With six different minor options, the Department of Anthropology offers something to suit a wide range of student interests, from studying immigration and diaspora to discussing the origins of ancient Incan sites. Each minor includes elective options, allowing students to choose topics that complement their major field of study.
The 21-credit minor in anthropology covers the four foundational branches of the field: biological anthropology, sociocultural anthropology, archaeology and linguistics. Students round out the curriculum with electives on topics ranging from speech analysis to the culture of ancient civilizations.
The 18-credit minor in archaeology allows students to choose classes from a wide range of geographical regions, including The Aztec Empire, African Roots from Australopithecus to Zimbabwe and Archaeology of Israel. Students also take a Theory and Practice in Archaeology course to prepare for future fieldwork.
In the 16-credit biological anthropology minor, students explore evolution in the classroom, in the research lab and through on-location sessions at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo. Other topics covered include anatomy, genetics, primatology and forensic anthropology. Students minoring in biological anthropology also complete a required field research course.
Linguistics is the study of the human capacity to learn and use languages. GW’s 18-credit, interdisciplinary linguistics minor provides students with training in the analysis of both the formal structures and social functions of language. Through analysis of key readings and approaches in linguistics, students learn how to interpret data and apply these analyses to theoretical debates and practical issues.
The cross-cultural communication minor explores how different cultures use language to express themselves and how language intersects with human nature, gender, race, class, power and more. Courses include Ethnographic Analysis of Speech and the Anthropology of Gender, and geographical focuses including Latin America, East Asia or Native Peoples of North America.
The Anthropology Department houses more than a dozen full-time and visiting faculty in the sociocultural anthropology field, offering students a variety of approaches to the field. The 18-credit minor allows students to explore topics including social organization, international development, governance and politics, ethnic conflict, cultural heritage, health and illness, gender and semiotics.