American Indian Studies Professor

Teach university students about American Indian people and culture.
picture of American Indian Studies Professor

Quick Stats

Salary Range
$41,000 – $129,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do American Indian Studies Professors do?

As an American Indian Studies Professor, you study and teach the history, culture, language, and religion of American Indians, who lived in America for centuries before European settlers discovered the “New World,” and then claimed it as their own.

Employed in the American Indian Studies department of a college or university — or, if your school lacks one, the History or Anthropology department — you’re at once a Teacher and a cultural steward, charged with developing knowledge about Native American cultures while also honoring them.

Like most Professors, your duties as an American Indian Studies Professor include advising students, planning curriculums, choosing textbooks, preparing syllabi, teaching courses, assigning homework, and giving and grading exams, not to mention performing and presenting — at conferences, in journal articles, and at other venues with your fellow American Indian Studies Professors — research in your field of expertise. Because of your focus on Native Americans, however, everything you do is a unique combination of academic study, cultural literacy, and social advocacy. For instance, you might teach courses on Native American languages, art, literature, music, philosophy, or socio-economics.

Your goal typically isn’t teaching American Indian “trivia.” Instead, it’s giving students an opportunity to see the world through a Native American perspective.

Should I be an American Indian Studies Professor?

You should have a doctoral degree or higher and share these traits:
  • High Achiever: You love the challenge of tackling difficult work.
  • Independent: You enjoy flying solo and doing things your own way.
  • Ready for a Challenge: You jump into new projects with initiative and drive.

  • Also known as: Native American Studies Professor

    How to Become an
    American Indian Studies Professor

    Most American Indian Studies Professors have a Doctorate. Start by getting your Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aaaaq9&chl=||||master%27s+%2821%25%29|doctorate+%2879%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,79
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