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Masters Degrees (Social And Cultural Anthropology)

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This MSc provides a thorough grounding in anthropological theory and analysis, an understanding of ethnographic approaches to the study of social worlds, and a strong foundation in research practices. Read more
This MSc provides a thorough grounding in anthropological theory and analysis, an understanding of ethnographic approaches to the study of social worlds, and a strong foundation in research practices. Flexible in its structure, the programme enhances students’ employability by focusing also on the interface between anthropological research and professional practices.

Degree information

The programme aims to develop knowledge and understanding of major theoretical, ethnographic and methodological debates in social anthropology. Students develop an understanding of human cultural worlds through in-depth historical study, gain knowledge of specific societies and specialist approaches, and enhance their independent research skills through practical training in research methods.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of two core modules (45 credits), three optional modules (45 credits) and a research dissertation (90 credits).

Core modules
-Critical Issues in Social Anthropology
-Research Methods

Optional modules
-Anthropology of Art and Design
-Social Forms of Revolution
-Mass Consumption and Design
-Anthropology and Psychiatry
-The Anthropology of Islam in Diaspora
-Medical Anthropology
-Anthropology of Latin America
-Documentary Film and the Anthropological Eye
-Social Construction of Landscape
-History and Aesthetics of Documentary
-Risk, Power and Uncertainty

Dissertation/report
All MSc students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of approximately 15,000 words.

Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, small group presentations and discussion, tutorials, laboratory and practical work, independent directed reading, interactive teamwork, and video, film and web based courses. It includes a research seminar series with invited speakers. Assessment is through unseen examination, essays, and the research dissertation.

Careers

Recent students on the course have pursued careers in fields including government, business, development, social research and consultancy, and the media, as well as in academia as professional anthropologists.

Top career destinations for this degree:
-Editor, Xinhua News Agency
-History of Crime, Université Catholique de Louvain (Catholic Univers
-PhD Anthropology, Harvard University
-Junior Research Executive, BDRC Continental
-PhD Researcher, Max Planck Society

Employability
In addition to the analytical, interpretative and writing skills honed by its core academic training, the course includes a unique orientation towards the interface between anthropological research and professional practice, allowing students to focus on the anthropology of professions including medicine, development, education, the law, the creative industries. Our close co-operation with UCL’s bespoke careers services, provides opportunities for internships and placements during the programme or following its completion.

Why study this degree at UCL?

UCL Anthropology was the first in the UK to integrate biological and social anthropology with material culture into a broad-based conception of the discipline. It is one of the largest anthropology departments in the UK in terms of both staff and research student numbers, offering an exceptional breadth of expertise.

Our excellent results in the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise and 2014 Research Excellence Framework show that we are the leading broad-based anthropology department in the UK.

Students are encouraged to take full advantage of the wider anthropological community in London and the department's strong links with European universities and international institutions.

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You can enter these programmes either with an undergraduate degree in Social Anthropology, or with no previous anthropological experience but the desire to convert your academic focus into anthropology. Read more

MRes programmes

You can enter these programmes either with an undergraduate degree in Social Anthropology, or with no previous anthropological experience but the desire to convert your academic focus into anthropology. The MRes aims to provide a firm foundation in the methods and methodologies of social anthropology and the human sciences, to serve as a basis for knowledgeable and skilled research in Social Anthropology. You are taught in dedicated postgraduate classes throughout.

MRes in Social Anthropology

• A general introduction to Social Anthropology at postgraduate level.
• Combines opportunities for theoretical development and specialist interests, with training in research methodologies.
• Conversion options within the degree structure if you are entering Social Anthropology as a new subject.
• Preparation for the possibilities of doctoral research, and more specifically, for fieldwork-based anthropological projects.
• Introduces cross-disciplinary connections and differences

Features

* Social Anthropology was established in 1979, and is now a constituent department in the University’s School of Philosophical, Anthropological & Film Studies with a staff of 14.
* Teaching at all levels is informed by the research interests and accomplishments of lecturing staff.

Postgraduate community

Many students are from abroad and are undertaking a varied range of taught courses and research programmes. Those returning from, or preparing to go into, the field form an active community with a wide range of diverse geographical and substantive interests.

You will participate in annual workshops organised by the Department, jointly with the Anthropology departments of the universities of Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow under the Scottish Training in Anthropological Research (STAR) programme. These workshops provide opportunities for informal presentations of research proposals, discussions relevant to your fieldwork preparations (e.g. ethics, data collection, writing field notes). The exploration of creative ways of learning is held in a relaxed yet focused environment, together with members of staff and PhD students from each of the universities. The training workshops last for
four days and take place in a beautiful countryside location. They act as complementary elements of the postgraduate training programme, and are organised in consultation with postgraduate students themselves, according to their perceived needs and wishes. In addition, there are shorter workshops which take place throughout the year and are designed to develop theoretical perspectives in anthropological research.

Facilities

The Department of Social Anthropology occupies an extensive suite of offices on North Street and in St Salvator’s Quad. It is well situated in the centre of town and at the geographical heart of the University. The Centre for Amerindian Studies has its own set of rooms within the Department, including a reading room that holds a library for Latin American and Amerindian studies. Within Social Anthropology there is also a museum collection of ethnographic objects, and a common room that includes a general anthropological class library, providing a space that is shared by both staff and postgraduates. The Departmental libraries, along with the main library, which holds a fine anthropology collection, include materials from all ethnographic regions of the world.

Weekly research seminars are organised by both the Department and sometimes by the Centres, and include speakers from outside St Andrews and abroad, thus enriching the intellectual environment. Social anthropologists from other UK departments, and beyond, visit and contribute to our series of seminars, and to workshops and conferences arranged by staff members and by research students. We endeavour to create a warm and friendly atmosphere and this also contributes towards maintaining a high quality of teaching and intellectual exchange.

Teaching methods

Taught postgraduate programmes in Social Anthropology are small class format modules, in which formal lectures are combined with seminar style teaching and student-led group work. Every taught postgraduate student is assigned an individual supervisor from among the anthropology staff, who works with them closely to develop a topic and direction for the end of degree dissertation.

International conferences

An important element in fostering the Department’s reputation has been a series of international conferences, each of which has considered an important contemporary theoretical issue within the discipline. These have dealt with, for example, the Anthropology of Violence; Power and Knowledge; Localising Strategies; the Concept of the Market; the Problem of Context; Kingship; the Anthropology of Love and Anger; Ways of Knowing; an Epistemology of Anthropology. The Ladislav Holy Memorial Trust plays an important supportive role for many of these conferences. From time to time distinguished scholars are appointed to the St Andrews Visiting Professorship in Social Anthropology, and each year members of the international academic community join the Department to follow postdoctoral work and other research endeavours. Such visiting scholars greatly enhance the thriving research environment.

Careers

Social Anthropology graduates have characteristics many employers seek and a Social Anthropology degree provides openings to a wide range of careers.
• Private organisations: can use the skills of social anthropologists doing research for urban planning, working with health organisations, doing market research for advertising companies, training employees who will be working in international divisions, or working within human resource departments.

• Government agencies: can employ social anthropologists as policy researchers, research analysts, evaluators, managers, planners and policy makers.

• International organisations: can employ anthropologists in projects in various countries around the world as researchers and cultural brokers.

• Non-profit agencies: can employ social anthropologists as advocates, administrators, evaluators and researchers.

• Graduate employers: 70% of graduate jobs are for students from any discipline. Social anthropologists successfully move into teaching, law, finance, HR, marketing, PR etc.

Well known St Andrews Social Anthropology graduates:
• Saba Douglas-Hamilton – wildlife conservationist & BBC presenter
• Nicolas Argenti – anthropologist
• Alexander Schulenburg – historian, independent scholar and activist for the British overseas territory of St Helena
• Nicholas Barker – journalist: winner of The Independent Young Journalist of the Year.

Read less
You can enter these programmes either with an undergraduate degree in Social Anthropology, or with no previous anthropological experience but the desire to convert your academic focus into anthropology. Read more

MRes programmes

You can enter these programmes either with an undergraduate degree in Social Anthropology, or with no previous anthropological experience but the desire to convert your academic focus into anthropology. The MRes aims to provide a firm foundation in the methods and methodologies of social anthropology and the human sciences, to serve as a basis for knowledgeable and skilled research in Social Anthropology. You are taught in dedicated postgraduate classes throughout.

MRes in Social Anthropology with Pacific Studies

• Designed for students who have a special interest in the Pacific and Melanesia, either:
– to do fieldwork for an anthropology PhD in the region.
– or to work there in some other capacity – e.g. in an NGO, in development projects, in multinational corporations with interests in the region.
• You study modules devoted to the history, languages, cultures and varieties of social organisation of Melanesia and the Pacific and their significance for the contemporary lives of its many peoples

Features

* Social Anthropology was established in 1979, and is now a constituent department in the University’s School of Philosophical, Anthropological & Film Studies with a staff of 14.
* Teaching at all levels is informed by the research interests and accomplishments of lecturing staff.

Postgraduate community

Many students are from abroad and are undertaking a varied range of taught courses and research programmes. Those returning from, or preparing to go into, the field form an active community with a wide range of diverse geographical and substantive interests.

You will participate in annual workshops organised by the Department, jointly with the Anthropology departments of the universities of Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow under the Scottish Training in Anthropological Research (STAR) programme. These workshops provide opportunities for informal presentations of research proposals, discussions relevant to your fieldwork preparations (e.g. ethics, data collection, writing field notes). The exploration of creative ways of learning is held in a relaxed yet focused environment, together with members of staff and PhD students from each of the universities. The training workshops last for
four days and take place in a beautiful countryside location. They act as complementary elements of the postgraduate training programme, and are organised in consultation with postgraduate students themselves, according to their perceived needs and wishes. In addition, there are shorter workshops which take place throughout the year and are designed to develop theoretical perspectives in anthropological research.

Facilities

The Department of Social Anthropology occupies an extensive suite of offices on North Street and in St Salvator’s Quad. It is well situated in the centre of town and at the geographical heart of the University. The Centre for Amerindian Studies has its own set of rooms within the Department, including a reading room that holds a library for Latin American and Amerindian studies. Within Social Anthropology there is also a museum collection of ethnographic objects, and a common room that includes a general anthropological class library, providing a space that is shared by both staff and postgraduates. The Departmental libraries, along with the main library, which holds a fine anthropology collection, include materials from all ethnographic regions of the world.

Weekly research seminars are organised by both the Department and sometimes by the Centres, and include speakers from outside St Andrews and abroad, thus enriching the intellectual environment. Social anthropologists from other UK departments, and beyond, visit and contribute to our series of seminars, and to workshops and conferences arranged by staff members and by research students. We endeavour to create a warm and friendly atmosphere and this also contributes towards maintaining a high quality of teaching and intellectual exchange.

Teaching methods

Taught postgraduate programmes in Social Anthropology are small class format modules, in which formal lectures are combined with seminar style teaching and student-led group work. Every taught postgraduate student is assigned an individual supervisor from among the anthropology staff, who works with them closely to develop a topic and direction for the end of degree dissertation.

International conferences

An important element in fostering the Department’s reputation has been a series of international conferences, each of which has considered an important contemporary theoretical issue within the discipline. These have dealt with, for example, the Anthropology of Violence; Power and Knowledge; Localising Strategies; the Concept of the Market; the Problem of Context; Kingship; the Anthropology of Love and Anger; Ways of Knowing; an Epistemology of Anthropology. The Ladislav Holy Memorial Trust plays an important supportive role for many of these conferences. From time to time distinguished scholars are appointed to the St Andrews Visiting Professorship in Social Anthropology, and each year members of the international academic community join the Department to follow postdoctoral work and other research endeavours. Such visiting scholars greatly enhance the thriving research environment.

Careers

Social Anthropology graduates have characteristics many employers seek and a Social Anthropology degree provides openings to a wide range of careers.
• Private organisations: can use the skills of social anthropologists doing research for urban planning, working with health organisations, doing market research for advertising companies, training employees who will be working in international divisions, or working within human resource departments.

• Government agencies: can employ social anthropologists as policy researchers, research analysts, evaluators, managers, planners and policy makers.

• International organisations: can employ anthropologists in projects in various countries around the world as researchers and cultural brokers.

• Non-profit agencies: can employ social anthropologists as advocates, administrators, evaluators and researchers.

• Graduate employers: 70% of graduate jobs are for students from any discipline. Social anthropologists successfully move into teaching, law, finance, HR, marketing, PR etc.

Well known St Andrews Social Anthropology graduates:
• Saba Douglas-Hamilton – wildlife conservationist & BBC presenter
• Nicolas Argenti – anthropologist
• Alexander Schulenburg – historian, independent scholar and activist for the British overseas territory of St Helena
• Nicholas Barker – journalist: winner of The Independent Young Journalist of the Year.

Read less
You can enter these programmes either with an undergraduate degree in Social Anthropology, or with no previous anthropological experience but the desire to convert your academic focus into anthropology. Read more

MRes programmes

You can enter these programmes either with an undergraduate degree in Social Anthropology, or with no previous anthropological experience but the desire to convert your academic focus into anthropology. The MRes aims to provide a firm foundation in the methods and methodologies of social anthropology and the human sciences, to serve as a basis for knowledgeable and skilled research in Social Anthropology. You are taught in dedicated postgraduate classes throughout.

MRes in Social Anthropology and Amerindian Studies

• Acquire an understanding of the highly complex social, political and cultural experiences of the historic populations of South America.
• Equips you for a wide range of extension, development and support activities in relation to Amerindian and South American peasant and urban communities, with NGOs, and with the national societies in which you participate (as well as providing opportunities for relevant language learning).
• We prepare you:
– for a range of related activities in different parts of the world.
– to participate in national and regional debates.
– to participate in the delivery of academic and extension talks and courses in different countries of the Hispanic world.

Postgraduate community

Many students are from abroad and are undertaking a varied range of taught courses and research programmes. Those returning from, or preparing to go into, the field form an active community with a wide range of diverse geographical and substantive interests.

You will participate in annual workshops organised by the Department, jointly with the Anthropology departments of the universities of Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow under the Scottish Training in Anthropological Research (STAR) programme. These workshops provide opportunities for informal presentations of research proposals, discussions relevant to your fieldwork preparations (e.g. ethics, data collection, writing field notes). The exploration of creative ways of learning is held in a relaxed yet focused environment, together with members of staff and PhD students from each of the universities. The training workshops last for
four days and take place in a beautiful countryside location. They act as complementary elements of the postgraduate training programme, and are organised in consultation with postgraduate students themselves, according to their perceived needs and wishes. In addition, there are shorter workshops which take place throughout the year and are designed to develop theoretical perspectives in anthropological research.

Facilities

The Department of Social Anthropology occupies an extensive suite of offices on North Street and in St Salvator’s Quad. It is well situated in the centre of town and at the geographical heart of the University. The Centre for Amerindian Studies has its own set of rooms within the Department, including a reading room that holds a library for Latin American and Amerindian studies. Within Social Anthropology there is also a museum collection of ethnographic objects, and a common room that includes a general anthropological class library, providing a space that is shared by both staff and postgraduates. The Departmental libraries, along with the main library, which holds a fine anthropology collection, include materials from all ethnographic regions of the world.

Weekly research seminars are organised by both the Department and sometimes by the Centres, and include speakers from outside St Andrews and abroad, thus enriching the intellectual environment. Social anthropologists from other UK departments, and beyond, visit and contribute to our series of seminars, and to workshops and conferences arranged by staff members and by research students. We endeavour to create a warm and friendly atmosphere and this also contributes towards maintaining a high quality of teaching and intellectual exchange.

Teaching methods

Taught postgraduate programmes in Social Anthropology are small class format modules, in which formal lectures are combined with seminar style teaching and student-led group work. Every taught postgraduate student is assigned an individual supervisor from among the anthropology staff, who works with them closely to develop a topic and direction for the end of degree dissertation.

International conferences

An important element in fostering the Department’s reputation has been a series of international conferences, each of which has considered an important contemporary theoretical issue within the discipline. These have dealt with, for example, the Anthropology of Violence; Power and Knowledge; Localising Strategies; the Concept of the Market; the Problem of Context; Kingship; the Anthropology of Love and Anger; Ways of Knowing; an Epistemology of Anthropology. The Ladislav Holy Memorial Trust plays an important supportive role for many of these conferences. From time to time distinguished scholars are appointed to the St Andrews Visiting Professorship in Social Anthropology, and each year members of the international academic community join the Department to follow postdoctoral work and other research endeavours. Such visiting scholars greatly enhance the thriving research environment.

Careers

Social Anthropology graduates have characteristics many employers seek and a Social Anthropology degree provides openings to a wide range of careers.
• Private organisations: can use the skills of social anthropologists doing research for urban planning, working with health organisations, doing market research for advertising companies, training employees who will be working in international divisions, or working within human resource departments.

• Government agencies: can employ social anthropologists as policy researchers, research analysts, evaluators, managers, planners and policy makers.

• International organisations: can employ anthropologists in projects in various countries around the world as researchers and cultural brokers.

• Non-profit agencies: can employ social anthropologists as advocates, administrators, evaluators and researchers.

• Graduate employers: 70% of graduate jobs are for students from any discipline. Social anthropologists successfully move into teaching, law, finance, HR, marketing, PR etc.

Well known St Andrews Social Anthropology graduates:
• Saba Douglas-Hamilton – wildlife conservationist & BBC presenter
• Nicolas Argenti – anthropologist
• Alexander Schulenburg – historian, independent scholar and activist for the British overseas territory of St Helena
• Nicholas Barker – journalist: winner of The Independent Young Journalist of the Year.

Read less
A wide range of students with different interests and backgrounds come to this programme from world over in order to explore why media matter. Read more

Who is this programme for?:

A wide range of students with different interests and backgrounds come to this programme from world over in order to explore why media matter. They are highly qualified with very diverse international interests. It is particularly suitable for:

- Students with a degree in media or cultural studies
- Students with a degree in the social sciences or humanities wishing to acquire a broad understanding of media and cultural studies with special reference to Asia or Africa
- People with professional experience in film, television, journalism, advertising or public relations
- Students with a degree in social anthropology wishing to pursue more specialist media-related topics along with regional or language-based study
- Students without a previous degree in Anthropology looking for an MA conversion degree to serve as a qualification for pursuing a further research degree in anthropology

Our world is inescapably and continuously transformed through a proliferation of media. The MA in Anthropology of Media at SOAS takes up the challenge of understanding how and why media matter. The programme uniquely combines anthropology, media and cultural studies with specific regional expertise in Asia, Africa and the Middle East. It provides students with critical skills, research methods, a wide-ranging understanding of media and the opportunity to pursue original research projects. The MA in Anthropology and Media is the first and still the only programme in Europe that specialises in bringing together contemporary anthropological concerns with media and cultural studies.

The MA in Anthropology of Media is a recent and rapidly growing field within the larger academic discipline of Anthropology. It both incorporates and challenges the well-established anthropological concerns with visual culture and ethnographic film through a more extensive examination of contemporary media practices. Along with the parallel disciplines of media and cultural studies, Anthropology of Media is now widely recognized as playing an increasingly important and critical role in current debates about media. It provides an alternative approach, which puts the emphasis upon studying the multiple relationships between people and media and thus seeks to anthropologise media and cultural studies. More than just focussing on media texts or technology, Anthropology of Media is marked by the centrality of people and how they relate to media.

The SOAS programme in Anthropology of Media is designed to provide a detailed introduction to the study of media in Asia, Africa, the Middle East and their diasporas. We also use the theoretical and methodological contributions of Anthropology to build upon and challenge Euro-American media and cultural studies. The programme stresses ethnographic approaches to media as cultural practices in social and political contexts where people inhabit, create and engage with media worlds.

Special Features

The Department cultivates several specialist strengths which distinguish it from other anthropology departments in the UK. The most obvious of these is that all members of the Department are specialists on Africa and Asia. Particular attention is given to teaching and researching regional ethnographic areas of expertise. All staff members are simultaneously attached as anthropologists to this Department and as regional specialists to their appropriate regional studies centre within the School.

SOAS also offers strong interdisciplinary support for the study of media including the Centre for Media and Film Studies and a highly regarded Department of Music. We have a dedicated multi-media suite, a radio station and satellite access to a wide range of world television. Further, the Library houses a major collection of books and journals on world media as well as extensive audio-visual materials.

Visit the website http://www.soas.ac.uk/anthropology/programmes/maanthofmedia/

Programme Overview

The programme consists of four units in total: three units of taught examined courses and a one unit dissertation of 10,000 words. Some courses may be taught in other departments in the school.

Core Courses:
- Comparative Media Studies - 15 PAN C009 (1.0 unit).

- Dissertation in Anthropology and Sociology - 15PANC999 (1.0 unit). This is a 10,000 word dissertation on a topic agreed with the Programme Convenor of the MA Anthropology of Media and the candidate’s supervisor.

- Additionally all MA Anthropology students 'audit' the course Ethnographic Research Methods during term 1 - this will not count towards your 4 units.

Foundation Course:
- Theoretical Approaches to Social Anthropology - 15PANC008 (1.0 unit). This is compulsory only for students without a previous anthropology degree.

Option Courses:
- The remaining unit(s) of your programme, either 1 unit of option courses (if taking Theoretical Approaches to Social Anthropology) or 2 units (if exempted from Theoretical Approaches to Social Anthropology), may then be selected from the Option Courses list below.

- Your 1 or 2 total units may be made up of any combination of 0.5 or 1 unit option courses.

- However, courses without a "15PANxxxx" course code are taught outside of the Anthropology Department. No more than 1 unit in total of these courses may be selected.

- Alternatively, one language course may be taken from the Faculty of Languages and Cultures.

Programme Specification 2012/2013 (pdf; 119kb) - http://www.soas.ac.uk/anthropology/programmes/maanthofmedia/file39767.pdf

Destinations

A Masters in the Anthropology of Media at SOAS develops students’ understanding of the world, other peoples’ ways of life and how society is organised. This programme will endow students with specialist understanding of producers, audiences, and other cultural and social aspects of mass media. Over the years the SOAS department has trained numerous leading anthropologists who have gone on to occupy lectureships and professorships throughout the world. Equally, students gain skills during their degree that transfer well to areas such as information and technology, government service, the media and tourism.

Postgraduate students leave SOAS with a portfolio of widely transferable skills which employers seek, including analytical and critical skills; ability to gather, assess and interpret data; high level of cultural awareness; and problem-solving. A postgraduate degree is a valuable experience that provides students with a body of work and a diverse range of skills that they can use to market themselves with when they graduate.

For more information about Graduate Destinations from this department, please visit the Careers Service website (http://www.soas.ac.uk/careers/graduate-destinations/).

Find out how to apply here - http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/howtoapply/

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The MA in Anthropology and Cultural Politics is an interdisciplinary programme in anthropology, directed at students from a wide range of disciplines in the humanities, social and political sciences, artists, and professionals in the media and cultural sectors. Read more
The MA in Anthropology and Cultural Politics is an interdisciplinary programme in anthropology, directed at students from a wide range of disciplines in the humanities, social and political sciences, artists, and professionals in the media and cultural sectors. http://www.gold.ac.uk/pg/ma-anthropology-cultural-politics/

The objective of the MA is to address contemporary issues in culture and politics from an anthropological perspective, drawing on the commitment of the Department of Anthropology at Goldsmiths to build a public anthropology.

The MA is organised around a critical investigation of the central thematic concepts of its title: 'culture', 'power', and 'politics', as well as 'anthropology' itself.

Each of these terms are posited in this programme as questions for critical reflection and students are encouraged to pursue independent research projects that investigate the meanings attributed to these terms in contemporary social contexts.

The programme is particularly interested in the intersections of 'culture' and 'power', and the consideration of what may be called 'cultural politics'.

- How and when does 'culture' become apprehensible as 'political'?
- How and when does 'power' operate upon or within 'culture'? Is it even tenable to uphold and retain this distinction?
- If so, what are the analytical or interpretive benefits?
- What may be the disadvantages or pitfalls?
- If not, what is implicated in the politicisation of 'culture' or the culturalisation of 'power' and 'politics'?
- How can these concerns be studied in the ongoing struggles over 'culture' in everyday life?

In addition to the core modules, options can be selected from several departments and centres.

See the website http://www.gold.ac.uk/pg/ma-anthropology-cultural-politics/

Core Modules

The MA is made up of four parts:
- Anthropology and Cultural Politics (30 credits)
- Anthropology Theory (30 credits)
- Option modules [within the Department of Anthropology, or the Departments of English and Comparative Literature, Media & - Communications, Politics, Sociology, or Centre for Cultural Studies] (60 credits)
- Dissertation (60 credits)

- Anthropology and Cultural Politics:

What is the relationship between culture and power?; How is power manifested or articulated 'culturally'?; In what ways may culture be understood to be 'political'?

This module is centrally preoccupied with social and political theories organised around the question of 'culture' and its relation to 'power', and vice versa, and with comprehending what may be the stakes of the politics of 'culture'. The module elaborates upon the problem of 'politics' and its always complex configuration with respect to what comes to be deemed to be 'cultural', specifically in relation to creative and productive labour, alienation, capitalism and commodification, the state, ideology, and hegemony.

We also consider the concepts of the critique of everyday life, the society of the spectacle, and the production of space. While principally concerned with a series of theoretical problems, the module will nonetheless also marshal the insights that may be gleaned from ethnography, in the effort to situate the discipline of socio-cultural anthropology in relation to the problems posed by or for 'cultural politics'.

- Anthropological Theory:

The aims and objectives of this module are to introduce you to major subfields of modern anthropology and to do so in a broadly historical and comparative framework.

The lectures will enable you to see how different anthropologists approach a number of central contemporary issues. The topics chosen will focus upon some of the theoretical developments and methodological strategies pursued in response to profound and widespread social transformations. Each week the module will focus on a single technique, methodology or strategy in anthropology in the work of a specific anthropologist.

Assessment

Dissertation – a thorough critical discussion of existing knowledge in a relevant area; reports; take-home papers. Options may require a presentation or production of visual material.

Department: Anthropology

Investigate a variety of fascinating areas that have real relevance to modern life.

As a department we’re interested in pushing the discipline forward. We’re known for pioneering new fields including visual anthropology and the anthropology of modernity. And we tackle other contemporary issues like urban planning, development, emotions and aesthetics, and new social movements.

Skills & Careers

The programme is great preparation for any role that involves research and communication. Graduates have pursued opportunities in journalism, other media, policy, education and public debate; they have also gone on to research degrees, either at Goldsmiths or elsewhere.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.gold.ac.uk/pg/apply/

Funding

Please visit http://www.gold.ac.uk/pg/fees-funding/ for details.

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120 credits’ worth of modules, taken over eight months exactly the same as the MRes, and a written examination, plus a further twelve months preparing a 40,000-word thesis. Read more

MPhil programmes

120 credits’ worth of modules, taken over eight months exactly the same as the MRes, and a written examination, plus a further twelve months preparing a 40,000-word thesis.
If you have an advanced background in Social Anthropology you may be permitted to enrol directly into the second year of the MPhil and receive the degree solely from the 40,000-word thesis.

Features

* Social Anthropology was established in 1979, and is now a constituent department in the University’s School of Philosophical, Anthropological & Film Studies with a staff of 14.
* Teaching at all levels is informed by the research interests and accomplishments of lecturing staff.

Postgraduate community

Many students are from abroad and are undertaking a varied range of taught courses and research programmes. Those returning from, or preparing to go into, the field form an active community with a wide range of diverse geographical and substantive interests.

You will participate in annual workshops organised by the Department, jointly with the Anthropology departments of the universities of Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow under the Scottish Training in Anthropological Research (STAR) programme. These workshops provide opportunities for informal presentations of research proposals, discussions relevant to your fieldwork preparations (e.g. ethics, data collection, writing field notes). The exploration of creative ways of learning is held in a relaxed yet focused environment, together with members of staff and PhD students from each of the universities. The training workshops last for
four days and take place in a beautiful countryside location. They act as complementary elements of the postgraduate training programme, and are organised in consultation with postgraduate students themselves, according to their perceived needs and wishes. In addition, there are shorter workshops which take place throughout the year and are designed to develop theoretical perspectives in anthropological research.

Facilities

The Department of Social Anthropology occupies an extensive suite of offices on North Street and in St Salvator’s Quad. It is well situated in the centre of town and at the geographical heart of the University. The Centre for Amerindian Studies has its own set of rooms within the Department, including a reading room that holds a library for Latin American and Amerindian studies. Within Social Anthropology there is also a museum collection of ethnographic objects, and a common room that includes a general anthropological class library, providing a space that is shared by both staff and postgraduates. The Departmental libraries, along with the main library, which holds a fine anthropology collection, include materials from all ethnographic regions of the world.

Weekly research seminars are organised by both the Department and sometimes by the Centres, and include speakers from outside St Andrews and abroad, thus enriching the intellectual environment. Social anthropologists from other UK departments, and beyond, visit and contribute to our series of seminars, and to workshops and conferences arranged by staff members and by research students. We endeavour to create a warm and friendly atmosphere and this also contributes towards maintaining a high quality of teaching and intellectual exchange.

Teaching methods

Taught postgraduate programmes in Social Anthropology are small class format modules, in which formal lectures are combined with seminar style teaching and student-led group work. Every taught postgraduate student is assigned an individual supervisor from among the anthropology staff, who works with them closely to develop a topic and direction for the end of degree dissertation.

International conferences

An important element in fostering the Department’s reputation has been a series of international conferences, each of which has considered an important contemporary theoretical issue within the discipline. These have dealt with, for example, the Anthropology of Violence; Power and Knowledge; Localising Strategies; the Concept of the Market; the Problem of Context; Kingship; the Anthropology of Love and Anger; Ways of Knowing; an Epistemology of Anthropology. The Ladislav Holy Memorial Trust plays an important supportive role for many of these conferences. From time to time distinguished scholars are appointed to the St Andrews Visiting Professorship in Social Anthropology, and each year members of the international academic community join the Department to follow postdoctoral work and other research endeavours. Such visiting scholars greatly enhance the thriving research environment.

Careers

Social Anthropology graduates have characteristics many employers seek and a Social Anthropology degree provides openings to a wide range of careers.
• Private organisations: can use the skills of social anthropologists doing research for urban planning, working with health organisations, doing market research for advertising companies, training employees who will be working in international divisions, or working within human resource departments.

• Government agencies: can employ social anthropologists as policy researchers, research analysts, evaluators, managers, planners and policy makers.

• International organisations: can employ anthropologists in projects in various countries around the world as researchers and cultural brokers.

• Non-profit agencies: can employ social anthropologists as advocates, administrators, evaluators and researchers.

• Graduate employers: 70% of graduate jobs are for students from any discipline. Social anthropologists successfully move into teaching, law, finance, HR, marketing, PR etc.

Well known St Andrews Social Anthropology graduates:
• Saba Douglas-Hamilton – wildlife conservationist & BBC presenter
• Nicolas Argenti – anthropologist
• Alexander Schulenburg – historian, independent scholar and activist for the British overseas territory of St Helena
• Nicholas Barker – journalist: winner of The Independent Young Journalist of the Year.

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This Anthropology MA provides an understanding of the ways in which anthropological approaches and debates inform the study of meanings and concepts in development, its priorities, policies and practice. Read more
This Anthropology MA provides an understanding of the ways in which anthropological approaches and debates inform the study of meanings and concepts in development, its priorities, policies and practice. It attracts students with diverse backgrounds and study/work experiences which makes for a lively and challenging atmosphere.

The degree is designed to provide students with a fairly detailed knowledge of anthropology, development issues, research methods and either an ethnographic region (and/or language) and/or thematic interest in health/gender/food/ media. Advice will be given to match the choice of optional components to the requirements, interests, and qualifications of individual students whose background may be in general social science, regional, language or other studies. While the focus of the degree is on development issues and practice, its disciplinary orientation remains anthropological.

Students explore the contribution of anthropology to contemporary development debates, for example, on donors/aid agencies and NGOs, poverty, migration and development, dominating discourses, human rights, violence and complex emergencies, refugees, gender, social capital and community action, health, climate change, the ‘market’ (as a core metaphor of globalised development), whether there are alternatives to the market, the role of business in development (corporate social responsibility and markets for the poor) and the importance of ethical, professional conduct by anthropologists. Anthropological studies provide the basis for understanding issues of state and governance in development, as well as the meaning of community development, and of popular ‘participation’ and ‘empowerment’. Throughout the programme, the role of, and opportunities for anthropologists as professionals in development is discussed, in part through a dedicated series of seminars in term 2.

Note: (1) Students registered in other departments who wish to take this course MUST write to the Director of Study for this course for permission to take it.

The programme consists of four elements: three assessed course units and a dissertation of 10,000 words.

The degree’s core course – ‘Anthropology of Development’ – provides an up-to-date and in-depth understanding of anthropological perspectives on policy and practice in contemporary international development, and gives a theoretical overview of the relationship between development and anthropology. The course examines the politics of aid, shifting aid frameworks, and concrete intervention programmes, bridging the disparate worlds of planners and beneficiaries. This involves close reading of anthropological monographs/studies which examine the nature of policy-making, bureaucracy and programmes in a variety of sectors – health, agriculture, water and others – while always paying close attention to the specific cultural contexts of intervention. Students should note that the course is continuously assessed which each term students are expected to write 1 book review, 1 essay and sit a 50 minute examination. This form of assessment has been found to be much fairer to overseas students whose first language is not English. While continuous assessment requires students to organize their studies efficiently from the very beginning of the year, we have found that a much higher proportion of our students graduate having achieved a distinction.

Commonwealth Shared Scholarship Scheme

The Commonwealth Shared Scholarship scheme (http://www.soas.ac.uk/registry/scholarships/soas-hakluyt-scholarship.html) has been extended to cover the MA Social Anthropology of Development.

Note (2). Students registered in other departments at SOAS, notably in Development Studies, must apply in writing/email to the Director of Studies for permission to take this course as part of their degree.

Visit the website http://www.soas.ac.uk/anthropology/programmes/masocanthdev/

Structure

Overview
The programme consists of four units in total: three units of examined taught courses and a one unit dissertation of 10,000 words.

Core Courses:
- Anthropology of Development - 15PANC090 (1.0 unit).

- Dissertation in Anthropology and Sociology - 15PANC999 (1.0 unit). This is a 10,000 word dissertation on a topic agreed with the Programme Convenor of the MA Social Anthropology of Development and the candidate’s supervisor.

- Additionally all MA Anthropology students 'audit' the course Ethnographic Research Methods during term 1 - this will not count towards your 4 units.

Foundation Course:
- Theoretical Approaches to Social Anthropology - 15PANC008 (1.0 unit). This is compulsory only for students without a previous anthropology degree.

Option Courses:
- The remaining unit(s) of your programme can be selected from the Option Courses list below.

- A total of either 1 unit of option courses (if taking Theoretical Approaches to Social Anthropology) or 2 units (if exempted from Theoretical Approaches to Social Anthropology), may be selected.

- Your 1 or 2 total units may be made up of any combination of 0.5 or 1 unit option courses.

- However, courses without a "15PANxxxx" course code are taught outside of the Anthropology Department. No more than 1 unit in total of these courses may be selected.

- Alternatively, one language course may be taken from the Faculty of Languages and Cultures.

Programme Specification

Programme Specification 2012/2013 (pdf; 134kb) - http://www.soas.ac.uk/anthropology/programmes/masocanthdev/file39771.pdf

Employment

A postgraduate degree in the Social Anthropology of Development at SOAS develops students’ understanding of the world, other peoples’ ways of life and how society is organised with a particular focus on how anthropological approaches and debates inform the study of meanings and concepts in development, its priorities, policies and practice. Over the years the SOAS department has trained numerous leading anthropologists who have gone on to occupy lectureships and professorships throughout the world. Equally, students gain skills during their degree that transfer well to areas such as information and technology, government service, the media and tourism.

Postgraduate students leave SOAS with a portfolio of widely transferable skills which employers seek, including analytical and critical skills; ability to gather, assess and interpret data; high level of cultural awareness; and problem-solving. A postgraduate degree is a valuable experience that provides students with a body of work and a diverse range of skills that they can use to market themselves with when they graduate.

For more information about Graduate Destinations from this department, please visit the Careers Service website (http://www.soas.ac.uk/careers/graduate-destinations/).

Find out how to apply here - http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/howtoapply/

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Learning how to make new discoveries that will contribute to a better understanding of the historical, social political and cultural processes that shape societies. Read more

Overview

Learning how to make new discoveries that will contribute to a better understanding of the historical, social political and cultural processes that shape societies.

Are people living in ethnically diverse neighbourhoods more inclined to turn inwards and to ‘hunker down’ compared to people of ethnically homogeneous settings? Are there cross-country differences in the causes of hooliganism, and in the effectiveness of methods used to combat hooligans in different European countries?

More and more comparative questions on societies are being raised. At Radboud University we believe that answers to comparative questions are more informative, lead to a better understanding of societal phenomena and processes, and therefore have more scientific and social importance than answers to questions about one society in one historical period.

This programme therefore fully focuses on teaching students how to perform high-quality comparative research. We look into the degree of inequality, cohesion and modernisation in both Western and non-Western societies. You’ll learn how to translate social problems into empirical research questions and understand the diverse theoretical approaches, research designs, data collections and analyses you need to get the answers you are looking for.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/scs

Why study Social and Cultural Science at Radboud University?

- A majority of our courses are exclusively created and offered for the research students enrolled in this programme, and therefore perfectly match the needs and desires of social and cultural researchers.
- This programme is linked to the Nijmegen Institute for Social and Cultural Research (NISCO) who offer an excellent research environment and have extensive social science databases that students are free to use.
- You’ll participate in group-oriented education and be part of a small, select group of highly motivated national and international students.
- You’ll be given your own workplace (equipped with a computer) in a room with your fellow students to enhance solidarity. Every student also receives personal guidance and supervision.
- You’ll write two scientific journal papers which will not only give you plenty of practise but will also give you a good academic research portfolio that you can use when applying for research positions.
- A large majority of our graduates gain PhD and other research positions; almost all of our graduates found work shortly after graduating.

Multidisciplinary

The programme combines the disciplines of sociology, anthropology, development studies and communication science. This programme is therefore ideal for Bachelor’s students from these disciplines with an interest in research. However, we believe that students from disciplines such as political science, economics and human geography can also profit from this Master’s.

The Research Master’s in Social and Cultural Science trains aspiring researchers and is ideal preparation for PhD positions or research positions in relevant non-academic research institutes. Or you could build a bridge between academic research and the world of practice, thereby influencing policy-making in the public and private sphere.

Quality label

This programme was recently awarded the quality label ‘Top Programme' in the Netherlands in the Keuzegids Masters 2015 (Guide to Master's programmes).

Career prospects

The career prospects of a graduate of Social and Cultural Science are good; almost 100% of our alumni found a job or research position immediately after graduating.

Job positions

There are plenty of options open to graduates of the research Master’s in Social and Cultural Science:
- Scientific research career (academia)
The programme provides an excellent basis for a scientific research career and attaining PhD positions.

- Societal research career
Our graduates can also go on to have careers in relevant non-academic research and policy institutes like government ministries, Statistics Netherlands (CBS), The Netherlands Institute for Social Research (SCP) and The Netherlands Institute for the Study of Crime and Law Enforcement (NSCR) and foreign equivalents.

- More
Of course, this Master’s programme does not close other doors. Students with a research Master’s are also highly sought after by (commercial) businesses and organisations because of their analytical and communication skills and in-depth understanding of social and cultural behaviour. Other careers, such as policymaker, manager, journalist, etc are certainly within reach.

Find information on Scholarships here http://www.ru.nl/scholarships

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/scs

Our research in this field

Half of the Master’s programme in Social and Cultural Science consists of practical research training.

In the first year, you’ll do a research project in which you conduct a small-scale empirical research under guided supervision of a senior researcher. The comparative research issue is typically part of the ongoing research within a Radboud chair group. Finally, you’ll write a scientific journal paper regarding the research results. The project is done in small groups (2-3 students) and prepares you well to independently conduct a comparative empirical social science study for your Master’s thesis in the second.

- Master’s thesis topics in the field of Social and Cultural Science
For your Master’s thesis you are completely free to tackle any social issue in the disciplines of sociology, anthropology, communication science or development studies. Important is the ability to reflect on the societal significance of your research question and the societal importance of your research. Thesis topics vary widely:
- Many theses are concerned with cross-country comparisons of behaviour or attitude measures using European cross-sectional survey data on, for example, xenophobia or gender roles.
- Others theses compare classrooms and the effect ethnic composition has on interethnic bullying or the impact of the economic crisis on African migrants in Athens, Greece, or the utilisation of different sexual health services by Aboriginal adolescents.
- Thesis topics can also be found in the field of communication science, like examining the news on extreme right political parties in Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands and correlating it with election results, or studying patterns in TV drama (e.g. increasing Americanisation) and comparing these media trends with societal processes such as individualisation.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/scs

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You can enter these programmes either with an undergraduate degree in Social Anthropology, or with no previous anthropological experience but the desire to convert your academic focus into anthropology. Read more

MRes programmes

You can enter these programmes either with an undergraduate degree in Social Anthropology, or with no previous anthropological experience but the desire to convert your academic focus into anthropology. The MRes aims to provide a firm foundation in the methods and methodologies of social anthropology and the human sciences, to serve as a basis for knowledgeable and skilled research in Social Anthropology. You are taught in dedicated postgraduate classes throughout.
• These programmes foster a critical outlook and the creative application of knowledge and skills.
• Teaching is carried out by means of lectures to subject specific and generic courses, complemented by seminars, supervisions and reading groups.
• You are expected to take an active part in classes, which provide the opportunity for practical work and formative assessment.
• The benefits of studying here are the close links between the research interests and teaching in the Department and the close integration to research centres: Centre for Amerindian & Caribbean Studies, Centre for Pacific Studies and the Centre for Cosmopolitan Studies.

MRes in Anthropology, Art and Perception

• Masters training for postgraduate research into Anthropology of Art, Material Culture and Visual Expression.
• Explore new ways of thinking anthropologically providing you with important, cutting-edge research tools for future research.
• Take perception and the senses as a starting point and draw on themes which extend across the subject boundaries between art and anthropology.
• Themes include:
– apprenticeship and practice-based research.
– the role of community and co-operation in both making and use.
– observation through drawing, photography, sound and film.
– heritage.
– the role of anthropology in design and contemporary art.
– commonalities between anthropological field work and contemporary arts practice.

Postgraduate community

Many students are from abroad and are undertaking a varied range of taught courses and research programmes. Those returning from, or preparing to go into, the field form an active community with a wide range of diverse geographical and substantive interests.

You will participate in annual workshops organised by the Department, jointly with the Anthropology departments of the universities of Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow under the Scottish Training in Anthropological Research (STAR) programme. These workshops provide opportunities for informal presentations of research proposals, discussions relevant to your fieldwork preparations (e.g. ethics, data collection, writing field notes). The exploration of creative ways of learning is held in a relaxed yet focused environment, together with members of staff and PhD students from each of the universities. The training workshops last for
four days and take place in a beautiful countryside location. They act as complementary elements of the postgraduate training programme, and are organised in consultation with postgraduate students themselves, according to their perceived needs and wishes. In addition, there are shorter workshops which take place throughout the year and are designed to develop theoretical perspectives in anthropological research.

Facilities

The Department of Social Anthropology occupies an extensive suite of offices on North Street and in St Salvator’s Quad. It is well situated in the centre of town and at the geographical heart of the University. The Centre for Amerindian Studies has its own set of rooms within the Department, including a reading room that holds a library for Latin American and Amerindian studies. Within Social Anthropology there is also a museum collection of ethnographic objects, and a common room that includes a general anthropological class library, providing a space that is shared by both staff and postgraduates. The Departmental libraries, along with the main library, which holds a fine anthropology collection, include materials from all ethnographic regions of the world.

Weekly research seminars are organised by both the Department and sometimes by the Centres, and include speakers from outside St Andrews and abroad, thus enriching the intellectual environment. Social anthropologists from other UK departments, and beyond, visit and contribute to our series of seminars, and to workshops and conferences arranged by staff members and by research students. We endeavour to create a warm and friendly atmosphere and this also contributes towards maintaining a high quality of teaching and intellectual exchange.

Teaching methods

Taught postgraduate programmes in Social Anthropology are small class format modules, in which formal lectures are combined with seminar style teaching and student-led group work. Every taught postgraduate student is assigned an individual supervisor from among the anthropology staff, who works with them closely to develop a topic and direction for the end of degree dissertation.

International conferences

An important element in fostering the Department’s reputation has been a series of international conferences, each of which has considered an important contemporary theoretical issue within the discipline. These have dealt with, for example, the Anthropology of Violence; Power and Knowledge; Localising Strategies; the Concept of the Market; the Problem of Context; Kingship; the Anthropology of Love and Anger; Ways of Knowing; an Epistemology of Anthropology. The Ladislav Holy Memorial Trust plays an important supportive role for many of these conferences. From time to time distinguished scholars are appointed to the St Andrews Visiting Professorship in Social Anthropology, and each year members of the international academic community join the Department to follow postdoctoral work and other research endeavours. Such visiting scholars greatly enhance the thriving research environment.

Careers

Social Anthropology graduates have characteristics many employers seek and a Social Anthropology degree provides openings to a wide range of careers.
• Private organisations: can use the skills of social anthropologists doing research for urban planning, working with health organisations, doing market research for advertising companies, training employees who will be working in international divisions, or working within human resource departments.

• Government agencies: can employ social anthropologists as policy researchers, research analysts, evaluators, managers, planners and policy makers.

• International organisations: can employ anthropologists in projects in various countries around the world as researchers and cultural brokers.

• Non-profit agencies: can employ social anthropologists as advocates, administrators, evaluators and researchers.

• Graduate employers: 70% of graduate jobs are for students from any discipline. Social anthropologists successfully move into teaching, law, finance, HR, marketing, PR etc.

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The general objective of this programme is to communicate an anthropologically-informed understanding of social life in both Western and non-Western societies. Read more
The general objective of this programme is to communicate an anthropologically-informed understanding of social life in both Western and non-Western societies. By confronting students with the remarkable diversity of human social and cultural experience, its aim is to encourage them to question taken-for-granted assumptions and to view the world from a new perspective.

Through a set of core modules, comprising about a third of coursework credits, students are provided with a comprehensive grounding in classical as well as contemporary debates in social anthropology and are introduced to the distinctive research methods and ethical positions associated with the discipline. Students then complete their coursework credits by choosing from a broad range of around 50 different modules offered around the Faculty of Humanities. Through these options, students apply the social anthropological theories and methods learnt on the core modules to particular substantive themes and topics. Diploma students complete their coursework in May and formally graduate in July. Over the summer vacation, MA students carry out research for a 15,000 word dissertation that is submitted in September. They then would normally expect to graduate formally in December.

Most of the coursework optional modules have been organized into pathways based on particular themes and topics.

Go to the Study Details tab for more details on the Culture, Ethnography and Development pathway.

Pathways are designed to ensure both an academic and timetabling fit between the options. Students are encouraged, on the basis of past experience and/or future goals, to select a pathway shortly after registration in consultation with the programme director. MA students' dissertation topics will normally also relate to this pathway. In addition to the Culture, Ethnography and Development pathway, there are currently 5 others.

Please note that it is not compulsory to select a pathway and all students will be awarded the same generic degree, MA in Social Anthropology.

Teaching and learning

In each semester, students take two 15-credit core modules, and a selection of optional modules that they select shortly after arrival. Many optional modules are worth 15 credits, though some are worth 30 credits. In total, students are required to achieve 120 coursework credits. Over the summer vacation, students are required to write a dissertation which is worth a further 60 credits.

In total, some 50 optional modules are available, not only in Social Anthropology but in a broad range of other disciplines across the Faculty of Humanities, including Visual Anthropology, Archaeology, Museum Studies, Latin American Studies, Development Studies, History, Sociology and Drama. Drawing on this broad range of disciplines, a number of pathways have been devised in order to maximize the academic and timetabling coherence of the options chosen by students.

The Culture, Ethnography & Development pathway provides you with the opportunity to study the history, theory and practice of development in a broad variety of social and geographical contexts, encouraging you to think of development critically as a complex transformative process that has cultural as well as economic and political consequences. You may select from modules covering a broad range of topics, including:
-Relationships of dependence between the global North and the global South
-Social and cultural effects of international labour migration
-The Millennium Development Goals
-The political economy of foreign investment
-Inequality and urban planning in the cities of the global South
-The international agenda for the reduction of poverty
-The impact of local civil society and NGOs
-Social welfare policies
-The politics of biodiversity conservation

Coursework and assessment

Most modules are assessed by means of an extended assessment essay. Typically, for 15 credit modules, these must be of 4000 words, whilst for 30 credit courses, they are normally of 6000 words. Certain options involving practical instruction in research methods, audiovisual media or museum display may also be assessed by means of presentations and/or portfolios of practical work. In addition, all MA students are required to write a 15,000 word dissertation.

Career opportunities

Past graduates of the MA in Social Anthropology have gone on to many different careers both inside and outside academic life. As it is a 'conversion' course aimed at those who want to explore anthropology after undergraduate studies in another field, or at least within a different anthropological tradition, it often represents a major change of career direction, opening up a wide range of different possibilities.
About 20% of our graduates carry on to do a doctorate, be it here or elsewhere. But the MA in Social Anthropology also represents a very appropriate preparation for careers in which an informed awareness of the implications of social and cultural diversity are important.

Some past students have been drawn to the voluntary sector, either in the UK or with development agencies overseas, others have gone on to work in the media or cultural industries or in education at many different levels. Others again have found opportunities in business or the civil service, where ethnography-based methods are increasingly popular as a way of finding out how people - from consumers to employees - interact with their everyday worlds.

The MA in Social Anthropology also trains students in a broad range of transferable skills that are useful in many walks of life, including social research methods and the ethics associated with these, effective essay-writing, oral presentational skills in seminars and other contexts, basic computing skills, using the internet as a research tool and conducting bibliographic research.

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- Intercalating medical students, or students intending to pursue a medical degree. - Students with a degree in the social sciences or humanities wishing to acquire a broad understanding of medical anthropology with reference to Asia or Africa, but also including other parts of the world. Read more

Who is this programme for?:

- Intercalating medical students, or students intending to pursue a medical degree.

- Students with a degree in the social sciences or humanities wishing to acquire a broad understanding of medical anthropology with reference to Asia or Africa, but also including other parts of the world

- People with professional experience in medical practice who have an interest in cross-cultural understandings of health and illness.

- Students with a degree in social anthropology wishing to pursue more specialist topics in the anthropology of medicine.

- Students without a previous degree in Anthropology looking for an MA conversion degree to serve as a qualification for pursuing a further research degree in anthropology

- The two-year intensive language pathway is directed at students who want to engage with a country in a professional as well as academic way, as the intensive language courses will enable them to reach a near proficient knowledge of the language.

As one might expect of study at SOAS, our programme is unique in that we take a cultural and phenomenological approach to the anthropology of medicine. That is, we stress a truly cross-cultural method, one which unites all medical systems in a unified comparative perspective. This allows students to grasp the underlying principles and questions common to all therapeutic systems. Given the diversity of the School’s courses, students may choose options which strengthen either the humanities or the development studies aspects of their interests.

It can also be taken with an intensive language pathway over two years, therefore making this programme unique in Europe.

The Japanese pathway is available for students who have an intermediate level of Japanese. Students will be required to take a placement exam in the week before classes begin in order to determine if their level is suitable. Please contact Professor Drew Gerstle () for further information.

The Korean pathway is designed for beginner learners of Korean. Students with prior knowledge of Korean are advised to contact the programme convenor, Dr Anders Karlsson (). Students will take four course units in the Korean language, one of them at a Korean university during the summer after year 1.

The Arabic pathway is designed for beginner learners of Arabic. Students will take four units of Arabic, one of them at the Qasid Institute in Jordan or another partner institution during the summer after year 1. Programme convenor: Dr Mustafa Shah ()

Visit the website http://www.soas.ac.uk/anthropology/programmes/ma-medical-anthropology-and-intensive-language/

Structure

- Core course: Cultural Understandings of Health - 15PANC093 (1.0 unit).

- Dissertation in Anthropology and Sociology - 15PANC999 (1.0 unit). This is a 10,000 word dissertation on a topic agreed with the Programme Convenor of the MA Medical Anthropology and the candidate’s supervisor.

- In addition, all MA Anthropology students 'audit' the course Ethnographic Research Methods during term 1 - this will not count towards your 4 units.

- Students without previous experience of anthropology must take the foundation course, Theoretical Approaches to Social Anthropology - 15PANC008 (1.0 unit).

Option Courses - Group A and Group B:

Students then choose TWO 0.5 unit courses from the Group A and B lists.

- AT LEAST ONE of the two 0.5 unit courses normally must come from Group A
- Students not taking Theoretical Approaches to Social Anthropology may then select their fourth unit (either a single 1.0 unit course or two 0.5 unit courses) from the Option Courses list.
- Alternatively, one language course may be taken from the Faculty of Languages and Cultures
- In the two-year language pathway, students take 2 intensive language units and Cultural Understandings of Health (1 unit) in their first year. During the summer, they will participate in a summer school abroad (location dependant on language). Upon their return, they will take one intensive language unit in their second year and two optional anthropology units. In the intensive-language pathway, the same rules apply as for the usual MA.

Programme Specification

MA Medical Anthropology and Intensive Language Programme Specification (pdf; 230kb) - http://www.soas.ac.uk/anthropology/programmes/ma-medical-anthropology-and-intensive-language/file93566.pdf

Teaching & Learning

Aims and Outcomes:
- All students are introduced to the types of problem and areas of questioning which are fundamental to the anthropology of medicine.

- Students new to the discipline are given knowledge of the general principles of anthropological enquiry

- All students develop advanced knowledge and understanding of the theoretical approaches which help form an anthropological perspective.

- All students gain an understanding of the practical methods by which this perspective is applied in field research.
All students will be provided with a near proficient ability in a language.

Knowledge:

- Students will be familiar with the foundational literature on the basis of which medical anthropology is linked to and emerges from broader disciplinary concerns.

- Students will have knowledge of the intersections linking medical anthropology to related fields, such as social studies of science, studies in bioethics, and critical approaches to public health

- Students will be familiar with the numerous ethnographic studies of health and illness.

Intellectual (thinking) skills:

- Students will learn to deploy an ethnographic kind of questioning – one directed toward teasing out of complex situations the sets of particular norms or principles which condition or shape them.

- As anthropologists, they will be trained to look for the specifically social in everything (even & especially in the “natural”)

- Students will learn how to form an anthropological problem – that is to distinguish an anthropological problem from a mere topic or area of interest.

Subject-based practical skills:

- Personal drive: Students are expected to take responsibility for their own learning

- Students will develop research skills: including location and adjustment to differing types of library collection, as well as locating organizations and people who hold significant information

- Listening & understanding: Students will be able to assimilate complex arguments quickly on the basis of listening – and to discuss or disagree constructively with points made by others.

- Planning and problem solving: students will be able to set targets and achieve them, and will be able to work well to deadlines.

- Working in a group: students will learn to lead by contributing to the development of consensus.

- In the two year intensive language pathway, to acquire/develop skills in a language to Effective Operational Proficiency level, i.e., being able to communicate in written and spoken medium in a contemporary language.

Transferable skills:

- Students will develop an ability to begin from a general question or issue and develop an appropriate research model and method.
- Ability to clearly represent a concise understanding of a project/problem and its solution.
- An ability to recognize and appreciate for what it is an unconventional approach or an unfamiliar idea
- An ability creatively to resolve conflict while working in a team; being able to see the other person’s point of view
- An ability to work and feel at ease in multicultural or cross cultural environments.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/howtoapply/

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Do our categories of behaviour – normal and abnormal – translate across cultures?. Why do ethnic minorities have different experiences of mental health?. Read more

About the course

Do our categories of behaviour – normal and abnormal – translate across cultures?
Why do ethnic minorities have different experiences of mental health?
Is there a ‘human nature’ underneath all the cultural differences?

Anyone interested in psychological processes, feeling and expression, memory and trauma, culture and personality, will have asked themselves questions of this kind. However, they are less likely to have asked themselves how (or if) we can recognise and analyse different emotions in other cultural settings.

In this new MSc degree, the first of its kind anywhere in Europe, we tackle these and other issues from an anthropological perspective, looking at the social and cultural dimensions of human experience.

By engaging with debates on these important topics and through the examination of world ethnography (including the UK), participants will learn about selfhood, emotion, madness and identity in cultural context.

Anthropology at Brunel is well-known for its focus on ethnographic fieldwork: as well as undertaking rigorous intellectual training, all our students are expected to get out of the library and undertake their own, original research – whether in the UK or overseas – and to present their findings in a dissertation. Students take this opportunity to travel to a wide variety of locations across the world – see “Special Features” for more details.

Attendance for lectures full-time: 2 days per week - for 24 weeks
Attendance for lectures part-time: 1 day per week - for 24 weeks (in each of 2 years)

Aims

This MSc gives candidates a solid grounding in key topics in psychological and psychiatric anthropology.

Through detailed consideration of cases from Britain and around the world, we explore the ways in which person, emotion, and subjectivity are shaped through cultural practices.

Candidates from backgrounds in health, therapy, social work and psychology will be able to challenge the categories and assumptions inherent in standard approaches to psychological and behavioural issues.

Course Content

The MSc consists of both compulsory and optional modules, a typical selection can be found below. Modules can vary from year to year, but these offer a good idea of what we teach.

Full-time

Compulsory modules:

Compulsory Reading Module: Political and Economic Issues in Anthropology
Compulsory Reading Module: Contemporary Anthropological Theory
Dissertation in Psychological and Psychiatric Anthropology
Ethnographic Research Methods 1
Ethnographic Research Methods 2
Themes in Psychiatric Anthropology
Themes in Psychological Anthropology

Optional modules:

Anthropology of the Body
Anthropology of the Person
Kinship, Sex and Gender
The Anthropology of Childhood
The Anthropology of Youth
The Anthropology of Global Health
Applied Medical Anthropology in the arena of Global Health
Anthropology of Education
Anthropology of Learning
Ethnicity, Identity and Culture
Medical Anthropology in Clinical and Community Settings

Part-time

Year 1

Compulsory Reading Module: Political and Economic Issues in Anthropology
Compulsory Reading Module: Contemporary Anthropological Theory
Themes in Psychiatric Anthropology
Themes in Psychological Anthropology

Year 2

Dissertation in Psychological and Psychiatric Anthropology
Ethnographic Research Methods 1
Ethnographic Research Methods 2
and optional modules

Assessment

Assessment is by essay, practical assignment (e.g. analysis of a short field exercise), and dissertation. There are no examinations.

Special Features

This degree looks at psychological and psychiatric topics from an anthropological perspective. There is an overlap with psychology and psychiatry in the things we look at (identity, consciousness, cognition, mental health, etc), but the approach is quite different; indeed, the findings can be startlingly different.

In all cases, we explore the point of view and experience of the insider, the ‘native’, in a range of cultures, we analyse this inside view in relation to the social and cultural environment. What we seek is a dynamic conception of human nature that is true to experience as well as illuminating broader social processes of which the individual may be only partly aware.
 
This degree challenges standard assumptions about normality and deviance, social and personal identity, the boundaries of the self, and the constituents of experience.

For those employed in the health, social and educational sectors, it will enhance professional practice and broaden understanding. But for every student it will open up new avenues.

The programme is run by experts in their field, who have worked in countries across the globe including Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, sub-Saharan Africa, Melanesia, India and Sri Lanka, as well as Britain.

All our degrees (whether full- or part-time) combine intensive coursework, rigorous training in ethnographic research methods, and a period of fieldwork in the summer term (final summer term if part-time) leading to an up to 15,000 word dissertation.

Students are free to choose their own research topic and geographic area, in consultation with their academic supervisor. In all cases, the dissertation research project provides valuable experience and in many cases it leads to job contacts – forming a bridge to a future career or time out for career development.

In recent years, students have undertaken fieldwork in locations across the world, including India, Mexico, Bolivia, Papua New Guinea, China, Nepal, Peru, Morocco, and New Zealand as well as within the UK and the rest of Europe.

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Anthropology prides itself on its inclusive and interdisciplinary focus. It takes a holistic approach to human society, combining biological and social perspectives. Read more
Anthropology prides itself on its inclusive and interdisciplinary focus. It takes a holistic approach to human society, combining biological and social perspectives.

All of our Anthropology Master’s programmes are recognised by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) as having research training status, so successful completion of these courses is sufficient preparation for research in the various fields of social anthropology. Many of our students go on to do PhD research. Others use their Master’s qualification in employment ranging from research in government departments to teaching to consultancy work overseas.

We welcome students with the appropriate background for research. If you wish to study for a single year, you can do the MA or MSc by research, a 12-month independent research project.

If you are interested in registering for a research degree, you should contact the member of staff whose research is the most relevant to your interests. You should include a curriculum vitae, a short (1,000-word) research proposal, and a list of potential funding sources.

About the School of Anthropology and Conservation

Kent has pioneered the social anthropological study of Europe, Latin America, Melanesia, and Central and Southeast Asia, the use of computers in anthropological research, and environmental anthropology in its widest sense (including ethnobiology and ethnobotany).

Our regional expertise covers Europe, the Middle East, Central, Southeast and Southern Asia, Central and South America, Amazonia, Papua New Guinea, East Timor and Polynesia. Specialisation in biological anthropology includes forensics and paleopathology, osteology, evolutionary psychology and the evolutionary ecology and behaviour of great apes.

Course structure

The first year may include coursework, especially methods modules for students who need this additional training. You will work closely with one supervisor throughout your research, although you have a committee of three (including your primary supervisor) overseeing your progress. If you want to research in the area of applied computing in social anthropology, you would also have a supervisor based in the School of Computing.

Research areas

- Social Anthropology

The related themes of ethnicity, nationalism, identity, conflict, and the economics crisis form a major focus of our current work in the Middle East, the Balkans, South Asia, Amazonia and Central America, Europe (including the United Kingdom), Oceania and South-East Asia.

Our research extends to inter-communal violence, mental health, diasporas, pilgrimage, intercommunal trade, urban ethnogenesis, indigenous representation and the study of contemporary religions and their global connections.

We research issues in fieldwork and methodology more generally, with a strong and expanding interest in the field of visual anthropology. Our work on identity and locality links with growing strengths in customary law, kinship and parenthood. This is complemented by work on the language of relatedness, child health and on the cognitive bases of kinship terminologies.

A final strand of our research focuses on policy and advocacy issues and examines the connections between morality and law, legitimacy and corruption, public health policy and local healing strategies, legal pluralism and property rights, and the regulation of marine resources.

- Environmental Anthropology and Ethnobiology

Work in these areas is focused on the Centre for Biocultural Diversity. We conduct research on ethnobiological knowledge systems and other systems of environmental knowledge as well as local responses to deforestation, climate change, natural resource management, medical ethnobotany, the impacts of mobility and displacement and the interface between conservation and development. Current projects include trade in materia medica in Ladakh and Bolivia, food systems, ethno-ornithology, the development of buffer zones for protected areas and phytopharmacy among migrant diasporas.

- Digital Anthropology: Cultural Informatics, Social Invention and Computational Methods

Since 1985, we have been exploring and applying new approaches to research problems in anthropology – often, as in the case of hypermedia, electronic and internet publishing, digital media, expert systems and large-scale textual and historical databases, up to a decade before other anthropologists. Today, we are exploring cloud media, semantic networks, multi-agent modelling, dual/blended realities, data mining, smart environments and how these are mediated by people into new possibilities and capabilities.

Our major developments have included advances in kinship theory and analysis supported by new computational methods within field-based studies and as applied to detailed historical records; qualitative analysis of textual and ethnographic materials; and computer-assisted approaches to visual ethnography. We are extending our range to quantitative approaches for assessing qualitative materials, analysing social and cultural invention, the active representation of meaning, and the applications and implications of mobile computing, sensing and communications platforms and the transformation of virtual into concrete objects, institutions and structures.

- Biological Anthropology

Biological Anthropology is the newest of the University of Kent Anthropology research disciplines. We are interested in a diverse range of research topics within biological and evolutionary anthropology. These include bioarchaeology, human reproductive strategies, hominin evolution, primate behaviour and ecology, modern human variation, cultural evolution and Palaeolithic archaeology. This work takes us to many different regions of the world (Asia, Africa, Europe, the United States), and involves collaboration with international colleagues from a number of organisations. We have a dedicated research laboratory and up-to-date computing facilities to allow research in many areas of biological anthropology.

Currently, work is being undertaken in a number of these areas, and research links have been forged with colleagues at Kent in archaeology and biosciences, as well as with those at the Powell- Cotton Museum, the Budongo Forest Project (Uganda) and University College London.

Kent Osteological Research and Analysis (KORA) offers a variety of osteological services for human remains from archaeological contexts.

Careers

Higher degrees in anthropology create opportunities in many employment sectors including academia, the civil service and non-governmental organisations through work in areas such as human rights, journalism, documentary film making, environmental conservation and international finance. An anthropology degree also develops interpersonal and intercultural skills, which make our graduates highly desirable in any profession that involves working with people from diverse backgrounds and cultures.

Many of our students go on to do PhD research. Others use their Master’s qualification in employment ranging from research in government departments to teaching to consultancy work overseas.

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Brunel was the first university in Europe to establish a Master's degree in Medical Anthropology. Since then we have continued to develop our programme to reflect the changing world in which we live. Read more

About the course

Brunel was the first university in Europe to establish a Master's degree in Medical Anthropology. Since then we have continued to develop our programme to reflect the changing world in which we live.

In short, Medical Anthropology can be described as the study of cultural beliefs and practices associated with the origin, recognition and management of health and illness in different social and cultural groups.

Literally hundreds of students – doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, social workers and other medical professionals among them – can testify to the quality of our programme, having used it either to enhance their professional practice, to change career or to develop their research interests for future studies.

Anthropology at Brunel is well-known for its focus on ethnographic fieldwork: as well as undertaking rigorous intellectual training, all our students are expected to get out of the library and undertake their own, original research – whether in the UK or overseas – and to present their findings in a dissertation. Students take this opportunity to travel to a wide variety of locations across the world – see “Special Features” for more details.

Attendance for lectures full-time: 2 days per week - for 24 weeks
Attendance for lectures part-time: 1 day per week - for 24 weeks (in each of 2 years)

Aims

The degree aims to equip students with a broad, general understanding of anthropology and how it might be applied to medical and health-related problems.

You will develop a deeper understanding of how people’s ideas about the world, as well as the structural constraints within which they find themselves, have an impact on their understanding and experience of health, sickness and disease.

You’ll achieve this through close study of key texts in medical anthropology, the original fieldwork experiences of your lecturers, and through designing and undertaking your own research project.

If you’ve wondered about some or all of the questions below – all of which are addressed in the degree – this could be the course for you:

How does poverty contribute to the profiles of diseases such as diabetes and tuberculosis?
Why are some diseases, such as leprosy or AIDS/HIV, feared and stigmatized?
Why do some biomedical interventions seeking to control infectious and non-infectious diseases work, and others fail?
What might stop some patients seeking conventional treatments for cancers and other conditions – even when they are offered for free – despite the apparent efficacy of the medicines available?
How does one make the distinction between the healthy and the pathological? Is being ‘disabled’, for example, always a negative state, or might some consider it just another, equally valid, way of being?
What are the effects of political, economic and other social conditions on people’s experiences of what, from a biomedical perspective, might be considered the same diseases?
How and why is it appropriate to combine insights emerging from clinical and epidemiological research with ethnographic understandings of health, illness and disease?

The Brunel Medical Anthropology MSc addresses these issues and more in a lively and challenging way, through a programme of lectures, class discussions, and your own – personally directed – final dissertation research project.

Course Content

The main objectives of the course are to provide a rigorous grounding in key topics and perspectives in medical anthropology, and to equip candidates with a range of research skills to enable them to complete research successfully.

The MSc consists of both compulsory and optional modules, a typical selection can be found below. Modules can vary from year to year, but these offer a good idea of what we teach.

Full-time

Compulsory modules:

Compulsory Reading Module: Political and Economic Issues in Anthropology
Compulsory Reading Module: Contemporary Anthropological Theory
Dissertation in Medical Anthropology
Ethnographic Research Methods 1
Ethnographic Research Methods 2
The Anthropology of Global Health
Applied Medical Anthropology in the Arena of Global Health
Medical Anthropology in Clinical and Community Settings

Optional modules:

The Anthropology of the Body
Anthropology of the Person
Kinship, Sex and Gender
Anthropological Perspectives of Humanitarian Assistance
Anthropological Perspectives of War
Ethnicity, Culture and Identity

Part-time

Year 1

Medical Anthropology in Clinical and Community Settings
Compulsory Reading Module: Political and Economic Issues in Anthropology
Compulsory Reading Module: Contemporary Anthropological Theory
The Anthropology of Global Health
Applied Medical Anthropology in the Arena of Global Health

Year 2

Dissertation in Medical Anthropology
Ethnographic Research Methods 1
Ethnographic Research Methods 2
and optional modules

Assessment

Assessment is by essay, practical assignments (e.g. analysis of a short field exercise) and a dissertation of up to 15,000 words. This dissertation is based upon fieldwork undertaken by the candidate. There are no examinations.

Special Features

All our degrees (whether full- or part-time) combine intensive coursework, rigorous training in ethnographic research methods, and a period of fieldwork in the summer term (final summer term if part-time) leading to up to a 15,000 word dissertation.

Students are free to choose their own research topic and geographic area, in consultation with their academic supervisor. In all cases, the dissertation research project provides valuable experience and in many cases it leads to job contacts – forming a bridge to a future career or time out for career development.

In recent years, students have undertaken fieldwork in locations across the world, including India, Mexico, Bolivia, Papua New Guinea, China, Nepal, Peru, Morocco, and New Zealand as well as within the UK and the rest of Europe.

Special scholarships

Cecil Helman Scholarship Fund
Set up to honour the life and work of leading light in international medical anthropology Professor Cecil Helman (1944-2009), the Doctor Cecil Helman Scholarship Fund provides fieldwork support for between two and four students on our MSc Medical Anthropology course.

Dr Helman taught at Brunel University London from 1990, and became a Professor of Social Sciences in 2005. In 2004, he was awarded the American Anthropological Association’s career achievement award, and the following year he won the Royal Anthropological Institute's Lucy Mair medal.

As well as leading the way in Medical Anthropology, Dr Helman exercised his artistic talents through his paintings, poems, fables, and short fiction – all of which revolved around a theme of the human side of medicine and the narratives that surrounded the doctor-patient relationship.

Scholarship
The Cecil Helman Scholarship Fund offers between two and four students up to £1,000 to help them to complete field research for their dissertations.

Selection
The scholarship will be awarded to MSc Medical Anthropology students who demonstrate excellent academic performance and the ability to undertake an original field research project.

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