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ANTHRO 220 - Magic, Witchcraft & Religion - Jessica Proctor

Course:Magic, Witchcraft & Religion
Professor:Jessica Proctor
  • Online
Course Length:
  • 5 Week


Welcome to Magic, Witchcraft & Religion

Course Description

Explores the cross-cultural phenomena of religion, witchcraft and magical behavior from an anthropological perspective and how it can affect social controls, cultural change, and healing practices. Topics include mythology, rituals, altered states of consciousness, the soul, religious specialists and modern religious movements. 

What to Expect in this Course

Course Guidelines & Key Strategies for Success

This course is designed to take about 12 - 18 hours per week (on average). Please plan to:  

  • Each module is designed to take one week.  This course is both online and short-term.  We are covering 16-weeks of information in just 5 weeks.  This means you can expect to devote at least 3X the amount of work each week (in comparison to a full semester length course.
  • Set aside time each week to view all module materials and submit required work.  
  • I recommend that you devote at least  2 - 3 hours to working on this course each day (Monday – Friday) to avoid an overwhelming amount of work to complete over the weekend. 
  • I HIGHLY recommend that you do not wait until Sundays to start working on your work for this course.  This will not leave you with any cushion time.  
  • Log in regularly each week to check for announcements, grades, messages, and comments.  
  • Participate in online discussions and respond thoughtfully to your peers.  
  • Please email or message me in Remind if you need an extension longer than 72 hours past the deadline.


Canvas Requirements to Access Course   

We will be using Canvas for this course, so you will need access to a computer and Internet. Canvas is also mobile-friendly and can be used on your phone or tablet through the Canvas Mobile App or a mobile browser!  

Software Requirements

  • Word Processor: You will need to be able to create documents. If you do not have access to Microsoft Word, you can use a free word processing program, such as Google Docs or LibreOffice.
  • If you are using Google Docs, please remember to save your final work as a PDF.  The only file types I will be able to view on Canvas - Microsoft Word, PDF or JPEG files.  
  • PDF Reader: You will need to be able to view PDFs for this class. You can download a free PDF reader here, if you don't have one already on your computer: Adobe Reader.

Other Recommended Materials for Success

  • It is recommended that you have a folder (either physical folder or electronic folder) to keep all of your materials for this course organized.  
  • Optional: Access to a printer if you prefer to print out your worksheets and hand write your answers.  
  • Genius Scan is a helpful application that you can download for free on your smartphone to scan documents.  
  • We will be using the Remind App. This is a free app that will allow us to text message each other in real time without the need to exchange private phone numbers.  This is the best way to reach me in the evening or over a weekend.  

Late Submissions and Assignment Corrections

  • Please submit your work on time.  Your timeliness helps me to plan and manage my own time when grading and providing feedback on your assignments and is much appreciated.  
  • If you forget to complete an assignment (oops, these things can happen), I will still accept it for up to 72 hours after the deadline. 
  • If an emergency or personal challenge prevents you from submitting an assignment, please reach out to me via email or Remind message if you need more than a 72-hour extension from the original due date.  
  • For the Concept Review Packets and Group Discussion Posts, I will accept these assignments up to 72 hours past the due date.  For example, if the assignment is due by Sunday 11:59 pm, then I will still accept the assignment through Wednesday 11:59 pm.  
  • Unit Exams are the only assignment that I cannot accept late, however, exams will be open for at least 72 hours to allow you to take the exam at a time the is convenient in your schedule.  

Types of Assessments

How Will I be Graded in this Course?

Concept Review Packets (20% of final grade) 

  • There will be ten Concept Review Packets (each worth 10 points).  
  • These assignments are designed help both the student and the professor ‘check-in’ to make sure that you fully understanding the concepts of each unit before taking an exam.  
  • Each week will have 2 - 3 review packets.  They will be due by Sunday at 11:59 pm. However, you are encouraged to submit these packets earlier in the week whenever possible.  
  • No credit will be given to any examples of plagiarism and/or identical assignments.  
  • Concept Review Packets may be submitted up to 72 hours past the deadline without a point penalty.  If you need a longer extension, then you should email me PRIOR to the original deadline to request an extension. Percentage of Final Grade: 100 points (20% of final grade)  

Group Discussion Posts (28% of final grade) 

  • There will be seven required discussions throughout the semester, each worth a total of 20 points. 
  • Each post should be at least 300 words and should cite at least three academic sources from the module (such as reading, lecture and film materials).
  • We will be using a “hook format” to engage in our discussion.
  • You will be placed into a discussion group with five students.
  • The first student to respond in the discussion question will answer the original prompts in the discussion directions and add in a “hook question” at the end of their post.
  • The next student will respond to the “hook question” proposed by the previous student.  
  • If you cannot respond with 300 words and cite at least three sources from the module (reading, lecture, film, etc.) based on the “hook question”, then you may also answer one or several of the original prompts from the professor found in the discussion directions.
  • Discussion posts may be submitted up to 72 hours past the deadline without a point penalty.  If you need a longer extension, then you should email me PRIOR to the original deadline to request an extension.  
  • Percentage of Final Grade: 140 points (28% of final grade)   

Religious Movement Project (12% of final grade)  

You will research a religious movement of your choice.  You will write a short paper or put together a PowerPoint presentation on your research.  You will be required to cite at least 3 – 4 academic resources from the course (textbook, articles, films, etc.)  More details will be provided in the assignment description and rubric.  Total: 60 points (12% of final grade)   

Midterm and Final Exam (40%)  

  • There will be a Midterm and a Final Exam each worth 100 points.    
  • Each exam will consist of 50 multiple choice and true/false questions.  
  • You will be permitted ONE attempt and you will have 90 minutes to take each exam.  
  • The exams will be unlocked for 72 hours to allow you to take the exam at a time the works in your schedule.  After the exam deadline has passed, I will post the answers to the exam for 24 hours.  
  • Percentage of Final Grade: 200 points (40% of final grade)  

Textbook Information

We will be using an OER (free) textbook in this course.

Title: Beliefs: An Open Invitation to Magic, Witchcraft & Religion by

Authors: Amanda Zunner-Keating and colleagues (Zunner-Keating et al. 2021)

Links to access the textbook for free (Direct links also provided in the Canvas shell):

Beliefs textbook via Pressbooks

Beliefs textbook via Medium

Beliefs textbook via Soundcloud (audio lectures will be through Soundcloud)

Other Relevant Course Information

If your prefer a hard copy of the textbook, the library does offer printing options for a low cost.  

Additional Resources


This course can be accessed on the first day of class via Canvas at Log into Canvas using your CanyonsID single sign-on:

  • CanyonsID Username is your COC student email address (Ex:
  • CanyonsID Password is your COC student email password

Please visit the Get to Know Your Online Classroom page for help logging into Canvas and for tips on using Canvas and Zoom. Canvas Chat Support is also available 24/7 for any Canvas related issues.

Online Education

Check out the Online Education website for more information on a variety of topics that can help you be a successful online student such as: exam proctoring, learning styles, computer skills, and tips for student success. If this is your first online course, feel free to take our online learning readiness assessment to assess your skills.

The Learning Center (TLC)

The TLC provides FREE online tutoring resources to COC students!

Academic Accommodation Center (AAC)

College of the Canyons AAC provides educational services and access for eligible students with documented disabilities who intend to pursue coursework at COC. A variety of programs and services are available which afford eligible students with disabilities the opportunity to participate fully in all aspects of the college programs and activities through appropriate and reasonable accommodations. For more information on their services visit the Academic Accomodation Center website.

Online Counseling

The Counseling Department offers appointments online. You can schedule an appointment by visiting the Online Counseling website. Counselors can help you map out a plan to reach your educational goals as well as advise you on course selection and registration.

Management of Stress and Mental Health

Often the pressure on our students is very strong, involving academic commitments, relationships, outside jobs and family pressure to name a few. The staff and faculty of College of the Canyons are here to see you succeed academically and care about your emotional and physical health. You can learn more about the broad range of confidential student services, including counseling and mental health services available on campus by visiting the Student Health & Wellness Center in the Student Services Building (across from the bookstore). The phone number is 661-362-3259 that you can call 24/7. You can also e mail for an appointment at At the Canyon Country Campus the Health Center will be in the new Student Services Building.

Also, the National Suicide & Crisis Lifeline number is now 988. All students at COC are encouraged to enter that phone number in their cells. You can call it when you, or someone you know, is having thoughts of suicide or is in severe distress.

You can also now use the Crisis Text Line: Just text "Courage" to 741741. Someone will get back to you immediately. Its free, 24/7, and confidential.

Veterans Resource Center

The College of the Canyons Veterans Resource Center is a department within the Student Services Division at the college, created to help veterans and veteran dependents with applying to College of the Canyons, enrolling in classes, and requesting VA Education or Vocational Benefits. For more information please visit the Veterans Resource Center website, email or phone (661) 362-3469.


The Library provides live online and in-person research help, access to a full range of e-resources and physical materials that support the curriculum, individual and group study areas, and much more!

Last updated: 10/12/2023 Sub#: 1365