Theoretical Approaches to Anthropological Research


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Mark is an anthropology student who is doing a project on religious rituals in a Southwestern culture. To guide his research he is using a perspective in anthropology that asserts culture is made up of symbols that the anthropologist can discern. This is known as _____.

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1. Leela is conducting a research project on the role of attending church services among people on a small Pacific island. She is trying to understand the particular role that this practice serves within the culture. The theoretical perspective Leela is employing is most likely _____.

2. _____ is a theoretical perspective that seeks to understand the large patterns of social life.

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About This Quiz & Worksheet

With this worksheet/quiz, you can discern how much you know about the approaches to anthropological research. Topics on the quiz include a type of anthropology that studies cultures through their symbols and the theoretical perspective in use in a given research scenario.

Quiz & Worksheet Goals

You'll be assessed on these key points:

  • The perspective that studies patterns in social life
  • The interpretive approach to how a researcher should understand symbols
  • Explanation of a certain perspective in anthropological research

Skills Practiced

  • Knowledge application - use your knowledge to answer questions about the approaches to anthropological research
  • Information recall - access the knowledge you've gained regarding the way a researcher should approach the studying of a culture's symbols in an interpretive way
  • Making connections - use your understanding of anthropological research to identify the theoretical perspectives in use in given examples

Additional Learning

For more on the subject, consider the accompanying lesson we've called Theoretical Approaches to Anthropological Research. The following topics will be addressed, in particular:

  • The four fields in the discipline of anthropology
  • Definition of ethnography
  • Development of cultural anthropology
  • Binary opposites