Anthropological Sciences

What is Anthropology?

Heidi Ruiz-Lopez explains her research poster at the 2022 winter CARD

Anthropology is a wide field and encompasses many surprising topics.

  • Forensics
  • Archaeology
  • Museum restoration
  • Cultural research
  • And more!

As an anthropology major, your studies fall into 4 main fields: Physical Anthropology, Archaeology, Cultural Anthropology, and Anthropological Linguistics. You can take classes in all of the fields and choose one to specialize in.

Your skills in each of these fields will help your resumé stand out among others. Hands-on lab experiences and fieldwork dovetail with classroom skills integrating information technology and the application of systematic logical thinking.

Anthropologists work in a myriad of organizations with dynamic, fast-paced jobs that lean into the scientific background, knowledge, and skills learned in the program. Your skills will give you broad opportunities - whether you’re in a lab, at a desk, or in the field - your skills in Anthropology will make you competitive in all kinds of commerce, research, and service opportunities

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From Bones to Behavior

Student attempts flint knapping

Anthropology is the perfect major if you’re curious about the world around - and the creative, scientific, study of the people in it.  If you’re passionate about the past, present, and future of humanity and want a major that qualifies you for jobs in every sector, consider a major in the Anthropological Sciences.

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The Humanistic Science

Anthropology is the scientific study of humanity.  Your courses will develop your skills in scientific investigation, critical inquiry, and logical investigation.  This major prepares students to be competitive in the workforce, as leaders and experts in the classroom and beyond. 

In the Radford Anthropological Sciences Department, the curriculum will give you a broad background to build the knowledge and skills necessary to become a valued member of the workplace, regardless of whether that's a board room, science lab, or a dig site.  At Radford, you'll have the opportunity to work with nationally recognized faculty, including a Carnegie U.S. Professor of the Year recipient, as you learn about the science of humanity.

  • Critical Thinking: from what it means to be human, to what the popularity of the program Ancient Aliens means about American scientific literacy
  • Creative Problem Solving: in what other field would you determine if a culture practiced ancestor veneration by looking at the chemical signature of trophy skulls

  • Technical and Research Skills: from how to determine sex from the diameter of the femoral head to how the shape of an arrowhead reveals ancient technologies

  • Human-Centered Skills: ethnographic analysis that highlights how culture conditions human behavior and activity.

Major Degrees Offered: B.S. or B.A. in Anthropological Sciences

Concentrations offered for Majors

All Anthropology majors must choose one of the three following tracks of study.  There is significant overlap, so don't worry if you want to take classes in more than one.

  • Archaeology
  • Biological Anthropology (includes Forensic Anthropology)
  • Cultural Anthropology


Minors offered for Nonmajors

If you are considering a different major but are interested in Anthropology, you can take courses in the department and earn a minor. A minor in Anthropology can be a valuable way to set yourself apart from the rest of the crowd when applying for jobs. When earning a minor, there are 3 tracks to choose from.  

For detailed program information and curriculum, please further visit the Anthropological Sciences Program Overview.  

For a detailed look at the courses available University-wide and the requirements for graduation, visit the Undergraduate Catalogs.

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