The School of Anthropology and Conservation offers a friendly and cosmopolitan learning community with students from over 70 different nationalities and 45% of staff from outside the UK. Our flexible degree provides diverse and relevant module choices where you are taught by enthusiastic academics, who produce inspired field research.
Our Social Anthropology degree gives you the opportunity to spend a year in professional practice, invaluable in today's global job market. It demonstrates your ability to adapt to new situations, your sensitivity to other cultures (intercultural competence), and provides commercial awareness, a valuable asset for employers.
Our degree programme
In the first year, you take modules that give you a broad background in the subject. The programme begins with an introduction to the history of anthropology, the foundations of biological anthropology, anthropology and conservation, and global perspectives on relatedness.
In your second and final years, you take compulsory modules that develop your specialised knowledge and skills. You can also choose further modules from a wide range of options.
Modules expand across the full range of our research expertise from traditional anthropology (The Anthropology of Amazonia; The Anthropology of Business) and current anthropological thinking (Theoretical Perspectives in Social Anthropology) to ideas impacting today's societies (Islam and Muslim Lives in the Contemporary World; The Anthropocene – Planetary Crisis and the Age of Humans).
Our degree also gives you the unique opportunity to study visual anthropology, with modules on the anthropological use of photography, film and video, including practical classes and visual anthropology projects.
Year in professional practice
The year in professional practice is a wonderful opportunity to spend up to a year, between the second and final years, undertaking work placements with organisations relevant to your degree programme. You spend a minimum of 24 weeks on placement at one or more organisations. Placements can be at home or abroad and give you the opportunity to apply your academic skills in a practical context, offering you rare and unique experiences which will set you apart.
Alternatively, you can take our three-year Social Anthropology BA degree, without a work placement. For details, see Social Anthropology BA (Hons).
A number of our modules include opportunities for learning and experiences outside of the classroom through field trips in the UK and abroad. Potential excursions are:
- Paris, the Musée du quai Branly and Musée de l'Homme
- The Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, Cambridge
- London Chinese temple
- London financial district
- Impact Hub Islington
- Canterbury Cathedral and Canterbury Mosque.
These may change from year to year and may incur additional costs. See the funding tab for more information.
For more details about field trips, including reports from students who went on our recent trips to Cambridge and Paris, visit Social Anthropology Field Trips.
The School of Anthropology and Conservation has excellent teaching resources including dedicated computing facilities. Other resources include:
- refurbished computer suite with 32 PCs with HD screens
- an integrated audio-visual system to help provide stimulating lectures
- a state-of-the-art visual anthropology room
- an ethnobiology lab for studying human-related plant material
- student social spaces
- a teaching laboratory with first-rate equipment
- an excellent fossil cast collection with hundreds of casts, including multiple entire skeletons of extant and extinct primates and hominins.
The Anthropology Society is run by Kent students and is a good way to meet other students on your course in an informal way. There are also many national societies, which are a great way to meet people from around the world and discover more about their countries and cultures.
The School of Anthropology and Conservation puts on many events that you are welcome to attend. We host two public lectures a year, the Stirling Lecture and the DICE Lecture, which bring current ideas in anthropology and conservation to a wider audience. We are delighted that these events attract leading anthropological figures from around the world; in 2017 we hosted paleoanthropologist Professor Lee Berger, one of Time magazine's 100 most influential people.
Each term, there are also seminars and workshops discussing current research in anthropology, conservation and human ecology.