MSc in Social and Cultural Anthropology
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UCL is one of the highest rated universities in the world, coming fourth after MIT, Cambridge and Harvard in the 2012-13 annual Times Higher Education QS World University Rankings.
Our research platform on Subjectivity and the Cultural Imagination (SCI) brings together anthropologists working on the role of the imagination in diverse social and cultural scales.
The Laboratory for the Ethnography of the UK (LabUK) is a research platform for the study of contemporary British society and culture through an anthropological lens.
About the Programme
Five things that make this programme unique
While a number of other departments in the UK and elsewhere offer Masters’ courses in socio-cultural anthropology, five key features distinguish our programme:
- It includes regular Academic Tutorials throughout the year, in which students develop in-depth discussions with staff members individually or, where appropriate, in small groups of three or four. Meeting fortnightly during the two teaching terms, Academic Tutorials are the prime forum in which staff members help students develop their ideas for their individual dissertation projects, which may involve original ethnographic fieldwork in the UK or abroad.
- It provides core teaching in two ‘study tracks’, which students choose in Term 2. Track I, titled Theory, Ethnography and Comparative Analysis, continues the in-depth instruction in core anthropological topics provided in Term 1, and is intended for students interested in anthropology for its own sake, often with a view to pursuing a PhD later. Track II, titled Theory, Ethnography and Professional Practice, explores the relevance of anthropological research to professional practices (e.g. government, NGOs, development, business, the arts), and is intended for students who are interested in bringing their anthropological training to bear on their subsequent work in other professional fields.
- As well as opportunities for fieldwork, the course provides opportunities for professional placements and internships and other volunteering opportunities in collaboration with UCL’s very active Careers Service, who help students match up their individual aspirations with potential employers seeking staff for paid placements and/or applicants for unpaid internships in the charity sector.
- It offers a uniquely wide range of specialist options, including those taught by staff in social anthropology as well as colleagues in medical anthropology, digital anthropology, visual and material culture, human ecology, and evolutionary anthropology. This reflects UCL Anthropology’s distinctly broad-based approach, in which in-depth research and training in social anthropology is complemented by an understanding of other sub-fields within the discipline.
- It allows students to participate in a plethora of Reading and Research Groups (RRGs). Conceived as open spaces for the exchange of ideas on topics ranging from Chinese philosophy and the work of Gilles Deleuze to the anthropological study of artistic performances or the contemporary sense of crisis, the RRGs are central to the collective intellectual life of the Department. In addition to their regular informal meetings, RRGs organise public events such as workshops, debates and conferences.
Studying Social and Cultural Anthropology at UCL
The MSc in Social and Cultural Anthropology is a flagship of cutting edge, research-led training in socio-cultural anthropology. Offering a flexible programme of study in the heart of London, the course provides a thorough grounding in anthropological theory and analysis, an understanding of ethnographic approaches to the study of contemporary society, and a strong foundation in anthropological research methods and their interface with professional practices in the world at large.
Comprising approximately 30 students, both full-time (1 year) and part-time (2 years), our student body is thoroughly diverse. Students from across the world, and of different ages and stages of career, come to form a tightknit community during the course of their studies, and participate fully in the dynamic research environment of the Anthropology Department and UCL at large.
While offering intensive further training at postgraduate level for students who already have a background in anthropology, the course is designed also for students with little or no prior training in the field. Indeed, most of our students come to us with degrees in a range of other disciplines (from history, maths or music, to business management, architecture or the law), often after having worked in different professional fields for a number of years.
Regardless of their background or prior training, students leave this course with in-depth training in socio-cultural anthropology and a firm grasp of social scientific research and methods more broadly. They are equipped to deploy these insights and skills in diverse subsequent career paths, including further research in anthropology at Doctoral level. Indeed, a sizeable proportion of our students go onto PhD programmes in anthropology, whether staying on at UCL, or joining other leading international departments including, among others, Harvard, California, Cambridge, LSE, Oxford, Paris, and the Max Planck Institute. Others go on to pursue careers in a host of fields, including the civil service, the media, journalism, international NGOs, consultancies, the arts, and business.
More information generally applicable to all postgraduate programmes within the department can be found on the Masters Degree web page of UCL Anthropology. Feel free to contact the course Tutor, Dr Martin Holbraad (email@example.com), with any questions relating to the content and structure of the course. For questions relating to the administration of your application contact our Postgraduate Taught Programme Officer, James Emmanuel (firstname.lastname@example.org). For more information visit the Contacts page.
Page last modified on 10 feb 13 22:43