Anthropology Program

students walking on campus

Why study Anthropology?

The expansive discipline of anthropology explores the human condition with a range of perspectives and approaches, appreciating humans as both biological and cultural creatures.

Knowledge acquired in the theoretical frameworks and methodological means for understanding and analyzing cultural institutions, practices, and phenomena will help prepare students for future careers spanning from non-profit work, to health care, to education and business. Program majors will also be well prepared for advanced graduate study in Anthropology and other social sciences, and professional programs ranging from public health, to social work, to business or law school.

What skills will I develop?

The primary focus of our program is Cultural Anthropology, which studies the ways that humans create meaning, forge alliances, assert differences, and both reinforce and create new social and political hierarchies and vectors of inequality.

Anthropology majors are trained to research topics, read complex material, critically evaluate information, and write cogent analyses of their findings. Throughout our curriculum students are trained to critically read and understand the complexities of ethnography-the qualitative research method and product that defines the discipline. They also have the opportunity to produce their own original ethnographic work in course research assignments as well as larger honors thesis projects, which may be the outgrowth of study abroad, field school, or internship experiences.

Anthropologists need to develop their own thoughts and draw their own conclusions and often challenge or overturn long-held assumptions or ways of doing things-skills critical in dynamic and rapidly changing careers. Like many Liberal Arts degrees, the skills you learn in Anthropology courses are “transferable” skills and can be transferred from one career to another.

What career opportunities are there for someone with this degree?

Equipped with strong research, writing, analytical, and communication skills, anthropology graduates are immediately employable in a range of professions, including as teachers, curators, urban planners, writers, professional researchers, non-profit employees, and human resource specialists. Individuals who combine their anthropology skills with additional professional or technical schooling often prove themselves to be some of the most competitive candidates in their chosen field, whether it be as a doctor, lawyer, social worker, business consultant, public health administrator, designer, psychologist, engineer… and the list goes on. Here are what some recent Butler graduates are doing with their degrees:

  • University Faculty
  • University Administration
  • Peace Corps
  • English as a Second Language Instructor
  • International Economic Consulting
  • Social Worker
  • Social Research
  • Public Health
  • Law
  • Teach for America