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The MPhil in Human Evolutionary Studies is a full-time interdisciplinary course, taken over a period of ten months, and involving teaching in evolutionary anthropology, human and hominin morphology, primate behaviour and evolution, archaeology and genetics. The lecturers are primarily involved in research and teaching within Biological Anthropology in the Department of Archaeology.

This taught MPhil invites applicants who are prepared for graduate work and wish to receive interdisciplinary training, but who do not have sufficient education in human evolutionary studies in their background to be considered for the research MPhil or doctoral work. This is a demanding course which enables students to obtain interdisciplinary training and specialist knowledge in an area of human evolutionary studies over a relatively short time frame. The course prepares students to undertake an advanced degree, subject to overall performance.

Learning Outcomes

The MPhil in Human Evolutionary Studies aims to:

  1. give students the chance to learn, at an advanced level, about the major topics in human evolution and related fields;
  2. provide students with the opportunity to review and discuss major research questions in human evolution;
  3. provide students with intellectual skills that will allow them to undertake independent research in human evolution;
  4. give students the appropriate intellectual and mentoring context for the development of an independent research project; and
  5. prepare students for research at doctoral level and to equip students to be future leaders in Human Evolutionary Studies and allied fields around the world.

Teaching

The MPhil in Human Evolutionary Studies is a full-time interdisciplinary course, taken over a period of ten months, and involving teaching in evolutionary anthropology, human and hominin morphology, primate behaviour and evolution, archaeology and genetics. The lecturers are primarily involved in research and teaching within Biological Anthropology, in the Department of Archaeology.

This taught MPhil invites applicants who are prepared for graduate work and wish to receive interdisciplinary training, but who do not have sufficient education in human evolutionary studies in their background to be considered for the research MPhil or doctoral work. This is a demanding course which enables students to obtain interdisciplinary training and specialist knowledge in an area of human evolutionary studies over a relatively short time frame. Subject to performance in the examination, the course prepares students to undertake an advanced degree.

Feedback

Formative feedback is provided in written comments on assessed work. 2-3 individual meetings with the MPhil Director are scheduled across the year, and more can be arranged on request. All marks released to students through the course of the year are provisional until certified by the final examiners meeting in September.

Assessment

Thesis

All students will write a thesis of not more than 20,000 words, excluding tables, appendices, and references, on a subject approved by the Faculty Degree Committee. This is worth 50 per cent of the final mark.

Essays

All students will undertake a quantitative exercise on statistical analysis and interpretation and a number of essays and other written assignments which will total 50% of the final mark.

The written assignments may take the form of an essay, article, grant application or laboratory report. Excluding the quantitative exercise, these assignments will total no more than 8000 words.

Funding Opportunities

There are many different sources of funding available to support UK/EU and international students in Biological Anthropology, but full scholarships for MPhil students are highly competitive. Exceptionally strong candidates for the MPhil programmes in Biological Anthropology (HUBAM2, 3 and 4) are entered for scholarship schemes according to eligibility: eg Gates US, Gates International, and scholarship schemes administered by the Cambridge Trust, among others. Staff will also endeavour to support students in obtaining funding from University, College and external sources. For further information about funding opportunities, visit the Funding for Graduate Students page on the Department website or .

General Funding Opportunities

Apply using the Applicant Portal

The Apply Now button on the right will take you to the Applicant Portal, where you can create and submit your application and supporting documents, and request references.

An application is only complete when:

  1. you have submitted your application and supporting documents via the Applicant Portal
  2. you have paid the £60 application fee
  3. your referees have provided their references.

If you miss the deadlines specified in this section, you will not be able to submit your application.

Selection Process

Applications for admission are considered on a rolling basis; therefore, applicants will receive decisions throughout the period the admissions window is open and in the weeks following its closure.

Applicants are encouraged to apply early as programmes have a limited number of places each year, and are particularly advised to note relevant funding deadlines when making their application.

Ranking of candidates recommended for funding will take place on a gathered field basis as necessitated by the funding deadlines.

The requirement for interview will be determined on a case by case basis.

Further information on How To Apply


Visit the MPhil in Human Evolutionary Studies page on the University of Cambridge website for more details!

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