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The One-Year M.A. in Anthropology

A William & Mary undergraduate can, with proper preparation, complete a conventional four-year undergraduate B.A. degree and then, with one additional year of study, earn the M.A.. in Anthropology. The One-year M.A. degree is based on the standard 30-hour (500-700 level classes) thesis M.A. degree option, but is completed in just a year of intensive graduate study. Classes counted for the undergraduate degree (B.A.) will not count towards the graduate degree (M.A.) and vice versa

Potential Students

The One-year M.A. is designed to elevate our outstanding undergraduates.  It relies on identifying potential students and having them enroll in graduate level classes by (at the latest) their senior year.  To be eligible, students must have a GPA of at least 3.4 in the Anthropology major and an overall GPA of 3.2.  The ideal students will develop a Senior Honor’s thesis, which will serve as the foundation of their M.A. thesis, but this is not a requirement of entry into the One-year M.A. degree.

Schedule of Study
  1. Students interested in applying to the One-year M.A. program should contact the Director of Graduate Studies as early as their sophomore year and as late as fall of their senior year, although we have a preference for students to register their intent by the end of their junior year. This allows students to enroll in graduate classes during their senior year and to begin work on their theses during the summer between their junior and senior years. Students with an Incomplete will not be allowed to take graduate classes until the Incomplete is off their student record.

  2. By the end of your junior year or fall of your senior year, register with the Anthropology Department as a student who contemplates applying to the Anthropology program with an interest in the One-year M.A. degree. Following registration, an Anthropology advisor will be assigned, if needed, to help with subsequent Anthropology course scheduling. Students will then be allowed to take graduate courses and pursue thesis research with their advisors.
  3. Upon adequate performance in Anthropology coursework (or in a closely related department) and adequate progress toward the Honor’s thesis, students during the Fall semester of the senior year will apply for admission to the Anthropology graduate program. In their personal statement, students must clearly indicate an interest in the One-year M.A. Degree Program. Application must be made through the online portal to the terminal M.A. by December 15th of your senior year.
  4. If admitted into the Anthropology M.A. graduate program, you must select a research advisor in the summer following the completion of the B.A. degree and, with this advisor, initiate planning for the eventual completion of your coursework and your M.A. thesis. Completion of the M.A. via the Paper & Presentation course in Spring of the 5th year is optional but highly recommended.

  5. In the Fall and Spring semesters of the 5th year, students take 12 graduate credits subject to the M.A.. degree requirements stated in the College’s current Graduate Catalog. If all requirements have been met, and the M.A. thesis has been successfully defended, the M.A. degree will be conferred in the May commencement of your 5th Year.

Potential Plan of Study for the One-Year M.A.
Undergraduate Junior Year
  • ANTH 603 - Archaeological Theory (3 hrs)
  • ANTH 300 - (students must take ANTH 300 before ANTH 600)
  • Elective at 500 level or above (3 hrs)
Undergraduate Senior Year
  • ANTH 600 - Socio-Cultural Theory (3 hrs)
  • ANTH 693 - Intro to Graduate Research (6 hrs)
  • Elective at 500 level or above (3 hrs)
Graduate One-Year
  • ANTH 700 - Thesis (6 hrs)
  • Two electives at 500 level or above (6 hrs)

Total of 30 credits