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The Australian National University

Graduate programs

Coursework programs

Master of Arts specialisations


Master of Anthropology

The Master of Anthropology is designed for students who have a background in another field, who have developed an interest in Anthropology, but who may have little formal background in the subject. The aim of the qualification is to provide quality and coherent graduate education in Anthropology.

The program is suitable for those who seek academic preparation for a career in a professional area requiring a solid understanding of Anthropology, whether in cultural institutions, the public service, the academy, or elsewhere. It is available to qualified applicants from both Australia and overseas.

For more information see Master of Anthropology on Programs and Courses.


Master of Applied Anthropology and Participatory Development

The Master of Applied Anthropology and Participatory Development (MAAPD) is a graduate program that provides an understanding of the principal ways in which critical social inquiry and participatory processes can be applied to the management of international development activities. Particular emphasis is placed on the problems of combining social perspectives and participatory practices with other forms of technical expertise in development work. The program is designed for people working in government, and non-government development agencies. On completion of the program MAAPD graduates will be better able to manage development projects, including undertaking social assessment and advising on their cultural and social impacts. The program also offers specializations in Gender and Development, Indigenous Policy, and Conflict and Development.

For more information see MAAPD Program or the Master of Applied Anthropology and Participatory Development on Programs and Courses.


Master of Archaeological Science

Archaeological Science is very broadly defined at the ANU. The Masters Program in Archaeological Science offers a bridge between the humanities orientation of traditional archaeology and approaches which apply scientific principles, analytical techniques and methods to answer archaeological research questions. We develop this pragmatically, with emphasis on fieldwork and best practice in archaeological research, consulting or Heritage Management. Research-led teaching and hands-on experience are all central to the "rich mix" of graduate coursework and research programs available across Archaeological Science. The Master of Archaeological Science (MArchSci) program is unusual in integrating staff, tuition, project supervision, and use of facilities across four ANU College areas. This results in an exceptional range of degree options, and a very wide choice of elective courses. Distance learning and flexible delivery are catered for through on-line tuition, Master Classes, intensive short courses, field schools, internships and individual research projects. Tuition is cross-campus by specialist staff in all contributing ANU College areas. Specialization in self-defined themes routes (eg GIS and Spatial Archaeology; Environmental Archaeology; Lithic Artefact Analysis; Palaeoecology; Geoarchaeology; Forensic Archaeology; Archaeological Site Management) is encouraged within the "umbrella" of an Archaeological Science degree. The program offers exceptional flexibility for professional development or graduate training as a foundation for PhD research.

For more information, see Master of Archaeological Science on Programs and Courses.


Master of Biological Anthropology

The aim of the suite of postgraduate qualifications in biological anthropology is to provide such a student, at the intensity and initiative levels appropriate for graduates, with a grounding in the main sub-fields of biological anthropology, and optionally to proceed from that to a short supervised research thesis in the field.  Students who proceed to the thesis and graduate at a high level from the MBian (Research) program will be strongly placed for Higher Degree Research in the discipline or other professional applications of their expertise in the field.

The core of the program is a 48-unit (2-semester or part-time equivalent) set of courses covering key topics in biological anthropology.  Extra preparatory coursework in the form of the Graduate Certificate (24 units) precedes this core, for those not eligible to enter the MBian directly.  The core is followed, for those who qualify and so opt to 'rollover' into the MBian (Res), by completing a short (24-unit) thesis, leading to a MBioanth (Research). Students may apply for the Graduate Certificate and/or for the Masters in the first instance.  Graduate Certificate entrants may either conclude their studies with that qualification or proceed to the Masters program.  

For more information see Master of Biological Anthropology on Programs and Courses.


Master of Culture, Health and Medicine

The Master of Culture, Health and Medicine (CHAM) is a graduate program that provides a nuanced understanding of the nature of health, sickness, and healing in a local and global context. Particular emphasis will be placed on the problems of combining socio-cultural perspectives and medical practices with other forms of technical expertise in health related research and practice. The program is designed for health professionals, people working in government, and non-government development agencies and recent graduate students. On completion of the program CHAM graduates will be better able to contribute to research and practice in diverse health related areas. The program also offers specializations in Global Health and Development, Health Policy and Ethics, Health and Gender, Health and Environment and Health and Indigenous Australia.

For more information see Master of Culture, Health and Medicine on Programs and Courses.


Graduate Program in Museum and Heritage Studies

The Master of Museum and Heritage Studies draws on our strong connections with Canberra's leading cultural and collecting institutions to prepare you for an innovative career in this field. Our local and national links mean you'll regularly hear from senior institutional staff in classes, and can learn on the ground through our internship program. Our academics are international leaders in research in the field, and the masters offers a range of specialisations in either museum or heritage studies. Within the museum specialisation you'll learn traditional curatorship and collections management, in addition to new areas such as such as social inclusion, citizenship and community engagement, social activism and museums, Indigenous curation and collection, and innovative visitor studies. The cultural and environmental heritage specialisation offers you the opportunity to analytically address and assess national and international policy and practices in the context of a critical framework that explores the political and social phenomenon and impacts of heritage and its management and conservation.



Visual Cultural Research

Visual Culture Research draws on the perspectives of anthropology, art theory and film studies with practical courses utilising visual media and relevant software. The program aims to foster in students a well-developed understanding of diverse visual cultural environments and a set of skills for working with visual materials. Graduates will achieve a high level of visual literacy - an ability to analytically grasp visual materials from a range of disciplinary perspectives, and an understanding of the key conceptual debates in visual studies. Flexibility in program design allows students to put together a suite of courses that are tailored to their interests. Courses in ethnographic film making and digital media methods are highlights of the program, as are internships that enable students to gain valuable on the job experience of working with world class visual culture collections. Graduates are well placed to pursue careers in cultural institutions, in diverse government and non-government contexts, or to pursue further research.

For more information see the Visual Culture Research page.

Read more information about online courses at the School of Archaeology and Anthropology.


Research programs

The school offers graduate research programs at Master of Philosophy (MPhil) and doctorate (PhD) levels. These research-only degrees enable students to undertake an in-depth research project at post-graduate level under the close supervision of academic staff. The MPhil and PhD take two and four years respectively.

Updated: 31 August 2016/ Responsible Officer:  Head of School / Page Contact:  Web Publisher