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General Anthropology, M.A.

  • Application Deadline
  • 24 months
, CA,
The General Anthropology Option Master degree at California State University Northridge emphasizes broad training in three fields of anthropology (archaeology, biological anthropology and human evolution, and cultural anthropology) while offering students some flexibility in degree planning and requirements.


The General Anthropology Option offered by California State University Northridge is particularly well-suited for students who wish to enter a Ph.D. program in anthropology but may not have the preparation necessary to enter such a program directly; teach in the community colleges; or establish a career in a field that utilizes anthropological methods, theory and/or data. All students in the General Anthropology Option are required to take seminars in socio-cultural anthropology, archaeology, physical anthropology and anthropological theory. In addition, students take elective courses to fit with their area of specialization.

Students complete their degrees either by passing a series of comprehensive exams or writing a thesis. Students who wish to teach anthropology at the community college level are encouraged, but not required, to choose the comprehensive exam alternative. Students who plan to enter a Ph.D. program in Anthropology are strongly encouraged to write the thesis. Students who plan other Anthropology-related careers (e.g., museum work, public folklore, etc.) will decide between the examination and thesis alternatives in consultation with the graduate advisor.

Student Learning Outcomes

Students completing the master’s degree program in Anthropology should be able to:

  • Analyze characteristics of human diversity across space and time from an anthropological perspective.
  • Analyze the evolutionary process, particularly as it relates to primate and specifically hominin evolution.
  • Analyze biological and behavioral variation among human and nonhuman primates in context.
  • Analyze the concept of culture as a fundamental principle in anthropology.
  • Analyze the causes and consequences of cultural diversity, social inequalities and change in human societies.
  • Analyze anthropological theories and paradigms, how they have changed over time, and how they are applied to explain fundamental aspects of the human condition, such as cultural diversity and social change.
  • Independently conceptualize, collect, describe, analyze and interpret anthropological evidence according to generally accepted professional practice.
  • Analyze ethics as they pertain to 21st century anthropology.

Programme Structure

Courses include:

  • Seminar in Anthropological Thought
  • Problems in Cultural Anthropology
  • Problems in Physical Anthropology
  • Problems in Archaeology
  • Seminar in Management of Archaeological Resources
  • Problems in Applied Anthropology

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Programme intensity Full-time
    • Full-time duration 24 months
  • Credits
    33 alternative credits
  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus

English Language Requirements

  • Minimum required score:


    The IELTS – or the International English Language Test System – tests your English-language abilities (writing, listening, speaking, and reading) on a scale of 1.00–9.00. The minimum IELTS score requirement refers to which Overall Band Score you received, which is your combined average score. Read more about IELTS.

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    The TOEFL iBT ® measures your English-language abilities in an academic setting. The test has four sections (reading, listening, speaking, and writing), each with a score range of 0-30, for a total score range of 0-120. Read more about TOEFL iBT ®.

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    The TOEFL®PBT is administered in a paper format and measures your ability to use and understand English in a classroom setting at the college or university level. It accurately measures how well you can listen, read and write in English while performing academic tasks. Read more about TOEFL®PBT.

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    PTE Academic (Pearson Test of English Academic) is a language test that enables students to demonstrate their writing, listening, speaking, and reading skills when applying to study in English. Delivered and marked by computer, it reports on a scale between 10 and 90.

Academic Requirements

You need the following GPA score:

Required score: 3

Applicants for graduate programs must have the equivalent of a bachelor’s degree with a minimum GPA equivalent to 3 on a US 4.0 grading scale. Admitted applicants typically have an undergraduate GPA of or better on a 4.0 scale. No exam grade should be lower than 4.5 (European grade scale) or D (American grade scale).

Your GPA (Grade Point Average) is calculated using the grades that you received in each course, and is determined by the points assigned to each grade (e.g. for the US grading scale from A-F).

General Requirements

  • Completion of minimum University requirement for admission to graduate standing.
  • Two-page written statement by applicant indicating research and career objectives.
  • Resume or curriculum vitae.
  • Two letters of recommendation from individuals who can evaluate the applicant’s potential for success in graduate studies.
  • Demonstration of research and writing skills. 
  • Exceptional cases that may not meet all the given requirements for admission will be considered by the graduate committee on petition by the applicant. Specific reasons for the waiver of any of the requirements must be offered in the applicant’s personal statement.

Tuition Fee

  • International

    8322 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 8322 USD per year and a duration of 24 months.
  • National

    8322 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 8322 USD per year and a duration of 24 months.
We've labeled the tuition fee that applies to you because we think you are from and prefer over other currencies.

Living costs for Los Angeles

  • 1520 - 2570 USD/month
    Living Costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


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