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The 3-year BA program will provide students with a foundation in the field of Anthropology and its main subfields.


The 3-year BA program will provide students with a foundation in the field of Anthropology and its main subfields.

Anthropologists are no longer found only in far off and exotic locations; they now work in government, private industry, law enforcement, and non-profit organizations, to name just a few. The unique skills and perspectives that an Anthropology degree provides is an understanding about how we are all shaped by the cultural, social, political, and historical contexts in which we live. Employers identify critical thinking, communication, and problem solving as the most important skills they look for in university graduates. An Anthropology degree emphasizes these important skills, improves your knowledge about cultural differences, and provides a broad understanding of the experience of being human. 

By the end of the program students will be able to:

  • demonstrate critical thinking skills
  • implement the self-directed exploration of anthropological methods
  • demonstrate enhanced collaboration skills
  • communicate research to a professional or public audience
  • articulate new perspectives on anthropological themes

90 units total (Levels I to III), of which 42 units may be Level I

30 units


  • the Level I program completed prior to admission to the program.
    (See Admission above.)

18 units

  • Levels II, III or IV Anthropology

36 units

  • Electives, of which at least six units must be taken from outside of Anthropology

Students start in the Social Sciences Level 1 program and apply to the Anthropology BA Program at the end of their first year. Students must complete the requirements of a Level 1 program including two Level 1 Anthropology courses.

Completion of any Level I program with a Grade Point Average of at least 3.5 including a grade of at least C- in three units from ANTHROP 1AA3 or 1AB3.


Note: Students who have completed only 3 units of Level I Anthropology will be required to complete 3 more units of Level I Anthropology by the end of the following academic year.

THE RUTH LANDES PRIZE was established in 1982 in honour of Professor Ruth Landes for her outstanding contributions to the Department of Anthropology. To be awarded to a graduating student in a program in Anthropology who has demonstrated outstanding academic achievement. There is no need to apply for this award
Value: $100

There are numerous awards offered by the office of student financial aid and scholarships. See the links below for those eligible to Anthropology majors or look at the following website: 

Beale-Lincoln-Hall Scholarship - Participation in formal exchange program

John P. Evans Travel Scholarship - Interest in Asian language or culture

Susan Vajoczki Legacy Travel Scholarship - pursuing research in pedagogy or earth sciences and travel

Howard P. Whidden Scholarship - French summer travel to Quebec

There are also a number of external awards available:

Undergraduate Scholarships, Bursaries and Awards

All undergraduate students accepted for admission to McMaster University are automatically considered for a McMaster University entrance award. Additional entrance awards, in-course scholarships, bursaries and other forms of financial assistance is available to you at various stages of their undergraduate careers.

Each scholarship, bursary, Government Aid or Work Study Program a has its own unique application process and requirements. More information on financial aid visit the Student Financial Aid & Scholarship (SFAS) Office.

Academic Advising

The Academic Advising office is run through the Office of the Associate Dean. The primary goal of the Advising Office is to provide all Social Sciences undergraduate students with the information and guidance they need to succeed in their academic careers.

Advisors can help you make the right academic decisions by explaining policies and regulations as well as presenting different options and supports available in your studies.

An academic advisor can assist you with:

  • Course requirements, dropping and adding courses
  • Program selection, application and changes
  • Studying abroad
  • Transfer credits
  • Petitions for missed term work, deferred examinations and special consideration
  • Appeals procedures
  • Referral to other campus services

Learn more about Academic Advising in the Social Sciences.

Anthropology Subfields

(Applicable to all Anthropology programs)

Anthropology includes the three major subfields of Social/Cultural Anthropology, Biological Anthropology, and Archaeology. It should be noted that each subfield has its own sequence of courses and prerequisites.


  1. Not all Level II, III, and IV courses are offered each year. 

Cultural/Social Anthropology

  • ANTHROP 2B03 - Contemporary Indigenous Knowledge and Societies
  • ANTHROP 2DA3 - Traditional Indigenous Ecological Knowledge
  • ANTHROP 2EE3 - Sport and/as Religion
  • ANTHROP 2F03 - Engaging Social Worlds: An Introduction to Cultural Anthropology
  • ANTHROP 2G03 - Readings in Indo-European Myth
  • ANTHROP 2HE3 - Heritage, Economy, and Ethics
  • ANTHROP 2MA3 - Media, Art and Anthropology
  • ANTHROP 2R03 - Religion, Magic and Witchcraft
  • ANTHROP 3AR3 - Culture and Religion
  • ANTHROP 3F03 - Anthropology and the ‘Other’
  • ANTHROP 3G03 - Comparative Mythology
  • ANTHROP 3GG3 - Anthropology of Contemporary Europe
  • ANTHROP 3GH3 - Interdisciplinary Global Health Field Course: Maternal and Infant Health in Morocco
  • ANTHROP 3HH3 - Globalization, Social Justice and Human Rights
  • ANTHROP 3HI3 - The Anthropology of Health, Illness and Healing
  • ANTHROP 3P03 - Doing Ethnography: Theory and Research Methods
  • ANTHROP 3PA3 - Haudenosaunee Health, Diet and Traditional Botany
  • ANTHROP 3PH3 - Dissent, Power and History
  • ANTHROP 3SS3 - Sacred Journeys
  • ANTHROP 3Y03 - Indigenous Community Health and Well-Being
  • ANTHROP 4AA3 - Materiality, Matter and Social Lives
  • ANTHROP 4B03 - Current Problems in Cultural Anthropology I
  • ANTHROP 4BB3 - Current Problems in Cultural Anthropology II
  • ANTHROP 4CP3 - Cultural Politics of Food and Eating
  • ANTHROP 4D03 - Practicing Anthropology: Ethics, Theory, Engagement
  • ANTHROP 4DD3 - Anthropology of Zombies and the Undead
  • ANTHROP 4M03
  • ANTHROP 4W03 - Explorations in Experimental Anthropology

Biological Anthropology

  • ANTHROP 2AN3 - The Anthropology of Food and Nutrition
  • ANTHROP 2D03 - DNA Meets Anthropology
  • ANTHROP 2E03 - Introduction to Biological Anthropology
  • ANTHROP 2FF3 - Human Skeletal Biology and Bioarchaeology
  • ANTHROP 2U03 - Plagues and People
  • ANTHROP 3BF3 - Bioarchaeological Field School
  • ANTHROP 3C03 - Health and Environment: Anthropological Approaches
  • ANTHROP 3FA3 - Forensic Anthropology
  • ANTHROP 3PP3 - Paleopathology
  • ANTHROP 4DN3 - Diet & Nutrition: Biocultural and Bioarcheaological Perspectives
  • ANTHROP 4GS3 - Genetics and Society
  • ANTHROP 4H03 - Human Evolutionary Genetics
  • ANTHROP 4J03 - Advanced Topics in Biological Anthropology I
  • ANTHROP 4JJ3 - Advanced Topics in Biological Anthropology II
  • ANTHROP 4R03 - Advanced Bioarchaeology and Skeletal Biology
  • ANTHROP 4S03 - The Anthropology of Infectious Disease
  • (Relevant courses are also offered by Biology and Kinesiology.)


  • ANTHROP 2BB3 - Ancient Mesoamerica: Aztecs to Zapotecs
  • ANTHROP 2C03 - Archaeology of Environmental Crisis and Response
  • ANTHROP 2O03 - Themes in the Archaeological History of North America
  • ANTHROP 2HH3 - Science, Technology & Society: Archaeological Perspectives
  • ANTHROP 2PA3 - Introduction to Anthropological Archaeology
  • ANTHROP 2PC3 - Aliens, Curses and Nazis: Archaeology and Hollywood
  • ANTHROP 2RP3 - Religion and Power in the Past
  • ANTHROP 2WA3 - Neanderthals to Pyramids: Introduction to World Archaeology
  • ANTHROP 3AS3 - Archaeology and Society
  • ANTHROP 3CA3 - Ceramic Analysis
  • ANTHROP 3CC6 - Archaeological Field School
  • ANTHROP 3BB3 - Ancient Agriculture to Criminal Investigations: Paleoethnobotany in Practice
  • ANTHROP 3FF3 - Key Debates In Andean Archaeology
  • ANTHROP 3DD3 - Archaeology of Death
  • ANTHROP 3E03 - Special Topics in Archaeology I
  • ANTHROP 3EE3 - Special Topics in Archaeology II
  • ANTHROP 3EM3 - Current Debates in Eastern Mediterranean Prehistory
  • ANTHROP 3K03 - Archaeological Interpretation
  • ANTHROP 3LA3 - Lithics Analysis
  • ANTHROP 3X03 - Zooarchaeology
  • ANTHROP 4AA3 - Materiality, Matter and Social Lives
  • ANTHROP 4AH3 - Archaeology and Heritage: Ethics, Politics, and Practice
  • ANTHROP 4CC3 - Archaeology Of Foodways
  • ANTHROP 4E03 - Advanced Topics in Archaeology I
  • ANTHROP 4EE3 - Advanced Topics in Archaeology II
  • ANTHROP 4F03 - Current Debates in Archaeology
  • ANTHROP 4HF3 - Archaeology of Hunter-Fisher-Gatherers
  • ANTHROP 4HH3 - Archaeologies of Space and Place
  • ANTHROP 4KK3 - The Archaeology of Neanderthals and Other Early Humans
  • (Relevant courses are also offered by the School of Geography and Earth Sciences, History and Classics.)

Other Courses

Courses not distinguished by subfield include the required course ANTHROP 3PD3 plus the independent study courses ANTHROP 3IS3, ANTHROP 4G03, ANTHROP 4GG3 and topic course ANTHROP 3W03.

In planning a program, it is important for students to take note of the prerequisites of certain upper-level courses.

2018/2019 Undergraduate Calendar Understanding Level 1 Internships & Experiential Education McMaster / Mohawk Affiliated Certificates Soc Sci Courses Apply Now
For more information:
Department of Anthropology, Undergraduate Program
905-525-9140 ext.24423
3 years
Required Credential:
Completion of any Level 1 program with a Grade Point Average of at least 3.5 (C-) including a grade of at least 3.5 (C-) in 3 units from ANTHROP 1AA3 or 1AB3.
Program Type:
Course based
Program Options:
Full-time, Part-time
Typical Entry: