applied anthropology in action
Department of Anthropology ← Apply Your Passion

Welcome!

Anthropology is a holistic science dedicated to the study of human cultural and biological diversity and evolution. Anthropology is unique in that it integrates fields of study that traditionally span multiple disciplines in the sciences, arts, and professional studies.

Studying anthropology is a great way to develop very useful and marketable life skills that are broadly applicable to multiple career trajectories. Anthropology students learn to be very culturally aware, which is critical to learning how to communicate effectively in a wide variety of cultural situations.

We offer a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Minor in Anthropology, and a Master of Arts in Applied Anthropology. Click on the resources and emphases below to learn more about the subfields of anthropology and the many career options in each!

  • Ethnobotany: Uniting Science and Spirit Ethnobotany: Uniting Science and Spirit Ethnobotany combines science and cultural knowledge with the goal of introducing students to groups and ideas they might not find in a traditional classroom setting. The unique program is a partnership between HSU's Department of Anthropology, U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management and members of the Karuk Tribe, including several basket weavers and herbalists.
  • Putting it All Together: HSU's Archaeology Lab Gives Students a Chance to Uncover History, Piece by Piece Putting it All Together: HSU's Archaeology Lab Gives Students a Chance to Uncover History, Piece by Piece Looking at the pile of unlabeled, broken glass bottles, most people would see recycling. But not Leslie Perkins, an Anthropology major immersed in work at the department's Archaeology Laboratory. "It tells a story about what people were doing back near the turn of the 20th century," she says.
  • From Forensics to Family Bonds, Lab Provides Students the Opportunity for Hands-On Research into Humanity From Forensics to Family Bonds, Lab Provides Students the Opportunity for Hands-On Research into Humanity HSU's Biological Anthropology Research Center is a lab dedicated to providing research experience for students."We're trying to answer fundamental questions about why we are the way we are," says Marissa Ramsier, Assistant Professor of Anthropology and lab Director. Current projects include research ranging from evolutionary medicine, comparative anatomy and forensics to ecology and conservation.
  • Hybrid Graduate Program Offers the Best of Hands-On and Online Experiences Hybrid Graduate Program Offers the Best of Hands-On and Online Experiences Intense, but relaxed. Rigid, but flexible. Those contradictory terms aptly describe the Applied Anthropology M.A. curriculum offered through Humboldt State’s College of eLearning and Extended Education.
  • Cultural Resources Facility: Students Working to Preserve History Cultural Resources Facility: Students Working to Preserve History Livia Arnold came to Humboldt State as a student with an interest in other cultures, but it wasn't until she volunteered with the Cultural Resources Facility that she discovered her passion for archaeology. "It's really cool to be able to touch history," she says. "You can take an object that has little meaning by itself and figure out its cultural context and historical significance."
  • Ariel Gruenthal ('08, Anthropology): Humboldt County's First Female Deputy Coroner Ariel Gruenthal ('08, Anthropology): Humboldt County's First Female Deputy Coroner As an undergraduate, she worked with Anthropology Professor Mary Glenn identifying remains in missing-persons cases for the coroner's office. "We would lay out skeletons and I would help her do biological profiles of the remains," Gruenthal says. "That kind of good, hands-on training is the best way to learn." In Oct. 2010, she was officially sworn in as the County's first female deputy coroner.
  • Exploring Ancient Maya Sites in Belize Exploring Ancient Maya Sites in Belize "It's a big deal for undergraduates to get this kind of hands-on fieldwork experience," says Marisol Cortes-Rincon, Professor of Anthropology at HSU. She's talking about the Belize Archaeology Field program that brings students to an unexplored Maya site and let's them make the discoveries. Students are mapping, excavating and exploring the site's ecology and getting hands on experience in a pristine jungle environment.
  • The Jungle as the Classroom: In Costa Rica, HSU Students Study Primate Behavior Firsthand The Jungle as the Classroom: In Costa Rica, HSU Students Study Primate Behavior Firsthand Drs. Marissa Ramsier and Mary Glenn and their students have found themselves in some pretty unique situations in Costa Rica. Oh sure, they trounced around the jungle among poisonous snakes and learned to live with insatiable mosquitoes, but nothing quite compared to the all-out battle at the suspension bridge.
  • Taking Cues from the Flakes: Flint Knapping Workshop Gives Hands-on Training in an Ancient Art Taking Cues from the Flakes: Flint Knapping Workshop Gives Hands-on Training in an Ancient Art Anthropology professor Marisol Cortes-Rincon has a sharp eye for authentic stone artifacts. But when it comes to workshop instructor Michael Peterson's work, even she sometimes has trouble telling his modern products from the real deal.
  • History and Culture at the Poland Medieval Bioarchaeology Program History and Culture at the Poland Medieval Bioarchaeology Program The Medieval Bioarchaeology Field Program in Poland is a unique opportunity to excavate and analyze human remains from a medieval cemetery at Bezlawki, in north eastern Poland.
     


“Studying Anthropology gave me the framework to understand how different cultures, including my own, operate and understand one another—that’s been invaluable in my international human rights work.”
Maria Paz Caceres
Indigenous Advocate &
New Voices National Fellow


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