Concentration in Biological Anthropology

Curriculum Checksheet

Courses and Syllabi

Bioanthro News


Forensic Anthropology Summer Camp  NEW


Dr. G. Robbins Schug's Website


Dr. Susan Lappans's Website


Anthropology Department Website




Biological anthropology is the study of primate biology in evolutionary perspective. The sub-discipline of biological anthropology includes many diverse fields of inquiry including primatology, molecular evolution and paleoanthropology, bioarchaeology, human variation, adaptation, and behavioral ecology, evolutionary medicine, and forensic anthropology. The curriculum at Appalachian is focused in three mains areas: evolutionary and biocultural theory, primate behavioral ecology, and human biocultural adaptations in the Holocene (bioarchaeology). Undergraduate research is an important part of our curriculum. Recently, students completed a project to identify human remains in the burned fragments of bone from the Donner Party campsite and currently students are working on projects in paleopathology and bone histology. Recent graduates from our program have gone on to graduate school in forensic anthropology and bioarchaeology at institutions worldwide, including University College London, UNC Chapel Hill, Texas State San Marcos, Central Florida University, SUNY Binghamton, and Michigan State University.


Students interested in Biological Anthropology should arrange to meet with Dr. Robbins Schug, Dr. Lappan, or Dr. Chin-hsin Liu to discuss research ideas and future plans. Dr. Lappan (416 Sanford Hall) is a primatologist with research focused on gibbons, their behavior, ecology, evolution, and conservation.  Dr. Robbins Schug (401 Sanford Hall) is a bioarchaeologist with research focused on climate and culture change and the evolution of infectious diseases in human populations living in South Asia in the latter half of the Holocene. Dr. Chin-hsin Liu is a bioarchaeologist who specializes in isotopic analysis as a tool for understanding human health and biocultural adaptations in prehistoric Thailand.