Anthropology, Bachelor of Arts

Department of Anthropology

College of Social and Behavioral Sciences

A degree in Anthropology provides opportunities to study and understand human social, cultural, biological, prehistoric, and language systems. The program features a holistic cross-cultural approach that includes research, fieldwork, and service. Students round out their studies with four terms of language (or via CLEP-demonstrated proficiency).

  • To receive a bachelor's degree at Northern Arizona University, you must complete at least 120 units of credit that minimally includes a major, the liberal studies requirements, and university requirements as listed below.

    • All of Northern Arizona University's diversity, liberal studies, junior-level writing, and capstone requirements.
    • All requirements for your specific academic plan(s).
    • At least 30 units of upper-division courses, which may include transfer work.
    • At least 30 units of coursework taken through Northern Arizona University, of which at least 18 must be upper-division courses (300-level or above). This requirement is not met by credit-by-exam, retro-credits, transfer coursework, etc.
    • A cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0 on all work attempted at Northern Arizona University.

    The full policy can be viewed here.

In addition to University Requirements:

  • 54 units of major requirements
  • At least 16 units of language requirements

  • Up to 9 units of major prefix courses may be used to satisfy Liberal Studies requirements; these same courses may also be used to satisfy major requirements.

  • Elective courses, if needed, to reach an overall total of at least 120 units.

Students may be able to use some courses to meet more than one requirement. Contact your advisor for details.

Minimum Units for Completion 120
Major GPA C
Highest Mathematics Required STA 270
Foreign Language Required
Fieldwork Experience/Internship Optional
Research Optional
University Honors Program Optional
AZ Transfer Students complete AGEC-A Recommended
Progression Plan Link View Progression Plan

Purpose Statement

Anthropology integrates scientific and humanistic approaches to the study of people and culture to inform our two goals:

  1. To support global citizenship through information, skills, and perspectives that build cross-cultural awareness and increase the ability to identify our own cultural assumptions, and
  2. To promote an engaged anthropology that addresses the contemporary challenges of our local and global communities.

The scope of the program encompasses past, present, and future perspectives on the human condition, within the subfields of socio-cultural, linguistic, and biological anthropology, and archaeology.

The content focuses on the range of human cultural and biological diversity through Anthropology’s core concepts, theories, methods, and major debates. Skills developed include; critical thinking, research methods and analysis, effective writing, and constructive dialogue.

Student-focused learning experiences include innovative coursework, research opportunities, community engagement, laboratory and field training, and internships.

The program prepares students for a range of professional careers in government, private sector, - not-for-profit, and community-based organizations in addition to graduate and professional degree

Student Learning Outcomes

Using the anthropological perspective (non-ethnocentrism, cultural relativism, cross-cultural emphasis, diachronic approach, and holism) students will:

  • Define, summarize, and analyze Anthropology’s core concepts, theories, methods, challenges, and major debates as they are articulated in archaeology, linguistic anthropology, biological anthropology, and sociocultural anthropology.
  • Describe how each of the four fields of Anthropology contributes to a greater understanding of the range of human cultural and biological diversity.
  • Compare various anthropological approaches common to each of the four sub fields within Anthropology.
  • Identify past and present ethical issues in Anthropology, summarize the ethical guidelines provided by the major professional Anthropological organizations, and apply these guidelines in their education and research.
  • Identify their own cultural assumptions and evaluate the ways in which these assumptions affect their beliefs, behaviors, and their own education.
  • Describe and discuss the complexities of contemporary global challenges, such as sustainability and ethnic diversity, and evaluate how focused research and action using the anthropological perspective are addressing these challenges.

Major Requirements
  • This major requires 70 units distributed as follows:

    • Anthropology Course Requirements: 54 units
    • A Foreign Language: 16 units

    Take the following 54 units with a Grade of "C" or better in each course:

Foreign Language Requirement
  • You must demonstrate proficiency in a language other than English that is equivalent to four terms of university coursework in the same language. You may satisfy this requirement by taking language courses or through credit by exam. (16 units)

General Electives
  • Additional coursework is required if, after you have met the previously described requirements, you have not yet completed a total of 120 units of credit.

    You may take these remaining courses from any of the academic areas, using these courses to pursue your specific interests and goals. You may also use prerequisites or transfer credits as electives if they weren't used to meet major, minor, or liberal studies requirements.

    We encourage you to consult with your advisor to select the courses that will be most advantageous to you.

Additional Information
  • Be aware that some courses may have prerequisites that you must also successfully complete. For prerequisite information, click on the course or see your advisor.