Department of Anthropology

Archaeology at CSULA

Building Room KHC4068
Phone (323) 343-2440 | Fax (323) 343-2446

Anthropology is the study of human beings from both a cultural and biological perspective. The department of Anthropology offers courses in the discipline's four subfields:

  • Socio-Cultural: Description and comparison of living cultures.
  • Biological: Fossil humans, human evolution and variation, genetics.
  • Archaeology: Collecting and analyzing the remains of past cultures.
  • Linguistics: Analysis of language and the connections between language and culture.

Students in anthropology have the opportunity to participate in archaeological excavations, ethnographic film making, the analysis of human remains, and the study of urban ethnography. Students are encouraged to develop expertise in particular cultural areas and research problems. Faculty members have engaged in work in Asia, North America, Mesoamerica, and South America. They have focused on a range of problems including urbanization, modernization, ethnicity, contemporary environmental issues, race relations, immigration, religion, ecological adaptation, and forensic anthropology.

The department maintains four active laboratories: the Anthropology Media Lab, the Linguistic Anthropology Lab, the California Coastal Archaeology Lab and the Mesoamerican Archaeology Lab.

The departments offers an Honors Program for qualified upper division students. The program is designed to introduce superior students to independent research and the writing of professional reports. Diplomas and transcripts of Honors Program graduates are designated: "Graduated with Departmental Honors in Anthropology."

Persons with a baccalaureate in anthropology can use it as a basis for teaching credentials. In addition, anthropology provides good preparation for jobs that require an understanding of cultural differences, such as counseling, medicine, human resource management and social services. The baccalaureate also trains for positions related to archaeology and museum work. 

Many advanced positions in the field require training beyond the bachelor's degree; some are open to those with the master's degree, others to holders of the doctorate. 

The department offers a master's degree in three tracks: Archaeology, Biological Anthropology, and Socio-Cultural Anthropology.

There are a number of active student associations. 

Important news

Cal State LA Anthropology LOGO

As a preventive measure and based on the guidance of health officials, Cal State LA is temporarily suspending face-to-face, in-person classroom instruction due to COVID-19.


CalStateLA classes are being offered remotely in response to the COVID-19 crisis. Classes will continue to be offered remotely through the spring 2021 semester.

Departmental Office

The campus and all department offices are closed. For help, please email Mrs. Maricela Godinez at or Dr. Beth Baker at



Beth Baker

Chair, Anthropology


Dr. Christine Lee is interviewed on death and burial on the Today show:

Dr. ChorSwang Ngin received the New Directions Award from the American Anthropological Association for her innovative work as an expert witness in immigration cases:

Working with her upper division undergraduate ANTH 4800 methods class students and her graduate students, Dr. Kate Sullivan's team produced the outreach online Story Map “Alamitos Bay Through Time,” (authored by Kathleen M. Sullivan, PhD, CSULA, Christine R. Whitcraft, PhD, CSULB, and Raul Iglesias, MA, CSULA), including creating more than 90 GIS map layers showing the effects of human built changes over the last several centuries, in the once fertile coastal estuarine system in the southern California Bight. The Story Map is currently on public exhibit in the “Water Changes Everything” Exhibition at the Historical Society of Long Beach, July 19, 2019 through June 13, 2020. Here is the link:

Dr. Jessical Bodoh-Creed won the award for Cal State LA Outstanding Lecturer 2019:

See the exciting international coverage of the research being done by Dr. Jim Brady and his students at Chichén Itzá in Balamkú (Cave of the Jaguar God)! (National GeographicNew York Times)
Top 25 ranked grad programs Spring 2014