Online Master’s Degree in Anthropology

An online masters degree program in anthropology provides students with an in-depth study of human diversity throughout the world, or in a specific culture or demographic. Students enrolled in an online masters program in anthropology will gain a mastery of social institutions, cultural beliefs, and methods of communication. While bachelor’s degrees in the field typically provide students with a broad a spectrum of the field, master’s degree programs in anthropology usually require students to pick a subfield, or specific area of focus. For example, subfields can include sociocultural anthropology, which focuses on present-day cultures of the world, archeology, or physical anthropology. Because of their highly intensive nature, most online anthropology masters degree programs will typically take upwards of three years to complete.

Classes for an Online Masters Degree in Anthropology

Online master’s degree programs in anthropology require students to do a great deal reading, writing, and independent research. Students in the field will also learn to develop quantitative analytics and methods for conducting independent research within the field. In addition, students will also study current and past anthropological theories and methods, and their various applications in the field. Some courses you might expect to see may include:

  • Ethnographic and Qualitative Methods
  • Quantitative Methods in Anthropology
  • Culture and Society
  • Culture and Human Sexuality
  • Archaeological Ethics

Almost all online anthropology master’s degree programs require students to complete a final thesis or project that demonstrates a mastery in a specific field of anthropology, or provides a significant contribution to the profession. Students will typically choose their final thesis topic with an advisor or instructional department, and then conduct original research to support their final thesis before submitting it to the board.

A Career as a Graduate with an Online Masters Degree in Anthropology

Upon completion of master’s degree in anthropology, individuals should be prepared for a career in a variety of different fields and environments. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, anthropologists and archeologists held about 6,100 jobs in 2010. The BLS also reported that more than 50% of the workers in the field were employed by either scientific research and development services, like research organizations, museums, and colleges and museums, or for the federal government. In addition, the BLS also reports that job growth is expected to increase by 21% through the year 2020. Because the field is relatively small, the growth will only result in approximately 1,300 new jobs over the 10-year period. Because of this, earning a master’s degree in the field is essential as most positions require one, especially if you plan on working for college or university.


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