The 2023-2024 AnthroGuide is the last print version. Edits for graduate programs are due July 31, 2023.

General Description / Special Programs

The Department offers training in three major subdisciplines of anthropology:  archaeology, biological anthropology, and sociocultural anthropology.  Faculty have expertise in anthropological and molecular genetics of both ancient and contemporary DNA, evolutionary studies, and demography; geoarchaeology, lithic analysis, Great Plains archaeology, sociopolitical complexity, Latin American archaeology; political anthropology, symbol systems, applied anthropology, gender, economic anthropology, environmental anthropology, and indigenous studies.  Area strengths include Mesoamerica, Central America, and both Andean and Amazonian South America, the Mediterranean, the Middle East, North America, and the Arctic.  The Department has ties to other disciplines in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences.  The Department provides courses in the University's interdisciplinary Museum Studies, and Indigenous Studies Programs.

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Tuition Info
Degrees Offered Anthropology PhD, BA/BGS major, minor
Highest Degree Offered PhD
BA/BS Field Areas
BA/BS Requirements
The Department of Anthropology offers majors and minors for the Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of General Studies degrees. The BA requires training in a foreign language. The BGS does not. Anthropology major requirements are otherwise identical for the two degrees. These include two introductory courses in archaeological/biological anthropology and sociocultural anthropology, a course in the fundamentals of a particular subdiscipline, a methodology course in a particular subdiscipline, and a capstone course. Graduation with honors requires a 3.25 GPA overall, a 3.50 GPA in anthropology, and a senior thesis.
Experience Offered
Field Work
MA/ MS Requirements Most graduate students are admitted with the expectation that they will pursue a PhD. However, the Department offers the option of pursuing an MA without continuing in the PhD program.
PhD Field Areas
Biological Anthropology
Cultural Anthropology
Phd Requirements We offer doctoral specialization in archeological, biological, and sociocultural anthropology. Upon admission, doctoral students determine with their advisor and committee whether they should complete an MA as part of their training. Following their completion of two years of coursework all doctoral students must pass a qualifying exam to continue in the PhD program. For an MA, the qualifying exam is conducted jointly with the MA exam. Doctoral students must complete at least 18 hours of coursework after their qualifying exam. To advance to candidacy, qualified students must submit a written dissertation proposal and defend it in an oral exam, usually a year after their qualifying exam. Candidates receive a PhD after fulfilling requirements that can include published research articles or a doctoral dissertation based upon original research.
Internship / Grants / Funding
Internships Available 1
Internship Required 0
Grants Or Funding The Department offers GTA or GRA appointments ( to all admitted graduate students. For more information, prospective applicants can go to the KU Graduate Studies Funding Opportunities website: The Department encourages students to undertake grant-funded research. Admitted students should discuss potential opportunities with their graduate mentors. Funding for dissertation research is available through a variety of KU and external sources. Students will work with their advisor to obtain project funding. Funding for dissertation research is available through a variety of KU and external sources. Your advisor will work with you on obtaining funding for your project.
Support Opportunities <p>All doctoral students are admitted with four years of guaranteed funding.&nbsp; This funding may take the form of Graduate Teaching Assistantships (average annual stipend $17,500) and grant-funded Graduate Research Assistantships; Graduate School Summer Fellowships, and opportunities for qualified doctoral students to teach their own courses.&nbsp; For more information, see the KU Financial Aid website:</p> <p>&nbsp;</p>
Program Details
Research Facilities <p>The KU Museum of Natural History and Biodiversity Institute houses ethnographic collections from around the world; archaeological collections from North American Great Plains, Latin America, and Europe.&nbsp; The Department maintains a state-of-the-art laboratory facilities for the study of both ancient and modern DNA as well as a laboratory for teaching qualitative and quantitative methods, an extensive teaching collection of casts of fossils and artifacts.&nbsp; For more information on the KU Anthropological Genetics Research Facilities:&nbsp; <a href=""></a></p> <p>The Department also provides students field training and research opportunities in collaboration with the Kansas Geological Survey through the endowed Odyssey Archaeological Research Program.&nbsp; Dr. Rolfe Mandel is Distinguished Professor of Anthropology, Senior Scientist at the Kansas Geological Survey, and Executive Director of Odyssey. &nbsp;The Odyssey Program is dedicated to using geoscientific methods to search for evidence of the earliest people in North America and to better understand the environments in which they lived. Odyssey-supported field and laboratory-based research has a strong focus on the Central Great Plains, Midwest, and Front Range of the Rocky Mountains.&nbsp; For more information on the Odyssey Archaeological Research Program see https://<a href=""></a>.</p>
Collections Anthropological Collections curated by the KU Natural History Museum and the Biodiversity Institute and genetic collections housed in our Anthropological Genetics facilities are available for research; subject to appropriate permissions and coordinated with the appropriate curators and collection managers.
Publications <p>University of Kansas Publications in Anthropology, list of KU publications:&nbsp;; To purchase a book, please send an email to</p> <p>&nbsp;</p>
Misc Information Anthropology course offerings listing: KU Anthropology FB page:
Certs Offered 0
Employees1 to 25
Archaeological Research Collections; Kansas Geological Survey; Human Biology Program; Area Studies Programs in Latin America, Africa, East Asia, and Eastern Europe; Environmental Studies; Global & International Studies; Indigenous Studies; Linguistics.
Online Courses
Online Courses: 1
Online Course Info: <p>We periodically offer on-line semester courses and some undergraduate courses on-line through the Center for Online and Distance Learning.&nbsp; We currently offer an Anthropology minor.&nbsp; We are in the processes creating an online bachelor&#39;s degree in Anthropology.&nbsp; Our target date for the online bachelor&#39;s degree is spring 2023.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p>
Application Deadlines
December 1st, for Anthropology Graduate Program.
Club / Honor Society
Anthropology Club: 1
Anthropology Club Info: Undergraduate Anthropology Association (UAA) UAA website: Pending Graduate Students for Anthropology (GSA). GSA website:
Anthropology Club Advisor: Dr. John Hoopes (UAA) and Dr. Jennifer Raff (GSA)
Lambda Alpha Chapter: 0