ANSO - Anthropology and Sociology


Effective 1 June 2023 through 31 May 2024

Please see the Undergraduate Catalog Archives for PDF versions of past catalogs.

Course Descriptions

Global Citizenship Program
Knowledge Areas
ARTS Arts Appreciation
GLBL Global Understanding
PNW Physical & Natural World
QL Quantitative Literacy
ROC Roots of Cultures
SSHB Social Systems & Human Behavior
Global Citizenship Program
Skill Areas
CRI Critical Thinking
ETH Ethical Reasoning
INTC Intercultural Competence
OCOM Oral Communication
WCOM Written Communication
** Course fulfills two skill areas


ANSO 1000 Introduction to Sociology (3)

Intended primarily for students who wish to gain a broad, general overview of the field and its area of study, methods of inquiry, and conceptions and analysis of society. Students will learn about core concepts in sociology, including sociological perspectives on culture; social structure; socialization; social institutions; personality and the self; prejudice and discrimination; the significance of race, class and gender; political and social change; demography; human ecology; and crime and deviance. GCP Coding: (SSHB) (WCOM).

ANSO 1050 Global Social Problems (3)

Provides an introduction to a wide range of social problems around the globe, such as homelessness, crime and poverty, and how these social problems differ by race, class, gender and country. Includes major sociological as well as anthropological perspectives on such social problems. GCP Coding: (SSHB) (INTC).

ANSO 1060 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology (3)

Explores the concepts of culture, universals and diversities of humanity, transmission of culture, and the role of the anthropologist in modern society. GCP Coding: (ROC) (INTC).

ANSO 1075 Introduction to Archaeology (3)

Archaeology, defined simply, is the study of humanity through its material manifestations. It is also about trying to understand something of our common humanity by examining the physical traces of the people of the past. These traces don't have to be old, and you don't have to dig for them; the vast majority of archaeological work, however, does involve digging up old materials people have left behind. The key, then, is the method. How do you deal with the material? What kind of conclusions can be drawn from it, and how do you arrive at them? We will examine the scope and usefulness of archaeology, as well as the ethics of doing it at all.

ANSO 1085 Human Origins (3)

Explores the evolution of humanity and culture through concepts and mechanisms of evolution, Homo sapiens’ place among the primates, and human variation. GCP Coding: (PNW) (CRI).

ANSO 1095 Introduction to Geography: World and Regional (3)

Acquaints the student with contemporary and classic issues in geography. Offerings range from the study of demography to the evolution of humanity and culture. Intended for majors and non-majors, including students in teacher education programs.

ANSO 1800 Careers in Anthropology and Sociology (1-2)

Provides students with career information for the field of anthropology and sociology, including health care, business, nonprofit organizations, government, the military, the criminal justice system, law and others. Students create personal statements, develop a résumé and learn how to search for and apply to graduate programs, internships and find jobs with a degree in anthropology or sociology.

ANSO 2015 Issues in Society and Culture (1-4)

Acquaints the student with various social and cultural issues in contemporary societies with an emphasis on concerns of living in globalized, industrialized, urban societies. Compares complex societies to gain an understanding of issues that confront their members. Guides students through the application of various sociological and anthropological approaches to a special topic of interest. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

ANSO 2025 Topics in Archaeology (3)

This course is designed to allow for focused study of special topics in archaeology. Different time periods and areas of the planet will be covered in each manifestation of the course (e.g. Ancient Greece, Dynastic Egypt, Cahokian Missouri and Illinois, etc.). ANSO 1075 is recommended but not required prior to enrollment. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

ANSO 2060 Culture and Communication (3)

Begins with the concept of culture as a means of communicating with others; not only through language but with manners, etiquette, dress, rituals and ceremonials, gesture and movement -- the entire system of symbols and signs that provide meaning for human behavior. Explores a variety of issues in cross-cultural communication, language use, and symbolic systems. GCP Coding: (ROC) (INTC).

ANSO 2070 Introduction to Sex, Gender and Sexuality (3)

Provides an introduction to sociological and anthropological perspectives on sex, gender and sexuality. Includes historical and comparative trends; legislative responses to people on the basis of sex, gender and/or sexuality; social inequality and social mobility; and work and labor force participation. Includes major sociological and anthropological theoretical perspectives on sex, gender and sexuality (such as functionalism, conflict theory, symbolic interactionism, feminism, post-colonial theory and intersectionality). May be repeated for credit if content differs. 

ANSO 2200 Peoples and Cultures (3)

An introduction to the ways in which diverse cultures or specific geographic regions respond to some of the stress points of the contemporary world. Issues we will examine include: violence and warfare, ethnic conflicts, environmental degradation, economic inequalities, cultural imperialism and social change, human rights and the role of governments, and the many conflicts between "traditional" values and modernity. The course is designed to broaden the student's understanding of the processes taking place in the contemporary world, utilizing the lenses provided by anthropology. May be repeated for credit if content differs. GCP Coding: (GLBL) (INTC).

ANSO 2300 Social Movements (3)

Provides an analysis of social movements and related themes. Topics include, but are not limited to, theories of movement formation, diversity and equity in movements, and examples of movements (e.g., women's rights, civil rights) both here and in global context. GCP Coding: (SSHB) (OCOM).

ANSO 2460 Good Intentions: Aid and Development (3)

What does it mean to "do good" in the wold? How do "good intentions" actually play out across different cultural contexts? This class will examine practices of aid, development and philanthropy that are intended to "do good" in different communities, but might, at times, exacerbate inequalities rather than alleviate them. In particular, we pay special attention to how these practices intersect with mechanisms of global capitalism in unexpected ways. This class is less about whether aid, development and philanthropy are good or bad, but rather explores in whose interest these global efforts are mobilized. 

ANSO 2530 World Musics (3)

Music is one of the most vital of all the arts, drawing together those who share a musical culture, but also bringing us together across the varied musical cultures of the globe. But do we know enough about other people’s styles of music? Ethnomusicologists study music from around the world, emphasizing that we must take a cultural approach, and that we must seek to understand music in its cultural context. This course therefore studies musics, but also the cultures in which we find them. GCP Coding: (ARTS) (INTC).

ANSO 2540 Environmental Anthropology and Sociology (3)

Examines sociological and anthropological perspectives on human ecology and environment. A variety of topics illustrating the relationship between humans and the physical environment will be presented, such as consumption and sustainability, globalization; environmental politics and law; urban systems and development; residential patterns and housing; urbanization and suburbanization; "natural" disasters; and the environmental impact of population structure, dynamics and migration.

ANSO 2610 Introduction to Social Work (3)

This course provides a broad survey of the social work profession, its history, and the values and ethics that are fundamental to the profession. An overview of social work theory, practice, policy, research, and the diversity of populations are integrated in exploring the knowledge, values, and skills base of the social work profession.

ANSO 2670 Games and Society (3)

This course explores the role that games play in our society -- why we like to play games, and what the games we play tell us about ourselves and our sense of the world around us. Looks at games from the perspective of several theoretical traditions: as rational exercises meant to impose order, as a cultural product to tell certain narratives, and as interactive exercises that create community and shared experience. Examines the rising trend in "gamification" -- the usage of games toward pro-social activities like learning and education, and in addressing social and behavioral problems. Investigates if games can -- or should be -- accurate representations of our social worlds, and how we can go about using them to tell sociologically interesting stories.

ANSO 2690 Food and Culture (3)

In this course we will discuss the history of food consumption and its connection to cultural values and attitudes, as well as issues such as power and control. We will delve into a variety of social issues and food/environment related topics, including human health.

ANSO 2720 Introduction to Measurement and Statistics (3)

Designed to aid the student in learning how to "make sense" of a body of numbers: how to summarize and extract information from numbers; how to detect, measure, and use relationships between variables; and how to use statistical aids to the decision-making process. Course covers descriptive statistics, correlation and regression, and inferential statistics such as the t-test and analysis of variance. GCP Coding: (QL).

ANSO 2760 Urban Studies (3)

The course examines space as an object of social inquiry, paying attention to the cultural, political, and economic processes that transform space into meaningful place. Building upon this theoretical foundation, it explores some central themes and concerns in the study of urban spaces, in particular, the “city” as cultural construct, the “city” as the site and object of local and global social struggles, and the “city” as part of the cultural imagination of the social, inequality, justice, and the “good life.” The “city” is an object of contention, complexly entwined with class, gender, race, ethnicity, and the “market.” This course will equip students to understand, among other topics, the formations of ethnic and racialized “ghettos,” suburbanization, policing of space, global cities, and urban community politics. GCP Coding: (SSHB) (CRI).

ANSO 2790 Asians in America (3)

This course examines comparatively the experiences, histories and cultural worlds of Asian communities of different national origins and identifications of the United States. "America" in this course indexes the contestations (accommodation, resistance, contradiction) around national and racial-ethnic belongings. It introduces the historical, political, cultural and economic processes that shape Asian and Asian American community and identity formation. Rather than static, discrete and bounded, Asian and Asian American identities and cultural-politics have been mutually constituted through histories of colonialism and war, economic globalization, and increasing transnational traffic, and the tightening and loosening of national borders and rules of citizenship. We will examine in this course the colonial and Cold War origins of Asian American diasporic communities; the culture and politics of racial formation; commodification of racialized and gendered bodies, emphasizing the centrality of labor politics; boundaries of citizenship; transnational movements; and struggles for power and recognition. GCP Coding: (GLBL) (CRI).

ANSO 2850 Introduction to Research Methods (3)

Research is at the heart of the behavioral and social sciences. This course will cover the basics of quantitative and qualitative research design. In addition, students will be provided with the means to critically analyze and assess the ethics of research findings. Lastly, students will be given the opportunity to develop a research proposal.

ANSO 2890 Health, Illness and Power (3)

How are health and illness experienced across different social and cultural contexts? Do they mean the same things across different communities? This class examines how our understandings and experiences of health and illness are structured by factors such as access to care, social and cultural values, local and global knowledges, availability of medicines and distribution of resources. In particular, we look at how these experiences intersect with broader structures of power and inequality. Rather than approach health and illness as strictly biomedical constructs, we analyze how they are shaped by wider political, economic, cultural and moral considerations. GCP Coding: (PNW) (ETH).

ANSO 2950 Community Practicum (3)

Students engage in service learning work at a community agency and have an opportunity to experience agency operations firsthand. Each student is expected to identify and gain admission to a field placement in consultation with their advisor prior to the beginning of the course. Classroom component will include discussion of placement experiences or issues and the ethics of service work. Reading materials, detailed learning outcomes and means of evolution to be negotiated between student and faculty member. Intended for majors. Prerequisites: Permission of the instructor and approval of placement proposal.

ANSO 3100 Topics in Anthropology and Sociology (3)

An advanced, in-depth analysis of issues and topics in anthropology and sociology. Topics vary by semester. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

ANSO 3110 Advanced Topics in Archaeology (3)

This advanced level course is designed to allow for focused study of special topics in archaeology. Topics may vary by semester. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

ANSO 3130 Race and Ethnicity (3)

Examines the anthropological and sociological contributions to the understandings of race and ethnicity. Compares the problems and issues surrounding racial and ethnic group status in various areas of the world. Explores the historical perspective of present issues confronting the United States and other countries.

ANSO 3340 NGOs in a Global Arena (3)

NGOs, or non-governmental organizations, have become powerful actors in the global arena. Their participation in development processes has shaped how we think about poverty and suffering, and what we do about these issues. NGOs have inspired new ways to think about the relationship between the state, citizens and globalization. As a result, we are now confronted with new forms of power and governance. This class will analyze NGO practices across global contexts, paying special attention to what these organizations do and the effects of their actions. Topics may include microfinance, disaster relief, humanitarianism, international development, gender and sexuality, human rights and global health. 

ANSO 3560 Theories in Anthropology and Sociology (3)

This course will provide a history of anthropological and sociological thought. It will introduce students to key works and scholars in each discipline, as well as familiarize them with the foundational schools of theory that have been critical to shaping the discipline. 

ANSO 3630 Independent Reading Course (1-6)

Designed for individual student exploration of a given body of knowledge or a specific area of interest. Selected topics agreed upon between student and a member of the departmental faculty. Topic of the course, detailed learning outcomes and means of evaluation to be negotiated between student and faculty member. Intended for majors. May be repeated for credit if content differs. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor.

ANSO 3910 Social Science Lab (3)

Lab is designed to allow the instructor and students to work collaboratively on a research project.  This course may be taught as an independent study, and it may be repeated for credit if content differs. 

ANSO 4110 Advanced Studies in Anthropology and Sociology (3)

Designed for in-depth study of a specific area or issue in anthropology/sociology. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

ANSO 4175 Globalization (3)

Provides the critical foundation to interrogate and understand the diffuse and diverse social-cultural-economic processes that constitute the “global” and “globalization.” It will examine the continuing salience of nationalism, ethno-national identities, state sovereignty, and citizenship in the uneven mobility of labor, cultural forms (commodities, images, music, news, etc.) and people. Through case studies, the course will reflect upon the cultural politics of immigration, the disruption of notions of nation-bound citizenship and national belonging by transnational connections, and the formation of global imaginaries and desires.

ANSO 4250 Class, Status and Power (3)

Analyzes sociological and anthropological perspectives on social class, status, power and stratification. Includes a variety of topics, such as prejudice and discrimination, legislative responses to minorities, social inequality, social mobility, and work and labor force participation. Analyzes the strengths and weaknesses of sociological and anthropological theories to explain stratification.

ANSO 4300 Global Sex, Gender and Sexuality (3)

This course takes a cross cultural, multi-disciplinary approach to sex, gender and sexuality, examining the social-cultural construction of sex and gender; theoretical explanations for gender inequality; and gender variations in sex/gender/sexuality systems. Cross-listed with WGST 4330.

ANSO 4575 Immigration and Demography (3)

This course covers the foundational theories, concepts, measures and tools used to study the core population dynamics of mortality, fertility and migration. It will also introduce topics of interest to those interested in social network analysis (SNA) and how it can be used to study data sets of all sizes. While learning some techniques to study these topics, students will also read and discuss key theoretical and empirical contributions in these fields. 

ANSO 4630 Advanced Independent Reading Course (1-5)

Designed for individual student exploration of a given body of knowledge or a specific area of interest. Selected topics agreed upon between student and a member of the departmental faculty. Topic of the course, detailed learning outcomes, and means of evaluation to be negotiated between student and faculty member. Intended for majors. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

ANSO 4700 Advanced Social Science Lab (1-6)

This course is an advanced level lab designed to prepare students to carry out research for their own senior projects. In the class, students will actively participate in conducting research, utilizing methodologies such as quantitative and qualitative methods, ethnographic fieldwork, literature review and archival research, and discourse analysis. The class is intended to teach students how to put theory into practice by engaging in all aspects of the research process: from developing a research question to refining methodologies to collect data to analyzing the literature and data. May be repeated for credit if content differs. 

ANSO 4950 Senior Thesis (3)

This capstone course offers each student the opportunity to carry out a unique line of research under the guidance of a faculty member. The final product should demonstrate the sum of the student’s anthropological and sociological knowledge: comprehension and application of relevant theories; appreciation of the diverse body of anthropological and sociological work done on chosen topic; and capacity to critique the methodological choices, representational strategies and ethical implications of social scientific research. Prerequisite: Senior status in Anthropology and Sociology or permission of the instructor.