Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon Portland Community College

Anthropology students at a castle in Ireland

PCC anthropology students at Newgrange in Ireland in 2018

Why choose Anthropology at PCC?

No matter what your major or career interests are, taking a class in anthropology at PCC will help you:

  • Increase your level of cultural literacy and awareness
  • Gain a fuller understanding of human behavior from a cross-cultural perspective
  • Examine issues related to social justice, culture change and globalization
  • Evaluate the impact of humans and their activities on the environment
  • Analyze information accurately about historic and prehistoric societies
  • Apply anthropological concepts and ideas to your daily life
  • Enhance current work, family and personal relationships
  • Fulfill general education requirements in social science and critical thinking
  • Major in anthropology or transfer with your associate’s degree to a four-year college

Degrees and certificates

PCC offers many options to meet your goals: short-term certificates, two-year degrees, and university transfer options.

Degrees and certificates by number of terms to complete
Award Length Financial aid eligible Currently accepting students?
University transfer 2 years at PCC + 2 years at university

What will you learn?

Anthropology is the study of humans in the past and the present. Anthropology seeks to understand the full sweep of human evolution and cultural development and change over time. To do so, anthropology draws upon and integrates knowledge from many sources and disciplines. These include:

  • Biological sciences
  • Physical sciences
  • Humanities
  • Socio-cultural sciences

Anthropology is also holistic, comparative, and practical. Anthropologists often engage in cross-cultural research and seek to understand the history of human behavior and cultural and biological diversity from many different theoretical perspectives.

Explore a variety of topics
  • Art
  • Cross-cultural perspectives on sex and marriage
  • Culture change
  • Cultural identity
  • Cultures of past world civilizations in Egypt, Asia, Europe, Africa or the Americas
  • Gender
  • History and origin of language
  • Human environmental and cultural adaptation
  • Human evolution
  • Language and culture
  • Politics
  • Primate behavior
  • Social justice and indigenous rights
  • Spirituality
  • Systems of power and cultural bias
Anthropology sub-fields

Historically, anthropologists in the United States gain a broad background in all four sub-fields of anthropology at the undergraduate level and specialize in one of them at the graduate level. You can take classes in all four sub-fields at PCC:

These courses will help prepare you to pursue a variety of careers or transfer to a four-year college or university.

What will you do?

It’s a great time to become an anthropologist. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of anthropologists and archaeologists are expected to grow 4.5% by 2026, In addition to working in education and research, many anthropologists are also employed by corporations, the government or nonprofit organizations. Learn more about careers in anthropology.

Transferring to a 4-year college or university

PCC doesn’t offer a degree in this subject, but you can take classes that will transfer to a four-year school.

If you want to major in anthropology, make a plan with your adviser to transfer and continue your studies at another college or university. Since transfer requirements vary from college to college, make sure that you check what these requirements are at the college or university you plan to attend. Consult an admissions counselor at the college or university you plan to transfer to for more information about this process. For students considering majoring in anthropology and transferring to PSU, the following video provides more information about courses you should take at PCC.

Next steps

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Related programs

PCC offers more than 90 programs.