Western Carolina University has a combined Anthropology and Sociology department, with 10 full-time anthropologists on faculty. The program offers undergraduate concentrations in Sociocultural Anthropology and Linguistics, Archaeology, and Forensic and Biological Anthropology.
Experimental Archaeology is offered every 4th semester (odd-numbered years) and has historically focused on questions arising from archaeological research in the southern Appalachians and often focuses on aspects of Cherokee prehistory. Projects have focused on a wide range of technologies, including bone, chipped stone, ground stone, rivercane, ceramics and local clay processing, and cooking. Students often have the opportunity to present their research at the Cherokee Archaeological Symposium and the REARC conferences and to learn from Cherokee artisans and cultural specialists, and university faculty from many departments and laboratories. The images illustrate a recent project where students attempted to replicate a poorly understood exterior surface treatment on early Mississippian pottery from our region.