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Course ePortfolio

ANTH 152: Culture and Human Behavior - Introduction to Cultural Anthropology

Cultural Anthropology is an exciting and diverse discipline focused on the study of important elements of human culture in societies around the world. This introductory course will provide a wide breadth of coverage of the field of cultural anthropology. We will examine the key concept of culture and use it to understand how people interpret their worlds, organize themselves, exert control and maintain cohesion, categorize themselves and others, interact, make a living, exchange products and ideas, and adapt to new problems and opportunities. We will examine short ethnographic studies from around the world to sample the rich diversity of the human experience. In coming to appreciate this diversity we will gain a better understanding of our own culture, our own beliefs, and our own place in the world. This course is 3 units.

Course Website in Canvas: the course syllabus, additional readings and course information will be available on the class website on Canvas. If you are enrolled in this class, you automatically have access to the web link for this class. Please make sure you sign-in and explore the course website. This will be an important class resource for information about readings, films and other resources. Students are responsible for doing all the assigned readings before Tuesdays’ lectures. Films will be watched in classroom and are important component of the class.


No prerequisites. It is a GE.

Pedagogical Approach

Inclusive excellence, inclusive teaching and inclusive pedagogy...

Learning Outcomes

ANTH 152 counts toward the General Education (GE) requirement for Social Sciences. By the end of the course, students should be able to demonstrate proficiency in the following Undergraduate Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) of the GE requirement for Social Sciences:

  • Explain how social scientists conduct the systematic study of social relations, human experiences and patterns of change over time.
  • Analyze and explain the multiple perspectives found in the social sciences that underlie debates on important historical and contemporary issues.
  • Apply appropriate social scientific methods to collect data, analyze, evaluate, explain, and/or solve problems in social relations and human behavior.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of how social problems impact individuals, communities and societies.

ANTH 152 also counts toward the Foundations requirement for the Anthropology major and minor. By the end of the course, students should be able to demonstrate proficiency in the following Undergraduate Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs) of the Department of Anthropology:

  • Describe and explain human experiences and the causes and consequences of cultural diversity across space and time from an anthropological perspective
  • Describe and explain the evolutionary process, particularly as it relates to primate and specifically hominin evolution
  • Describe and explain biological and behavioral variation among human and non-human primates in context.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the foundational concept of culture and core theories in anthropology and their applications to the field.
  • Demonstrate the ability to conceptualize, collect, describe, analyze, interpret, and communicate anthropological evidence according to generally accepted professional practice and ethics.
  • Describe and explain how anthropology can be used to engage in contemporary issues and can be applied toward addressing social problems



Attendance (20%)

You are expected to attend every class and for the entire class period. I will pass attendance at the beginning of each class. To get full credit for attendance, you have to be on time. Students that arrive more than 10 minutes late won’t receive credit for attendance. Students can miss two days with no penalty. If you need to miss more than two days, please discuss your situation with the professor, and the professor will consider if the absence can be excused. Unexcused absences beyond two days will be penalized percentage points of your final grade per the following sequence (2, 4, 8, 16, 32). Keep in mind that every time you miss a class, it will be your responsibility to obtain class notes from your fellow students; not from the professor during office hours. Attendance also include class participation. I encourage students to attend class but also to engage in the class discussions and conversations. It will be recognized when grades are determined. Contributions, questions, and commentary should adopt an “academic” tone. One may certainly disagree with the readings, one another, and the instructor; but we must do so in a manner suitable for public discussion in the somewhat formal setting of the university. Students may believe anything they wish, but not all the things one believes should be or need be expressed in the classroom. The classroom is a forum focused on specific intellectual tasks. Use of Phones and Computers in the Classroom The active use of cellphones is prohibited in class. If students choose to be distracted with their phones during class period, it will count against their attendance grade. Students can use their computers in classroom just for academic purposes. If students use their computer for games, Facebook or watch TV series, their attendance grade will be considerably impacted. If students do not comply with these suggestions, the student may be asked to leave the classroom.  

Quizzes (10%) Students’ knowledge of the material will also be evaluated through random quizzes, which will be available online on Canvas. The quizzes will be based on the readings and lectures. The quizzes are posted on Canvas. Students will be able to take the quiz twice and the system will record just the highest grade. All quizzes will be available to students from the first day of class until May 11 at 11:59 PM (the last week of class). After that, all quizzes will be closed and students will not be able to access it.

Exams 1 & 2 (40%)

There will be two exams. They will consist of multiple choice questions, concepts and definitions, and/or short essays. The exams are not cumulative and will take place during lecture periods. Students need to buy NO. 882-E Scantron for all the exams. There is a copy of the scantron you need to purchase on our Canvas website. Finally, I will provide study guide for the all the exams, at least, one week in advance.

Final Exam (30%)

The final exam will consist of JUST multiple choice questions. It is cumulative. I will provide a study guide for the final exam, at least, one week in advance. The final exam will be on Thursday, May 17 @ 03:00 - 05:00 PM in the same classroom. Students need to bring a scantron for the final exam as well.

Other Information