United States Masters in Archaeology Degrees | Archaeology Masters Programs
Students aspiring to a career as an anthropologist or archaeologist need at least a Masters in Archaeology degree to work in these domains. Since a Ph.D. may be needed for jobs that require leadership skills and advanced technical knowledge, earning an Archaeology Masters Degree may be supportive of future doctoral study and occupational versatility. On average, Masters in Archaeology program takes 2 - 5 years to complete, and includes either field or laboratory work, coursework and an original thesis project.
Masters in Bioarchaeology Graduate Programs Overview
In the U.S., Masters in Archaeology programs are traditionally housed within anthropology departments. Archaeology is the study of the human distant and recent past through investigation of material remains. Students in Archaeology Masters Programs receive an education and training in the recovery, analysis, and interpretation of the material remains of the human past. Bioarchaeology graduate programs include the application of scientific techniques, as well as the study of archaeological heritage.
FUN FACT: Archaeologists held about 7,700 jobs in 2014[i]
By depicting and constructing on a variety of areas in the humanities and social, physical, and biological sciences, anthropologists and archaeologists examine the ways of life, languages, archaeological remains, and physical characteristics of people in different parts of the world. They also examine the customs, values, and social patterns of various cultures.
Is a Masters Degree in Archaeology Right For You?
Enrolling in Archaeology Masters Programs may be a great fit for students who have the prerequisite knowledge, gained from undergraduate study in a related field or through extensive professional experience. Earning a Masters degree in Archaeology may further your understanding of artifact and architectural conservation, site preservation
and project management through campus-based or online study.
FUN FACT: Archaeologists often specialize in a particular geographic area, period, or object of study, such as animal remains or underwater sites.[ii]
Typically, students applying to a Masters program in Archaeology must hold a BA, with sufficient course work in archaeology, anthropology, art history, classical studies and/or other related fields, and/or significant field and/or lab experience. Some archaeology graduate programs require demonstration of reading proficiency in one modern foreign language by the end of the second semester.
Choosing an Archaeology Masters Program: Online or On-campus?
GradSchools.com can help simplify your search for archaeology graduate schools and Masters in Archaeology Programs. Studying archaeology may mean you spend time doing heavy fieldwork, which may involve travel. This means that while there are distance-learning Masters programs in Archaeology, you would be advised to check whether they are completely online or have a campus component. In terms of finding a University or College, use the location search to yield listings according to the city, state or country you prefer. Some of these choices might include MSc Human Osteology and Funerary Archaeology. Master of Arts in Applied Archaeology or Master of Arts in Anthropology.
Archaeology Masters Potential Curriculum
Students in Archaeology Masters degree programs might expect to learn the fundamentals of archaeological methods and theories are covered. Once this component is completed, students might then concentrate on their specific research interests and geographical specialization. Some of the topics that an Archaeology Masters degree may delve into might include:
- Field methods in archaeology (excavation techniques)
- Materials analysis (data collection and identification)
- Conservation and preservation
- Historical archaeology
- Faunal analysis
- Cultural resource management
- Laws and ethics
- Advanced archaeology
- Advanced archeology field methods
- Lab methods
- Ethnographic research methods
- Archaeological interpretation
Specialization Courses in Archaeology
Some Masters in Archaeology degree programs may allow students the freedom to customize their studies by choosing a specialization within archaeology. For example, a student interested in cultural resource management (CRM) may take courses in project planning and data management. A historical archaeologist might find coursework in recording architecture or site preservation more useful. Aspiring museum curators would focus on art conservation and restoration.
Potential Career Paths in Archaeology
Masters in Archaeology graduates might explore a variety of potential career paths. This will depend on their interests, education level and goals. Archaeologists work in research, cultural resource management firms, government and engineering services. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a 4% employment growth is projected between 2014 and 2024. Fierce competition means that job prospects will be best for candidates with a Ph.D. in Archaeology, extensive anthropological or archaeological fieldwork experience, and experience in quantitative and qualitative research methods.[iii]
Some Archaeologists work as Archivists, Curators and Museum Workers. There will be similar competition for jobs; employment is projected to grow 7% from 2014 to 2024[iv]
Ready to Find Bioarchaeology Graduate Programs?
If uncovering, interpreting and preserving material human history fascinate you, earning a Masters in Archaeology may be a rewarding academic choice. Why not review your options on GradSchools.com today!
Sources: [i] bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/anthropologists-and-archeologists.htm | [ii] bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/anthropologists-and-archeologists.htm | [iii] bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/anthropologists-and-archeologists.htm | [iv] bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/curators-museum-technicians-and-conservators.htm
- Riverside, CARiverside, CA
La Sierra University
La Sierra offers the only Seventh-day Adventist graduate religion and ministerial training program in the western United States, drawing students from around the world to study on our campus.
- Indiana, PAIndiana, PA
Indiana University Of Pennsylvania
Earn your M.A. in Applied Archaeology at IUP, which offers the only degree of its kind in the state, and you can dig into...
- Las Vegas, NMLas Vegas, NM
New Mexico Highlands University
Unique anthropology program focusing on the the American Greater Southwest at a liberal arts university in northeastern New Mexico.
- Normal, ILNormal, IL
Illinois State University
We now offer a Master's Degree in Archaeology that has three concentrations: Historical Archaeology, Prehistoric Archaeology and Bioarchaeology.
Cultural and Regional Studies provides the opportunity for students to complete degrees in multicultural and cross-cultural...
- West Long Branch, NJWest Long Branch, NJ
The skills of an anthropologist are becoming more valued in an evolving economy, with the job market for successful graduates expected to grow 15% between now and 2016.
- Flagstaff, AZFlagstaff, AZ
Northern Arizona University
MA in Anthropology offers computer training, faculty support, individualized study, and training for job market challenges.
- Las Vegas, NVLas Vegas, NV
University of Nevada Las Vegas
We offer a four field approach leading to an MA in anthropology. Normally, a student specializes in one of the four fields. A variety of active field programs are offered. A Ph.D. program was established in Fall 1999.
- Logan, UTLogan, UT
Utah State University
Master of Science (MS) Degree in Archaeology and Cultural Resource Management...
- Waltham, MAWaltham, MA
The Department of Anthropology at Brandeis University offers a wide range of courses covering the discipline's four major subfields: Sociocultural anthropology Linguistic anthropology Physical anthropology Archaeology of complex soci...
- Waltham, MA
- Tampa, FLTampa, FL
University of South Florida
USF was the first university in the United States to offer graduate programs in applied anthropology. The Anthropology Department now has 17 full-time faculty members. There are 3 archaeologists at the Tampa campus, 2 more at the Sarasota campus, plus s...
- San Francisco, CASan Francisco, CA
University of California - Berkeley
- Pensacola, FLPensacola, FL
University of West Florida
The Anthropology M.A. program prepares graduates for a variety of professional positions and entrance into doctoral programs.
- Arcata, CAArcata, CA
Humboldt State University
A rigorous yet flexible program focused on relevant, competitive skills in archaeological, biological, & cultural anthropology.
- New Haven, CTNew Haven, CT
An interdisciplinary program with faculty from the Departments of Anthropology, Classics, Geology and Geophysics, History of Art, and Near Eastern Lan...
- Wheaton, ILWheaton, IL
The M.A. in Biblical Archaeology at Wheaton College investigates the world of the Bible through the recovery and study of ancient sources in order to better understand Scripture...
- Tulsa, OKTulsa, OK
University of Tulsa
The M.A. program in anthropology provides students with the necessary theoretical and technical background for pursuing professional careers or contin...
- Tallahassee, FLTallahassee, FL
Florida State University
Florida State University's Program in Underwater Archaeology (PUA) offers undergraduate courses and M.A. and Ph.D. degrees, providing students with a balanced approach to the study of submerged cultural resources, taking into consideration both historic...
- Tallahassee, FL
- Williamsburg, VAWilliamsburg, VA
College of William and Mary
The graduate program in history at the College of William and Mary prepares students for careers as university professors, editors, historical archaeologists, and professionals in historical societies, libraries, and museums. The department offers a doc...
- Williamsburg, VA
- Los Angeles, CALos Angeles, CA
University of California - Los Angeles
The primary purpose of the program is to train scholars in archaeology foruniversity-level teaching and research and other professional aims.
- Athens, GAAthens, GA
University of Georgia
The MS in archaeology resource management (ARM) degree is a professional degree offered through a unique interdisciplinary, non-thesis program whose g...
- Boulder, COBoulder, CO
University of Colorado - Boulder