Welcome to the Department of Anthropology at Appalachian State University! We are one of the fastest growing departments at ASU with nearly 200 majors. Today, we are the largest undergraduate-only anthropology program in the state of North Carolina and the third largest program overall (behind UNC-Chapel Hill and Duke University). We offer both B.S. and B.A. degrees in several sub-fields of anthropology through tailored concentrations of study. We also share pedagogical partnerships with other departments on campus (i.e. Global Studies, Sustainable Development [which started in the Department of Anthropology], Sociology, Geology, and Biology).
The Department of Anthropology is committed to a comparative and holistic approach to the study of the human experience. The anthropological perspective provides a broad understanding of the origins as well as the meaning of physical and cultural diversity in the world - past, present, and future. As such, the program in anthropology offers the opportunity for understanding world affairs and problems within the total context of the human experience and for constructing solutions to world problems which are firmly grounded in that context. Cultural anthropologists study people and their cultural practices and beliefs both within and outside of the United States as well as the topics of identity, power, inequality, and social praxis. Archaeologists study the material culture of past peoples in order to reconstruct their cultures, traditions, and practices in order to understand both what came before and how this may help us understand the present. Biological anthropologists study primate evolution and behavioral ecology, human biological variation, biocultural adaptations, bioarchaeology, and human paleontology. Together, we strive to understand both past and present variation in human societies. [ Welcome from the Chair ] [ Why study anthropology? ]