Graduate education and the role of the physical anthropologist in biomedical teaching and research

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Abstract

There is a place for the physical anthropologist in biomedical teaching and research because of the special and unique skills possessed by this individual. However, eventual success in the health sciences environment requires the student to obtain the knowledge and background for functionally oriented teaching and research. Students interested in a biomedical teaching and research career must prepare themselves methodologically and theoretically. This requires: (1) teaching qualifications, (2) an increased emphasis on methodology and technology, (3) an increased emphasis on research and experimental design, (4) appropriate interdisciplinary courses which provide the background for both teaching and research, (5) increased interaction with graduate faculty active in research, and (6) the latitude to adapt the graduate program to meet these specific needs. Students who finish their graduate training with a marketable skill, and who can apply their unique talents to a specialized area, will have broad appeal in the job market and will considerably strengthen their career opportunities.

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