Sociology and anthropology are complementary approaches to the study of society and culture. While sociologists usually study modern urban industrial societies, anthropologists take a broader perspective by focusing on cultural and biological adaptations of all humankind, whether past or present.
Sociology is the scientific study of the processes and patterns of individual
and group interaction, of the forms of social organization, and of the influence
of group pressures upon individual behavior. Opportunities are available for
the application of sociological knowledge and the use of critical thinking
to clarify social problems and evaluate policies of public and private agencies,
particularly by field experiences in such areas as industrial organizations,
social change, intergroup relations, criminal justice, and social welfare.
Anthropology is the comparative study of human life and culture, past and
present. It is concerned with human biological and cultural adaptations to
physical and social environment throughout time and in all parts of the world.
The basic themes of anthropology include adaptation, evolution, change, and
continuity. Opportunities exist to apply anthropological knowledge to many problems of modern society, including the social impact of development, economic and political change, and cultural resource management.
The sociology major offers a breadth of exposure to subject matter in both sociology and anthropology, with grounding in the theories and methods of these disciplines. The curriculum includes an understanding of theories and methods used by sociologists and anthropologists, as well as substantive areas to which these theories and methods are applied. The student interested in studying and working in such areas as social change, cultural resource management, museum work, and forensic science may elect a formal concentration in anthropology.