Anthropology Major

Student digging at Mill Creek Ravine

MAJOR |  Bachelor of Arts

You appreciate other cultures and want them to be valued. You recognize and respect human diversity. You are a big picture thinker with the patience and desire to analyze new situations and contexts. When you study anthropology, you delve into the fascinating world of human history and contemporary human issues.

As an anthropology major, you gain insight into some of the most important questions facing humanity today. You use your understanding of cultural differences to explore topics such as social inequality, material culture, human connection to the physical world, human evolution and language.

Anthropologists work in a wide variety of careers, including professional archaeology, forensic science, market research, language revitalization projects, medicine, government, intercultural education and climate change responses.

Career Ideas


What to expect

As you progress through the anthropology major, you refine critical thinking skills while developing research skills (including learning and applying methods) and analytical skills. You choose one or two subfields that interest you the most and begin to study them more deeply.

In the first and second year of the program, you learn key terms, approaches and theories of anthropology. You are introduced to the big questions that drive the discipline, examining cross-cultural and biological perspective on what it means to be human. You become familiar with the historical and contemporary underpinnings of each of the four subfields of anthropology: social/cultural anthropology, archaeology, biological anthropology and linguistic anthropology. In the second year, you begin to conduct work in the lab.

In your third year, you learn how humans live in, have adapted to and participate in our physical and social environments. The courses you take, including those that focus on research methods, prepare you for special topics courses that expand on and deepen your knowledge of anthropology subdisciplines. By the final year of the program, you are creating and disseminating original research, communicating anthropological concepts using a variety of media and evaluating your peers using a variety of techniques. When you encounter an unfamiliar cultural situation, you are able to respond to and interpret it from an anthropological perspective. You have learned to listen, ask questions and evaluate the world from a biocultural, holistic point of view.

Courses and requirements

This major is open to students in the Bachelor of Arts. Courses for your major are only one component of the degree requirements you need to graduate. You must complete the courses and requirements outlined in the academic calendar for the year you declare your major/minor or the year you are accepted into an honours program.

Program of Study // Anthropology

Declare your major/minor

Academic advisors for the program have prepared resources to help you understand how your major/minor fits within overall degree coursework. Consult the information provided by Program Services to choose and enrol in courses and complete the major/minor declaration process. 

Academic Planning