Anselm studied at the University of Virginia in 1935, where he received his Bachelor of Science in Biology in 1939. From there he went to the University of Chicago, where he received his Master of Arts in sociology in 1942 and his Doctor of Philosophy in the same field in 1945. It was also there where he studied symbolic interactionism under Herbert Blumer.
From 1944 to 1947, Strauss was on the faculty of Lawrence College. From there he moved to Indiana University in 1946, and was there until 1952; in 1949, he published a very influential book, "Social Psychology." That volume was translated into Swedish, German and Japanese and the eighth edition in English was published in 1999.
In 1952, Strauss returned to the University of Chicago as assistant professor. During that time, he worked with Professor Everett Hughes, and became associated with a group of colleagues who would become known as the "Second Chicago School." In 1960, he went to the School of Nursing at the University of California, San Francisco, where he founded the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences. He chaired the department until 1987, although even as a professor emeritus he continued his research and teaching activities. During his time as chair, he was a consultant to the World Health Organization in 1962 and 1970.
Between 1955 and 1980, he was an invited visiting professor at the universities of Frankfurt and Konstanz in Germany, Cambridge and Manchester in England, Paris in France, and Adelaide in Australia.
American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Dr. Strauss gained a reputation as an innovative thinker.
For 56 Anselm was married to a woman named Frances.