11 Module 1 Introduction

Welcome to Module 1!

This module is our introduction to anthropology. We will learn about three important areas that help us understand the cultures we are studying:

  • The Culture ConceptStart with important anthropological concepts that give us tools to understand the world, including the concepts of culture, cultural relativism, and the pitfalls of ethnocentrism. Learn about early anthropologists like Sir James Frazer and Sir E. B. Tylor, Bronislaw Malinowski, and Franz Boas. Lastly, consider some of the ethical issues that can arise from anthropological research.
  • Doing FieldworkExplore what is unique about ethnographic fieldwork and how it emerged as a key strategy in anthropology. Identify some of the contemporary ethnographic fieldwork techniques and perspectives. Continue learning about ethical considerations in doing anthropological fieldwork.
  • LanguageExamine the relationship between human language and culture. Think about language variations, ethnic or cultural identity, and how language is affected by social class, ethnicity, gender and other aspects of identity. Explore the reasons why languages change and efforts that can be made to preserve endangered languages.

Where do you want to go?!

In Modules 1-3 you will get to choose your destination for a “virtual field trip” to explore other cultures. The Field Trip options draw on the chapter materials, and integrate them in an interdisciplinary way.

The Module One Virtual Field Trips offer you many choices. You will use some of the anthropological fieldwork methods found in our chapters to describe how you would conduct fieldwork with the culture you have chosen for your Virtual Field Trip! See the options below.

For each field trip, you will submit an essay to the Assignments tool, and paste a copy into the Discussion tool to share wth your fellow students. You will then read and comment on two of your peers’ essays. See the Virtual Field Trip pages for complete instructions. Grading uses the following rubrics:

Virtual Field Trip Essay and Discussion Post (1 post, 350 words)
Exceeds Expectations
(50 points)
Meets Expectations
(40 points)
Almost Meets Expectations
(30 points)
Does Not Meet Expectations
(20 points)
Not Submitted
(0 points)
Student responds fully to the questions posed, demonstrating knowledge and application of ideas and concepts presented in this module. Clear knowledge and insights into the subject are demonstrated. Student uses at least one citation from the text and one citation from the Discussion video(s) or website(s) in developing the post, and provides a Bibliography. Student’s posting responds to the questions posed. The posting indicates understanding of the subject matter. Student uses at least one citation from the text and one citation from the Discussion video(s) or website(s) in developing the post, and provides a Bibliography. Student’s posting responds to the questions posed only on a superficial level. The response may contain many words but says little of substance. This type of response may be vague or unclear. This grade could also be assigned when the writing of the response is haphazard or appears to be rushed or “thrown together the last minute.” Student uses at least one citation from the text or Discussion video(s)/website(s). Student’s posting is present but barely responds to the questions posed. The student may respond to only part of what was asked or substituted simpler or different questions altogether. Not submitted.

 

Student’s Comments to Peers (2 posts, 75 words each)
Exceeds Expectations
(10 points)
Meets Expectations
(8 points)
Almost Meets Expectations
(6 points)
Does Not Meet Expectations
(4 points)
Not Submitted
(0 points)
Each posting response integrates the thoughts of others and ideas and concepts presented in this module within the discussion thread. Student is online at least two different days during the week and responds in a thoughtful manner to two or more other students’ responses. Student reads the majority of the discussion posts. Each posting indicates understanding of the subject matter but may not contain thoughtfulness or insight to the question or to other students’ responses. The student is responding to at least two other students’ responses. Student responds to other students’ work on a superficial level. The student is responding to at least one other student’s response. Student does not respond to other students’ postings. Not submitted.

Module 1 Assignments

Discussion

If you have not completed the Insta-Snap Introduction Discussion, be sure to do that first. Instructions are on the Welcome page.

Reading

Read the following chapters from Perspectives: An Open Invitation to Cultural Anthropology, use the links below to read online or print.

Use the Study Guides as you read the chapters to help you focus on important terms, concepts, people, and places. This will also help you prepare for the quizzes in this module.


Study Guides and Quizzes

There is a 15 question quiz for each chapter. You can find these in the Quizzes tool.


Virtual Field Trip – Where do you want to go?

Submit your essay to the Assignments tool, and then paste the text of your essay into the Discussion tool to share with your fellow students.

Read the essays posted by your peers, and post a comment (75 words each) to two peers. This will be done the week after you have posted your own Field Trip Essay. Due dates are on the Schedule of Work.

See complete Instructions on the Virtual Field Trip pages.


Research Project – Follow Your Own Path

Start thinking about a topic for your Semester Research Project. 

How do professional anthropologists “follow their own path” when starting original research? They begin by creating a proposal outlining the type of research they want to pursue when they do field work.

In Module 2 you will turn in the Semester Research Project Study Proposal. This is a 150-word, one to two paragraph overview of your ideas, describing the culture and topic you would like to investigate.

Be sure to read the Semester Research Project page for complete instructions.


License

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Cultural Anthropology by Lumen Learning is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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