Skip to Content - Skip to Navigation

Careful record-keeping, attention to details, analytical reading, and clear thinking are taught by anthropological courses.

Social ease in strange situations, critical thinking, and strong skills in oral and written expression are cultivated by anthropological training. Using a range of social, behavioral, biological and other scientific research methods, anthropology majors learn to supplement statistical findings with descriptive data gathered through participant observation, interviewing, and ethnographic study. An anthropologist is a trained observer who knows the importance of collecting data, in listening and watching what others are doing, in reflecting on what has actually as well as apparently occurred, in researching the context, in applying various explanatory models, and in adopting a broad perspective for framing an understanding. Whatever the topic of research, anthropologists share a particular holistic vision that requires using a repertoire of methods in order to forge a deeper understanding of situations. This holism characterizes the best anthropology and imparts the perspective for which the profession is valued.

While the job market for academic anthropologists is relatively steady, demand for anthropologists is increasing in other areas, stimulated by a growing need for analysts and researchers with sharp thinking skills who can manage, evaluate, and interpret the large volume of data on human behavior. In fact major corporations such IBM, Daimler-Benz and others are increasingly seeking qualitatively and quantitatively trained anthropologists (see appendix). The extent of occupational flexibility reflects the emphasis on breadth, diversity, and independence of thought. What we know about the future marketplace indicates the type of global, holistic knowledge, which an anthropological perspective brings. Still, finding a job as an anthropologist with an undergraduate degree is challenging. This guide will help.

  • Anthropology Department
  • McElhaney Hall, Room G-1
    441 North Walk
    Indiana, PA 15705
  • Phone: 724-357-2841
  • Fax: 724-357-7637
  • Office Hours
  • Monday through Friday
  • 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
  • 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.