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Have you ever wondered about humanity and how we fit within our environment? Then anthropology might just be the program for you. It's the study of all facets of the human condition. Examine the past, present, and applied future, and learn about us as a species, and how we fit within our environment biologically and socially. Anthropology is ever expanding and constantly yielding new, interesting information.

Course Catalog Description

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Program Description and Goals

Anthropology is a scientific discipline that studies humans and human behavior. The subject is divided into five broad fields: biological anthropology, cultural anthropology, linguistics, archaeology, and applied anthropology. Biological anthropology is concerned with hominid evolution and the biological features of human populations. Cultural anthropology deals with cross-cultural studies of learned behavior, such as language, kinship, religion, economics, technology, values, and personality. Linguistics is the study of the origin and evolution of languages and how they reflect the behavioral patterns of people. Archaeology is involved in the recovery of material remains of past peoples with the objective of reconstructing the past. Applied Anthropology applies what we have learned from the other four fields to promote change. As both a biological and social science, anthropology seeks to understand and describe humankind.

The anthropology program has been developed to provide the student with a broad perspective of human biological and cultural origins and change which prepares the student for transfer to a four-year institution. It also offers a limited course curriculum in archaeology. A certificate of achievement is available for the student who has an interest in the recovery, identification, and analysis of prehistoric and early historic artifacts related to archaeological research projects.


Our brand new facilities are equipped with new technologies and impressive collections of casts, specimens, and artifacts, placing our students ahead of the curve after transfer, graduation, and in employment.

In anthropology, you will learn how everything we do as a species can be considered from an anthropological perspective.

Whether you want to complete an associate degree, introductory courses for university transfer, or a career change, we make a dedicated effort to ensure you have all the tools you need to succeed in the field of anthropology.

Cultural Anthropology

Cultural, or Socio-Cultural, Anthropology is the study of past and present cultures all over the world. Learn how social living is a complex feature of humankind, where everything from our beliefs to the types of beds we sleep in and foods we eat are part of our cultural selves.

Did you know that cultural anthropologists are employed around the world, often in times of aid, as their experience with different cultures can make them liaisons between two societies? They were called upon during the Ebola and Zika epidemics to help aid-workers appropriately approach different cultures about medical practices concerning the onset and spread of these diseases. Cultural anthropologists are also utilized in marketing and demographic analysis like census, survey analysis, and advertising.

Physical Anthropology

Are you interested in human evolution? Examine the biological aspect of humanity by studying our evolution as a species, including variation and adaptation, our relationship to other primates, and our hominid past deep in the paleontological fossil record in physical or biological anthropology. Physical anthropology also focuses on genetics, disease, forensics, population patterns, migration, and the origins of our species.

Physical Anthropologists are often employed as medical examiners and in anatomy and forensics. Experts in human remains are also employed in government and military positions, such as the identification and extraction of lost soldiers from past and present conflicts, epidemic studies, and examining how our social environment affects our physical health. Physical Anthropologists that study primates have found employment in zoos, research facilities, and conservation efforts.


Gets hands on with history through Archaeology. It is the study of past peoples through material remains. It help us understand more about past cultures, societies, and peoples by examining evidence of how they lived. Archaeology aims to understand everything from beliefs to food production and interrelationships on small and broad scales.

Archaeologists are often employed by Cultural Resource Management firms that preserve cultural heritage of Native and historic peoples. Archaeological research is conducted all over the world, reconstructing the past to answer questions of history and how we can apply such knowledge to our present and future. New discoveries are made all the time, making archaeology an exciting and ever-changing field.

Certificate of Performance in Archaeology

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be an archaeologist? Or wondered what working archaeologists actually do? Our Certificate of Performance in Archaeology is designed to teach and train those looking to pursue an education and career in the field. Cultural Resource Management (CRM) is the primary way archaeologists make a living by working in the preservation and management of cultural heritage sites and assemblages all over the world.

We prepare students for the reality of employment in North American archaeological fieldwork. We connect students with local CRM firms, professional archaeologists, and volunteer and hiring opportunities. We pride ourselves on our reputation among these firms -- many of our students have been hired straight out of our classes for field technician positions and paid internships. 

We offers hands-on training in cataloging, site survey, site layout, mapping, and excavation on an active archaeological site with the county of San Diego. Students partake in research about the historical and pre-historical context of the site, use typology and seriation methods, and learn how to implement practical analysis into narratives, which are the foundation of archaeological report writing.

This program has been used for over twenty years by students looking to gain experience for graduate school or practical work experience in Cultural Resource Management.

Our students are diverse in age, background, and goals and we are proud to boast tremendous success in all student demographics. In addition, alumni and current archaeologist benefactors have donated generously to our program, including scholarships solely for those completing the Certificate of Performance in Archaeology at San Diego City College.

This program is completed in just five classes--the shortest of its kind, and one of only two similar programs offered in the San Diego area. At less than a fifth of the cost of most excavation programs, our courses are an affordable way to see if archaeology is for you, and comes with the support of our instructors and staff, who are personally dedicated to your success.


For more information, contact:

Dr. Tori Randall, Ph.D., Full Time Professor

Dr. George Gross, Ph.D., Full Time Professor

Amy Ross, Educational Technician, Anthropology Department