The doctorate requires 72 credits at the graduate level, comprising at least 54 of course work (the remaining 18 may be non-topical research), and the successful completion of a dissertation. Students entering with an M.A. degree can transfer up to 24 graduate credits.
Several requirements reflect the department’s commitment to a critical assessment of the history of anthropology, to an integrated approach across the sub-disciplines (socio-cultural anthropology, archaeology, and linguistics), and to a program flexibly shaped to the particular needs and goals of each student. Students first take the “common courses” in the history and theory of anthropology, on anthropological monographs, and in archaeological and linguistic anthropology; this sequence is usually completed in the first three semesters. Next is the Qualifying Assignment. Before the faculty and other graduate students usually in the fourth semester, candidates fore the Ph.D. present a research paper that is directed toward dissertation research, often developed from an already completed seminar paper. For those students planning to go on to a Ph.D., the M.A. is awarded upon successful completion of current course work and the Qualifying Assignment,” as well as demonstrated competency in one foreign language.
Students complete courses and begin work toward a Ph.D. research proposal in the third year of study. Subsequent to their third year, students defend their research proposal, conduct their dissertation research, and complete and defend a dissertation. Competency in a second foreign language is required for the Ph.D. Statistics may be substituted where relevant.
For students taking the M.A. degree only, 30 credits are required comprising 24 credits of regular courses and 6 credits of thesis research. M.A. students are asked to take only the first two semesters of “common courses.” They must also demonstrate competency in one foreign language and write an M.A. thesis.
A fuller description of the graduate program and the degree requirements is available on-line at www.virginia.edu/anthropology.
Note: An 8 in the middle or end of a course number (e.g., 5080, 5800, 7080, 7890) usually indicates a course in archaeology, a 4 indicates linguistic anthropology, and a 5 or 6 indicates an ethnographic or regional emphasis.