Skip to main content

** No ANTH 390’s offered in Spring 2023 count for the Research Methods credit **

Learn what Medical Anthropology can do for pre-med students here!

Medical anthropology addresses the biological, cultural, and political-economic dimensions of health, illness, and healing historically and at present. Reflecting the multi-disciplinary character of its parent field of anthropology, medical anthropology deploys quantitative and qualitative methods to examine the body as a site of evolutionary processes and cultural symbols, and healing as interpretive processes at macro, meso, and micro levels.

This program provides students with the fundamental knowledge and exposure needed to pursue careers and post-graduate studies in fields related to global health, public health, allied health care and health and human services, medicine, dentistry, and other emerging disciplines.

For students seeking a career in the health professions, the program in medical anthropology complements training in the natural sciences. Courses in medical anthropology explore population variations in health outcomes due to the influence of culture. The curriculum also equips students with ways to understand the meanings people find in illness and healing and the moral stakes of medical decisions. Additionally, courses in medical anthropology give students awareness of the formal institutions and social relations that become the channels and limitations of technical knowledge about illness and healing.

Upon completion of the medical anthropology program, students should be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the relationships between humans’ health and historical, biocultural, and societal dynamics
  • Demonstrate understanding of the ways comparative cultural and historical experiences impact health-related values and practices, definitions of illness, and methods of healing
  • Demonstrate competence in reading, analyzing, and communicating social science research on health
  • Gain experience conducting and/or applying research using medical anthropology’s methods
  • Gain an understanding of medical anthropology’s relationships to the holistic, parent discipline of anthropology and its contributions to applied professional fields such as medicine and global health.

 

Medical Anthropology BA Degree, as of 8.15.2022 

Below is the list of required categories of coursework and courses that fulfill the various categories, arranged in a chronological plan of study, for the major in Medical Anthropology (UNC-CH’s Department of Anthropology).

The UNC Undergraduate Catalog listing of courses that count towards the Research Methods and Experiences requirement contains errors that are in the process of being corrected. Please refer to the list below for the accurate listing.

 

Years 1 and 2

FOUNDATIONAL COURSES (2 REQUIRED)

Course No.

Course Title

ANTH 53 Darwin’s Dangerous Idea
ANTH 66H Saving the World?
ANTH 104 Introduction to Biocultural Medical Anthropology
IDST 112-001 Death and Dying
IDST 190-014 Pandemics: Ethics, Literatures & Cultures
Years 2 and 3

ANTH 270 Living Medicine
ANTH 319 Global Health
ANTH 147 Comparative Healing Systems
RESEARCH METHODS AND EXPERIENCE COURSES (2 REQUIRED)

ANTH 326 Practicing Medical Anthropology
ANTH 390 (depending on topic) Special Topics in Medical Anthropology
ANTH 393 Internships in Anthropology
ANTH 399 Independent Study in Anthropology
Years 3 and 4

ANTH 414 LAB METH: Human Osteopathy
ANTH 419 Anthropological Applications of GIS
ANTH 450 Ethnographic Research Methods
ANTH 582 Fieldwork with Social Models of Well-Being
ANTH 625 Ethnography and Life Stories
ANTH 650 Reconstructing Life: Nutrition and Disease in Past Populations
ANTH 675 Ethnographic Methods
ANTH 676 Methods in Biomedical Anthropology
ANTH 691H Senior Honors Thesis

 

Other Department Courses that count for Research methods Med ANTH Requirement Sociology:

251 MEASUREMENT AND DATA COLLECTION

251 MEASUREMENT AND DATA COLLECTION

252 DATA ANALYSIS

318 COMPUTATIONAL SOCIOLOGY

 

Geography:

391 Quantita Methods

392 Research Methods in Geography

410 Modeling Env. Systems

456 Geovisualizing Change

477 Intro Remote Sens Env

491 Intro to GIS

592 GISCI Programming

 

Epidemiology:

700 SAS and Data Management

 

Biostatistics:

600 Principles of Statistical Inference

661 Probability and Statistical Inference

668 Design of Public Health Studies

669 Working with Data in a Public Health Research Setting

 

In addition to the 2 foundational and 2 methods /experiences courses, students must take 5
total elective courses, including at least 1 from each of the following two groups,
Biological/ecological and Sociocultural (listed below). These courses can be taken at any time during the student’s tenure at UNC. No more than 2 of the 5 courses can be at the 100- level. Students may count up to 2 ANTH courses not included in this list, or up to 2 courses from outside the Department that relate to the student’s area of interest in Medical Anthropology. 

 

Biological and Ecological Electives for the Medical Anthropology Major 

Course No. Course Title
ANTH 143 Human evolution and adaptation
ANTH 148 Human Origins
ANTH 217 Human Biology
ANTH 315 Human Genetics
ANTH 318 Human Growth and Development
ANTH 437 Evolutionary Medicine
ANTH 446 Poverty, Inequality and Health
ANTH 471 Maternal and Child Health
ANTH 538 Disease and Discrimination
ANTH 623 Disease Ecology
ANTH 151 Food and Culture
ANTH 175 Intro to Food Studies: From Science to Society
ANTH 237/ENEC 237 Food, Environment and Sustainability
ANTH 252 Archaeology of Food

 

 

Sociocultural electives for the Medical Anthropology Major

Course No. Course Title
ANTH 272/ENGL 264 Healing in Literature and Ethnography
ANTH 278 Women in Science
ANTH 280/PWAD 280 Anthropology of War and Peace
ANTH 320 Anthropology of Development
ANTH 325 Emotions and Society
ANTH 328 Anthropology of Care
ANTH 422 Anthropology and Human Rights
ANTH 426 Making Magic
ANTH 430 War, Medicine and Military
ANTH 442 Health and Gender After Socialism
ANTH 443/WGST 443 Cultures and Politics of Reproduction
ANTH 445 Migration and Health
ANTH 448 Health and Medicine in the American South
ANTH 470 Medicine and Anthropology
ANTH 473 Body and Subject
ANTH 474 Anthropology of Disability
ANTH 582 Fieldwork with Social Models of Well-Being
ANTH 585 Anthropology of Science
ANTH 624 Anthropology and Public Health
ANTH 649 Politics of Life and Death
AAAD 300 Cultures of Health and Healing in Africa
AAAD 387 HIV/AIDS in Africa and the Diaspora
ARAB 214 Medicine and Modernity in the Arab World