Jan 21, 2021  
Undergraduate Record 2008-2009 
Undergraduate Record 2008-2009 [ARCHIVED RECORD]


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Requirements for Major

Ten courses (31 credits) taken within a program approved by a departmental undergraduate advisor are required for a major. These ten courses may include courses taken before declaration of the major, and up to two from outside the Department of Anthropology. Courses taken outside the anthropology department, including courses transferred from other institutions or study-abroad programs, may count toward the area requirements for the major (subject to approval by a major advisor, usually limited to six credits), but normally they may not count toward the above-300-level requirement for the major. In order to declare a major, a student must have completed two courses in the anthropology department. No course for the major may be taken on a CR/NC basis. Normally at least 18 credits must be taken after declaration of the major. The major requires a distribution of courses in the following areas:

  1. one course in each of these areas within anthropology: principles of socio-cultural analysis; ethnography; archaeology; and linguistics;
  2. ANTH 301 in the second or third year;
  3. ANTH 401 during the third or fourth year;
  4. at least two courses at or above the 300 level, in addition to 301 and 401;
  5. at least one course in anthropology that fulfills the major’s non-Western perspectives requirement .

Each semester, the department publishes a list of the current courses that satisfy the above requirements on its website.

Students frequently find that anthropology provides a cognate discipline which can be paired with other studies in the humanities and sciences. Many of these students choose to double-major in anthropology and another discipline. Up to six credits in another department major may be counted toward an anthropology major if they are consistent with a student’s overall program. Specific courses, therefore, may be counted toward both majors, but the student must receive approval from a departmental advisor in advance.

Exceptions to any of these requirements are made only upon written petition to the Undergraduate Committee of the Department of Anthropology. No petitions are accepted after the completion of a student’s seventh semester.

A number of informal activities are associated with the department. Among these is the Anthropology Association of the University of Virginia. Majors are encouraged to attend meetings of the group and to attend lectures and symposia sponsored by the department.

Requirements for Minor

Students majoring in a diverse array of disciplines choose to minor in anthropology. Courses taken in other disciplines may not count toward a minor. A maximum of one anthropology course taken at another institution may count toward the minor, if approved by a major advisor.

A minor consists of six three-credit courses. In addition all minors must take one course in three of the following four areas of anthropology: principles of sociocultural analysis; ethnography; archaeology; and linguistics, and at least one course in anthropology that fulfills the major’s non-Western perspectives requirement. There are no requirements as to level.

Independent Study in Anthropology

For students who want to work on an individual research project, ANTH 496 allows considerable flexibility. There is no formal limitation on the kind of project as long as a faculty member is willing to direct it, but the project should not duplicate what is already available in a regular course. Applicants should have their projects roughly defined when they apply to the faculty member. The normal requirements for ANTH 496 are a reading list comparable in substance to those in regular courses and a term paper and oral examination at the end of the semester.

Distinguished Majors Program in Anthropology

Students with superior academic performance are encouraged to apply for the departmental Distinguished Majors Program (DMP) in which they write a thesis demonstrating independent study of high quality. The requirements for admission to the DMP are:

  1. satisfaction of all College requirements as stated in this Record with a GPA of at least 3.400 in all university courses;
  2. a GPA of at least 3.400 in all courses taken as part of the anthropology major;
  3. permission of an advisor, who may be any member of the departmental faculty that is willing to take on the responsibility of supervising the thesis and is normally someone to whom the students have already demonstrated their ability in an upper-level course.

After gaining admission to the DMP by selecting a topic approved by an advisor, students register for three credits of ANTH 497 in the first semester of the fourth year. In this course, students conduct their research and produce an outline and the first draft of their thesis. In the second semester, students register for ANTH 498 and, taking into account the criticisms and suggestions of their advisor and other interested faculty members, produce a finished thesis of approximately 10,000 words, which must be approved by a committee of two faculty members and deposited in the departmental office. Students wishing help in setting up their program should contact a major advisor.

Minor in Global Culture and Commerce

The minor in Global Culture and Commerce (GCC) focuses on the intersection of two sets of issues: (1) cultural translation and cross-cultural knowledge, and (2) local and global economic and cultural development. The minor consists of six courses in Anthropology and other departments, plus one co-requisite language course, to be chosen in consultation with the minor Directors. Admission to the minor is competitive, with applications submitted by April 1 of the student’s second or third year. For more information, see Richard Handler or Rachel Most (Garrett Hall).

Additional Information

For more information, contact Adria LaViolette, Director of Undergraduate Studies, Department of Anthropology, Brooks Hall, P.O. Box 400120, Charlottesville, VA 22904-4120; (434) 924-7044; Fax: (434) 924-1350; www.virginia.edu/anthropology; laviolette@virginia.edu.

Course Descriptions

Courses at the 100 and 200 levels have no prerequisites and are open to all students. Courses at the 300 level are advanced undergraduate courses and assume that students have already taken ANTH 101 or other relevant 200-level courses. These are general prerequisites and individual professors may consider other courses within or outside the department to be sufficient preparation. Courses at the 500 level have third- or fourth-year status and prior course work in anthropology as a general prerequisite. These courses are designed primarily for majors and graduate students, but are open by permission to other qualified, sufficiently motivated undergraduates.

Principles of Sociocultural Analysis


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