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Essential Objectives

Course Syllabus

Revision Date: 11-Jun-24

Fall 2024 | ANT-1010-VO02 - Introduction to Cultural Anthropology

Online Class

Online courses take place 100% online via Canvas, without required in-person or Zoom meetings.

Location: Online
Credits: 3 (45 hours)
Day/Times: Meets online
Semester Dates: 09-03-2024 to 12-16-2024
Last day to drop without a grade: 09-16-2024 - Refund Policy
Last day to withdraw (W grade): 11-04-2024 - Refund Policy
Open Seats: 11 (as of 07-13-24 2:05 PM)
To check live space availability, Search for Courses.


Ben Maniscalco
View Faculty Credentials
View Faculty Statement
Hiring Coordinator for this course: Gilberto Diaz Santos

General Education Requirements

This section meets the following CCV General Education Requirement(s) for the current catalog year:
VSCS Humanistic Perspectives
  1. Many degree programs have specific general education recommendations. In order to avoid taking unnecessary classes, please consult with additional resources like your program evaluation, your academic program catalog year page, and your academic advisor.
  2. Courses may only be used to meet one General Education Requirement.

Course Description

This course is a survey of basic issues, concepts, theories, and methods of cultural anthropology. Students think critically about the nature of culture and society from the perspective of the past and the present. Topics include social and political organization, gender, myth and religion, language, adaptation, and cultural change.

Essential Objectives

1. Describe the origin and development of anthropology as a social science and as a humanities field, the subject matter it includes, and how it relates to other disciplines.
2. Explain and apply key anthropological concepts, including culture, ethnocentrism, cultural relativism, adaptive strategies, agency, social stratification, magic, ritual, cultural change, and world-view.
3. Discuss the application of quantitative and qualitative anthropological methods to the study of human culture and examine the relationship between method and theory.
4. Describe the development of anthropological theories such as cultural evolution, structural functionalism, cultural ecology, and symbolic interactionism and understand how current theoretical approaches are used to explain cultural phenomena.
5. Examine the role and importance of fieldwork in cultural anthropology and discuss ethical conduct within the discipline, including bias in research design and practice.
6. Discuss the diversity of humans past and present by identifying differences, similarities, and interrelationships among individuals, cultures, and societies.
7. Apply basic anthropological concepts to better understand and respect the characteristics of unfamiliar cultures and critically examine aspects of familiar cultures, cultural conflict, and systemic racism.
8. Describe the various roles that cultural anthropologists play in today's world and give examples of current research questions and applied cultural anthropology in business, medicine, education, development, and advocacy.

Required Technology

More information on general computer and internet recommendations is available on the CCV IT Support page. https://support.ccv.edu/general/computer-recommendations/

Please see CCV's Digital Equity Statement (pg. 45) to learn more about CCV's commitment to supporting all students access the technology they need to successfully finish their courses.

Required Textbooks and Resources

This course uses one or more textbooks/books/simulations.

Fall 2024 textbook details will be available on 2024-05-20. On that date a link will be available below that will take you to eCampus, CCV's bookstore. The information provided there will be specific to this class. Please see this page for more information regarding the purchase of textbooks/books.

ANT-1010-VO02 Link to Textbooks for this course in eCampus.

The last day to use a Financial Aid Advance to purchase textbooks/books is the 3rd Tuesday of the semester. See your financial aid counselor at your academic center if you have any questions.

Artificial Intelligence(AI) Policy Statement

CCV recognizes that artificial intelligence (AI) and generative AI tools are widely available and becoming embedded in many online writing and creative applications.

Prohibited: The use of generative AI is not allowed in this course, with the exception of spellcheck, grammar check and similar tools. This course rests in the value of students engaging in the learning process without relying on AI-generated content. Students will develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills independently, owning their learning journey from start to finish. If you use these tools, your actions would be considered academically dishonest and a violation of CCV's Academic Integrity Policy.


The instructor will utilize the following online teaching modalities:

  • The use of presentations, short videos, surveys, and audio files to explain and present course material throughout the semester.
  • Students will be required to post responses in the weekly discussion forum using guidelines provided by the instructor.
  • Documentary films and radio broadcasts may also be utilized by the instructor throughout the semester.

Evaluation Criteria

Students will be evaluated based on their performance on the following types of assignments:

  • Weekly discussion forum posts
  • Response paper assignments
  • Exams
  • Class Participation (Feedback offered to classmates on the discussion forum as well as attendance)

*For actual point breakdowns please view the syllabus posted on Canvas.

Grading Criteria

CCV Letter Grades as outlined in the Evaluation System Policy are assigned according to the following chart:

A Less than 9893
A-Less than 9390
B+Less than 9088
B Less than 8883
B-Less than 8380
C+Less than 8078
C Less than 7873
C-Less than 7370
D+Less than 7068
D Less than 6863
D-Less than 6360
FLess than 60 
NPLess than 600

Weekly Schedule

Week/ModuleTopic  Readings  Assignments


- Introduction to Cultural Anthropology

- What is Culture?

- Cultural Relativism vs Ethnocentrism


Reading from Textbook


Discussion Forum



Religion and Rites of Passage


Chapter 3


Response Paper #1



Examining Culture and Economic Anthropology


Reading provided by the instructor


Discussion Forum



Applied Anthropology and Bio-physical Anthropology and Exam #1


Review study guide provided by the instructor


Use the exam link provided by the instructor to take the exam



Race, Ethnicity, and Racial Stratification


Chapter 6 in text


Response Paper



Social Stratification in the U.S. and around the world


Reading provided by the instructor


Response Paper



Political Sociology


Chapter 8 in text


Discussion Forum



Exam #2


Review the Study Guide provided by the instructor


Exam to be taken using the link provided by the instructor



Gender, Sex, and Gender Stratification


Chapter 9 in text


Discussion Forum



Environment and Sustainability


Reading provided by the instructor


Discussion Forum



Technology, Culture, and Cultural Evolution


Chapter 12 in text


Response Paper/ Test #3



Food and Culture


Chapter 13 in text


Response Paper



Automation and the American Economy


Reading provided by the instructor


Response Paper



Art and Media


The Environmental Anthropology of Homelessness


Response Paper



Final Unit Exam


Study Guide will be provided by instructor


Test #4 (Non Cumulative)


Attendance Policy

Regular attendance and participation in classes are essential for success in and are completion requirements for courses at CCV. A student's failure to meet attendance requirements as specified in course descriptions will normally result in a non-satisfactory grade.

  • In general, missing more than 20% of a course due to absences, lateness or early departures may jeopardize a student's ability to earn a satisfactory final grade.
  • Attending an on-ground or synchronous course means a student appeared in the live classroom for at least a meaningful portion of a given class meeting. Attending an online course means a student posted a discussion forum response, completed a quiz or attempted some other academically required activity. Simply viewing a course item or module does not count as attendance.
  • Meeting the minimum attendance requirement for a course does not mean a student has satisfied the academic requirements for participation, which require students to go above and beyond simply attending a portion of the class. Faculty members will individually determine what constitutes participation in each course they teach and explain in their course descriptions how participation factors into a student's final grade.

Participation Expectations

Students are required to participate each week by completing the weekly required assignment. This assignment may consist of a discussion forum post, a response paper assignment, or an exam.

The following does not count towards your weekly class participation:

  • Logging into Canvas and/or the Course shell
  • Emailing the instructor about grades

Please email the instructor at profmaniscalco@gmaill.com with any questions.

Missing & Late Work Policy

Late work will be accepted within one week of the due date outlined in Canvas. Points will be deducted depending on how late the assignment was turned in. After one week, the assignment grade will be recorded as a zero in the gradebook.

We all have emergency situations, medical procedures, and other things that pop up during the course of the semester. Please email me at profmaniscalco@gmail.com if you know ahead of time that you will have difficulty completing an assignment on time.

Accessibility Services for Students with Disabilities:

CCV strives to mitigate barriers to course access for students with documented disabilities. To request accommodations, please
  1. Provide disability documentation to the Accessibility Coordinator at your academic center. https://ccv.edu/discover-resources/students-with-disabilities/
  2. Request an appointment to meet with accessibility coordinator to discuss your request and create an accommodation plan.
  3. Once created, students will share the accommodation plan with faculty. Please note, faculty cannot make disability accommodations outside of this process.

Academic Integrity

CCV has a commitment to honesty and excellence in academic work and expects the same from all students. Academic dishonesty, or cheating, can occur whenever you present -as your own work- something that you did not do. You can also be guilty of cheating if you help someone else cheat. Being unaware of what constitutes academic dishonesty (such as knowing what plagiarism is) does not absolve a student of the responsibility to be honest in his/her academic work. Academic dishonesty is taken very seriously and may lead to dismissal from the College.