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 additional requirements reflect the department’s commitment to a critical assessment of the history of anthropology, to an integrated approach to anthropology 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. The first consists of the “common courses” in the history and theory of anthropology, on anthropological monographs, and in archaeological and linguistic anthropology, which are to be taken in the first three semesters. The second fulfilled in the fourth semester, consists of a presentation before the faculty and other graduate students of a research paper that is developed from an already completed seminar paper or is directed toward dissertation research. A written version of that paper is later submitted to the student’s committee for formal assessment. For those students planning to go on to a Ph.D., the M.A. is awarded upon successful completion of both current course work and the “paper and presentation,” 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, 24 credits of course work are required. 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 from the department office or on-line at www.virginia.edu/anthropology.
Note: An eight in the middle or end of a course number (e.g., 508, 580, 708, 789) usually indicates a course in archaeology, a four indicates linguistic anthropology, and a five or six indicates an ethnographic or regional emphasis.