Anthropology is the scientific study of human beings and their cultures across time and space. In the broadest sense, anthropology is about how the human species came to be, how it developed myriad ways of living in the world, and how those ways may change in the future. It is the major most closely associated with archaeology.

Anthropology is a unique field that combines elements of social science and natural science. Students will find themselves in all types of settings - out in the field collecting physical samples, in a lab analyzing fossils and specimens, interviewing individuals and groups to collect oral histories, in the library and community researching, and in the classroom learning how to fit all of the pieces of evidence into a cohesive theory.

Students at UWM will be exposed to all types of anthropological work. Some may find themselves more drawn to the "people" side of things and gravitate more towards electives that focus on culture and societal structures. Social anthropologists may examine issues such as workplace behavior, religious rituals, art, family structures or gender relations. Others may find linguistic anthropology - the study of the development of languages - more interesting. Students who have always envisioned themselves digging up artifacts will find archaeology or biological anthropology of most interest.

Regardless of specialization, hands-on experience is critical. UWM offers all types of field experience and research opportunities, locally and at spots around the globe.


The anthropology minor requires 18 credits within the department, including the following:

ANTHRO 101Introduction to Anthropology: Human Origins3
ANTHRO 102Introduction to Anthropology: Culture and Society3
ANTHRO 103Digging Up the Past: Approaches to Archaeology3
9 credits at the 300-level or above9
Total Credits18

Students must earn 9 credits in advanced-level courses (numbered 300 or above) taken in residence at UWM. The College requires that students attain at least a 2.0 GPA on all credits in the minor attempted at UWM. In addition, students must attain a 2.0 GPA on all minor credits attempted, including any transfer work. If the student is interested in transitioning from a minor to a major, courses that satisfy the methods and/or research requirements in the major have been marked in the subfield tables below.  

Three Anthropology Subfields

Biological Anthropology

ANTHRO 301Human Evolution and Variation3
ANTHRO 401Primate Populations 13
ANTHRO 402Primate Evolution3
ANTHRO 403The Human Skeleton3
ANTHRO 404Human Biological Variation3
ANTHRO 405Forensic Anthropology3
ANTHRO 406Evolutionary Biology & Human Diseases3
ANTHRO 407Neuroanthropology3
ANTHRO 408Hormones and Behavior3

This course may also satisfy a methods and/or research requirement in the Anthropology major; however, no single course may count for more than two requirements.


ANTHRO 304Violence and Warfare in Prehistory3
ANTHRO 305The Celtic World3
ANTHRO 306European Archaeology3
ANTHRO 307World Archaeology: Foundations of Civilization3
ANTHRO 308Archaeology of North America3
ANTHRO 309Archaeology of Central and South America3
ANTHRO 310Archaeology of Middle America3
ANTHRO 311The World of the Ancient Maya3
ANTHRO 313Archaeology of the American Southwest3
ANTHRO 420Power and Ideology in Archaeology3
ANTHRO 421Cities in the Ancient World3
ANTHRO 424Ethnoarchaeology and Experimental Archaeology3
ANTHRO 425Hunter-Gatherer Lifeways: Past and Present3
ANTHRO 426Who Owns the Past?3
ANTHRO 465Historic Preservation in Archaeology3
ANTHRO 466Historical Archaeology3
ANTHRO 501Archaeology of Death3
ANTHRO 502Lithic Analysis: Stone Tools and Human Behavior3
ANTHRO 525Zooarchaeology: Analysis of Faunal Remains 13
ANTHRO 535Analysis of Archaeological Ceramics 13
ANTHRO 565Seminar in Regional Archaeology:3

This course may also satisfy a methods and/or research requirement in the Anthropology major; however, no single course may count for more than two requirements.

Sociocultural Anthropology

ANTHRO 302Anthropology and Popular Culture3
ANTHRO 314American Indian Societies and Cultures3
ANTHRO 320Peoples and Cultures of Africa3
ANTHRO 322Europe in Anthropological Perspective3
ANTHRO 325Japanese Culture and Society3
ANTHRO 326Peoples and Cultures of South Asia3
ANTHRO 328Comparative Studies of Music, Race, and Gender in Nationalism3
ANTHRO 335American Indians of the Southeast3
ANTHRO 340Cultures of Online Games and Virtual Worlds3
ANTHRO 349Seminar in Ethnography and Cultural Processes3
ANTHRO 351Anthropological Theories of Religion3
ANTHRO 354Anthropology, Aesthetics, and Art3
ANTHRO 355Globalization, Culture, and Environment3
ANTHRO 400Human Sociobiology3
ANTHRO 431Cities and Culture3
ANTHRO 439Culture and Global Health3
ANTHRO 440Medical Anthropology3
ANTHRO 441Nature, Knowledge, and Technoscience in Anthropological Perspective3
ANTHRO 442Humanitarianism in Global Perspective3
ANTHRO 443Medicine and Pharmaceuticals in the Global Age3
ANTHRO 445Psychological Anthropology3
ANTHRO 446The Child in Different Cultures3
ANTHRO 447The Global Politics of Human Rights3
ANTHRO 448Cultural and Human Ecology3
ANTHRO 449The Human Economy3
ANTHRO 450Political Anthropology3
ANTHRO 540Applications of Anthropology3
ANTHRO 543Cross-Cultural Study of Religion3
ANTHRO 544Religious Giving in Anthropological Perspective3
ANTHRO 649Ethnography of Institutions3

Letters & Science Minor Advising

Advising for the minor takes place within the department by a faculty member or staff member. Follow the steps using the "Declare a Minor" button on the department’s website which may include instructions on how to select a faculty advisor if there is more than one to choose from.

Students who already have an L&S college advisor because their degree plan is in L&S can discuss the minor with them as well since they will be familiar with any minor in L&S. Students who are working on a degree from a UWM college other than the College of Letters & Science will not need an L&S college advisor for just a minor and one will not be assigned. These students should work with the faculty or staff advisor they receive as part of the minor declaration process or contact the department directly for assistance.

Applicants who have not started classes at UWM yet who wish to declare a minor should wait until they are registered for their first UWM classes and then can declare the minor using the “Declare a Minor” button on the program’s website. If you have questions about the minor before then, contact