The science of us, understanding humanity: past, present and future

Department of Anthropology

Message from the Chair

March 17, 2020

The anthropology department office is now closed to visitors, as is most of SDSU. It is our sincere hope that this step will help soften the blow of COVID-19 on our community. We hope that you, too, are following instructions such as to maintain social distance and to stay home whenever possible.

Even from home, our faculty and staff are working overtime to ensure educational continuity for our students. Instructors have by now contacted all students regarding how we will complete spring anthropology coursework. Plans are in place.

Students: If you experience any confusion regarding how things will be done moving forward, reach out to your instructor/s. I can assure you that they are ready to assist, and happy to do so. That said, if you have any questions or concerns that your instructors cannot answer, please feel free to contact the department office for assistance. We are here for you. Contact information is as follows (you will be asked to leave a message if you call, but do not worry: we are checking messages regularly).

619-594-5527 or [email protected]

Please also feel free to contact me directly at at [email protected], and note that the following SDSU website page is full of information and useful links: health-services/coronavirus.

We'll get through this together.

Sincerely yours,
EJ Sobo, Chair
Department of Anthropology


Anthropologists study the biological characteristics, evolutionary history, geographic distribution, environmental adaptations, linguistic practices, social relationships, institutions, customs, knowledge, myths, and cultural processes of human populations.

Why choose our programs?

Our programs provide a broad background for the various specialized areas in the field: (a) archaeology, the analysis of past cultures through a focus on material remains or artifacts; (b) socio-cultural anthropology, the study of socio-cultural processes and diversity; (c) linguistic anthropology, the analysis of cultural differences in communication; and (d) biological anthropology, the study of past and present human and primate populations.

Research and special instructional facilities provided by the department include various laboratories and other options for hands-on learning.  Facilities available in the community include the Museum of Man, the San Diego Zoo, and various internship sites for applied research.  

Most importantly, we boast a world-renowned group of specialist tenure track faculty and the best lecturers around. Students who join the Department of Anthropology at SDSU come away with an excellent understanding of human biological and cultural diversity across space and time—past, present, and future. 

What can you do with your anthropology degree?

Employment opportunities for anthropology graduates include academic research and teaching as well as nonacademic or applied careers, for example in nonprofit associations, federal, state, local government, and international agencies; in health care, business, and manufacturing organizations; at research institutes; at zoos or wildlife preserves; on environmental projects, doing human-impact assessment or resource management; and in museums.

Meet some of our current and former students.

Jose HuizarJose Huizar

Program Manager,
Child Advocates of Placer County

Desseray ReyesDesseray Reyes
Undergraduate Student
Socio-Cultural Anthropology
Molly Sirota Molly Sirota 

Lead Games User Researcher, 
AAS Students

Association of Anthropology Students (AAS)

Provides a forum for the discussion, promotion, and realization of anthropological pursuits for students in the department.

AGSA Students

Anthropology Graduate Student Association (AGSA)

Facilitates a unified graduate student voice and to provide peer support for academic and professional endeavors.

cave paintings

Friends of Anthropology (FOA)

Creates community interest in anthropology, linking students with practical experience and job opportunities.  For information about FOA, contact the department at [email protected].