Anthropology at UNT | Department of Anthropology

Anthropology at UNT

Anthropology at UNT emphasizes the use of anthropological theories, methods, and perspectives to solve problems and improve people's lives.

Welcome to Anthropology at UNT! The study of anthropology is the study of humanity, in all of its complexity, across space and time. Our department is one of the leading departments in the nation centered around the practice of applied cultural anthropology, or the application of anthropological methods, theories, and insights to address real world problems. A degree in Anthropology will provide students with the skills and knowledge necessary to address the challenges and opportunities of living in an increasingly diverse and globalizing world.

We are all cultural beings; learning about different cultural forms and processes not only enlightens us to the diversity and similarities amongst humans but also reveals a lot about ourselves. UNT Anthropology offers a wide range of courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels that teach students to ethically and critically evaluate cultural forms and processes at both local and global levels. Through their courses, students will gain skills in research methods and design, data visualization, multicultural awareness, oral and written communication, and critical thinking.

All faculty members in our department are applied cultural anthropologists. We conduct community-based, applied research projects that often cross traditional disciplinary boundaries. Although we have diverse topical and geographic research and teaching agendas, what unites us is our commitment to using anthropology to improve people's lives. Our dedication to our students is driven by a department culture based on collaborative decision making, camaraderie, congeniality, and support of collaborative work, motivated through creatively generating solutions instead of outperforming others. Faculty interests include the following areas: Business Technology and Design, Public Health and Medical Care Systems, Migration and Citizenship, Education and Education Equity, the Environment and Environmental Sustainability, and Urban Anthropology.

Business, Technology, and Design Anthropology
Susan Squires and Christina Wasson have extensive experience working in this area. It encompasses design anthropology and user-centered design, communication in the workplace, human-computer interaction, consumer behavior, diversity and globalization, and organizational anthropology. Professor Wasson and Professor Squires have deep networks in business, technology, and design, providing opportunities for partnerships with a variety of organizations. Their interests span both private and nonprofit sectors.

Crossing Borders: Migration and Identities
Jara Carrington, Alicia Re Cruz, Mariela Nuñez-Janes, Doug Henry, and Andrew Nelson represent this area. Topics covered include analysis of current and historic instances of displacement across the globe; U.S. immigration law and policy; borders; nationalism; Mexican, Mexican-American, and Latiné communities in the U.S.; and South Asian diasporic populations in the U.S.

Medical Anthropology
Lisa Henry and Doug Henry specialize in this area, which addresses public health, healthcare delivery, indigenous medicine, risk, program evaluation, and the health issues of ethnic minorities, migrants, and/or refugees. We are affiliated with UNT Health Science Center at Fort Worth.

Anthropology of Education
Alicia Re Cruz and Mariela Nuñez-Janes represent this area, which focuses on schools and the educational process. Connections between culture and education are explored in a variety of contexts, with attention to teaching and learning issues. Both faculty members focus on the challenges of bilingual education.

Environmental and Ecological Anthropology
Karine Narahara and Jamie Johnson represent this area, which examines human relationships with their environments. This includes climate change forecasting and adaptation, political ecology, environmental justice, the cultural politics of protected spaces, extraction and conflict, as well as the environmental epistemologies foundational to how we interact with the world around us. This emphasis has applications in the realms of environmental management, urban planning, policy writing, and activist environmental organizing.

Urban Anthropology
Andrew Nelson, Mariela Nuñez-Janes, and Jamie Johnson represent this area. Urban anthropology studies social phenomena in cities with an emphasis on the relationship between spatial, cultural, and political-economic structures and the everyday life of people. It has applications in the arenas of policy, planning, social and health services, education, labor and migration, technology, business, ecology and community relations.

Faculty's Applied Interests and Consulting Specialties

For more information on our graduate and undergraduate degrees, please visit our undergraduate overview and graduate overview pages or email us at