DSST General Anthropology Exam

Anthropology is the study of humanity – from our basic physical traits to the more complex questions of culture and society. If you already know a lot about anthropology, you may want to consider taking the DSST exam to receive college credit without using time and money for the classroom.
DSST is a prior learning assessment program, meaning that it measures what you already know. Many students choose to take DSST exams as a way of satisfying requirements for credit hours, freeing up time to take more challenging and interesting classes. The DSST General Anthropology exam counts as three lower-level credit hours. You will need to check with your college or university before registering to take the exam, to make sure your college accepts DSST for credit and to confirm what your school requires for a passing score.
The DSST General Anthropology exam covers these 10 topics:

  1. Anthropology as a Discipline, Branches and Methodologies
  2. Various Theoretical Perspectives
  3. Physical Anthropology
  4. Archaeology
  5. Nature of Culture
  6. Social Organization
  7. Economic Organization
  8. Political Organization
  9. Religion
  10. Modernization and Application of Anthropology.

For a more detailed outline of the DSST General Anthropology exam, be sure to check out a DSST General Anthropology study guide, which provides sample questions and other helpful resources.
Although the DSST is meant to measure what you already know, it would be good for you to review an outline of the exam. One of the best ways to study is to compare the outline from the DSST General Anthropology study guide with the chapter outlines from current anthropology textbooks.

DSST General Anthropology Practice Questions

1. Participant observation is a research method that is MOST likely to be used in which of the following subfields of anthropology?
A. Physical anthropology
B. Cultural anthropology
C. Linguistics
D. Archaeology
2. A study that compares and contrasts the modern kinship structures of Southeast Asian societies would be BEST categorized as which of the following types of research?
A. Ethnographic
B. Ethnological
C. Archaeological
D. Physical
3. Primary sources are LEAST likely to be used in which of the following anthropological subfields?
A. Linguistics
B. Archaeology
C. Paleoanthropology
D. Cultural anthropology
4. Julian Steward is most closely associated with the argument that:
A. Cultural change is induced, at least in part, by humans’ adaptation to the environment
B. Human behavior must be understood within the context of culture
C. All social structures share certain universal laws
D. All societies pass through comparable stages of development
5. The theories of cultural relativism and cultural determinism are BEST described as:
A. Historically at odds with one another
B. Synonymous
C. Examples of anthropological explanations for societal change
D. Similar in the sense that they view culture as an important influence on human behavior
6. According to the theory of Mendelian inheritance, individuals have how many factors (genes) for each trait?
A. One, the factor consisting of the genes passed down from both the father and the mother
B. Two, one gene from the father and one from the mother
C. Four, two genes from the father and two from the mother
D. The number of genes varies depending upon the trait.
7. Which of the following statements correctly describes the relationship between an individual’s genotype and phenotype, according to the theory of Mendelian inheritance?
A. An individual’s genotype entirely determines the individual’s phenotype
B. An individual’s genotype is the product of both the individual’s phenotype and environmental factors
C. An individual’s phenotype is the product of both the individual’s genotype and environmental factors
D. Genotypes and phenotypes are unrelated
8. A genetic mutation that occurs because a mistake is made when a person’s cells replicate, or is due to environmental factors like radiation exposure, is called a
A. De novo mutation
B. Somatic mutation
C. Hereditary mutation
D. Spontaneous mutation
9. Which of the following processes is MOST likely to have a negative impact on the diversity of a gene pool?
A. Adaptive radiation
B. Genetic mutation
C. Gene migration
D. Selective breeding
10. Which of the following is NOT true of genetic drift?
A. It is usually the result of variations in blood chemistry
B. It is often precipitated by environmental factors such as geographic separation
C. It can result in the formation of new species
D. It can precipitate genetic migration
DSST General Anthropology Practice Questions Answer Key


Last Updated: June 18, 2021