Applied Anthropology

Graduate programs

Master of Science, Applied Anthropology

Applications are not being accepted at this time.

Suzanne Walker-Pacheco, Graduate Director
Strong Hall, Room 482; Phone 417-836-6358

Program description

The master’s program in anthropology provides advanced training in the field of applied anthropology, the application of anthropological knowledge and skills to the needs and problems of society today. This program embodies the public affairs mission of the university to the fullest extent, preparing ethically-informed, culturally competent professionals to engage with community issues, both locally and globally. It is intended to be a terminal, practice degree, although it will also be helpful preparation for a Ph.D. program. Applicants should generally have a strong background in anthropology. The program emphasizes the cultivation of transferable professional skills such as research design, qualitative and quantitative analysis, computer applications, proposal and report writing, and public speaking, which are useful in many lines of work, as well as the methodology to conduct ethnographic or archaeological research projects. Applied anthropologists typically work as archaeologists or social scientists for government agencies, nongovernmental organizations, corporations, and private consulting firms, and may be involved in practical research or planning and management

Accelerated Master's option

Outstanding undergraduate majors in anthropology at Missouri State may gain early acceptance to the Master of Science program in Applied Anthropology. Admitted students will be permitted to take up to 6 hours of graduate credit in ANT at the 600-700 level that can be applied to the requirements for both the undergraduate and the graduate degrees.

Before enrolling in a course to be counted for both undergraduate and graduate credit, an undergraduate student must be accepted into the accelerated program and receive prior approval from the graduate program director, department head, and Dean of the Graduate College. Acceptance into the program and all approvals must be completed prior to the end of the Change of Schedule Period for the course.

Eligible students may initiate the process for admission to the accelerated option by submitting an application to the Graduate College. This should be completed as early as possible to allow sufficient time for consideration of all application materials. Students are encouraged to consult with the graduate program director prior to applying.

Admission Requirements for the Accelerated Master's Option
  1. A declared major in Anthropology at Missouri State University.
  2. Senior standing and an overall GPA of 3.25 or better.
  3. Completion of at least 21 hours in ANT, including ANT 226 and ANT 240, with a 3.5 GPA or better in the major.
  4. Three letters of recommendation concerning academic and professional promise from faculty familiar with your performance.
  5. A resume of not more than two pages, highlighting any experience relevant to this master's program.
  6. A statement of purpose of 300-500 words on your qualifications and reasons for pursuing this degree.
  7. At least one sample of writing (e.g., a term paper).
  8. Formal acceptance to the accelerated option by the graduate faculty in anthropology.

Admission requirements

Admission to the program is selective. The minimum standards for admission are:

  1. A bachelor's degree from a college or university accredited by agencies recognized by Missouri State University.
  2. A minimum overall GPA of 3.00 on a 4.00 scale; OR at least a 3.25 GPA on a 4.00 scale for the last 60 hours of academic course work; OR a combined score of at least 300 on the verbal and quantitative sections, and a score of at least 3.5 on the writing section of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE).
  3. At least a 3.25 in all anthropology courses.

This program is designed for students who have completed an undergraduate major in anthropology, which should include at least two courses in cultural anthropology and in archaeology, a theory course, and an introduction to statistics. A field school or fieldwork experience is highly recommended, as are courses in North American Indians and North American Archaeology. Promising applicants may be admitted provisionally with deficiencies, which will need to be rectified with extra course work.

A final decision on admission will be made by the anthropology graduate admissions committee, which will take the following into consideration:

  1. Three letters of recommendation concerning academic and professional promise.
  2. A resume of not more than two pages, highlighting any experience relevant to this Master’s program.
  3. A statement of purpose of 300-500 words on qualifications and reasons for pursuing this degree.
  4. At least one sample of writing (e.g., a term paper).
  5. A transcript of all courses taken and degree(s) completed.

Admission will also depend on the number of students the program can support at a given time and the suitability of the applicant and his or her interests for the objectives of the program.

Degree requirements (minimum of 36 hours)

* Core Requirements (21 hours)

Course Code Course Title Credit Hours
ANT 701 Colloquium in Applied Anthropology 3 hrs
ANT 705 Anthropological Theory and Practice 3 hrs
ANT 770 Research Design and Writing in Anthropology 3 hrs
ANT 790 Internship in Applied Anthropology 3 hrs
ANT 795 Directed Reading 3 hrs

ANT 797


Practicum in Applied Anthropology

6 hrs 

Electives, Group 1 (6 hours)

Course Code Course Title Credit Hours

ANT 600


ANT 645

Applied Cultural Anthropology


Cultural Resource Management

3 hrs


ANT 611


ANT 650

Ethnographic Field Methods


Advanced Methods in Archaeology


3 hrs


Electives, Group 2 (9 hours). Any graduate level course in ANT as approved by advisory.  May include one or more of the following courses: ANT 605, ANT 614, ANT 615, ANT 616, ANT 626, ANT 655, ANT 698,, ANT 769, ANT 751; ANT 600, ANT 645,ANT 611, and ANT 650 not taken as a Group 1 Elective.

Internship. Every student will complete an internship of at least 200 hours with an approved organization. It is the responsibility of the student to arrange this internship, in consultation with his or her advisor. Completion of the internship requires submission of a detailed report or portfolio and an oral presentation to the anthropology faculty and graduate students.

Advisory Committee. Every student will be assigned a faculty advisor, who will supervise the course of study. An advisory committee of at least three professors from the Graduate Faculty will be formed to evaluate the practicum or thesis. This committee may include an additional member from another university, or an agency or organization, when appropriate.

Research. Upon completion of the core courses, electives, and internship, each student will submit a proposal for a research project. This proposal shall be prepared in consultation with the student’s advisor. When completed, the graduate director will convene a hearing with the student’s advisory committee for final approval.

  1. Practicum. The student wil conduct an applied research project from beginning to completion. The final report will serve as the equivalent of a thesis.

Comprehensive Examination. Upon completion of a thesis or a practicum report, a hearing will be held and the student will be examined by the advisory committee. Each student will also give a public presentation on his or her research.