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Anthropology Masters

The Department of Sociology and Anthropology offers M.S. and M.A. degrees in Anthropology. The masters program is based on the principle that graduate level education in Anthropology is a desirable preparation for a growing number of career orientations. The precise plan of study for each student will be established in consultation with the academic advisor. Graduate students are also expected to enhance their coursework and degree research by engaging in professional development activities such as paper or poster presentations or attendance at academic conferences, campus and community service, and teaching and research assistantships.

Sample positions that our graduates have obtained include teaching, contract archaeology, folklore program coordination, international studies program administration, and research analysis as cultural experts.

Degree Tracks

The focus of graduate education in Anthropology is directed toward two possible tracks: 1) the development of applied anthropologists and 2) advanced training for those planning to pursue a doctoral degree. Students may elect to take courses in a specialty area, or they may pursue a background in general anthropology. Subdisciplinary areas of specialization include cultural anthropology or archaeology. The Anthropology graduate program provides students with the opportunity to expand their existing background and perspectives through instruction and application of research methods and theory. Consequently, the first year of the program is designed to expose students to theory and a variety of research methods.

Application Information

For full consideration for assistantships and tuition waivers, applicants applying for Fall semester entry into the masters program must submit a complete application to the Graduate School by February 15. For full consideration for assistantships and tuition waivers, applicants applying for Spring semester entry into the masters program must submit a complete application to the Graduate School by September 15.

Review of complete applications for full consideration for assistantships and tuition waivers will begin after these deadlines. The online applications for the Anthropology Masters Program and Graduate School can be found on the NDSU Graduate School's web page.

Materials required for the online application to the masters program include:

  • Transcripts
  • A statement of purpose indicating your reasons for pursuing graduate study, specifying your specific research interests/area of focus for study, and your background preparation in that area. Mention any relevant skills or experience that you have acquired and which faculty you wish to work with.
  • Three letters of recommendation are required from persons familiar with your academic achievement and future potential.
  • International students must also submit one of the following test scores: Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), and the Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE Academic).

Masters Program Options

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

Requirements for the Degree

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:

  1. a theory-oriented Anthropology course (such as ANTH 680)
  2. a methods-oriented Anthropology course (such as ANTH 650)
  3. additional coursework to finish the 30-credit requirement (24 credits for thesis, 26 for paper)
  4. a research-based thesis or a comprehensive study paper

The department of Sociology and Anthropology have a graduate handbook: A Guide for Graduate Degree Programs

If you have additional questions regarding the masters program, contact Dr. Pamela Emanuelson, Graduate Committee Coordinator.


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North Dakota State University
Sociology and Anthropology Department: +1 (701) 231-8657
Fax: +1 (701) 231-5118
Campus Address: Minard Hall 428, Fargo, ND 58102
Mailing Address: Dept. 2350, PO Box 6050, Fargo, ND 58108-6050
Site manager: Kate Ulmer

Last Updated: Tuesday, September 18, 2018 10:40:55 AM
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