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Anthropology | Anthropology


Anthropology is the study of human diversity in the broadest sense.

We ask and attempt to address the most basic questions about the nature of culture, the origins of humans, and human variability. Anthropologists study the interactions between our biological heritage and our learned cultural heritages. Anthropologists are important components of management projects that deal with landscape development, human impact studies, cultural resource use, crime scene investigations, and internationalization projects. In addition, anthropologists investigate the unwritten human past that accounts for over 99% of all human existence.

Through world class research and instruction the anthropology department at Washington State University seeks to inform the public, students, and the profession on these aspects of human diversity. Many of our students go on to make careers in one of the sub disciplines of anthropology (bioanthropology, archaeology, cultural anthropology, and linguistics). However, many of our students that did not later pursue careers in anthropology tell us that their experiences here greatly enriched their perspectives on life and learning in other fields. Our goal is to continue to pursue an understanding of, and to foster, a holistic sense of the complex human condition in all of its diversity.



anthropology students reviewing bones - zooarchaeology


The program in archaeology emphasizes research and training in the prehistory of the Americas including the Pacific Northwest from British Columbia to northern California, the Columbia Plateau, the Pueblo societies of the Southwest, Mesoamerica, and the Andes. Learn more about archaeology

At the Window

Cultural Anthropology

The graduate program in cultural anthropology at WSU emphasizes three constellations of subject matter within the broad range of the subdiscipline: (1) psychological and medical anthropology; (2) children, family, and gender; and (3) ecological anthropology. Learn more about cultural anthropology

Historic homestead in Western New Mexico

Evolutionary Anthropology

The Evolutionary Anthropology program at the WSU Department of Anthropology offers comprehensive training in evolutionary approaches to human behavior and biology. Learn more about evolutionary anthropology