Anthropology Education Committee

Anthropology Education Committee (Inactive)

AEC Charge

Objectives: The AEC (Anthropology Education Committee) is charged with promoting the high quality, effective, and equitable teaching of anthropology at all levels as a means of increasing public understanding of anthropology.

Duration of Committee: Permanent committee.

Committee Reports to: The Executive Board.

Responsibilities: The AEC will choose a focus for its work from among the following responsibilities:

  • To identify, develop, and promote high quality curriculum for the teaching of anthropology in K-12, community college, undergraduate, professional, graduate, adult education and museum programs.
  • To identify, develop, and promote effective methods for the teaching of anthropology in K-12, community college, undergraduate, graduate, adult education and museum programs.
  • To promote the relevance of anthropology as a tool for understanding and improving schools and schooling.
  • To use AAA meetings, the AAA website, Section newsletters, and other media to diffuse information about anthropology curricula and teaching methods.
  • To promote the presence of anthropology in K-12 education by supporting pre- and in-service programs in anthropology teacher training, encouraging the state or provincial certification of teachers in anthropology, and supporting anthropology as a high school elective with advanced placement status.
  • To coordinate education-related initiatives of the AAA, its Sections and its Committees.
  • To work with other educational organizations, such as the National Council for Social Studies (NACC) and the National Council for the Teaching of Science (NCTS) to enhance the public understanding of anthropology.
  • To identify sources of sustainable funding for the support of education initiatives such as an Educational Outreach Center (and other forms of support for educational outreach), mentoring programs, anthropologist-in-residence programs, and other activities endorsed by the AEC.
  • To increase the acceptance of anthropology as a social science major and recognition of anthropology as meeting social science requirements by State Boards of Education.
  • To liaison with the appropriate Sections (e.g. the Council on Anthropology & Education, the Society for Anthropology in Community Colleges).

Committee Membership and Method of Appointment:
6 members, including the Chair.
3 year terms
Committee members are appointed by the AAA President in consultation with the Council on Anthropology & Education and the current Chair of the AEC.
President and President-elect serve ex-officio.
Chair is elected by the Committee from within the Committee.

Product: Annual report to the Executive Board and the Long-Range Planning Committee.

Meetings and Schedule: One formal meeting, at the AAA Annual Meeting. Additional meetings may be scheduled depending on needs and funding.

Adopted by AAA Executive Board
May 22, 2004

To read a history of what anthropologists have done to improve the teaching of anthropology in K-12 and community college education. 
Paul Erickson has written a summary of many such efforts entitled “Past Efforts by AAA to Promote Anthropology Education” (in the September 2000 issue of the Anthropology News).  This article provides valuable grounding and awareness of past efforts so that we don’t "reinvent the wheel" as well as insights into what has not been well covered.

Committee Links