- Offered as:
- Specialization track in Anthropology
Archaeology is available at WSU as an area of specialization in the anthropology major. Anthropology is the study of human life in all places and at all times, addressing the most fundamental questions about human origins and human nature.
Archaeology is the most popular concentration in anthropology at WSU; the University is internationally known for its archaeological research.
- Strengths of the program
- The flexible degree program lets you concentrate in cultural anthropology, linguistics, archaeology, or physical anthropology — or receive a broad background in all four.
- Do research in the field: anthropology students can join WSU faculty at field sites in western North America for cultural, linguistic, archaeological, and physical anthropological research.
- Your professors are experts in the evolution of cooperation and sharing, cultural ecology, education, religion, international development, and stone-tool manufacturing.
- The Anthropology Club brings faculty and students together in various activities.
- At the weekly public colloquium, you can hear from faculty, advanced graduate students, and visiting experts who are there to share their work.
- Featured courses and hands-on learning
As an anthropology major concentrating in archaeology, you'll take core courses like these:
- Peoples of the World
- Introduction to Archaeology
- Introduction to Physical Anthropology
- Integrative Themes in Anthropology
- One 300- or 400-level course in each of the four subdisciplines:
The core courses also include three electives of your choice. If you're concentrating in archaeology, you can use these electives to go deeper into the areas that interest you. There are many specialized archaeology courses you can choose from.
The University also offers hands-on opportunities that are hard to find elsewhere. You can do field work as part of a faculty-led team at various sites in the western U.S. and get research experience in nationally respected labs on campus.
Note: See the WSU Catalog for degree requirements and talk with your academic advisor about planning and scheduling your courses. All students must meet requirements as outlined in the catalog in order to graduate.
- Scholarships and financial aid
A variety of state, federal, and university-sponsored programs are available to help students with educational costs.
For archaeology students
All anthropology/archaeology majors are eligible to be considered for more than $50,000 in scholarships awarded by the WSU College of Liberal Arts.
For all WSU students
Washington State University awards millions of dollars in financial aid and scholarships to students every year based on financial need, academic merit, or a combination of the two.
To be eligible for WSU scholarships, complete the University's general scholarship application. Also be sure to complete the FAFSA to ensure your eligibility for the widest range of scholarships and need-based financial aid.
For information or to apply for financial aid and scholarships from WSU, see the Scholarships and Finances section of the WSU website.
- Research opportunities at WSU facilities
Students are welcomed in the University's anthropological research facilities. University research labs and museums offer the chance for paid employment and valuable hands-on experience in anthropological techniques.
The University has leading national labs for:
- Palynology — identification of pollens for reconstruction of past environments
- Zooarchaeology — identification and interpretation of animal bones from archaeology sites
- Geoarchaeology — study and interpretation of sediments from archaeology sites
- Lithic technology — analysis and interpretation of stone tools
WSU is one of the few schools where students can learn to replicate stone tools, which makes it possible to interpret the stone tools and waste flakes found in archaeological sites.
The Museum of Anthropology offers employment and volunteer opportunities for students. Its exhibits and activities enrich instruction and draw the public. The museum's collections include aboriginal baskets of notable importance from several areas of the western United States and collections resulting from the activities of WSU archaeologists during the last 40 years.
- Careers in anthropology
Training in anthropology and archaeology provides an excellent liberal arts background for many professions. WSU anthropology graduates are employed in museums, the National Park Service, archaeological crews, the Peace Corps, and other international development organizations.
Anthropology gives you an understanding of human diversity that is also useful in jobs that don’t require an anthropology degree. A major in anthropology is an excellent basis for teaching, legal professions, international business, foreign service, and graduate work in other social sciences or the humanities.
What you can do with a degree in anthropology:
- Archaeologist, museum curator
- Local and international environmental impact consultant
- Forensic anthropologist
- Government service
- University professor, teacher
- Writer, journalist
- International business consultant
- Cultural impact consultant
Skills you can market with a degree in anthropology:
- Critical analysis of human behavior, organization, and development
- Research skills in quantitative and qualitative data gathering and analysis
- Cultural awareness and sensitivity
- Intellectual curiosity
- Ability to work solo or as a team member
- Effective written and oral communication skills
- Reading and listening comprehension
- Time management and organization