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Master of Applied Anthropology

Course Description


* Protesters claim a dam financed by international development loans risks destroying the traditional culture of a nomadic people
* The failure of an internationally successful advertising campaign in a new market is blamed on cultural taboos
* A court is told that cultural norms require the circumcision of a ten-year-old immigrant girl


The Applied Anthropology program at Macquarie is one of the first in Australia that focuses on training current or future professionals to critically assess both cultural impacts and claims about them. Based on the research areas of its members, the Department of Anthropology offers coursework units and research supervision that address the issues that face those who deal with ‘culture’ in professional settings.

In recent years there has been a marked increase in interest in the cultural determinants of people's behaviour. Professionals working in a range of fields have been told that ‘culture matters’, but they have not been told how.

The theoretical insights and research methodologies of
anthropology provide an answer to this question. They offer both a critical understanding of ‘culture’ as well as a unique hands-on research methodology.

The Master of Applied Anthropology is suitable both for fresh graduates or professionals who wish to apply anthropological insights and methods in a wide range of professional settings. These may include fields more traditionally associated with Applied Anthropology, such as work in development projects, social impact assessment, or work with migrants and refugees. However, corporations are increasingly recognising the applications of ethnographic method in professional settings and the MAA also seeks to address this growing interest.

Entry Requirements

Bachelor degree with social science component and/or relevant work experience.

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