Admission to the MA program is open competitively to students holding an Honours or Major BA in Anthropology, although special provisions are made in the MA program in Medical Anthropology for students with expertise in health science who lack a strong background in Anthropology. Outstanding candidates with Bachelor's degrees in other disciplines but with substantial background related to Anthropology are somtimes admitted on the condition that they complete a specified number of additional courses in Anthropology. The applicants we admit usually have an undergraduate grade point average of 3.5 and above.
Admission to the PhD program is open to those with a BA or an MA in Anthropology, although we may in special circumstances admit candidates with Master's degrees in related disciplines. Copies of research papers are also essential to our assessment. For PhD applicants who have followed thesis MA programs, a copy of the MA thesis, in draft or final form, is mandatory. All admissions for the academic year, which begins in September, are decided as a group the previous spring. Individual admissions will not be considered at other times in the year. The nature of the student's intellectual and research interests is a second important factor. Our program requires that applicants have a focus and see themselves moving in a particular direction. MA applicants should have at least a tentative commitment to a particular sub-discipline, approach, or research issue. PhD applicants should have a fairly well-delineated research problem. To judge this factor, we give serious attention to the Statement of Purpose, considering its degree of focus, intellectual sophistication, and creativity. The decision to admit depends on correspondence of the student's interests with interests and resources available in the Department. Some applicants with excellent records, worthwhile interests, and promising futures are not admitted to our Department because we do not feel able to serve their particular needs. Since the number of students that can be admitted each year is limited, final decisions are made on a competitive basis.
We look for students capable of working at the research frontiers of the discipline who can benefit from the opportunity to design and carry out their own program. We put great weight on a high level of intellectual capacity and achievement. University grades as well as the results of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) are taken as a good index of these factors. GRE (general exam) scores are mandatory for all applicants and the exam should be taken no later than December. Information on GRE is available here http://www.ets.org/gre/revised_general/register/centers_dates/. Registration for the December exam takes place before mid-October. Write to Graduate Record Examinations, Educational Testing Service, P.O. Box 6000, Princeton, NJ 008541-6000, U.S.A., or call 609-771-7670. Graduate Record Examination scores above 600 are regarded as competitive. The TOEFL www.toefl.org examination is required for students whose first language is not English.
January 1, 2013
Any applications that are incomplete (including letters of reference, scores from any required standardized tests and grades) by the application deadline will not be considered.
“As of October 2012, McGill’s formerly paper-based graduate application process has been replaced with a more convenient electronic version. For detailed instructions on how to apply and how to upload required supporting documents in the new version, please see: http://www.mcgill.ca/gradapplicants/apply/prepare
All applicants must submit the following:
1. Online Application for Admission form: www.mcgill.ca/gradapplicants/apply/ready.
2. Statement of Purpose: 1 to 2 pages describing your current interests in anthropology, your reasons for wishing to pursue them at McGill.
3. Sample of Written Work: All applicants must submit a sample of their academic writing of no more than 40 pages. For example a chapter of your MA thesis or an article or conference paper you have written.
4. Transcripts: your complete record of study from each university-level institution (incluidng McGill) you have attended to date. Uploaded copies will be considered as unofficial; final, official copies will be required once you are offered admission.
5. Reference letters: TWO letters are required. On the application form you must provide the names and email addresses of at least two professors who are familiar with your academic work. McGill will contact these referees and invite them to upload references on your behalf. Please note that although you can list public domain addresses such as Hotmail, Gmail, or Yahoo Mail on the application form, references uploaded from these addresses will not be accepted by the Department. Therefore you must list a valid institutional or corporate e-mail address for your referees. You MUST inform your referees to use the form Graduate Studies Letter of Recommendation [.pdf]
6. Graduate Studies Admissions Checklist [.doc]
Please verify on Minerva to see which supporting documents have been uploaded.