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Anthropological Sciences

Anthropologists work in a myriad of organizations with dynamic, fast-paced jobs that lean into the scientific background, knowledge, and skills learned in the program. Whether in a lab, at a desk, or in the field - your skills in anthropology will give you broad opportunities in commerce, research, and service opportunities.

anthropologu student with bones

General Anthropology Concentration

This concentration is designed for students who wish for a broad foundation in anthropology. Students are encouraged to take a variety of anthropology coursework to build an interdisciplinary understanding of the field.

Archaeology Concentration 

This concentration will prepare students for a career as an archaeologist by giving them general training in addition to training in archaeological fields, lab techniques, and archaeological culture areas.

Bioarchaeology Concentration

Students interested in learning about culture and past societies human skeletal remains can take the bioarcheology concentration. In this course of study, students will learn about human skeletal analysis and archaeological culture areas to see what can be learned about an individual and their culture from a burial.

Forensic Anthropology Concentration

This preprofessional concentration prepares students for graduate-level study of recent unidentified human remains in a medicolegal context.

Why Study Anthropological Sciences at Radford?

  • Anthropology prepares students to be competitive in the workforce as leaders and experts in the classroom and beyond. The Radford Anthropological Sciences Department curriculum will give you a broad background to build the knowledge and skills necessary to become a valued member in the workplace, regardless of whether it’s in a board room, science lab, or  dig site.
  • At Radford, you'll have the opportunity to work with nationally recognized faculty, including a Carnegie U.S. Professor of the Year recipient, as you learn about the science of humanity.
  • You’ll learn the crucial skills that will help you not just in your career, like:
    1. Critical Thinking: from what it means to be human to what the popularity of the program Ancient Aliens means about American scientific literacy
    2. Creative Problem Solving: in what other field would you determine if a culture practiced ancestor veneration by looking at the chemical signature of trophy skulls
    3. Technical and Research Skills: from how to determine sex from the diameter of the femoral head to how the shape of an arrowhead reveals ancient technologies
    4. Human-Centered Skills: like ethnographic analysis highlighting how culture conditions both human behavior and activity

Careers and Internships

An anthropology degree is flexible and gives you the skills for a wide variety of positions.

A few examples of jobs that anthropology alumni hold are forensic anthropologist in a crime lab, cultural attaché to a diplomat in a foreign country, and archaeologist working at the "Jamestown Rediscovery" site. We have alumni working in medical examiner offices, archaeological sites, and the FBI.

Anthropology is also an excellent springboard for business and marketing-related work. There are alumni working at non-profit organizations and large companies. The well-rounded education that a degree in anthropology offers can also be a bridge into a number of jobs within the healthcare field including doctors, physical therapists, and occupational therapists.

Here are the positions held by various alumni:

  • Assistant Professor
  • Agricultural Liaison Officer 
  • Social Worker
  • Crisis Worker 
  • Museum Technician 
  • Community Director 
  • Deputy Clerk 
  • Lead Clinical Data Manager 
  • RN 
  • Criminal Defense Investigator 
  • Tribal Historic Preservation Officer 
  • Police Officer 
  • Crime Scene Technician 
  • Biorepository Laboratory Technician 
  • Lead Solutions Engineer 
  • Medicolegal Death Investigator
  • Cultural Resource Management Field Supervisor 
  • Clinical Study Manager 
  • Intelligence Analyst 
  • Director of Tourism 
  • Software Developer 
  • Professional Brewer 
  • Medical Lab Technician

Opportunities for Anthropological Sciences students at Radford

The faculty of Anthropological Sciences place a high priority on providing students with direct, hands-on experience in the field and lab, including involvement in ongoing faculty research projects. These include archaeological investigations in historic and prehistoric Virginia.  Internationally, the faculty have active archaeological, bioarchaeological, and forensic investigations in Bolivia and the Solomon Islands. Students may also work with a faculty member to develop a research topic that they are interested in pursuing.

At some schools, you may spend 4 years reading about anthropology. At Radford, we have engaging coursework filled with hands-on experiences. You won’t just learn from textbooks in your classes—you'll learn by doing real anthropology. In the Anthropology major, you can go from a class that considers what an artifact was used for to a class that questions what it means to be human.

anthropology students

We want to get to know you better and we are excited that you are ready to take your next step and learn more about us. We are here to help you and look forward to working with you during your college search process.