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Washington and Lee University

Washington and Lee University

Sociology and Anthropology

Program Offerings

Academic Division: College

Degrees Offered:
  • Bachelor of Arts
  • Bachelor of Science
Academic Programs: Course Offerings:

Example Career Outcomes

  • Cultural Resource Management
  • Education
  • Finance
  • Graduate Study
  • Law

The faculty in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology have a combined interest in culture. We believe that anthropology and sociology provide a special opportunity for students to transcend the narrow boundaries of their own experience and society. Because the society in which we live is so diverse and our world is so interconnected, our mission is to give students opportunities to examine critically their own lives and values in the context of the United States and other societies and communities.

Through our commitment to a liberal arts education, we prepare our students for a variety of careers and professions. We also provide training that will enable our majors to pursue professional careers in anthropology, archaeology, and sociology. Our curriculum is designed to provide the knowledge and develop the basic skills required for graduate study.


Program Highlights

  • Students in anthropology and archaeology have the opportunity to take part in a range of field experiences, such as class field trips, the annual Washington and Lee "dig," and class based projects that require hands-on student engagement.
  • The department offers students the opportunity to engage in directed individual study or research with the guidance of a faculty member.
  • The department offers several formal internship opportunities for students, with preference for our majors. In addition, students are encouraged to design their own internships with input from specific department members.
  • Faculty in the department offer several Spring Term Abroad options, and students also have the opportunity to participate in summer programs at other institutions.
  • Washington and Lee University maintains an active research program in archaeology. We conduct field work part of every year, usually in the spring and sometimes also in the summer.
  • Students have been participating in field schools with university faculty since the 1970s, beginning with excavations at Liberty Hall, a late 18th-century predecessor of Washington and Lee. Since 2009, students and faculty have been collaborating with archaeologists at Thomas Jefferson's Monticello near Charlottesville, Virginia, to excavate the remains of an overseer's house, c. 1806-1822.
  • W&L has an on-site Anthropology Laboratory housed in the nine-room, historic Liberty Hall Farmhouse. The lab consists of five networked computers for students of Sociology and Anthropology to analyze collections, facilities for processing artifacts from initial washing to final curation using archival materials, artifact storage areas, and a museum area with permanent display cases.