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Graduate School



Department Chair

Dr. Jeff Clark

Department Location

Minard Hall Rm. 428

 E-mail Address

Telephone Number

(701) 231-8657

Degrees Offered

M.A., M.S.

Application Deadline

Applicants who seek funding must apply by February 15 for fall semester and September 15 for spring semester.

English Proficiency Requirements

TOEFL ibT 100

Program Description  

The Department of Sociology and Anthropology offers an M.S. and M.A. degree in Anthropology. The program centers on human herit­ age past, present and future, cultural and material and it is based on the principle that graduate level education in Anthropology is a desira­ ble preparation for a growing number of career orientations. The pre­ cise plan of study for each student is established in consultation with the academic advisor. Graduate students are also expected to en­ hance their coursework and degree research by engaging in profes­ sional deevelopment activities such as paper or poster presentations and or atttendance at academic conferences, campus and community ser­ vice, and teaching and research assistantships. Sample positions that our graduates have obtained include university and college teaching, contract archaeology, folklore program coordination, international studies administration, National Park Service archaeology, not­for­profit program event coordinationmanagement, teaching English in other countriesabroad, and research analysis as cultural experts.    

The focus of graduate education in Anthropology is directed toward both the development of applied an­ thropologists and the advanced training of those seeking to pursue a doctoral degree. Students may elect to take courses in a specialty area, or they may pursue a background in general anthropology. Ar­ eas of specialization include cultural anthropology and archeology.  

The Anthropology graduate program provides students with the opportunity to expand their background and perspectives in research methods and theory. Consequently, the first year of the program is designed to expose students to anthropological theory and a variety of research methods. Research facili­ties include the Archaeology Technologies Laboratory and Anthropology Materials Laboratory.  

Two program options are available for students. In the thesis option, students work on a research­based thesis. Students typically test theoretical assumptions using primary or secondary data. The compre­ hensive study option is designed for students who wish to combine their studies with some type of spe­ cialized field or internship experience. Students electing this option are required to complete a comprehensive study paper related to their experience, such as evaluating a program.  

Students in the Anthropology graduate program benefit from a favorable faculty-­to-­student ratio.

Admission Requirements  

The Anthropology graduate program is open to qualified graduates of universities and colleges of recog­ nized standing. To be admitted with full standing to the program, the applicant must meet the Graduate School's requirements and have adequate preparation in anthropology.  

Financial Assistance  

Teaching assistantships are available to qualified applicants. Research assistantships may also be available, contingent on faculty research funds. Applicants for assistantships are considered on the ba­ sis of scholarship and potential to undertake advanced study and research.  

Degree Requirements  

The masters degree (M.A. or M.S.) in Anthropology credit requirements consists of a minimum 30 credits (for the thesis option) or 35 credits (for the paper option), of which 16 must be didactic credits. Core requirements include the following:

  • Successfully complete a theory­oriented Anthropology course (such as ANTH 680)
  • Successfully complete a methods­oriented Anthropology course (such as ANTH 650)
  • Complete additional coursework to finish the 30­credit requirement (24 for thesis, 26 for paper)
  • Complete a research­based thesis or a comprehensive study paper and pass an oral defense of the thesis or paper administered by the student's supervisory committee.  

Click here for course descriptions.


Jeffrey T. Clark, Ph.D.
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1987
Research Interests: Archaeology, digital archaeology, paleoenvironmental studies, archaeological method/theory, heritage and material culture, Oceania, North America 

Thomas J. Riley, Ph.D.
University of Hawaii, 1973
Research Interests: Archaeology, archaeological theory, agricultural systems, Polynesia, Micronesia, Eastern North America 

Katherine Lafrenz Samuels, Ph.D.
Stanford University, 2010
Research Interests: Cultural heritage, archaeological ethnography, democracy, development, the environment, rights, place­making; transnationalism, Middle East and North Africa, Spain 

Joy Sather­-Wagstaff, Ph.D.
University of Illinois at Urbana ­ Champaign, 2007
Research Interests: Cultural anthropology, visual anthropology, sociolinguistics, tourism, violence/disasters, museum studies, cultural heritage and memory, North America, Latin America and the Caribbean 


Travis Kitch, M.S.
North Dakota State University, 2003
Research Interests: Archaeology, medical anthropology 

Joshua Samuels, Ph.D.
Stanford University, 2013
Research Interests: Historical archaeology, ethnographic archaeology, archaeology of the recent past, heritage ethics, landscape archaeology, GIS, post-conflict reconstruction, totalitarianism, colonialism, cultural resource management, Italy 

Emeritus Faculty

Bill B. Brunton, Ph.D.
Washington State University, 1974
Research Interests: Cultural anthropology, shamanism, religion, North American Indians, intergroup relations 

Timothy J. Kloberdanz, Ph.D.
Indiana University, 1986
Research Interests: Cultural anthropology, expressive culture and folklore, anthropological theory, Indians of the Plains, peoples of Europe, ethnicity, ethnic groups and heritage

Student Focused. Land Grant. Research University.

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NDSU Graduate School
Phone: +1 (701) 231-7033
Campus address:  106 Putnam Hall
Physical/delivery address:  NDSU Graduate School/106 Putnam Hall/1349 12th Avenue Northwest/Fargo, ND 58102
Mailing address:  NDSU Dept. 2820/PO Box 6050/Fargo, ND 58108
Page manager: NDSU Graduate School

Last Updated: Tuesday, January 28, 2014 8:14:48 PM