Graduate Student Admissions

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Students interested in applying to UWF for graduate studies in the Department of Anthropology should begin at the Graduate Admissions Overview page of the UWF Graduate School, where they will find the basic information about how to apply for graduate studies at UWF.

Department-specific information regarding admission to Anthropology Master's degree program is available at the Anthropology MA page for the Graduate Catalog.

Which specialization should I choose?

The UWF Anthropology Department offers master's degrees following two specializations or "tracks": General Anthropology and Historical Archaeology.  The difference between the two specializations is basically one of emphasis.  Each track has five required graduate classes (one common to both, the rest distinct, as shown below) and several additional elective classes in required areas (an additional cultural, biological, and archaeological electives in Anthropology for the General Track, and History electives for the Historical Archaeology track), along with several open electives.  Full details can be found in the Anthropology Department listing within the current UWF Catalog, but the table below provides a quick comparison, as well as unofficial graduate program planners that may be downloaded for individual planning purposes and advising sessions.

General Anthropology M.A.

Historical Archaeology M.A

Students who want a stronger focus on history and documents as part of their historical archaeology studies should enroll for the Historical Archaeology track, while students who prefer to take a more diverse range of anthropological classes should enroll for the General Anthropology track.  We have students doing historical archaeology thesis projects in both tracks, so it is mostly a difference in coursework.  For a list of history courses available at UWF (as well as current course offerings), see the links below, and also my General Student Links

Historical Archaeology track graduate students should also make note of the fact that Florida participates in the Academic Common Market, a program of the Southern Regional Education Board in which students from other participating states can have out-of-state tuition waived if there are no graduate degree programs in their chosen field within their home state.  Since the Historical Archaeology specialization is relatively uncommon in Master's programs, UWF students have the opportunity to avail themselves of this program.  Details on this program can be found here and here.

UWF also offers two certificate programs that may be of interest to prospective graduate students, one in Historic Preservation (administered through the History Department), and the other in Geographic Information Science (GIS) (administered in the Earth and Environmental Sciences Department). These certificates are separate from the Historical Archaeology/Anthropology M.A. degree program, but some course requirements actually overlap and can count toward both.

What is the application process?

The following items are required in order to apply for graduate studies in Anthropology.  Note that ALL items must now be submitted directly to the UWF Graduate School, and should NOT be submitted directly to the Anthropology Department:

Required by UWF Graduate School:

Required by UWF Department of Anthropology:

In general, your statement of intent should give the department a sense of what your interests and anticipated career path is, because that will help us evaluate the extent to which our program (including current faculty specialties and projects) is a good match for you.  You should also provide an overview of your previous training and experience in archaeology, particularly focusing on your academic background in the field, though you can of course also cover any subsequent relevant job experience (for example archaeological work in the CRM field).  This can provide you an opportunity to summarize or explain briefly some of the facts and figures provided elsewhere on your more detailed transcript(s) and test score reports.

Your writing sample can be a term paper from a previous class, or a presented or published paper, and is used by the department to assess your writing skills.  Writing samples submitted are normally based on anthropological topics, but may also include other appropriate disciplines as long as they offer a basis for evaluating the quality of your writing.

Your recommendations should be strongly weighted toward academic faculty members who can speak to your performance as a student, and it's best if most (or even better all) are anthropologists/archaeologists, though of course if you choose, you can also include faculty from other disciplines, or non-academic job supervisors or field school directors, etc. (but these should  not constitute the bulk of your recommendations).  To the extent that you have non-academic anthropologists/archaeologists among your recommendations, or professors from other disciplines, you should probably address and explain this directly in your statement of intent or cover letter.

Do I need an undergraduate degree in anthropology?

A bachelor's degree in anthropology is preferred, but not the only route to admission to the UWF graduate program in anthropology.  All incoming students, including those with an anthropology BA or BS, must have completed a minimum set of prerequisite courses, and students lacking one or more may be required to complete them prior to full admission to the graduate program at UWF (conditional admittance is possible while prerequisites are completed).  All students in both tracks must have completed at least one upper division (300/3000-400/4000 level) course in both archaeology and cultural anthropology.  Additional requirements for each track are detailed below:

For the General Anthropology track, an upper division course in both biological anthropology and anthropological theory is required in addition to those in archaeology and cultural anthropology. 

For the Historical Archaeology track, students must have completed Biological Anthropology including Lab (ANT 2511/2511L or its equivalent), as well as Principles of Archaeology (ANT 3101 or its equivalent), and they must also have completed an undergraduate archaeological field school in the area of anticipated specialty (terrestrial or maritime) of sufficient length and appropriately comparable content to prepare them to act as field supervisors during their graduate field school at UWF (ANG 6824).  Incoming graduate students at UWF commonly take the 10-week undergraduate field school (ANT 4824 or 4121) during their first summer as a prerequisite for the supervisory graduate field school during their second summer semester.

What about funding opportunities?

The Division of Anthropology and Archaeology makes determinations for several funding opportunities for incoming graduate students shortly following the published deadline for annual applications to the program.  All but one of these awards are determined based on the regular graduate application materials, and thus no separate application is required.  However, one assistantship does requires that a separate and additional letter of interest be submitted along with the original application to the Department, and that is the Florida Public Archaeology Network (FPAN) assistantship, which is detailed here.

Once admitted students have begun their graduate studies, additional funding opportunities are also available, including graduate assistantship positions, as well as paid student employment through the various branches of the Division, including the Archaeology Institute, the Anthropology Department, and FPAN.  These jobs include archaeological fieldwork and labwork for both temporary and ongoing projects, as well as other positions such as visitor services at public heritage tourism facilities.  In addition, several local opportunities exist for research or travel funding for graduate students in association with thesis or other research projects. One such opportunity is provided by the UWF Scholarly and Creative Activities Committee, which offers competitive Graduate Student Research Awards (both internal UWF links) in the amount of up to $1,000 for research projects (as well as $500 additional for students who have already received a previous grant) and up to $500 for conference travel in order to present results.  Two cycles of grant applications are offered each year (fall and spring), and students may apply for one grant category each cycle.  Students may be awarded a total of up to 3 such grants during the course of their studies at UWF.  Another local funding opportunity is through the Pensacola Archaeological Society, which offers several competitive student awards for research and travel expenses.  All these funding opportunities may be pursued with the assistance of the student's thesis advisor, normally selected toward the end of the coursework phase of the graduate program (usually 2 years or less).