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University of Colorado Denver College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

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Master's

Degree Requirements


MA students may pursue the thesis or non-thesis option.

Thesis Option: 30 credit hours including four to six thesis hours

  • 5810, Integrating Anthropology (required fall of first year): three credits
  • 5053, Quantitative Methods in Anthropology: three credits (all students must complete or demonstrate competence in this subject)
  • Two core courses each from two of the following three subdisciplines: 12 credits (do not have to be taken sequentially):
  • Archaeology
        • 6307, Contemporary Perspectives in Archaeology: three credits
        • 6317, Archaeological Research Design and Analysis: three credits
  • Biological
        • 6503, Biological Anthropology Core: The Fossil Record: three credits
        • 6513, Biological Anthropology Core: Modern Human Variation: three credits
  • Cultural
        • 6063, Qualitative Research Design and Analysis: three credits
        • 6103, Current Theory in Ethnography: three credits
        • Research Concentrations: six to eight credits
  • Thesis Credit Hours: four to six credits

Non-Thesis: 36 credit hours

  • 5810, Integrating Anthropology (required fall of first year): three credits
  • 5053, Quantitative Methods in Anthropology: three credits (all students must complete or demonstrate competence in this subject)
  • Two core courses each from two of the following three subdisciplines: 12 credits (do not have to be taken sequentially):
    • Archaeology
          • 6307, Contemporary Perspectives in Archaeology: three credits
          • 6317, Archaeological Research Design and Analysis: three credits
    • Biological
          • 6503, Biological Anthropology Core: The Fossil Record: three credits
          • 6513, Biological Anthropology Core: Modern Human Variation: three credits
    • Cultural
          • 6063, Qualitative Research Design and Analysis: three credits
          • 6103, Curent Theory in Ethnography: three credits
    • Research Concentrations: 18 credits

General Requirement

A plan of study, including a statement of proposed coursework, and thesis subject if applicable, must be submitted to and approved by the student's advisor by the third semester in residence.

Students may apply to the degree up to 12 hours of study in disciplines outside of, but related to, the discipline of anthropology, with the approval of their graduate advisor. Such courses must be taken at the 5000 level or above.

A graduate student must receive a grade of B- or better in a course in order to have it count toward graduation, and must maintain an overall GPA of 3.0 to remain in good standing.

A minimum of two full years devoted to advanced study is required by the Graduate School; students are strongly discouraged from spending more than four years to attain the M.A. degree. Generally, three years of full-time participation are required to complete the M.A. degree. Most of our students attend part time, and thus take slightly longer to complete their degree program.

All students are required to pass a written comprehensive examination, taken ordinarily after core course work has been completed.

Research Concentrations (8-18 credit hours)

You will round out your program by selecting from the diverse range of courses offered in the department according to your particular interests in anthropology, your career goals, and your plans for future graduate study. Links below will take you to a sampling of possible elective courses for each concentration. You may take courses in one or more concentrations. The courses listed are suggestions only; you must work closely with your advisor in constructing your particular program of study.

Research Concentrations