The department expects graduate students to maintain a breadth of competence in core anthropological issues, theories, and practices through the master's degree with studies becoming increasingly specialized as students approach the PhD. Students will pursue a primary specialization in any of the major subfields of anthropology: archaeology, cultural, or biological anthropology. To get acquainted with our graduate program, please visit the department website

Degrees Offered

  • MA, MA/MBA, PhD

Degree Details


Requires a minimum of 30 hours of graduate level course work, examinations cover particular subfields of anthropology.


This is a dual degree program, requiring 30 hours of graduate level work in anthropology (3 hours of which may be an approved elective in the MBA program) and 43 hours of MBA course work in the Leeds School of Business. For contact information and other details, please see:


Requires an MA in anthropology or equivalent degree (as assessed by CU anthropology faculty) and sponsorship of a student’s candidacy by a faculty member. There is a minimum of 30 hours advanced graduate course work. The foreign language requirement can be met if a student has received a C or better in a fourth semester undergraduate course or if facility in a foreign language can be assessed and documented by other means approved by the Graduate Committee. Depending on the specific research planned, doctoral students may be asked to acquire an additional language or other skills. Preliminary exams are based on the student’s field of interest. The dissertation is typically based on fieldwork or laboratory research.

Certificate Programs

Anthropologists are integral to a number of interdisciplinary and professional graduate certificate programs offered on campus, including Development Studies, Remote Sensing, Population Studies, Culture, Language, and Social Practice, Interdisciplinary Documentary Media Practices, and others. For a complete list see the Certificate Programs page.

Admissions Requirements

Students entering the program are enrolled either in the master's or doctoral program, depending on whether or not they hold a master's degree in anthropology. Students with an MS in museum sciences from the University of Colorado Boulder may be admitted to the PhD program on condition of completing deficiencies in course work. Students with a master's degree in a closely related discipline may also be considered for admission to the PhD program on a case-by-case basis, and should expect to fulfill all the core requirements of our graduate program.

Research experience is highly recommended. For archaeology applicants, this includes fieldwork. GRE required of all applicants, with a recommended minimum score of 50th percentile or above.

Applicants must:

  1. Hold a baccalaureate degree or its equivalent from an accredited college or university; applicants to the PhD program must hold a master's degree in anthropology, as above.
  2. Have an undergraduate grade point average of at least 3.00.
  3. Complete the University of Colorado Graduate School Online Application
  4. Submit one transcript from each college or university attended.
  5. Submit GRE scores — verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing. Institution code: 4841
  6. Submit four letters of recommendation.
  7. Pay a nonrefundable application fee of $60—either by credit card with your online application or made payable to the University of Colorado. The fee for international applicants is $80.
  8. Submit a statement of purpose with your application identifying how your academic and professional aspirations and expectations can be specifically met by the faculty and curriculum of the CU Anthropology Graduate Program.


Fall Domestic Application Deadline

January 13, 2017

Fall International Application Deadline

December 1, 2017

Contact Information

University of Colorado Boulder
Department of Anthropology
Hale 350C
233 UCB
Boulder, CO 80309-0233
Phone: 303-492-7947
Fax: 303-492-1871

Anthropology website