Anthropology, M.A.

As of Fall 2017 this degree is in teach-out phase; it is not open to new or readmit students.


The mission of the Master of Arts in Anthropology is to provide students with a holistic understanding of the diversity of human behavior across time, geography and culture from a distinctly Christian perspective and to equip them to actively bridge cultural differences so that they can effectively share the good news of the Gospel and holistically address human problems such as injustice and the effects of globalization on populations around the world.

Program Description

The Master of Arts in Anthropology degree is designed for students who desire advanced training in the study of people in culture preparatory to careers in the teaching of anthropology, serving as anthropological consultants to cross-cultural agencies, or research into and the application of anthropological methods of inquiry to contemporary issues associated with globalization, development, public health or other social conditions. The Master of Arts in Anthropology is designed as a generalized degree that requires students to be familiar with all five fields of anthropological inquiry: cultural anthropology, linguistic anthropology, physical anthropology, archeology, and applied anthropology. A distinctive of the Master of Arts in Anthropology degree is the manner in which a Christian perspective is integrated into every aspect of the courses offered.

Program Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the Master of Arts in Anthropology, students will be able to:

  1. Identify major paradigms, major figures, and major theories in anthropology and explain (ULO 1).
  2. Demonstrate they are able to form research questions, apply appropriate research methodologies, and interpret, analyze, and report ethnographic and/or archaeological data (ULO 2).
  3. Recognize and respond appropriately to key challenges to and opportunities for their faith raised (ethics, integrity, and intellectual honesty) in engaging their sub-discipline in anthropology (ULO 3).

Each Program Learning Outcome (PLO) listed above references at least one of the University Learning Outcomes (ULO 1, 2, 3), which may be found in the General Information section of this catalog.

The Master of Arts is designed to build upon the competencies in research, fieldwork, and integration achieved through an undergraduate degree in anthropology or allied fields. In the Masters program student achieves competencies in the methodologies necessary for research and work as a professional anthropologist and/or preparation for continuation to a doctoral program in the social sciences or related fields.

Program and Entrance Requirements

The M.A. in Anthropology is a 42-credit program. Curriculum includes 15 credits of core courses, 18 credits of electives, and 9 credits of Bible and theology courses. Students entering the program are expected to have a strong background in anthropological studies including introductory courses in each of the five fields of study. Students wishing to enter the program without these prerequisites will be required to take them as graduate students during the first year of study, thereby adding up to 15 credits of study to the program. Qualified applicants with a B.A. in anthropology consisting of 40 or more credits in anthropology may have their coursework reduced to a minimum of 32 credits.

Graduation Requirements

  1. Satisfactory completion of all coursework.
  2. At least 24 credits must be taken at this institution.
  3. Maintain a 3.0 grade point average on a 4.0 scale.
  4. Completion of an approved thesis.
  5. Meet with department advisor and Graduate Graduation Counselor in the Office of the Registrar one year prior to graduation to declare intent to graduate. (See Graduate Graduation Check description in the Admission, Enrollment and Graduation Requirements section).

Curriculum Requirements

Program Courses
ISAN 521Contemporary Anthropological Theory3
ISAN 523Ethnographic Research Methods3
ISAN 601Proseminar3
ISAN 603Master's Thesis3
Select one of the following Seminar courses:3
Seminar in Applied Linguistics
Seminar in Advanced Archaeology
Seminar in Advanced Physical Anthropology
Elective Courses
Select 18 credits from any of the five sub-fields of anthropology18
Bible/Theology Courses
Select three courses from TTBE/TTTH or similarly approved Talbot classes in Bible and/or theology upon the recommendation of the academic advisor and from the following list:9
Approved CSSR and ISAN theological and scientific approaches to the study of humanity courses
TTOT courses in language and/or cultures of the biblical word
Approved TTNT biblical backgrounds courses
Pre-approved courses include:
Justice, Advocacy and the Kingdom of God
Acts in Cross-cultural Perspective
Topics in Biblical Theology from an Anthropological Perspective
Cultural Context of 1st Century Palestine
Biblical Morality and Cultural Relativity
The Cultural Setting of the Gospels
The Cultural Setting of Acts
The Cultural Setting of Second Corinthians
Studies in the History and Culture of Israel
Archaeology of Israel
Total Credits42