Palaeoanthropology and Palaeolithic Archaeology MSc
The Palaeoanthropology and Palaeolithic Archaeology MSc, run jointly by the Institute of Archaeology and Department of Anthropology, brings together the expertise of the two departments to provide graduate students with an integrated training in the biological and archaeological aspects of human evolutionary studies.
Mode of study
- Full-time 1 year
- Part-time 2 years
- UK/EU Full-time: £8,750
- UK/EU Part-time: £4,400
- Overseas Full-time: £17,000
- Overseas Part-time: £8,500
- All applicants: 1 August 2014
More details in Application section.
What will I learn?
Students gain training in research methods and a scientific grounding in the principles, content and practice of palaeoanthropology and palaeolithic archaeology, including: fossil and archaeological evidence of human evolution; temporal and spatial patterns and processes of evolutionary and environmental change; and the evolutionary background for understanding human adaptation and culture.
Why should I study this degree at UCL?
The UCL Institute of Archaeology and Department of Anthropology have considerable staff expertise in the fields of palaeoanthropology and palaeolithic archaeology. Staff and research students are currently involved in field projects as well as museum-based studies in Britain, various parts of Europe, the Middle East, and eastern and southern Africa.
Our excellent results in the 2001 and 2008 Research Assessment Exercises show that our two departments are both very highly ranked in the UK.
Situated in central London, the university is within easy access to the British Museum and Natural History Museum and their outstanding palaeontological and archaeological collections.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of one core module (30 credits) four optional modules (60 credits) and a research dissertation (90 credits).
All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 15,000 words.
Teaching and Learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, discussions, seminars, laboratory practicals and student presentations. Assessment is through essays, practical examination and seminar presentations, (depending on the options chosen), and the dissertation.
Further details available on subject website:
A small number of IoA Masters Award bursaries, normally in the region of £1,000, are available each year.
Scholarships available for this department
Further information about funding and scholarships can be found on the Scholarships and funding website.
A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a relevant discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.
Select your country for equivalent alternative requirements
English language proficiency level: Good
How to apply
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.
The deadline for applications is 1 August 2014.
Who can apply?
The programme provides an excellent foundation for graduate study in the fields of palaeoanthropology and palaeolithic archaeology, and is therefore suitable for students wishing to undertake doctoral research in these fields. It will also appeal to graduates with strong interests in the origins and emergence of human societies.
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
- why you want to study Palaeoanthropology and Palaeolithic Archaeology at graduate level
- why you want to study Palaeoanthropology and Palaeolithic Archaeology at UCL
- what particularly attracts you to this programme
- how your personal, academic and professional background meets the demands of a challenging academic programme
- where you would like to go professionally with your degree
A significant number of the graduate students from this programme have gone on to take PhDs at UCL, elsewhere in the UK and in other countries. A number of those have been awarded prestigious scholarships to cover their costs. Other graduates have gone on to work in cultural resource management and museums, and others have used their skills to pursue careers in fields such as teaching and business.
Top career destinations for this programme
- Institute of Archaeology, UCL, PhD Student, 2011
- Cotswold Archaeology, Field Archaeologist, 2010
- Stanford University, Researcher, 2010
- University of East Anglia, PGCE Religious Studies, 2010
- University of Oxford, MPhil Archaeology, 2010
The skills which students develop include the critical evaluation of scholarship across the discipline, design and management of personal research, primary data collection and analysis, and the preparation of detailed reports/dissertations up to publication standard. Although these will relate to anthropology and archaeology, they are invaluable skills for other areas of employment.
"UCL Archaeology has a great atmosphere for both staff and students; it's a great place to work, and with so many experts passing through from different countries to give lectures and seminars it is very much the centre of the archaeological world."
Professor Mike Parker Pearson
Professor of British Later Prehistory
"The Institute of Archaeology's library has been an invaluable tool due to the huge amount of material available that is related to our field, and is one of my favourite things about the institute."
Degree: Archaeology MA