PhD Curriculum

The Advisor and the Committee. The anthropology department's graduate program is designed to facilitate close collaboration among faculty and students with shared areas of interest. Consistent with this philosophy, upon entering the program each student is assigned a professor who will act as his or her major advisor (please see the department's advising policy for more information). By the end of their first year in the program each Ph.D. student should form his or her advisory committee. The advisory committee has a core of four members. This core must include a minimum of two faculty members from the graduate program (with one being the major professor as chair or co-chair), and one representative from outside the graduate program.

Steps toward the PhD. The PhD program in Anthropology (click for checklist and sample timeline) consists of 36 credit hours (at minimum), a dissertation proposal defense, qualifying exams, a minimum of two semesters of ANT 767 and the writing and defense of the PhD Dissertation. The graduate advisor will review and approve all first year coursework, and in consultation with the DGS, evaluate requests for transfer of up to 9 credit hours of equivalent graduate-level coursework. An entering PhD student should complete required coursework by the end of the second year. Generally students enroll in ANT 662 (research design) in the spring semester of their second year (preferred for cultural students due to fall funding deadlines) or the fall semester of their third year. ANT 662 prepares students to write the dissertation research proposal, which must be defended prior to scheduling the qualifying exams. Some advisors collaborate with other faculty to co-teach ANT 662 in a workshop format while others prefer to work one-on-one with their students. A sample syllabus should be used as a starting point for designing ANT 662 to meet individual student needs. Students should complete the qualifying exams as early as the fifth semester, but no later than the tenth semester, after admission to the program. Beginning in the semester that they plan to sit their qualifying exams, students should enroll in 2 credit hours of ANT 767. They should continue to maintain this 2 credit enrollment until they graduate. These two hours are charged at in-state tuition and confer full-time status on the student. The department is committed to ensuring that students successfully complete their PhD degrees in a timely fashion. In order to help ensure this, students are encouraged to consult the departmental dissertation guidelines and work with their advisory committee to draft a dissertation plan that best suits their individual needs. Students must fulfill any and all other requirements of the Graduate School.

Specific Courses and Language Requirements in the Ph.D. program consist of: (1) three required courses - History of Theory (ANT 610) and a theory and a methods course in the student’s designated sub-discipline, to be taken in the first year when available; (2) a course in Research Design (ANT 662), (3) an approved statistics course; (4) 7 courses (21 hours) of additional coursework, of which at least 1 course must be in an anthropological subdiscipline (archaeology, biological, cultural) other than the student’s designated sub-discipline. Demonstrated competence by the student in reading or speaking one or more languages may be required by the student's committee. Click here for the policy on ANT 749.

Graduate Courses

Graduate credit courses include all 600 and above level courses; additionally some 400G level courses and some 500 level courses, with approval from the student’s committee, may count towards the graduate degree in Anthropology. Please see the Registrar for a complete list of available graduate courses in anthropology. Enrolled graduate students at the University of Kentucky that sit out for one or more semesters will need to complete a new application and pay the application fee in order to be considered for readmission.  In many instances this requirement can be avoided by requesting a “leave of absence.