Humboldt State University [link]

SUMMER DATES TO BE ANNOUNCED


Courses
:

ANTH 306   |   ANTH 357

 

ANTH 306: Cultures of Belize

This course is designed to assist you in adjusting to life in a culture other than your own. Some of you may have traveled abroad before, and may just be interested in learning a bit more about yourself and how to adapt to cultural differences. But for others, going to Belize will be their first time overseas. We will examine the issues of culture shock, stereotyping, misperceptions and misunderstandings, ethnocentrism and intercultural communication. We hope this class will help you to:

  • recognize and deal with culture shock
  • identify the aspects of your own culture that affect your values
  • see your own culture in a different light
  • explore the roots of ethnocentrism and the process of stereotype formation
  • incorporate new attitudes and behaviors into your interactions with people who view the world from a different perspective
  • increase your cultural sensitivity
  • improve your ability to communicate across cultures
  • better adapt to and enjoy your time in Belize

General Education

Anthropology 306 is a General Education (Area D - Upper Division) course and has been designed with GE goals in mind. This course should help you to further develop your ability to think and communicate clearly and effectively and to gain a better understanding of the human experience through the examination of culture and human interaction.

Course Requirements

Evaluation in this program will be through field participation, and three two-page papers. Any questions, confusion about the course grading, etc. should be clarified/settled with Prof. Cortes-Rincon as soon as possible.

Field Participation (40%)

You will be evaluated based on their individual progress and ability to work in teams. Team work is a big part of the evaluation process. The Teaching Assistant and Instructor will keep track of each student’s progress in the field, camp, and when visiting local sites and villages.

Short Paper(s) 60%
      First Paper Due May 27
      Second Paper Due June 11
      Final Paper Due June 24

You are required to write three two-page papers (hand-written papers are acceptable as long as you write legibly) reflecting on your field experiences. You may write the first paper on your flight to Belize City about what your preconceived expectations of the project and your opinion of the local culture(s). Your second paper may be about daily life in camp and discuss the many different cultures that are found just within our camp. Your third paper may be about whether or not the program met your expectations, your preconceived opinion of Belize, and camp life prior to your arrival and how these changed after your field school experience. The last paper may be written while you are on your flight(s) home, and the assignment should be submitted via Moodle.

This course fulfills upper division Area DCG and GE requirements.

COURSE OBJECTIVES

Upon completion of this course, you should achieve a broad understanding of the following:

  1. To expose students to different Belizean cultures, beliefs, and every day practices while participating in an abroad program.
  2. The changing relationship between humans and their natural world through time
  3. Examples of current research being conducted at HSU and other academic institutions
General Education Outcomes: Diversity and Common Ground

Upon completion of this program you will be able to:

  • explain how the diversity of cultures creates an assortment of knowledge, experiences, values, world views, traditions, and achievements.
  • explain how cultural differences and identities are produced and perpetuated through a variety of social, cultural, and disciplinary discourses (i.e. popular culture, literature, science, among others).
  • explain and critically analyze how differential privilege and power occurs and how it creates problems such as inequalities, prejudicial exclusions, and injustices.

This course explicitly contributes to students’ acquisition of skills and knowledge relevant to HSU Learning Outcomes:

  • Effective communication through written and oral modes
  • •Critical and creative thinking skills in acquiring a broad base of knowledge and applying it to complex issues
  • Take responsibility for identifying personal goals and practicing lifelong learning

Area D Measurable Learning Outcomes:

  • Human behavior over time and in the context of Belizean cultures and Central American region
  • Students will demonstrate knowledge of and ability to apply archaeological and ethnographic vocabulary. Written assignments will demonstrate application of concepts and principles to a specific instance.
  • The contributions and context of diverse human experiences in Belize dealing with gender, ethnicity, class, and religion.
  • Through written or presentational assignments, students will demonstrate the interrelationship of four of the core “organizing principles” of the social sciences.
  • Students will explore the principles, methodologies, value systems and ethics employed in social scientific inquiry.

As part of the Department of Anthropology’s outcome goals, students completing this course will be able to:

  • provide a global appreciation and understanding of human cultural and biological diversity, both past and present.
  • examine the impact of European colonial expansion on non-European cultures.
  • provide time depth to our understanding of human cultural development.
  • explore the relationships between past human cultures and the environment.
  • provide the practical foundations for assuming the roles and responsibilities of a productive member of a community.

Contact Hours

We spend eight hours in the field from Sunday to Friday which encompasses lectures, hands-on experience, and note taking totaling 48 contact hours. Additionally, we have 1 hour lectures in the evenings from Monday to Thursday which total four hours.

On Saturdays, we take our students to visit archaeological sites outside of PfBAP, we provide students with a historic occupation of the site along with the archaeological work and finds at each site. This activity is usually 4 hours on Saturdays. On a weekly basis, the total contact hours are 56. For the duration of the field school, the total contact hours are 224.

There will not be a grade curve. Final letter grades for the course(s) will be figured as follows:

A = 93-100%; A- = 90-92.9%

B+ = 87-89.9%; B = 83-86.9%; B- = 80-82.9%

C+ = 77-79.9%; C = 73-76.9%; C- = 70-72.9%

D+ = 67-69.9%; D = 60-66.9%; F = <59.9%

Please note: If the class is taken CR/NC, 70% or higher is required to pass the class.

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ANTH 357 - Field Archaeology

Archaeology is a subfield of anthropology that focuses on the study of people of the past through their materials remains. Archaeology offers a unique perspective on human history and culture that has contributed greatly to our understanding of both the ancient and the recent past.

Archaeology helps us to understand not only where and when people lived on the earth, but also why and how they have lived, examining the changes and causes of changes that have occurred in human cultures over time, seeking patterns and explanations of patterns to explain everything from how and when people first came to inhabit the Americas, to the origins of agriculture and the rise of complex societies.

The principal focus of this course will be instruction in the basic field techniques required both in cultural resource management and in more strict research settings. You will learn how to map with different techniques (i.e. tape and compass, Theodolite, Total Data Station, and GPS). You will also learn how to use a hand held professional GPS unit (Magellan Mobile Mapper 6). We will use the GPS units for most of the mapping in the survey transect. You will learn how to map various features in the field with the GPS unit, and how to download the data to a laptop. You will also learn the basics of computer cartography using the data files collected with the GPS unit.

You will also learn how to lay out a grid and excavate small test pits that will help in evaluating the research potential of an archaeological site. Following this, you will learn the basics of larger scale excavation. Emphasis will be placed on sampling procedures, excavation techniques, collection of special samples, field laboratory procedures, documentation, and field assessment of findings as these relate to research objectives. Laboratory instruction includes the analysis of artifacts, features, architecture, and other remains recovered in the field.

Field techniques training will be supplemented by lectures. Subjects vary but generally cover excavation objectives, lithic analysis, ceramic analysis, osteological analysis and Maya prehistory.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS

Evaluation in this program will be through a field journal and field participation. Any questions, confusion about the course grading, etc. should be clarified/settled with Prof. Cortes-Rincon as soon as possible.

Class Exercises (20%)

The assignments include exercises designed to illustrate archaeological concepts described in the field lectures and/or in your texts, as well as readings that are intended to stimulate critical thinking concerning important issues in the practice of archaeology and the study of human prehistory.

Reading journal (40%)

You will be required to have a field journal detailing field activities from the moment you arrive in the field up to your last field day. This journal should not be a personal diary.

The journal should have the following: (1) a short description of the field events of each day, noting significant finds and field techniques; (2) address the field research questions and how you and the rest of the team are fulfilling these goals.

Each entry should be at least one to two pages long. Please note that you should keep careful notes while in Belize. It is recommended that you do each entry in the evenings. Field notebooks will be graded on organization, details, and context.

Field journals will be collected every Friday afternoon and returned on Saturday night.

Field Participation (40%)

Students will be evaluated based on their efforts to learn archaeology and survey methodology in the field. Team work is a big aspect of the evaluation process. The Teaching Assistant and Instructor will keep track of each student’s progress both in the field and in camp.

COURSE OBJECTIVES

Upon completion of this course, students should achieve a broad understanding of:

  1. the archaeology of a specific region including the historical development of archaeological work in the area, the culture history of the region, and the character of current research related to interpreting and understanding human behavior in the region during the Classic period (A.D. 250 - 900)
  2. everyday practices of archaeological practices and interpretation
  3. the methods and theories archaeologists use to reconstruct the past
  4. the changing relationship between humans and their natural world through time
  5. examples of current archaeological research being conducted at HSU and other academic institutions

This course explicitly contributes to students’ acquisition of skills and knowledge relevant to HSU Learning Outcomes:

  • Effective communication through written and oral modes
  • Critical and creative thinking skills in acquiring a broad base of knowledge and applying it to complex issues
  • Take responsibility for identifying personal goals and practicing lifelong learning

As part of the Department of Anthropology’s outcome goals, students completing this course will be able to:

  • provide a global appreciation and understanding of human cultural and biological diversity, both past and present.
  • provide time depth to our understanding of human cultural development.
  • explore the relationships between past human cultures and the environment.
  • provide the practical foundations for assuming the roles and responsibilities of a productive member of a community.

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