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Wilfrid Laurier University Leaf
April 16, 2014
 
 
Canadian Excellence

Anthropology



Anthropology at Laurier 

Anthropology deals with the many ways in which people in different places and times relate to one another and to the world around them. Anthropologists explore the human experience through, among other things: 

  • family 
  • marriage
  • religious and spiritual practices
  • livelihoods
  • creativity
  • settlement of legal disputes
  • human environment interactions
  • social power and inequality, both locally and globally
Anthropology connects social and cultural analysis to everyday life through participant observation and ethnographic fieldwork: the process of involving oneself in the lives of people in a culture different than one's own.  If you are interested in multiculturalism and human diversity, consider majoring in anthropology or combining anthropology with another program of study.

Anthropology as a combined major

Anthropology combines well with other programs because it provides a comparative, cross-cultural perspective on any field of study. For example, if you are interested in pursuing a career in media and the culture industries, consider combining anthropology with communication studies or cultural studies.

If you are interested in international law, foreign affairs, or international development, or you want to work with refugee and immigrant communities both here and abroad, then combine anthropology with political science or global studies. Those working in museums, heritage consultancies, or First Nations title and land claims negotiations have pursued a traditional four-fields anthropology degree by combing anthropology and prehistoric archaeology. During their first year, combined majors take sociocultural anthropology and one other introductory course from a list of options.

Program highlights

  • Laurier’s Anthropology program specializes in sociocultural anthropology (the study of the cultural acquisition of diverse beliefs and behaviours) and linguistic anthropology (the study of human languages). 
  • Faculty members conduct fieldwork in Brazil, Canada, Iceland, India, southern Africa, the former Soviet Union, Sri Lanka, Ukraine and West Africa where they research environmental politics, samba dancers, plantation works, media impacts on non-Western peoples, and the changing lives of hunter-gatherers.

Courses offered

First year

  • Sociocultural Anthropology
  • Physical Anthropology & Human Prehistory
  • Introduction to Sociology

Popular courses

  • Introduction to Human Osteology
  • Emergence of Urban Civilizations
  • Ritual, Religion & Magic

Admission Requirements

4U Requirements IB Requirements Admission Range
English at 60% HL or SL English at 4 

Mid 70s

IB Minimum score: 28  

Careers 

An anthropology degree will prepare you for a number of different careers. Our graduates can be found in the following fields: 

  • sustainable development 
  • foreign service 
  • social work 
  • law 
  • land claims research 
  • teaching 
  • non-governmental advocacy 
  • museology 
  • curatorship 
  • journalism
  • publishing 
  • documentary filmmaking 
  • advertising and marketing 
  • teaching English as a second language

Student experience 

000borscoks.jpgEverything happens for a reason. 

The summer before his first year at the University of Ottawa, David Borcsok was in a car accident. “I had to take a semester off school for rehab and when I was looking at schools, Laurier stood out as a place that was close to my home in Burlington,” he recalls. 

Even though he had originally planned to take political science, Borcsk found himself interested in studying anthropology after taking an introductory course in his first year. “I had no knowledge of what anthropology was before I took the course, but, after I became more and more interested in both the subject matter and the anthropological process, I decided that it was something I had to pursue further.” Borcsok found the courses to be both challenging and rewarding. He cites Visual Anthropology as one of his favourite courses, affirming his decision to study anthropology. 

Borcsok has deferred his postgraduate studies in Management at Imperial College in London, England and accepted a position in investment banking. His goal is to pursue a career in intellectual property law. 

Faculty experience 

00000Houston__Magdalena.jpgAfter completing at BA in Theatre and Philosophy, an MFA in Interdisciplinary Studies (Theatre Directing and Anthropology), and a PhD in Anthropology and Theatre as well as working as a professional theatre director and playwright for 15 years, it’s clear that Dr. Magdalena Kazubowski-Houston loves theatre. As a faculty member in the Department of Anthropology at Laurier, she is exploring this passion from a unique perspective.

Kazubowski-Houston find that Laurier provides a productive environment for research and teaching. “Working with colleagues whose research spans visual studies, anthropology of religion, history and memory, performance, and science and technology has been very rewarding and invaluable to my work in experimental ethnography and performance studies,” she says. “I have also enjoyed teaching at a university with a diverse student body and a strong commitment to undergraduate education and mentorship.”