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Anthropology BA

(HEGIS: 22.02 ANTHROPOLOGY, CIP: 45.0201 Anthropology)

Department of Anthropology

380 Academic Center
Ellicott Complex
North Campus
Buffalo, NY 14261-0026

Jaume Franquesa

Noreen von Cramon-Taubadel
Director of Undergraduate Studies

Associated Programs

Associated Subjects

Why study Anthropology BA at UB?

Anthropology combines the biological, historical, and social sciences in a unique study of humankind as a whole. It is the only discipline that examines and attempts to understand humankind as a whole. The undergraduate program includes the subfields of archaeology, cultural anthropology and biological anthropology. Students declare a specialization in one of these three focus areas when they apply for the major.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of all requirements, the student will have knowledge:

  • To display sophisticated knowledge of core concepts, theories and methods in cultural anthropology, biological anthropology and/or anthropological archaeology.
  • To appreciate and understand the diversity of human experience, interpret complexity.
  • To demonstrate global awareness and understanding of other cultures.
  • To conduct research: pose questions, conduct fieldwork, obtain evidence, analyze sources, assess information, instruct an argument.
  • To use critical reading skills and think critically.
  • To use effective written communication skills: express a point of view on a subject and support it with evidence.
  • To organize and orally present research results in a meaningful way.

The Learning Environment

The Anthropology Department offers courses in three subfields of anthropology: archaeology, cultural anthropology and biological anthropology. Archaeology is a discipline that employs a multitude of historical and scientific methods to study past societies through physical remains. Cultural anthropology is the study of shared and transmitted beliefs, behaviors and products within human societies. Biological anthropology is the study of the origins and evolution of our own species and our primate relatives.

Classes offered by the department range from large lecture to small seminar formats. Students complete a capstone senior seminar in addition to a range of area studies and theoretical or problem-oriented courses. Students in biological anthropology engage in laboratory work, while those studying archaeology perform practical research on sites and artifacts. The department also offers opportunities to conduct independent study and research under the supervision of a faculty member.

About Our Facilities

The Department of Anthropology office is located at 380 Academic Center in the Ellicott Complex. The department holds classes in centrally scheduled spaces throughout the campus, which include traditional classrooms and lecture halls that can accommodate the program’s teaching philosophies.

Archaeology students who enroll in the department-sponsored field school have the opportunity to conduct artifact identification and material analysis in a working Cultural Resource Management (CRM) firm, UB’s Archaeological Survey.

The Biological Anthropology program has two specialized lab spaces: a wet lab to conduct specimen dissections and a morphology dry lab outfitted with a skeletal collection. In addition, there are several research groups such as the Buffalo Human Evolutionary Morphology Lab, the Hominin Movement Lab, and the Applied Primate Behavioral Evolution Lab. 

The Cultural Anthropology program provides students with opportunities to learn about and conduct research on many contemporary issues, including migration, environmental policies, warfare, medical care, and religion around the world.

The Marian E. White Anthropology Research Museum and Anthropology Library provide resources to undergraduate students conducting research.

About Our Faculty

The Anthropology Department includes fifteen full-time faculty who specialize in various fields within cultural anthropology, biological anthropology, and archaeology. Dr. Sirianni and Dr. Bacigalupo have each received awards for excellence in teaching. Dr. Sirianni is a State University of New York Distinguished Teaching Professor and has also been recognized with the SUNY Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching. Dr. Bacigalupo has received the Student Association's Milton Plesur Teaching Excellence Award. Recent internal and external evaluations have given high marks to the department.

Faculty List Directory

Please visit the Anthropology department website for additional information about our faculty.

Career Outlook

To work in any branch of anthropology, an advanced graduate degree is needed, usually a PhD. Most professional anthropologists work for universities and colleges; some for museums or government. However, there are many practical applications and career tracks where having a BA degree in anthropology is advantageous. Anthropology students learn to develop skills for understanding differences in cultures. This is helpful in careers in health, social services, business and urban planning, among many others.

Settings in which anthropologists work include government agencies, education, research, banking, business, human resources, public relations, marketing research, human services, international intergovernmental organizations, non-profit corporations, museums, the tourism and cultural heritage industries and media. Salaries range from one occupation, position and work setting to another.

Academic Advising

Students are assigned an advisor based upon their interests and plans once they are admitted to the program. The student and advisor devise a plan of study and meet at least once per term. Students may choose to concentrate in one of the sub-disciplines or enroll in the pre-medical/pre-dental concentration.

Students have the responsibility to plan their programs carefully with their advisors, to understand applicable expectations and deadlines, and to meet with their advisors at least once each semester to ensure they are on track. Depending on the student's plans for the future, advisors may also suggest additional coursework in computer science, geology, geography, linguistics or other departments.

Academic Advising Contact Information

For advising information, please contact the Director of Undergraduate Studies:

Dr. Noreen von Cramon-Taubadel
380 Academic Center
Email Dr. von Cramon-Taubadel

Scholarships and Financial Support

The Phyllis Hartrich Memorial Fund provides support on a competitive basis for anthropology majors conducting independent research. Project proposals are submitted annually to the Director of Undergraduate Studies.

Associated Programs

Associated Subjects

Published: Feb 01, 2023 08:49:28