Program at a Glance

  • Program Credits

    18 credits
    • Major/Concentration: 18
  • Accreditation


The anthropology minor equips students from a variety of disciplines with anthropological frameworks that provide holistic understandings of the diversity of human behavior across time, geography and culture from a distinctly Christian perspective.


Note: This list is intended to give you a quick glimpse into the program’s academic offerings, and should not be used as a guide for course selection or academic advising. For official program requirements, see the course catalog.

Core Courses

The nature of people in culture; worldview and perception; culture change; a study of the subsystems of cultures, including social organization, religion, language and related topics. Includes practical applications to global problems such as AIDS, human rights, etc. Notes: Approved for Core Curriculum Behavioral Science credit. Grade Mode: A.

Elective Courses

Required: 15 credits upper division courses from the following:

A treatment of conceptions of the supernatural, the functions of religion in society, religion and social control, the nature of religious ritual and paraphernalia, sacred places and religious practitioners. Grade Mode: A.
The study of the processes and theories for the existence of the present variation between and within human populations, the genetics of human populations and the significance of racial classifications. Grade Mode: A.
Techniques in the basic identification of human skeletal remains, including aging, sex, race and stature reconstruction. Professional and ethical considerations related to handling human remains. Grade Mode: A.
Survey of the growth and development of anthropological theories and research methods for understanding cultural knowledge. Explores key ideas, concepts and issues relating to cognition, culture and meaning. Grade Mode: A.
This course is a holistic approach to language that addresses the interdependence of language and culture in society. It examines the relationship between cognition and behavior to language in communities worldwide. Topics include the structure of language and interaction, symbols and metaphors, language and identity, language and cognition, classification of experience, and language and power. Grade Mode: A.
Topics may include:
Survey of approaches, methods and theory used in current and past archaeological research. The class addresses the use of assumptions, models, strategies and research designs. Grade Mode: A.
Field archaeology examines the principles of archaeological site survey, excavation and laboratory operation. The course is focused on the hands-on study of the methodology of field and laboratory processes commonly used to recover and study the wide range of materials recovered from archaeological contexts. Grade Mode: A.
Enhanced course in the principles of archaeological field and laboratory process. The course focuses on the mapping, stratigraphy and specialized methods of data recovery archaeological data. Students are introduced to principles of leadership and organization of field archaeology, and professional and ethical conduct. Grade Mode: A.
Examination of a variety of issues related to gender. Topics may include gender and communication, globalization and gender, feminization of poverty, representation of gender, etc. Notes: May be taken for a total of 6 credits with different content. Grade Mode: A.
The origin and development of the cultures of the prehistoric peoples of North America and north of Mexico are explored using archaeological evidence. The class focuses on the development of regional and continent-wide patterns of human adaptation. Grade Mode: A.
A cross-cultural comparison of the oral traditions of cultures including an examination of major themes, cultural uses of myth, and the anthropological analysis and interpretation of folk literature in society. Grade Mode: A.
Survey of native California groups indigenous to the state at the beginning of the historic period. Environmental and technological adaptations, social organization, religious systems, art and culture change are explored in this survey class. Grade Mode: A.
Survey of the development of ancient culture and society throughout the world. Regional development of cultures and general themes of social behavior are explored, with a focus on the adaptation, social organization, technology and culture change. Grade Mode: A.
An introduction to major themes and issues in the anthropological study of social justice and human rights. Common human rights violations will be considered from an anthropological perspective and in the light of Scripture. Various tools for engaging in social activism and advocacy, rescuing the oppressed and undertaking social justice and human rights interventions will be considered. Grade Mode: A.
Techniques of field methods learned such as genealogies, participant observation, life history, mapping, structured interviews, etc. in preparation for the field practicum. Ethnographic research conducted as part of the course. Grade Mode: A.
A six-week field learning situation during which time students, under supervision, will engage in the application of field methods of research including participatory observation, interviews, mapping, and other data gathering strategies as appropriate to their discipline. Grade Mode: A.
The history of archaeology and literature of the Ancient Near East and the bearing of archaeological findings on the interpretation of the Old Testament. Grade Mode: A.
The history of the excavation, the history and geography of Palestine and how archaeological findings have bearing upon Biblical interpretations. Grade Mode: A.
A survey of the archaeology and relevant texts of Ancient Egypt during the period of the Pharaohs, from the Predynastic period to Ptolemaic Egypt. Grade Mode: A.
Examination of a variety of anthropological issues from either a theoretical or applied perspective including: marriage customs, leadership patterns, political relations, indigenous movements, culture change, worldview, etc. Notes: May be taken multiple times for credit with different course content. Grade Mode: A.
Cross-cultural study of leadership including diverse patterns of authority, legitimacy, public support, leadership recruitment, and training as they affect communication, national and international development. Grade Mode: A.
An examination of the theories and principle figures who have contributed to the development of modern anthropological inquiry, research strategies and field methods. Grade Mode: A.
Cross-cultural study of the basic human groups of family, kin and community, examining marriage patterns and gender roles within families. Grade Mode: A.
Exploration of theory and methods for the study of economic and social relations as they impact human values, with emphasis on analytic tools for comparative research and cross-cultural application. Grade Mode: A.
An exploration of approaches, methods and theory in the interrelated fields of semiotics, symbolic anthropology and structural anthropology. Focus on ways in which anthropologists examine social and psychological structures, mental entities and lived experience, and symbolic contrasts and correspondences. Grade Mode: A.
A survey of the human fossil record focusing on the functional and behavioral significance of important morphological changes within the fossil record. Grade Mode: A.
An exploration of the theory and methods of the study and preservation of human skeletal remains from archaeological sites. Moral, ethical and legal issues which attend the recovery of such data are explored. Topics include nutrition, disease, injury, and population demography. Grade Mode: A.
An exploration of the ethnic dimensions of human association and community, with an emphasis on the cultural construction and maintenance of identity and social memory, particularly among immigrant, refugee, and indigenous communities. Topics include concepts and theories of ethnicity, identity, and social memory; the relationships of language and religion to ethnic identity, and ethnic conflict and nationalism. Grade Mode: A.
A critical exploration of how language relates to power. The course will focus on (a) minority language rights and linguistic imperialism, language shift and maintenance, and linguistic ecology, as well as (b) political, media, gender, ethnic, age, and class language. Students will engage in critical analysis of various kinds of discourse in terms of linguistic articulation, maintenance and subversion of power relations. Grade Mode: A.
Examination of a variety of issues related to archaeological issues either from a theoretical or practical perspective. These topics may include: Advanced Archaeological Methods, Specialized Field Methods in Archaeology, California Prehistory, Southwestern Archaeology, Archaeology of North America, Archaeology Laboratory Method, etc. Notes: May be taken for a total of 6 credits with different content. Grade Mode: A.
Explores the 'roots and fruits' of aggression, violence and conflict from an anthropological perspective. Examination of biological, ecological and other materialistic explanations for these phenomena, as well as patterns in learning, symbol using and structuring of society as they relate to conflict and its transformation. Consideration of violence, aggression and warfare in small-scale societies, ethnic conflict, cross-cultural case studies, and techniques for conflict mediation and intervention. Grade Mode: A.
Examination of the cultural adaptation resulting in the growth of cities, patterns of migration, social effects of urbanization, relationships to surrounding communities and the growth of megalopolis internationally. Notes: May be taken multiple times with different course content. Grade Mode: A.
Examines the archaeological, historical and geographic backgrounds of Acts, the Epistles and Revelation. The program visits archaeological sites in Turkey, Greece and Rome including Ephesus, Pisidian Antioch, Corinth, Athens and several others. Anthropology students will examine the archaeological field reports from each of these excavations as part of their preparation. Grade Mode: A.
Examines the archaeological, historical and geographic backgrounds of the Old Testament and the Gospels. The program visits archaeological sites in Israel, and students are able to experience the historical and geographic context of the Old Testament and the gospels. Anthropology students will examine the archaeological field reports from excavations in Israel as part of their preparation. Grade Mode: A.
A survey of theoretical, methodological and ethnographic topics geared toward developing a deeper anthropological understanding of cross-cultural experiences related to both normal and 'altered' states of consciousness. We will explore topics including the neurophysiology of spiritual experience; trance; possession, shamanistic and mediumistic states; glossolalia; mystical traditions and a number of other 'extraordinary' experiences, as well as develop a thoroughly Christian, cross-culturally valid approach to various ethnophilosophies of mind, soul and spirit. Grade Mode: A.
Selected topics in biological anthropology. Notes: May be taken multiple times for credit with different content. Grade Mode: A.
Students may spend four weeks to a semester in a field learning situation, during which time a student, under supervision, engages in the application of archaeological methods in a current archaeological excavation. Grade Mode: A.
An examination of various approaches to anthropology from 1950 to present. Topics may include neoevolutionist, symbolic, psychological, postmodern, or feminist theoretical approaches. Notes: May be taken for a total of 6 credits with different content. Grade Mode: A.
Exploration of the contributions of anthropology and/or other academic disciplines to human rights and/or social justice considerations. Anthropological topics may include critical ethnography, cross-cultural approaches to developing international human rights standards, various forms of trafficking (human, organ, cultural heritage, etc.), genocide and ethnocide, anthropological ethics, representation and subjectivity in human rights and social justice contexts, universalism and relativism, anthropology of post-liberalism and neo-liberalism, cultural legitimacy, narrative approaches to transformational change, etc. Grade Mode: A.
Individual directed research in anthropology on a specific topic or problem. Notes: May be taken for a total of 6 credits with different content. Grade Mode: A.
Research for and writing of a thesis under the supervision and guidance of an anthropology faculty mentor. Grade Mode: A.