UMBC logo
Undergraduate Catalog cover art

Anthropology, Cultural

Career and Academic Paths | Academic Advising | Major Program | Double Major | Minor Program | Honors Program | M.A. and Accelerated B.A./M.A. Programs in Applied Sociology | Evening and Part Time Options | Student Organizations | Undergraduate Research Opportunities |


View faculty details


James E. Trela


Henry P. Brehm
Jere M. Cohen
J. Kevin Eckert
Christopher J. Hewitt
Leslie A. Morgan
Fred L. Pincus
William G. Rothstein
Robert L. Rubinstein
Mary E. Stuart

Associate Professors

Marina Adler
Ilsa L. Lottes
John G. Schumacher

Assistant Professors

Bambi L. Chapin
Sarah Chard
Andrea L. Kalfoglou
Seth Messinger
Gul Seckin

Courses in this program are listed under ANTH.

The Department of Sociology and Anthropology at UMBC offers majors and minors in sociology and in cultural anthropology. Information on the anthropology major and minor is presented here. For information on the sociology major and minor, refer to sociology in this catalog.

Anthropology is the worldwide comparative study of humankind present and past. The field traditionally divides into four subfields: cultural anthropology, physical anthropology, archeology, and linguistics. The Anthropology major at UMBC focuses on cultural anthropology, providing students with an understanding of the diversity of cultural worlds, human social organization and social structure, and social research methods. Anthropology course help students gain an understanding of the complexity of current events within the U.S. and internationally, and of the diversity of perspectives, values, and ideas across the globe. Course offerings examine topics ranging from anthropological theory and the positioning of knowledge and power, to the application of anthropology in urban social issues, health care, and public policy.

Academic Advising

When a student declares a major in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, a copy of the declaration is sent to the department. A staff member then assigns the student an anthropology faculty advisor. Students may change advisors if they wish by notifying the department office. The staff will make the necessary changes. Students may contact advisors at any time during the advisor’s office hours or by telephone or email. Telephone numbers and email addresses are listed in the UMBC directory. Office hours are noted outside of each faculty member’s office door. Staff members usually do not make appointments for faculty members. Majors should plan to meet with their anthropology advisor at least once each semester to discuss progress toward the major, future plans and to obtain electronic permission to register. A meeting to discuss registration must be held prior to a student’s assigned registration time in order to avoid delays in being able to register. We also encourage students to meet with their advisors any time that they have questions or problems or want to discuss career plans. If a student’s advisor cannot help with a problem, a student may be referred to someone who can. When a student applies for graduation, his or her anthropology faculty advisor makes the final evaluation as to whether the student has completed all requirements for the major or minor. If the advisor has permitted the student to modify the major in any way, such as by transferring courses or waiving requirements, the student should get a written and signed copy of the agreements. The advisor will be glad to discuss the general university requirements for graduation, but advisors have no authority to modify these requirements in any way. The Registrar’s Office monitors completion of general education and university requirements.

Major Program

ANTHROPOLOGY (Total Credits: 31)

Students must complete the following requirements with a grade of ”C” or better:

1. Core Requirements (13 credits)

  • ANTH 211 Cultural Anthropology [3]
  • ANTH 303 Anthropological Research Methods [3]
  • SOCY 300 Methodology of Social Research [4]
  • ANTH 400 Anthropological Theory [3]

2. Elective Requirements (18 credits)

A minimum of four of the elective courses (twelve credits) must be Anthropology courses. Students may choose whether the remaining two courses (six credits) are in Anthropology or Sociology. The department’s Anthropology elective courses include

  • ANTH 297 Selected Topics in Anthropology
  • ANTH 302 Human Evolution: Physical Anthropology and Archaeology
  • ANTH 304 Kin, Community, and Ethnicity
  • ANTH 310 Ethnographic Film
  • ANTH 311 Urban Anthropology
  • ANTH 312 Medical Anthropology
  • ANTH 313 Applied Anthropology
  • ANTH 314 Psychological Anthropology
  • ANTH 316 Anthropology of Religion
  • ANTH 317 Contemporary Problems in Anthropological Perspective
  • ANTH 326 American-Indian Cultures
  • ANTH 397 Selected Topics in Anthropology
  • ANTH 402 Ethnography of Communication
  • ANTH 416 Cyberspace, Culture and Society
  • ANTH 419 Qualitative Methods in Social Research
  • ANTH 429 Aging in Cultural Context
  • ANTH 497 Advanced Selected Topics in Anthropology
  • ANTH 498 Selected Topics in Anthropology
  • ANTH 499 Advanced Independent Study in Anthropology (or ANTH 399 Independent Study in Anthropology)

Students may also wish to take courses in other departments that complement a four-field approach to Anthropology. While the Anthropology faculty encourages students to explore additional coursework in archeology, linguistics, and physical anthropology, as well as cultural studies, these courses cannot be used as Anthropology electives.