• Class Number 2580
  • Term Code 3230
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Dr Ashley Carruthers
    • Dr Guillaume Molle
    • Dr Katharine Balolia
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 21/02/2022
  • Class End Date 27/05/2022
  • Census Date 31/03/2022
  • Last Date to Enrol 28/02/2022
SELT Survey Results

The three disciplines of Anthropology, Archaeology and Biological Anthropology originally stem from a common quest to understand human beings as embodied subjects of culture and evolution. Each of the disciplines shares a core concern with cultural identity, difference and change across time and space, in both material and nonmaterial worlds. They deploy a wide range of theoretical frameworks and methodologies (fieldwork, lab work, data analysis) that in many ways bridge the divide between the humanities, the social sciences and the physical sciences. In introducing students to ways in which the three disciplines approach Nature and Culture, the course will build on the two overarching themes of Body and Environment. Within these, students will investigate key topics and case studies around bipedality, foodways, totemism, migration, archaeological tourism and more. Although materials and methods differ between disciplines, the challenge of the Anthropocene makes it more critical than ever to understand the past, present and future of our societies, and what it is that makes us human. This course provides a unique cross disciplinary perspective on these vital questions.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. demonstrate foundational disciplinary knowledge of anthropology, archaeology and biological anthropology;
  2. understand the diversity of theoretical and methodological frameworks (differences and similarities) across the three disciplines;
  3. demonstrate capacity for critical analysis of case studies and important empirical and conceptual issues relating to human diversity through the various disciplinary lenses; and
  4. evaluate how the disciplines are relevant to a better understanding of past, present and future societies.

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • written comments
  • verbal comments
  • feedback to whole class, groups, individuals, focus group etc

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Introduction to the course and explanation of assessment structure Keywords: Anthropology, Archaeology, Biological Anthropology, multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary, social sciences, physical sciences Case Study: A “three field” perspective on human beings as embodied subjects of culture and evolution
2 What makes us human? Keywords: Biological and cultural evolution, biological and cultural difference, cultural construction of race, natures-cultures, humans and human ancestors Case Study: Cultural and biological difference
3 Natures-Cultures: body and environment Keywords: Natures-cultures, the body, anthropocentrism, biocentrism, environment Case Study: Introducing three field perspectives on body and environment Assessment: 400 word response essay or equivalent
4 Approaches to text and writing in the 3 disciplines Keywords: Text, discourse, metaphor, narrative, ethnography, translation, data, theory, analysis, qualitative, quantitative, comparative, reflexivity, positivism Case Study: Reading and writing in the three disciplines Assessment: 400 word response essay or equivalent
5 Origins of the human body Keywords: Skeleton, origins, primates, arboreality, bipedality, Homo, environmental adaptations, natural selection, body size and shape Case Study: Neanderthal adaptations to a cold environment: Bergmann’s rule and Allen’s rule Assessment: 400 word response essay or equivalent
6 The cultural body Keywords: Primitivism, authenticity, embodiment, foodways, imaginaries, lifestyles Case Study: The “Paleo” movement Assessment: 400 word response essay or equivalent
7 Food, health, medicine and diseases Keywords: Primate diet, nutritional balance, meat eating in human evolution, palaeodiet, ancient medicine, human skeleton, bioarchaeology, palaeopathology Case Study: Paleodiet and Palaeopathology Assessment: 400 word response essay or equivalent
8 Research and methodology in the three fields Keywords: Deductive/inductive reasoning, Fieldwork, excavations, participant observation, interviews, oral history, surveys, archival research, hypotheses, models, sampling, measurements, pilot-study, protocols, laboratory-work, techniques and methods, statistics, data visualization, ethics, good practice Case Study: Research methods in the three disciplines Assessment: 400 word response essay or equivalent
9 People making/occupying environments Keywords: Cultural ecology, Socio-ecosystems, subsistence economy, multispecies, ontologies Case Study: Introducing three field perspectives on people and environments Assessment: 400 word response essay or equivalent
10 Mobility and migrations Keywords: Mobilities, walking, migrating, landscapes, ethnoscapes, borderscapes Case Study: Walking through landscapes; Borderscapes Assessment: 400 word response essay or equivalent
11 Landscapes as palimpsests Keywords: Cultural geography, core and periphery, stratigraphy, Urbanism, development, rituals, monumentality, cultural heritage, tourism, conservation Case Study: Angkor as a palimpsest: city, ruins and postcards... Assessment: 400 word response essay or equivalent
12 Looking at the three fields – final discussion Assessment: 400 word response essay or equivalent

Tutorial Registration

Required, via Wattle

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Learning Outcomes
Weekly 400 word Response Essay or Comparable Task 100 % 1,2,3,4

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the Academic Integrity . In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 100 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Weekly 400 word Response Essay or Comparable Task


  • Beginning in week 3, students will complete a weekly task for this course, finishing in week 12 to make a total of 10 assignments. 
  • In some weeks the assignment will take the form of a 400 word response essay; in others a multiple choice and short answer quiz; and in others a non-written task.
  • The exact requirements for each assessment, including a detailed rubric, will be explained on Wattle and discussed weekly in lectures and tutorials.

Word Limit:

  • 400 per item * 10 items = 4 000 words (or equivalent in non-written assessments).
  • This word count excludes references.

Value: 100%

Grade Calculation:

  • At the end of the course, the Wattle gradebook will drop your lowest three weekly scores.
  • Your final grade will then be based on your top 7 assignments
  • 7 assignments @ 14.29% each = 100%

Maximum Submission:

  • The maximum number of weekly assignments you may submit is 10

Minimum Submission:

  • There is no minimum number of assignments that must be submitted for this course
  • Obviously, if you submit too few assignments, you'll find it mathematically impossible to pass the course
  • If you only submit 7 assignments, the gradebook will automatically exclude the zero scores for the unsubmitted items. In other words, it will consider these your lowest 3 grades.
  • You won't be penalised for only submitting 7 assignments, it will just mean you miss out on the chance to have a few practice runs, or a few off weeks
  • If you submit fewer than 7 assignments, you won't be penalised apart from missing out on these marks in your final grade

Learning Outcomes: This item tests comprehension of course readings, language, case studies and concepts, evaluates your capacity to produce an analysis, and requires prior interactive teamwork, to be done in tutorials.

Due Date: One week subsequent to the relevant lecture 

Return Date: Two weeks subsequent to submission

This is NOT a hurdle item

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically, committing to honest and responsible scholarly practice and upholding these values with respect and fairness.

The ANU commits to assisting all members of our community to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle and Academic Misconduct Rule, uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with.

The Academic Misconduct Rule is in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Very minor breaches of the academic integrity principle may result in a reduction of marks of up to 10% of the total marks available for the assessment. The ANU offers a number of online and in person services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. Visit the Academic Skills website for more information about academic integrity, your responsibilities and for assistance with your assignments, writing skills and study.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Individual assessment tasks may or may not allow for late submission. Policy regarding late submission is detailed below:

  • Late submission not permitted. If submission of assessment tasks without an extension after the due date is not permitted, a mark of 0 will be awarded.
  • Late submission permitted. Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Returning Assignments

Via Wattle gradebook

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Resubmission of Assignments

Not permitted

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

Dr Ashley Carruthers

Research Interests

Mobilities, migration, socio-technical systems, Vietnam

Dr Ashley Carruthers

By Appointment
Dr Guillaume Molle

Research Interests

Dr Guillaume Molle

By Appointment
Dr Katharine Balolia
+6126125 9298

Research Interests

Dr Katharine Balolia

By Appointment

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions