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Human Osteology and Palaeopathology (MSc)

Course Description

This course provides graduates from both arts and sciences backgrounds with practical and theoretical knowledge in the interpretation of human remains within their archaeological context. It strongly emphasises the integration of biological and archaeological evidence to address problem-oriented research themes, and the application of scientific methods to unravelling the human past. It provides advanced instruction in the identification and analysis of human remains, the techniques and methods applied to understanding human skeletal morphological variation, and the means by which to assess pathological conditions affecting the skeleton.

The course takes place in the Biological Anthropology Research Centre (BARC) within the University’s School of Archaeological Sciences. It draws on expertise in the analysis of human remains developed over the last 20 years. The BARC curates a large and unique collection of human remains that permits hands-on analysis of skeletal variation and palaeopathological conditions. Archive facilities and purpose-built laboratories support the course, including osteometric analysis, calcified tissue histology and microscopy, and isotope analysis to reconstruct diet and migration of past human populations.

Core modules:
Palaeopathology; Musculo-skeletal anatomy; Maths and quantitative methods; Research skills; Dissertation (MSc)

Plus options from:
Archaeology of human remains; Chemistry of human remains; Funerary archaeology; Human ecology; Forensic taphonomy; Archaeometry; Introduction to forensic archaeology; Advanced archaeozoology.

“As a Commonwealth Scholarship holder, I was able to choose from all of the universities in the United Kingdom for my postgraduate studies. Quite simply there was no contest.
Bradford is the best of the best in this field, both in the UK and on a global stage.”
Graduate from MSc in Human Osteology and Palaeopathology

For enquiries please clearly state:

Subject of bachelor degree
Year of entry e.g. September 2016

Visit the Human Osteology and Palaeopathology (MSc) page on the University of Bradford website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Felicia Fricke

3766.jpg I found the University of Bradford’s MSc Human Osteology and Palaeopathology to be one of the best things I have ever done. Students are provided with a rounded approach towards the study of skeletal remains in archaeology, including the study of animal bones and human anatomy. They are also encouraged to pursue their own specific interests within the discipline. A large skeletal reference collection provides hands-on experience of many palaeopathological conditions and the assignments set are a good and realistic preparation for professional employment.

The School contains excellent lab facilities. The archaeologists form a friendly, relaxed community, and the very approachable
lecturers encourage students to ask questions and become involved in the School beyond the bounds of their academic courses.
You may hear people say rather unflattering things about Bradford city. However, once you have lived there a couple of weeks it
becomes clear that there are many hidden gems. A thriving arts community and a brilliant bier café are two examples. Bradford is also surrounded by gorgeous villages reached easily and cheaply by train. And if you feel you need some more cosmopolitan entertainment, Leeds is only 20 minutes away!

On completion of her studies, Felicia worked as an archaeologist on a series of cemetery excavations. She is now undertaking doctoral research at the University of Kent.


Country Specific Scholarships 2016 - 20+ Awards

All students from one of the World Bank countries will be entitled to a £2,000 fee scholarships as a fee reduction for meeting or exceeding the entry criteria.

Value of Scholarship(s)



Self-funding international students (not EU) who are nationals of countries that are defined by the World Bank as having low-income or low to middle income economies.

Application Procedure

These are automatically processed by us and no separate application is required.

Further Information



International Academic Excellence Scholarships 2016 - 20+ Awards

Although you may apply for more than one scholarship, you can only receive one scholarship from the University. The exception is that you can still receive the 15% Alumni discount and this scholarship. Students must be paying their own fees. Students in receipt of external funding e.g. chevening scholarships are not entitled to this award.Country equivalent of 2:1 at degree-level will result in a £2,500 fee scholarship
Country equivalent of first-class Honours at degree-level will result in a £3,500 fee scholarship

Value of Scholarship(s)

up to £3,500


Students from all other countries excluding EU countries and China will be automatically assessed for academic-related fee scholarships worth £2,500 or £3,500, based on your entry qualifications.Students entitled to the £3,500 fee scholarship can apply for one of our Half-Fee Academic Excellence Scholarships (see below).

Application Procedure

These scholarships are automatically processed by the University and no separate application is required. The amount of scholarship that you are entitled to will be shown on your offer letter.

Further Information



Academic Excellence Scholarships Home/EU Students 2016 - 10 Awards

Available for all full-time taught MSc and MA courses at the University of Bradford.The scholarship is given as a fee reduction. The award is valid for one year only.

Value of Scholarship(s)



Self-funding students paying Home/EU feesStudents must achieve at least a first-class Honours in their undergraduate studies, or the European equivalent.

Application Procedure

Please contact [email protected]

Further Information



Postgraduate Bursary 2016 - 20+ Awards

ELIGIBILITYIn order to apply for this bursary you must:Be from the UK or EU (if you are from the EU you must have done your degree in England to qualify).
Be on a full-time taught masters or research postgraduate programme and paying your own fees.
Have recently graduated from your undergraduate degree programme.
Have received support (i.e. fee payment, not a loan) towards your fees from your Local Authority or the Student Loans Company in your final year of undergraduate study at your previous university – and be able to prove this with a financial support notification letter. You will also be eligible if you received a bursary during your undergraduate study.
Bursaries will be paid in March provided that you are still in attendance and progressing satisfactorily on your course.

Value of Scholarship(s)



See full details below

Application Procedure

After you have started your course, come to The Hub with your last financial support notification letter, or bursary letter, from your undergraduate study - you will be required to fill in a short application form. In each academic year you need to apply for your PG Bursary by 31 July.

Further Information


Entry Requirements

2:1, relevant discipline

Email Enquiry

Recipient: University of Bradford

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