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    Irvine Valley College
    Jul 12, 2024  
2019-2020 Catalog: September 2019 Edition 
2019-2020 Catalog: September 2019 Edition [ARCHIVED]


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Dean: Traci Fahimi
Academic Chair: Wendy Gabriella, JD
Faculty: Wendy Gabriella, JD; Chris Loeffler


Anthropology is the study of the organization, behavior, and development of the human species. Physical anthropology examines the fossil remains of ancestral humans and the behavior of primates in order to construct theories of how and why human beings have evolved. Cultural anthropology is concerned with the basic structures of human cultures, particularly with regard to subsistence strategies, social organization, language, religion, and political and economic systems.


Students majoring in anthropology will focus on the nature and implications of human behavior and interactions through the integration of the four major sub-disciplines of Anthropology. Knowledge and use of the scientific method will allow students to explain evolutionary theory in light o the human fossil record, analyze the relationship between modern humans and non-human primates, and objectively evaluate non-western customs and beliefs. The major is ideal for those who intend a career obliging a high degree of such interaction, particularly of a bi-cultural or multicultural form. Students considering careers in social work, international affairs, teaching, politics, public health, and journalism will find the anthropology major appropriate. Students intending to specialize in anthropology on the professional level almost always attend graduate school, since employment in the field usually requires an advanced degree.

Program Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the anthropology program, students will be able to

  • Describe how the sub-disciplines of Physical Anthropology, Cultural Anthropology, Archeology, and Linguistics (the four-field approach) are integrated and provide a theoretical basis for understanding human behavior past and present.
  • Explain evolutionary theory and have an understanding of the fossil record of human evolution as well as the relationship between non-human and human primates.
  • Apply the concepts of cultural relativism, a holistic approach, and ethnocentrism to critically evaluate traditional non- Western customs and beliefs as well as cultural change.
  • Identify and explain current archeological fieldwork techniques and the importance of the scientific method in anthropology.
  • Describe the relationship between language and culture and how anthropological linguist conducts fieldwork.

Potential Careers

Examples of careers in anthropology include the following:

  • Archaeologist
  • Anthropologist
  • Corporate Planner
  • Forensic Anthropologist
  • Government Agency Administrator
  • High School or College Teacher
  • International Law
  • Linguist
  • Multicultural Specialist
  • Museum Curator
  • Public Health Administration
  • Researcher


    Associate in ArtsAssociate in Arts for Transfer

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