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

General Description / Special Programs

The Department of Anthropology of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences has a PhD Program, in both social-cultural anthropology or archaeology, requires three years of coursework, 1-2 years of research, and 1-2 years of dissertation writing. Students are required to take a minimum of eight courses (not Independent Study classes) in the department for letter grades, including a two-semester core class during the first year. In addition, students commonly study outside the department, in a variety of specialized programs and institutes at Columbia. Many also take courses in the New York City Consortium (NYU, New School University, CUNY). The Department also has a terminal MA Program, which involves the equivalent of one full year of course work (30 credits) and may be pursued part or full-time. A concentration in archaeology is also available in the MA Program. Contact Ellen Marakowitz ( A specialized MA Program in Museum Anthropology trains students to interpret ethnographic and archaeological collections for the general public; to work in registration or collection management; or to become scientific or research staff for a range of museum types. Contact Brian Boyd ( The Department of Sociomedical Sciences housed in the School of Public Health offers a PhD with a concentration in medical anthropology. Contact: Jennifer Hirsch ( The PhD Program in evolutionary primatology, formerly administered by the Department of Anthropology, is now housed in the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Environmental Biology (1200 Amsterdam Ave, Columbia U, New York, NY 10027). Teachers College offers PhDs in Anthropology and Education, and in Applied Anthropology Contact Hervé Varenne. (

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Degrees Offered Anthropology PhD, MA, MPhil, BA major/concentration
Highest Degree Offered PhD
Other Degree Requirements The MPhil degree is awarded upon completion of eight departmental courses for letter grades; the foreign language requirement; two Advanced Qualifying Examinations; and defense of a research Prospectus, at the end of three years of study.
BA/BS Field Areas
MA/MS Field Areas
Cultural Anthropology
Museum/Curatorial Studies
MA/ MS Requirements Two (2) residence units are needed (a residence unit is granted for each semester of full-time study), 30 credits (18 credits in Anthropology) and MA thesis.
PhD Field Areas
Cultural Anthropology
Medical Anthropology
Phd Requirements Six (6) Residence Units are needed (a residence unit is granted for each semester of full-time study); a high level of proficiency in a language other than English; eight departmental courses for letter grades; compulsory grant writing seminar, two or more additional courses for letter grades in Anthropology or a related field; two Advanced Qualifying Examinations; defense of a research Prospectus (in the third year) for the MPhil degree; fieldwork; dissertation; defense.
Internship / Grants / Funding
Internships Available 0
Internship Required 0
Support Opportunities

Graduate: The Columbia University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences awards fellowships providing support and full tuition for five years to entering PhD students based upon maintaining academic progress. Funding for fieldwork typically is sought from outside sources. Summer funding is available for five years for preliminary research, language training, and dissertation writeup.

Program Details
Research Facilities

Research facilities include an archaeology laboratory; the Center for Studies in Ethnomusicology; the American Museum of Natural History, the Museum of the American Indian, and the university libraries. Columbia and the American Museum of Natural History have agreed to join their resources in teaching and research in anthropology. Museum curators teach seminars and lecture courses at Columbia, and advise graduate students. Columbia faculty and students, have access to the Museum's research facilities, library, archives laboratories and photograph and artifact collections. In addition, opportunities for graduate students to work in the field with Museum curators are available. This agreement substantially increases the intellectual community at Columbia in all anthropological subdisciplines, giving students a greater chance to exchange ideas and work with faculty, whose research spans four continents and many methodological approaches. See the entry of the American Museum of Natural History for information about curators and collections.

Certs Offered 0
Employees25 to 100
Online Courses
Online Courses: 0
Application Deadlines
All prospective students must apply using the GSAS online application. For more information, visit URL: Anthropology PhD No Doctoral Admission for 2021: In response to the disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, the Department of Anthropology is not accepting doctoral applications for 2021 admission. Please visit the department's website for more information The Deadline for application to MA programs, Sociocultural Anthropology and Museum Anthropology, is Thursday, March 18, 2021.
Club / Honor Society
Anthropology Club: 0
Lambda Alpha Chapter: 0