Broadest in scope of the social sciences, anthropology contributes to an understanding of the human condition through interpretations of human biological and cultural variation and diversity. Anthropologists shed light on human origins and on our relationships with one another and with our surroundings, environments, and other species. They look at social life and everyday activities, but they also address issues of pressing contemporary concern in the world today. Anthropology provides perspectives on our origins, the immediacy of our lived experiences, on global challenges, and what kind of futures we face.
To study anthropology is to embark on an exploration of human life and the human condition at all times and in all places, from understanding ancient migrations and past societies, to the human transformation of local, regional and global environments, and to our places, situations and responsibilities in the globalized modern world. The knowledge and skills acquired through the study of a degree in Anthropology prepares students for a wide range of careers. At the University of Alberta, we have a vibrant department and expertise in several major branches of the discipline of anthropology that focus on different aspects of human populations, societies and cultures. Our work contributes to new ways of thinking for an anthropology of the 21st century, but also for how we think about the world in which we live. At once philosophical and applied, our discipline is also key to how we understand the arts, humanities and social sciences and there are opportunities to study anthropology in combination with a wide range of other subjects.