People & Society



About the Anthropology Program

Anthropology is an ambitious intellectual venture that examines the origin, development, and organization of humans from both a biological and behavioral perspective. As such, Anthropology is arguably the most comprehensive discipline to examine the framework of human existence.

At Santa Monica College, we are committed to developing an Anthropology Program that not only introduces non-majors to the enormous breadth of anthropological inquiry, but also prepares interested students for a career within the academic discipline. We believe that our diversified department provides the needed foundation to achieve these goals. In fact, Santa Monica College is recognized throughout the academic community as a leader in anthropological instruction.

Academic Programs Within Anthropology

Archaeology: Scientific study of historic or prehistoric peoples and their cultures by analysis of the physical record.

Cultural Anthropology: Scientific study of the origins, history, and development of human culture, and including in its scope the fields of archaeology, ethnology, and ethnography.

Linguistic Anthropology: Scientific study of the role language plays in society, with particular attention to the relationship between communication and broader socio-cultural processes.

Biological Anthropology: Scientific study of the evolution of humans, their variability, and adaptations to environmental stresses.

Program Level Outcomes

Upon completion of Anthropology classes, students will:

  1. Organize the cultural, historical, and biological aspects of humanness into an integrated perspective of humans as unique and adapted bio-cultural animals.

  2. Use key concepts, methodologies and developments in anthropology to recognize, describe, evaluate, and analyze various aspects of human behavior.

Anthropology Courses

All classes meet IGETC and GE transfer requirements. Courses are not sequential; there are no prerequisites.

  • Anthropology 1: Biological Anthropology
  • Anthropology 2: Cultural Anthropology
  • Anthropology 3: World Archaeology
  • Anthropology 4: Methods of Archaeology
  • Anthropology 5: Biological Anthropology with a Lab
  • Anthropology 7: Introduction to Linguistic Anthropology
  • Anthropology 9: Paleoanthropology
  • Anthropology 10: Forensic Anthropology
  • Anthropology 11: Primatology
  • Anthropology 14: Sex, Gender, and Culture
  • Anthropology 19: The Culture of Food
  • Anthropology 20: Traditional Peoples and Culture of Africa
  • Anthropology 21: Peoples and Power in Latin America
  • Anthropology 22: Magic, Religion, and Witchcraft
  • Anthropology 35: Archaeological Field Studies in Latin America

Transfer Preparation

Many colleges and universities offer baccalaureate degrees in this field. Students planning to transfer to a four-year college or university need to know which courses completed at Santa Monica College will be accepted at the specific college/university. Please consult a Counselor. SMC has transfer articulation agreements with the many UC and CSU campuses, as well as several private and out-of-state institutions.

Degrees and Certificates

Associate in Arts for Transfer - Anthropology

18 units + General Education Requirements

Upon successful completion of the Santa Monica College AA-T in Anthropology, students will have a strong academic foundation in the field and be prepared for upper-division baccalaureate study. This coursework will satisfy most of the lower-division Anthropology requirements at many institutions at both the UC and CSU university systems*. This degree is intended for students who are interested in the theory of Anthropology and are planning on transferring to a four-year university and majoring in Anthropology.

*Completion of this degree will likely give you priority admission consideration in the major at some CSU campuses. In addition, you will need to complete no more than 60 semester/90 quarter CSU units of coursework after transfer to complete your degree. If you are considering transferring to a UC, private, or out of state university, please consult a counselor before applying to transfer, as transfer requirements might be different than those required for the AA-T in Anthropology.

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Certificate of Achievement - Cultural Resource Management

9 units + General Education Requirements

This certificate provides specific knowledge and practical experience to students who may pursue careers in Cultural Resource Management (CRM), Archaeology, Museum Studies, or Historic Preservation. CRM integrates the fields of Archaeology and Historic Preservation to address the myriad of Federal, State, and local legislation aimed at protecting cultural resources. CRM is the fastest growing subdiscipline within archaeology, and ensures that critical archaeological concerns are represented throughout project planning and construction.

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Potential Career Options

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