Biological Anthropologist

Research how the human body has physically evolved over time.

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$31,000 – $89,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Biological Anthropologists do?

No matter when and no matter where you are on Earth, humans have always been and will always be changing, their bodies and brains constantly adapting to the environment. Biological Anthropologists study how the human body grows and reacts to change. Unlike Cultural Anthropologists who are concerned with social movements and psychology, your focus as a Biological Anthropologist is on the physical form and its evolution.

With all of humanity (and some apes as well) to study, you have no trouble choosing subjects. And since they can be both alive and fossilized, there aren’t many areas you can find on the planet that won’t yield something fun to research. In fact, as a Biological Anthropologist you have the opportunity to travel the globe, from Latin America to Africa to the Pacific, to apply your knowledge of genetics and the human body to the data you collect.

Then again, your discipline isn’t just about gathering information; you also use the good ol’ scientific method every day. Just like when you’re setting up an experiment with Mentos and Mountain Dew in your own living room, your whole endeavor starts with a “What if?” You develop a hypothesis, whether it’s about dental patterns in ancient Mayans, or a growth hormone found in your town’s cola factory, then you conduct research and see if you can prove or disprove your theory.

Places like hospitals, universities, and even companies that deal with human development are all in need of people who, like you, understand the human body and how it interacts with the ever-changing world around it.

Should I be a Biological Anthropologist?

You should have a master's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • High Achiever: You love the challenge of tackling difficult work.
  • Flexible: You're open to change and think variety is the spice of life.
  • Logical Thinker: You take a step-by-step approach to analyze information and solve problems.

  • Also known as: Behavioral Scientist, Medical Anthropology Director

    How to Become a
    Biological Anthropologist

    Most Biological Anthropologists have a Master's degree. Start by getting your Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aaaa9u&chl=||||master%27s+%2857%25%29|doctorate+%2843%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,57
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