Best Graduate Schools for Forensic Anthropology

Discover the graduate options available for those pursuing a career in forensic anthropology. Learn more about the concepts and practical skills covered in both graduate and undergraduate programs, the career options available, and the job outlook for the industry. Schools offering Social Science degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Those looking to pursue a career in forensic anthropology will require both a master's and bachelor's degree in anthropology. These programs will provide a thorough, technical understanding of the complexities surrounding human evolution, societies, and cultures - with the option to focus on the identification, recovery, and study of human remains.

What Is the Most Common Degree for Forensic Anthropology?

Anthropologists typically obtain a master's degree in anthropology before pursuing a professional career in a specialized field. These degree programs typically have the option of specializing in forensic anthropology, which covers both theoretical and practical knowledge of subjects such as general forensic science, human osteology, human anatomy, human identification, and crime scene investigation.

As forensic anthropology entails the study of human remains for legal cases, technical skills surrounding human identification, skeletal trauma identification, and excavation methods are also covered.

These programs are commonly comprised of both laboratory and lecture-based experiences, providing students with a well-rounded training course that prepares them for professional employment experience. Before graduating, their studies will likely culminate in a final examination, thesis, or portfolio.

What Schools Offer a Master's Program in Forensic Anthropology?

Schools offering master's degree programs in anthropology with the option of specializing in forensic anthropology include:

  • Boston University
  • Mercyhurst University
  • California State University, Los Angeles
  • University of Montana
  • University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Should I Pursue a Bachelor's Degree?

A bachelor's degree in anthropology is generally required before pursuing a master's degree program in the field. These bachelor programs will offer you a general study of various anthropological fields, including cultural anthropology, biological anthropology, archaeology, physical anthropology, and linguistic anthropology.

Graduates will develop an in-depth understanding of and appreciation for human cultures and society, as well as the evolutionary and biological systems that have formed the human populations of today. These programs will also touch upon forensic anthropology, providing you with fundamental knowledge of the field before pursuing your graduate studies.

What Schools Offer a Bachelor's Degree in Anthropology?

Schools that offer bacheor's degree programs in anthropology include:

  • Boston University
  • University of Tennessee, Knoxville
  • Brandeis University
  • Drexel University
  • Western Carolina University

What Are My Career Prospects as a Forensic Anthropologist?

Graduates of forensic psychology commonly go on to find work in the following professional fields:

  • Law enforcement: forensic psychologists can pursue careers as forensic scientists or technicians working for legal cases.
  • Education: graduates may choose to work in an academic setting, teaching at colleges or universities.
  • Museum curation: other forensic anthropology graduates may work in the human osteology departments of museums or galleries.

What Is the Job Outlook for Anthropologists?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, anthropologists and archaeologists have a relatively positive job outlook, with employment expected to grow 4 percent from 2016 to 2026 - though this is slower than the all jobs average. However, with corporations continuously dependent on anthropological research for a better analysis of the consumer market (and its cultural and social sub-sections), anthropologists will find their skills in demand with these businesses.

There is strong competition among graduates in this field, and it is highly recommended for employment-seekers to hold a master's degree or Ph.D., extensive experience in the anthropological field, and excellent research skills to improve their career prospects.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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