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Anthropology Careers

At UCL, anthropology students learn how to think differently and critically about their own society and positionality in the world.

What career does anthropology lead to?

Graduates in social science subjects offer a wide range of skills that are enormously valuable to employers across the public, private and third sectors. This includes their discipline-specific knowledge, critical analysis, problem solving, writing skills, interpersonal communication, and qualitative and quantitative research skills. As reflective thinkers, anthropology graduates in particular bring their ability to question assumptions, understand complex issues holistically, on individual and cultural and societal levels, as well as understand people, institutions and their relationships to the employment arena. These skills are transferrable to a broad range of careers including teaching, social work, the civil service, the ‘not for profit’ sector and development, as well as advertising, the arts, museum curation, media, market research and business.

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What does anthropology teach you to do?

  • See the world differently – a whole new way of thinking
  • Understand things from other people’s points of view
  • Translate between different communities and groups
  • Create original insights about human behaviour and motivation
  • Manage and make sense of social complexity
  • Transform the world in socially and ethically responsible ways

What kind of jobs does this equip you for?

  • Jobs which demand a capacity to think independently
  • Jobs that deal with complex and difficult data
  • Jobs which demand that you understand other points of view empathetically
  • Jobs which require you to analyse data and information critically

What can I do with an anthropology degree?

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Alex is an Anthropology BSc Alumnus and in this video he talks about his career in a charity and how he's using the skills gained during his anthropology degree.

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Isaiah is an Anthropology with a Year Abroad alumnus and in this video he shares what an Antropreneur is, his year at Harvard University and his job at Airbnb.

 

UCL Anthropology Careers Support

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Anthropology in the Professional World | UX Research & RAI

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Anthropology in the Professional World | Ipsos Mori

Central UCL Careers Support

  • Dedicated Careers Liaison for Anthropology
  • UCL Careers Liaison workshops – CV writing, internships, finding a job
  • 1:1 sessions with Careers Service during degree and after graduation
  • Interactive Sessions – Mock aptitude tests, personality profiling, using LinkedIn
  • Talent Bank
  • Global Internship Programmes
  • Global Citizenship Employability
  • Careers Essential Talks, Workshops and E-Learning (succeeding at interviews, writing successful applications)

Sally Brown, careers consultant at UCL Careers, has worked with the Anthropology department for several years and walks you through the careers services we offer.

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Undergraduate careers services

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Postgraduate (Taught) careers services
other RESOURCES

Careers@Anthropology

As a student with us, you will have access to the Anthropology Careers Moodle pages where we host a range of specific, tailored resources and events to help you make the most of your anthropology degree and to support you in your next steps.

Public Diplomacy & Global Communication MA

This MA programme ran for two cohorts in 2018/19 and 2019/20. It is currently paused with a view to resumption following discussions on how best to position it among the various UCL departments to which it is relevant, and after the current acute phase of the coronavirus pandemic.

Graduate destinations have included the UK’s Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs; Turnout Nation; Cratus Communications; MHP Communications; OSB Consulting; returning to the Ministries of Foreign Affairs from which they came; and further study.

‘UCL’s Public Diplomacy and Global Communication course was a great mix of international relations, the study of soft power and persuasion, and communication techniques, all while leaving space for students to dive deep into a wide variety of topics for their dissertations. If you’re interested in learning from diplomats and landing a career in politics or communication, I would highly recommend this course’ (Chloe, 2018/19)

The MA programme was designed and convened by a senior British diplomat and Anthropology PhD and the teaching drew on experts in public diplomacy, journalism and advocacy including former and serving diplomats. It combined an innovative mix of theory and practice, inter-disciplinarity, diplomacy and communication, including modules from Anthropology and Political Science and engagement with both academics and practitioners.

The core course, Public Diplomacy & Global Communication: History, Theory and Practice, provided opportunities to learn about soft power, digital diplomacy, the role of non-state actors in diplomacy, ‘nudge’, propaganda online and off, and other themes from this rapidly evolving area of the social sciences. It also offered training in global public engagement, for example public speaking; working with the press and media; practical film making for social media usage, and internet research skills.

Weekly seminars included speakers such as the General Manager of the Premier League Charitable Fund; Director of the European Council for Foreign Relations; Home Affairs Editor of The Telegraph; Chief Executive of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association; Director of Communications at DEXEU; UCL’s Vice Provost/former High Commissioner to South Africa; Director of Partnerships at tech start-up Improbable; and from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office the Head of the Policy Unit; Director of the Diplomatic Academy; Head of Soft Power & Strategic Engagement; a former Director National Security, former Chief Historian and others.

Students also studied three optional modules from the Anthropology or Political Science departments, including the Anthropology of Social Media; Risk, Power & Uncertainty; the EU in the World; Theories of International Relations; Journalism Writing Skills for International Affairs; Radio & Podcasting.  Over the third term and summer students planned, researched and completed dissertations on topics of their choice, in most cases working with a practitioner mentor from diplomatic or related communication circles.

Contact: Dr Cornelia Sorabji, c.sorabji@ucl.ac.uk