Master's degree programme in Anthropology
Equipped for globalisation
In the degree programme, you work with cultures and societies around the world. You work with a comparative perspective and, through the study of social and cultural conditions, you seek to acquire an understanding of basic human conditions and the way they change. You gain insight into how people live and interact with each other and into the society"s institutions, rules, traditions and technology. Anthropology deals with man as a social and cultural being and with the way we interact with each other and society. These are important skills in an increasingly globalised world, and with a Master’s degree in Anthropology you are well equipped for the dansih aswell as the international job market.
Anthropology in theory and practice
In the Master’s degree programme in anthropology at Aarhus University, you can gain considerable practical experience. Anthropological fieldwork or a period of practical training in a Danish or foreign company or organisation provides you with an opportunity to try out anthropological methodology and theories in practice. You also strengthen your individual competence profile and specialise in specific topics through your choice of supplementary subjects and your thesis, for which many students often draw on material and data from their fieldwork or practical training.
There are five different tracks in the Master’s degree in anthropology, three of of which are taught in English.
- Global Studies and Development (English)
- Medical Anthropology and Glocal Ethnography (English)
- Visual Anthropology (English)
- Innovation, Organization and Work Anthropology (Danish)
- General Anthropology (both Danish and English)
This track, which is taught in English, focuses on globalisation and development. The topics you study include the relationship between globalisation, poverty, environment and conflicts and the role culture and cultural differences play in development processes and conflicts.
As a student, you get an opportunity for in-depth study of complex social issues and processes in a global perspective. Theoretical discussions combined with empirical examples teach you to use your academic competences in global development work and to solve cultural conflicts.
NEW TRACK: Medical Anthropology and Glocal Ethnography (in English):
Grounded in anthropological theory, the course programme “Medical Anthropology and Glocal Ethnography” presents you with global medical problematics. It investigates the role of biomedicine at all levels of society – from the individual to the global. With the concept glocal we point attention towards the unfolding of biomedicine (including biotech sciences) in dynamic global-local interlinkages: How are medical thinking and practice shaped in different contexts? How do biomedicine and other medical systems contribute to shaping societal development and cultural practice? What new needs are created by biomedical inventions and interventions, and how do perceptions of e.g. sociality, identity and kinship change along with these perceived needs?
You will learn how to analyze medical knowledge and practice as part of cultural landscapes that influence the very meaning of what it is to be human, and the conditions people live under in a globalized world. Through multidisciplinary discussions of the social and biological life of illness and disease you will be trained to challenge implicit assumptions about universalism and determinism and groomed to engage in collaboration with epidemiologists, geneticists and other scientists in the broad fields of health and medicine.
Learn more about Medical Anthropology and Glocal Ethnography by downloading this PDF-leaflet.
This MA programme provides students with practical and theoretical skills to take part in visual anthropological debates about the workings of human imagination and perception in diverse cultural settings. Through hands-on workshops in the production of anthropological film, photography and exhibitions, students learn to apply audiovisual and new social media as a participatory research method and as a means of analytic expression. The aim is to develop practical and conceptual sensibilities that allow students to explore and experiment with the interfaces and dialectics of human perception, emotion and imagination beyond what can be contained in words.
Learn more about Visual Anthropology by downloading this PDF-leaflet.
General Anthropology (both Danish and English)
The track builds on a classical, anthropological approach to the study of man as a social and cultural being and the way people interact with each other. The structure of this track allows you to specialise in topics that interest you. This could be a specific topic, for example integration, visual culture, religion and politics or change processes, or you can specialise in the cultural issues relating to a specific area such as East Africa, North America or South East Asia.
You acquire a basic cultural understanding that enables you to analyse complex social and societal issues in a globalised world, cutting across genders, generations, ethnical groups and other divides.
Innovation, Organization and Work (in Danish)
Culture also exists behind a company’s closed doors. If you are interested in the social and cultural aspects of companies, organisations and in work contexts, this track will give you the tools to study innovation and creativity, work, identity and integration as well as the culture of companies and organisations.
A company has its own cultural practice; its own discourse and social structure, and a company’s culture is affected by its material objects and feelings and the language spoken in the workplace. As a student of this track, you study these aspects and acquire skills that improve your chances of employment in the Danish and international business community as well as within the government and the municipalities.
READ, PRINT AND BE INSPIRED
Download and print a short presentation of the MSc programme in Anthropology 2013.
The following Bachelor's degree programmes qualify the student for admission to the Master's degree programme in anthropology:
- A Bachelor’s degree in anthropology from Aarhus University (AU) or University of Copenhagen (KU).
- A Bachelor"s degree with at least 45 ECTS-points (i.e. 75 % of a full-time academic year of study) within anthropology
The Board of Studies carries out an individual assessment as to whether applicants with qualifications other than the above have the academic qualifications required for their application to be given equal status.
Legal right of admission
Students of the Bachelor's degree programme in Anthropology at Aarhus University have the right to be admitted to the Master's degree programme in Anthropology on the condition that application is made with a view to continuing directly from the Bachelor's degree programme to the Master's degree programme. The legal right of admission requires receipt of the application by Aarhus University within the appropriate period of time.
As the Master’s degree programmes in Anthropology (due to government legislation) only admits a limited number of students each year, meeting the admission requirements does not in itself guarantee admission to the programme.
In evaluating qualified applicants, the admissions committee assesses each applicant on the basis of the average mark (i.e. GPA) of the Bachelor’s degree at the time of application. Marks/grades obtained after the application deadline will not be included in the GPA.
The admissions committee assesses each applicant’s marks on the basis of the information provided by diplomas and transcripts.
In addition to the above, the following language requirements apply for admission to the Master's degree programme in anthropology:
The following specialisations require Danish at upper secondary school "A" level or equivalent:
- The Danish-language line in General Anthropology
- Innovation, Organisational and Work Anthropology line
The following specialisations require English at upper secondary school "B" level or equivalent:
Medical Anthropology and Glocal Ethnography
The English-language line in General Anthropology
Global Studies and Development
In the following graphical presentation of the subject you can see the different modules and courses that, in addition, link to the course catalogue where you can read the course descriptions.
As a student it is important to know the regulations for your chosen subject: what is the content, how is it structured and what does it require from you. You can find this information in the academic regulations.
The Department of Anthropology and Ethnography is based at Moesgaard – an old manor house located just south of Aarhus. Here you have access to a library, a common room, the Moesgaard Museum and beautiful countryside.
You also have plenty of opportunity to take an active part in student life. The following services are available at the Department of Anthropology and Ethnography:
The Student Committee is where you, as a student, can discuss the academic content of your degree programme and contribute to its further development.
The Danish Ethnographic Association is available for all people interested in anthropology and ethnography. The association publishes the journal Jordens Folk (People in the World) and holds meetings in Aarhus and Copenhagen.
Informanten is the student newsletter, which is published 3–4 times a year and deals with a variety of topics.
Kultura is a students’ association where you can meet your fellow students after hours. Kultura consists of three committees:
- The Kula lecture association, which organises Friday lectures, debates, seminars, etc.
- The Social Events Committee, which organises a Christmas lunch and other celebrations.
- The Friday bar, where you can socialise with fellow students every Friday.
In addition, there are many other events for students at the Faculty of Humanities and the University of Aarhus – e.g. lectures, intro days, career days, seminars, celebrations and sports days.
Student-to-student is your opportunity to ask about being a student at the Faculty of Arts and about Aarhus and Denmark in general to another international student who has already taken the leap and now lives in Denmark and studies for his/her Master's degree at the Faculty of Arts.
You can read more about the student-to-student service and find the list of AU international student ambassadors at Arts here.
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Job functions for grads
This data is derived from AU's 2013/2014 employment survey. This data should not be considered a completely accurate representation of the labour market and job functions for all graduates of the individual degree programmes. It exclusively represent the responses submitted to the survey in the years in question.
A Master’s degree in anthropology and ethnography provides you with the following competences:
- Cultural understanding: You acquire a thorough understanding of cultural differences and similarities and, in particular, ways to analyse complex cultural issues. This applies to foreign cultures as well as cultural differences in Denmark between companies, gender, generations, ethnic groups, etc.
- Communication: You become skilled at communicating both verbally and in writing, especially with a view to publicising knowledge about work and project results.
- Specialisation: You come to specialise in specific topics and regions, and acquire special skills in areas such as the environment, integration, China, etc.
- Analysis: Your knowledge of anthropological tools of analysis enables you to plan and implement large projects that involve complex analysis and evaluation procedures.
Anthropologists have many different career paths, including teaching, project management, development projects, and consultancy and analysis work within the following areas:
- The social sector: Many anthropologists are employed in private consultancy firms, municipalities or educational institutions within the social sector. Examples of these include project managers, job consultants in municipal job centres, labour market and integration consultants, researchers and teachers in education programmes for social workers.
- Organisation and staff: Anthropologists who specialise in organisational and industrial anthropology can find work in human resources and organisational development departments in both private and public sector companies via recruitment agencies or as external consultants.
- Development and aid to developing countries: Many anthropologists are involved in the planning, implementation and evaluation of development projects, where they can be based in Denmark or posted abroad working for NGOs, the Danish International Development Agency (Danida), consultancy firms, etc.
- Analysis and evaluation: As an anthropologist, you become skilled at undertaking systematic analyses. Many graduates therefore find jobs in consultancy firms or public institutions, where they carry out evaluation and analysis work in different areas, such as psychiatry or the treatment of drug abusers.
- Health: You have the opportunity to specialise in health anthropology and apply for jobs such as a project manager, intermediary, development consultant or project evaluator in the health sector.
You can choose to work in research by studying for a PhD, either at the university or in collaboration with a private company. Click on for more information about PhD degree programmes at the Faculty of Arts.
You can also read more about a range of career guidance services including special events and workshops at AU Career.