Graduate Minor in Native American Studies


Jemez dancers perform at the University Museum, Spring 2015

The purpose of the Native American Studies Graduate Minor is to:

  • Provide an opportunity for all students to learn about Native American cultures and societies,
  • Facilitate research and other creative activities that concern Native American peoples and that have potential benefit for them,
  • Serve the University and State of New Mexico in ways that support and illuminate the rich heritage of Native American peoples.

NAS focuses on Native American cultures and societies, deals with contemporary and historical experiences of American Indians, and examines the contributions of Indigenous peoples to life in the United States and other American nations. This specialization field has developed in reaction to Western academic views of Native Americans and to the frequently restrictive, assimilationist approach within universities to issues concerning Native peoples. NAS contributes to a new understanding of Native American cultures and societies from contemporary and historical perspectives. Please contact Dr. Donald D. Pepion (, the NAS advisor, with any questions.

For the minor in anthropology, students are required to complete 9 credits (3 courses) of graduate-level anthropology coursework. A minor in anthropology provides a useful concentration for students developing professional careers in teaching, environmental sciences, international business, community development, health sciences, social work, art, and historic preservation. To qualify for a graduate minor in Native American Studies-Anthropology, students are required to complete 9 credit hours (3 classes) of graduate level courses. To record a minor on a student’s transcript, the minor must be listed on the “Application for Admission to Candidacy,” and the Native American Studies advisor in the Department of Anthropology must sign this form. Graduate students majoring in anthropology may not also earn a minor in the same field. Core courses for the minor are as follows:

  • ANTH 541 Decolonizing Methodologies in Native American Studies
  • ANTH 543 Indigenous Ways of Knowing
  • ANTH 455 Federal Indian Policy

Student participatory learning in Dr. Pepion’s Ethnohistory of the Blackfeet class

Alternative and support classes are identified below in the list of cognate classes, and one class or alternative classes may be substituted with the approval of the student’s M.A. chair and the Coordinator for the Graduate Minor in Native American Studies.

Cognate Area Courses:

  • ENGL 557 American Indian Literatures
  • GOVT 524 American Indian Politics
  • HIST 509 Native American History
  • MSW 564 Social Work with Native American Populations