, we have aggregated a few common themes of why students select anthropology after a decade of helping students. Common reasons students select an anthropology degree include:
- Understanding of human diversity, commonalities, and capabilities
- Respect of diverse cultures and experiences
- Grasp of fundamental social constructs and social organizations
- Understanding of historical and cultural human links
- Integral laws, political influence, and processes involved in cultures around the globe
- Underlying structural and theoretical understanding of diverse groups
- Attention to detail
- Critical reasoning and analytical understanding of humans
- Robust written and oral communication skills
- Ability to leverage social, biological, and behavioral research methods
Student that earn a college degree in anthropology online or in class are equipped with the skills to launch a career in a variety of industries. Examples of careers for anthropologists include: teaching anthropology, research organizations, social science organizations, public health organizations, medicine, international affairs, museums, forensics, international law, ethnic studies, linguistics, neural science organizations, and cognitive psychology specialist.
Education and Schools
Individuals may seek a bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral degree in the field of anthropology, with graduate level educations allowing for research and education positions. Individuals will receive education in multiple disciplines, including history, behavioral science, sociology, statistics, as well as in becoming familiar with the tools and research methods used in the field. Individuals will also learn to analyze large amounts of information in order extrapolate data, as well as provide educated papers in regards to the meaning of that data.
A curriculum may include:
- Behavior and Society
Ideal schools for study in anthropology will have departments that are active and provide research opportunities, internships, and practical experience in the form of study abroad programs and lab work. Schools that can provide one or more of these types of experiences should have a leg up over those that do not, with additional factors resulting in the specifics and types of opportunities available.
Schools Other Students Requested Information From:
Anthropologists generally work in research positions, often through schools or agencies, public and private, in order to better understand human behavior and report their results. Job growth in this field is expected to increase greatly over the next decade, though the actual growth will be small due to the actual size of the field. These new jobs will be due to the demand to further catalog human societies and apply that knowledge to current problems, including burgeoning opportunities in the private sector where such knowledge is applied to diversifying populations within the workforce.
How Much Does an Anthropologist Make?
The amount of money you will make as an anthropologist will depend on work experience, degree type, job demand, job duties, geographic location, organization type, and hours worked. As such, it is important to understand a range of possible incomes as you think about a career in anthropology. The median annual income of an anthropologist is $63,190 which translates to $30.38 per hour. The top 10% of anthropologists make $99,590 and the bottom ten percent make $36,910 on an annual basis.
The Top Paying States for Anthropologists
- District of Columbia $92,200
- New York $90,340
- Pennsylvania $78,990
- Alaska $76,100
- Maryland $74,770
Top Employers of Anthropologists
- Research and Development Firms
- Scientific and Technical Consulting Firms
- Federal Government Agencies
- Architectural and Engineering Firms
- State Government Agencies