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College of Arts and Sciences

Anthropology is broadly defined as the scientific study of humanity, and includes most any investigation concerned with how people from different cultures and different times behave, think, and interact. For this reason, anthropology has useful applications in many fields including business, public service, consulting practice, and medicine.

Anthropology combines biological, cultural, linguistic, and material approaches to understanding the human condition. An undergraduate major in anthropology at IPFW combines the study of each of anthropology's four subfields:

    Cultural Anthropology
    The analysis of the similarities and differences among the world's cultures.
    Archaeology
    The study of human cultures and behavior based on analysis of their material remains.
    Bioanthropology
    The study of the biology of being human with a special emphasis on human origins and the diversity of modern human populations.
    Linguistics
    The study of language, its structure and diversity, and its role in social interaction.

    Although anthropology is divided into four subfields, many anthropologists combine aspects of each of these fields to create unique approaches for explaining human behavior and biology. This holism is one of anthropology's strengths. Because of these diverse interests, anthropologists create syntheses of both behavioral and biological data to increase our understanding of the human condition.