MA Social Anthropology
UCAS code: L600
Duration: 4 years
School: Social and Political Science
College: Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences
Introducing MA Social Anthropology
Social anthropology is the study of human conduct and thought. Societies around the world vary enormously socially, culturally and politically.
The study of these variations, and the common humanity that underlies them, is at the heart of social anthropology.
There are close links between social anthropology and sociology, human geography, development studies, history, archaeology, and philosophy.
You will take a broad range of courses in Year 1 and 2 and will have the opportunity to specialise in Years 3 and 4.
You will spend up to four months on an individual research project that will form the basis of your dissertation. Fieldwork for your project can be done both within and outside the UK.
Year 1 provides you with a broad introduction to the subject. You will study:
- Social Anthropology 1A and 1B
- Fundamentals: Studying Anthropology
- Fundamentals: Anthropological Practice.
You will choose two to four option courses.
You will study:
- Social Anthropology 2: Key Concepts
- Ethnography: Theory & Practice
- Fundamentals: Ethnographic Theory
- Fundamentals: Reading & Writing Anthropology
You will also choose between two and four additional courses, either related to your programme or from another academic area.
You will study compulsory courses including:
- Anthropological Theory
- Kinship: Structure & Process
- Ritual & Religion
- Consumption, Exchange & Technology
You will also choose two courses from a range, such as Happiness: Cross-cultural Perspectives, Urban Anthropology, the Anthropology of Africa and Latin American Anthropology.
You will also have the opportunity to conduct your own research in the summer break between Years 3 and 4. Your dissertation supervisor will help you to plan and develop your research project which can take place in the UK or overseas.
You will study the compulsory course Culture & Power. You will also use your research findings to complete an honours dissertation, and continue to choose option courses.
Find out more about the compulsory and optional courses in this degree programme.
To give you an idea of what you will study on this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.
Most of the teaching takes place at facilities located within the University's Central Area. You will also have access to the University library and computer facilities.
In addition to your research project, which may be based overseas, there are opportunities to study abroad through the University's international exchange programme.
How will I learn?
You will be taught through a combination of lectures, seminars and tutorials, and will receive supervision with your research project.
How will I be assessed?
The course is assessed through exams, coursework, and project work.
Find out more about this programme's aims, what you will learn, how you will be assessed and what skills and knowledge you will develop.
To give you an idea of what to expect from this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.
Previous graduates have chosen careers in social development, healthcare, journalism and film. Others have gained employment with international organisations such as Oxfam.
A growing number choose to continue with postgraduate study in anthropology, leading to careers as anthropological researchers with universities, public bodies such as the NHS, or private sector companies.
Standard entry requirement
The standard entry requirement is:
- SQA Highers: AAAA-AABB by the end of S5 or AAAA-AAAB by the end of S6. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.(Revised 09/04/2020 from AAAA-AAAB and to include alternate grades to be achieved by end of S6.)
- A Levels: AAA - ABB.
- IB: 43 points with 776 at HL - 37 points with 666 at HL.
Minimum entry requirement
The minimum entry requirement for widening access applicants is:
- SQA Highers: ABBB by end of S6. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.
- A Levels: ABB.
- IB: 34 points with 655 at HL.
The grades used to meet our entry requirements must include:
- SQA: Highers: no specific Higher subjects required. National 5s: English at C.
- A Levels: no specific A Level subjects required. GCSEs: English at C or 4.
- IB: HL: no specific subjects required. SL: English at 5.
We welcome applications from students studying a wide range of international qualifications.
International Foundation Programme
If you are an international student and your school qualifications are not accepted for direct entry to the University you may be eligible for admission to this degree programme through our International Foundation Programme.
We welcome applications from mature students and accept a range of qualifications.
You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.
SQA, GCSE and IB
For SQA, GCSE and IB students, unless a higher level is specified in the stated entry requirements, a pass is required in English at the following grades or higher:
- SQA National 5 at C
- SQA Standard Grade at 3
- SQA Intermediate 1 at A
- SQA Intermediate 2 at C
- GCSE/IGSCE at C or 4
- Level 2 Certificate Grade C
- IB Standard Level at 5 (English ab initio is not accepted for entry)
English language tests
We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified*:
- IELTS Academic module overall 6.5 with 5.5 in each component.
- TOEFL-iBT (including Special Home Edition) 92 or above with 20 in each section. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
- Cambridge English: Advanced or Proficiency overall 176 with 162 in each component.
- Trinity ISE: ISE II with a distinction in all four components.
We also accept a wider range of international qualifications and tests.
English language qualifications must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the degree you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.
*(Revised 27 April 2020 to include TOEFL-iBT Special Home Edition.)
This information is part of a government initiative to enhance the material that higher education institutions provide about their degree programmes.
It is one of many sources of information which will enable you to make an informed decision on what and where to study.
Please note that some programmes do not have Discover Uni data available.
If you choose to go overseas to do your dissertation research you will be responsible for all costs. Most students incur no additional costs as they either remain in the UK or do their research while studying abroad in Year 3.
For more information on how much it will cost to study with us and the financial support available see our fees and funding information.
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