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Anthropology is the study of humans, involving both sociocultural and biological aspects of humankind. Saint Louis University's anthropology program offers you a choice of rigorous social science tracks focused on four subfields: sociocultural anthropology, biological anthropology, linguistic anthropology and archeology.

Anthropology students at SLU

Major in Anthropology

Students in  SLU's Department of Sociology and Anthropology gain practical applied experience as undergraduates through fieldwork opportunities and independent research projects, and make connections with the larger anthropological community through internships, study abroad opportunities and a senior capstone project.

Fieldwork in SLU's anthropology program takes place within and outside the United States, allowing you to experience other societies firsthand and gain a greater appreciation for cultural difference.

If you major in anthropology at Saint Louis University, you will choose from three emphasis areas, each of which offers lab courses that provide hands-on learning:

  • Cultural/social anthropology: the study of human cultures in the present or recent past
  • Physical/biological anthropology: the study of humans from a biological and evolutionary perspective
  • Linguistic anthropology: the interdisciplinary study of how language influences social life.
  • Archeology: the study of the ancient and recent human past through excavation, analysis and interpretation of material remains

SLU’s Archeology Lab provides an excellent workspace for you to explore and contribute to the science of archeology. Each semester, the lab provides hands-on opportunities for students to explore prehistoric and historic lithics, ceramics and other materials and to develop student-initiated research projects.

The Urban Lab makes the city of St. Louis your classroom. Through coursework, internships and field schools, you’ll have the chance to conduct original research on urban culture, inequality and development.


The B.A. in anthropology requires a minimum of 37 credit hours. The minor in anthropology requires 22 credit hours.

Required Foundational Courses

Students majoring in anthropology must take all of the following courses. Minors in anthropology must take the courses with an asterisk.

  • ANTH 1200: Introduction to Anthropology*
  • SOC 2000: Research Methods
  • ANTH: Cultural Anthropology*
  • ANTH 2210-01: Biological Anthropology*
  • ANTH 2210-36: Biological Anthropology Lab* (Note: SOC 2210-01 and SOC 2210-36 together count as one course and must be taken in the same semester)
  • ANTH 2240: Archaeology
  • ANTH 3200: Contemporary Anthropological Theory*
  • ANTH4870 Capstone in Anthropology

In addition, majors will select five courses from the following list. Minors will select at least three courses.

  • SOC 1180: World Geography
  • ANTH 2080: Urban Issues: Poverty and Unemployment
  • SOC 2300: American Pop Culture
  • ANTH 2460: Global Mental Health
  • FRSC 2600: Survey of Forensic Science
  • SOC 2930: Special Topics
  • SOC 3930: Special Topics: Food and Culture
  • ANTH 4930: Special Topics: Ethnographic Field School
  • SOC 3010: Quantitative Analysis
  • SOC 3020: Qualitative Analysis
  • ANTH 3210: Science & Pseudoscience
  • SOC 3230: Gender and Society
  • ANTH 3240: Anthropology of Sex and Gender
  • ANTH 3260: Peace and Conflict
  • ANTH 3270: Environmental Anthropology
  • ANTH 3280: Forensic Anthropology
  • ANTH 3290: Native Peoples of North America
  • ANTH 3340: World Archaeology
  • SOC 3360: Racial and Ethnic Relations
  • SOC 3430: Marriage and the Family
  • SOC 3500: Social Inequality
  • FRSC 3630: Forensic Biology and Lab
  • ANTH 4710: Archaeological Field School
  • ANTH 4720: Archaeological Lab Methods
  • ANTH 4080: Urban Issues: Advanced Seminar
  • ANTH 4240: Primate Social Behavior
  • ANTH 4530/5530: Urban Ethnography
  • ANTH 4540/5540: Environmental Impact of the City
  • FRSC 4610: Death Investigation
  • SOC 4800: Undergraduate Research Activity
  • SOC 4980: Advanced Independent Study

Student should plan their coursework sequentially. SOC 1200 is a prerequisite for SOC 2200 and SOC 2210, and should be taken before any other courses in the Anthropology major.

Major advisors and the department chair reserve the right to alter these courses in consultation with each other for the benefit of the anthropology major or particular needs of the major candidates. No more than one elective may double count for another, separate major or minor within the department.

Internships and Careers

SLU's anthropology graduates are prepared to successfully function in an interconnected world. The major and minor degrees in anthropology are designed to complement any other major at SLU. If you major in anthropology at SLU, you might consider the following careers:

  • Archaeological technician
  • Corporate anthropologist / market research
  • The Foreign Services
  • Preservation assistant
  • Documentary filmmaker
  • International development
  • Mission organizer

SLU’s renowned anthropology faculty members hold the highest degrees attainable in their fields. Not only do they teach the courses required for the anthropology major and minor, but they also actively participate in research and fieldwork of their own.

Tuition and Fees

Saint Louis University takes pride in being one of Barron's Best Buys in College Education and Kiplinger's Best Values in Private Colleges.

For information regarding the upcoming academic year’s tuition rate, fees and financial aid, visit SLU Financial Services.

2018-2019 Tuition and Fees
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Minor in Anthropology

SLU’s minor in anthropology allows you to explore race and ethnicity, inequality, American Indian studies, environmental anthropology, contemporary urbanism, health, archeology, primate social behavior and forensic anthropology. It also provides a background in basic anthropological theory and social science methodology. The minor in anthropology complements a variety of other majors at SLU.

Student Organizations

Join the Anthropology Club

Our anthropology program also supports an active Anthropology Club, and we house the Eta Chapter of Lambda Alpha, the National Anthropology Honor Society. Both organizations are engaged in numerous outreach programs at SLU and within the greater St. Louis community.