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At Webster, courses in anthropology and sociology are designed to help students develop a critical appreciation of the social-structural and social-cultural dimensions of human behavior and beliefs. They provide the analytic tools and conceptual knowledge to examine and explain social change, various forms of inequality and their consequences, diverse social-cultural identities and experiences, and complex relationships between individual lives and social-cultural forces at local and global scales. Our curriculum has a strong focus on inequality, social change, and social organizations, with an emphasis on emerging trends in the field including informatics, environmental sociology, and social network analysis.

Students have an opportunity to supplement coursework for the major in diverse fields such as human rights; criminology; women, gender and sexuality studies; and cultural anthropology. Global engagement is at the center of all coursework with particular emphasis on the role globalization is playing in shaping our world. Students will have numerous opportunities for collaborative research with faculty on ongoing projects.

Studying Diverse Systems

Anthropology is the study of human cultures. Webster students study past cultures to learn what methods human societies developed to deal with the complexities of social life, social order, and social change throughout history and pre-history. Understanding what came before provides insights into present-day cultural questions and issues, and can help shape solutions. Students may choose an undergraduate minor focused on cultural anthropology or archaeology, or combine the two in a four-year bachelor's degree.

Sociology is, at its core, the study of human behavior in social settings. With a focus on positive social change, Webster sociology students develop the analytical skills necessary for critically evaluating the diversity of human belief systems. Sociology students enjoy diverse coursework and many opportunities to supplement their studies. The curriculum emphasizes inequality and social organizations. We emphasize emerging trends in the field, including informatics, environmental sociology, and social network analysis. Students may supplement their studies with coursework in human rights, criminology, women, gender and sexuality studies, and cultural anthropology.

Examining ancient tools

Details of Webster's Anthropology and Sociology programs

Required Courses

Within the 33 credit hours for the major, students are required to complete the following courses:

  • ANSO 1000 Introduction to Sociology (3 hours)
    or ANSO 1060 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology (3 hours)
  • ANSO 1800 Careers in Anthropology and Sociology (1 hour)
  • ANSO 2850 Introduction to Research Methods (3 hours)
  • ANSO 3560 Theories in Anthropology and Sociology (3 hours)
  • ANSO 4950 Senior Thesis (3 hours)
  • ANSO Electives (17-20 hours)

Electives

  • ANSO 1050 Global Social Problems
  • ANSO 1075 Introduction to Archaeology
  • ANSO 1085 Human Origins
  • ANSO 1095 Introduction to Geography: World and Regional
  • ANSO 1800 Careers in Anthropology and Sociology
  • ANSO 2015 Issues in Society and Culture
  • ANSO 2025 Topics in Archaeology
  • ANSO 2060 Culture and Communication
  • ANSO 2070 Introduction to Sex, Gender and Sexuality
  • ANSO 2200 Peoples and Cultures
  • ANSO 2300 Social Movements
  • ANSO 2460 Good Intentions: Aid and Development
  • ANSO 2530 World Musics
  • ANSO 2540 Environmental Anthropology and Sociology 
  • ANSO 2610 Introduction to Social Work
  • ANSO 2690 Food and Culture
  • ANSO 2720 Introduction to Measurement and Statistics
  • ANSO 2760 Urban Sociology
  • ANSO 2790 Asians in America
  • ANSO 2890 Health, Illness and Power
  • ANSO 2950 Community Practicum
  • ANSO 3100 Topics in Anthropology and Sociology
  • ANSO 3110 Advanced Topics in Archaeology
  • ANSO 3130 Race and Ethnicity
  • ANSO 3340 NGOs in a Global Arena
  • ANSO 3560 Theories in Anthropology and Sociology
  • ANSO 3690 Independent Reading Course
  • ANSO 3910 Social Science Lab
  • ANSO 4110 Advanced Studies in Anthropology and Sociology
  • ANSO 4175 Globalization
  • ANSO 4250 Class, Status, and Power
  • ANSO 4300 Global Sex, Gender and Sexuality
  • ANSO 4575 Immigration and Demography
  • ANSO 4630 Advanced Independent Reading Courses
  • ANSO 4700 Advanced Social Science Lab
  • ANSO 4950 Senior Thesis

Webster students can select from three 18-credit hour minors in anthropology or sociology.

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand the history and theory of cultural anthropology, characterize various types of ethnographic work and describe the ways applied anthropology can be used to solve human problems.
  • Evaluate and critique the assumptions, purposes, methods and ethics of anthropological fieldwork and research.
  • Illustrate the centrality of culture in the human experience and apply this understanding to a range of social problems such as class, caste and stratification, race, ethnicity and nationalism, and the unequal access to social resources that emerge from these systems.
  • Distinguish individual, social and cultural frames of analysis through the use of social and anthropological theory.
  • Demonstrate through the verbal and written forms a multicultural and cross-cultural perspective of our world, and distinguish the factors contributing to diversity and inequality within and among nations.
  • Understand our human past and the history of human civilization through archaeological concepts, theories and methods.

Required Courses

  • ANSO 1060 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology (3 hours)
  • ANSO 1075 Introduction to Archaeology (3 hours)
  • Anthropology and Sociology Electives (6 hours from the following list of approved courses)
    • HIST 1010 Topics in History: The Greeks: From Agamemnon to Alexander the Great (3 hours)
    • ANSO 1085 Human Origins (3 hours)
    • ANSO 1095 Introduction to Geography: World and Regional (3 hours)
    • ANSO 2025 Topics in Archaeology* (3 hours)
    • ANSO 3110 Advanced Topics in Archaeology* (3 hours)
    • ANSO 3910 Social Science Lab (3 hours)
  • ANSO Electives (6 hours)

*Courses marked with an asterisk are only available at the Webster Athens campus.

Webster students can select from three 18-credit hour minors in anthropology or sociology.

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand the history and theory of cultural anthropology, characterize various types of ethnographic work and describe the ways applied anthropology can be used to solve human problems.
  • Evaluate and critique the assumptions, purposes, methods and ethics of anthropological fieldwork and research.
  • Illustrate the centrality of culture in the human experience and apply this understanding to a range of social problems such as class, caste and stratification, race, ethnicity and nationalism, and the unequal access to social resources that emerge from these systems.
  • Distinguish individual, social and cultural frames of analysis through the use of social and anthropological theory.
  • Demonstrate through the verbal and written forms a multicultural and cross-cultural perspective of our world, and distinguish the factors contributing to diversity and inequality within and among nations.
  • Understand our human past and the history of human civilization through archaeological concepts, theories and methods.

Special Requirements

In addition to the general University requirements for a minor:

  • Students who transfer in ANSO 1060 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology must take an additional 3 credit hour ANSO elective at Webster University.

Required Courses

  • ANSO 1060 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology (3 hours)
  • ANSO 2200 Peoples and Cultures (3 hours)
  • NSO Electives (12 hours, of which 6 hours are at 3000-level or above)

Webster students can select from three 18-credit hour minors in anthropology or sociology.

Learning Outcomes

  • Describe the major concepts, theoretical perspectives, empirical findings and historical trends in the fields of cultural anthropology and sociology.
  • Explain and apply research methods in sociology and cultural anthropology, including research ethics and the analysis and interpretation of quantitative and qualitative data.
  • Examine and describe contemporary social problems/issues through social-cultural and social-structural analysis.
  • Appreciate the diversity of human behaviors, beliefs, social structures and ethnocultural belonging across the globe.

Special Requirements

In addition to the general University requirements for a minor:

  • Students who transfer in ANSO 1000 Introduction to Sociology must take an additional 3 credit hour ANSO elective at Webster University.

Required Courses

  • ANSO 1000 Introduction to Sociology (3 hours)
  • ANSO Electives (15 hours)

Alumni Success and Job Outlook

Anthropology studies contribute to careers in many sectors, including:

  • Government: cultural and natural resource management, international development and forensic anthropology
  • Academics: medicine, epidemiology, public health, linguistics, education, and ecology
  • Business and technology: consumer insights, market research and more
  • Non-profit organizations: community health, finance, and cultural advocacy

Sociology graduates pursue a variety of post-graduate opportunities from law school or governmental professions to sociological research, business, or academic careers. Webster alumni use their education in the following areas: teaching, social service, museum studies, historical societies, nonprofit organizations, and corporate environments. Sociology alumni have gone on to successful careers in diverse fields including bank manager, park ranger, teacher and political scientist.

  • Director, Nonprofit Organization
  • Probation Officer
  • Data Coordinator, Center for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Oral Historian
  • Park Ranger, US Park Service
  • Professor, Harvard University
  • University Academic Advisor
  • Police Officer
  • Hospital Intake Counselor
  • Loan Officer, Commerce Bank

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