University College Cork


We offer our students a unique opportunity to gain intercultural competencies as well as professional and transferable skills. It will appeal to those of you with a strong international and intellectual outlook who seek a deeper understanding of the cultural, political and social challenges of the 21st Century.

Course Practicalities
The MA Anthropology, on the one hand, employs conventional classroom practice and pedagogy but on the other hand transgresses and broadens it through its summer schools, winter schools, and fieldwork placements with partner institutions globally.

These summer and winter schools, as well as fieldwork placements, offer unique spaces for free and unconventional/alternative thinking and educational practice by means of culturally alienated educational scenarios and contexts.

The fieldwork placement will offer a unique opportunity for Irish students to engage in ethnographic practice at a range of institutions in India, Latin America, and Europe, and for international students to conduct ethnographic research in Ireland.

The international local and global experience of transcultural learning and communication offers unique academic think-tank and creative spaces which foster global understanding and empathy through local engagement.


The MA Anthropology programme may be taken full-time over 12 months or part-time over 24 months from the date of first registration for the programme. Part-time students take at least the core modules in year one and the remainder required for credit over years one and two.

Why Choose This Course
The MA in Anthropology is an innovative and unique programme that fills a large gap in the Irish higher education landscape

Anthropology is uniquely well-placed to provide an analysis of our contemporary local and global situation: Recent and ongoing political and economic crises bring into sharp relief the need to forefront anthropological perspectives and expertise to the benefit of the social sciences and public life. Such a programme will offer the increasing number of international students with personal lived experience of migration, immigration and globalisation, conflict and war, a vehicle with which to voice their own thoughts and experiences to an academic standard. There is no graduate programme in Ireland and few internationally that address this intersection.

The programme will employ conventional classroom pedagogy combined with summer school, winter school and fieldwork placements with partner institutions globally. The already existing summer and winter schools will service not only the students from the MA in Anthropology programme but also students in other Irish Third Level Institutes, and, will also offer a recruitment window for international students.

The summer school and winter school plus the fieldwork placement make this a very attractive programme with a unique profile in Ireland.

Placement or Study Abroad Information
Students will be exposed to international perspectives and possibilities facilitated in particular through summer, winter-schools and fieldwork placements.

The fieldwork placement will offer a unique opportunity for Irish students to engage in ethnographic practice at a range of institutions in India, Latin America, and Europe, and for international students to conduct ethnographic research in Ireland.

The international local and global experience of transcultural learning and communication offers unique academic think-tank and creative spaces which foster global empathy through local engagement.

Subjects taught

Students take 90 credits in total:

Part I (Full-time) 60 credits

Students complete core modules to the value of 30 credits, and select 30 credits from the Elective Modules (students are strongly encouraged to attend one of the summer/winter schools and can take up to 10 credits from those on offer in a given year).

Core Modules

AY6002 Ethnography, Practice and Writing (15 credits)
AY6011 Rereading the Anthropological Classics (5 credits)
AY6013 Anthropology: Paradigms and Theories (10 credits)
Elective Modules

Summer School/Winter School Elective Modules

AR2051 Anthropology of War in Stateless Societies (5 credits)
AY6004 Anthropology and Social Control (10 credits)
AY6005 Anthropology Research Laboratory (10 credits)
AY6006 International Political Anthropology Summer School 1 (5 credits)
AY6007 International Political Anthropology Summer School 2 (10 credits)
AY6012 Anthropology Research Laboratory (5 credits)
SC6001 Economy and Society Summer School (5 credits)
SC6002 Economy and Society Summer School 2 (10 credits)
Standard Electives (select 20 credits)

CR6000 Governmentality: Disciplines, Institutions and Critiques (10 credits)
GV6115 European Security (10 credits)
LW6544 Criminology (10 credits)
MU6042 Ethnography of Music (10 credits)
MU6043 History and Theory of Ethnomusicology (10 credits)
RG6061 Indigenous Worldviews and Minority Religions (10 credits)
SC6631 Sociology of Sustainable Development (10 credits)
SC6638 Rethinking Borders: Sovereignty, Rights and Justice (10 credits)
SC6639 Feminist Epistemologies: Feminisms, Sexuality and Society (10 credits)
SC6642 Social Theory and Climate Justice (10 credits)
SC6643 Sociology of Science, Technology and Medicine (10 credits)
SC6644 Im/mobilities: forced migration and belonging (10 credits)

Part II (30 credits)

AY6003 Dissertation (30 credits) or
AY6010 Fieldwork Placement (30 credits)
See the University Postgraduate Calendar (MA Anthropology) for full course details.

Fieldwork Placement

The Fieldwork Placement will take place in one of our partner universities and will be jointly supervised by a team of two supervisors, one based at UCC and one in the partner university. The supervisor in the partner university will oversee and facilitate the practical aspects of the fieldwork project. The placement will be designed by the two supervisors in consultation with the student before they depart for fieldwork. Students will go on fieldwork placement for 1 to 2 months in Ireland, Europe, or to non-European partner universities between the months of April and August. The placement will be monitored by a UCC academic mentor plus a local mentor if the fieldwork is undertaken at a non-European partner university. Students will be expected to report their experiences at agreed intervals.

For a student to go on Fieldwork Placement pertinent conditions must be satisfied by the Programme Director including but not limited to linguistic requirements, political stability, health concerns, travel and health insurance undertaken and logistical practicalities. Where unsure the Programme Director will consult with the Board of Studies or where conditions are unmet a student may make their case to the Board of Studies. The decision of the Programme Board of Studies is final.


Further details on the modules listed above can be found in our Book of Modules. Any modules listed above are indicative of the current set of modules for this course but are subject to change from year to year.

Entry requirements

A candidate for this MA programme must normally hold a Second Class Honours Grade I in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) or equivalent, in Anthropology, or a cognate subject in social/cultural sciences (Sociology, Criminology, Management, Development, Political Science, Languages, Social Sciences, Classics, Comparative Literature, Cultural Studies, Study of Religions) or equivalent international qualification.

Candidates who hold a Second Class Honours Grade II in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) may also be considered under Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) subject to review by the Board of Studies.

As part of the application process all applicants will be required to submit:

1. A supporting statement which should outline your intellectual biography and your reasons for pursuing postgraduate studies in Anthropology.

2. Prospective applicants may be required to present themselves for an interview. The interviewing of overseas applicants may be conducted by Skype.

English Language Requirements
Applicants that are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university approved English language requirements available at

For applicants with qualifications completed outside of Ireland
Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements, available at

International/non-EU applicants
For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students. In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.

Not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above.

For more information please contact the International Office.

Application dates

The closing date for non-EU applications is 30 June 2023

How Do I Apply
1. Check Dates: Check the opening and closing dates for the application process in the fact file boxes at the top of the page.

For Irish and EU applicants we operate a rounds system and you can check the rounds closing dates here.
Note that not all our programmes are subject to the rounds system so check the opening and closing dates for your specific programme in the fact file boxes above.

2. Gather Documents: Scanned copies of supporting documents have to be uploaded to the UCC online application portal and include:

Original qualification documents listed on your application including transcripts of results from institutions other than UCC;
Any supplementary items requested for your course if required.

3. Apply Online: Apply online via the UCC online application portal. Note the majority of our courses have a non-refundable €50 application fee.

Any questions? Use our web enquiry form to contact us.

Additional Requirements (All Applicants)
Please note you will be required to provide additional information as part of the online application process for this programme. This will include the following questions:

You may enter the details of professional or voluntary positions held. We strongly encourage you to complete this section with all relevant work experiences that will support your application.

Please describe your motivation and readiness for this programme.

Please detail your computing/technical/IT skills.

Please upload your CV.

Please enter the names and email addresses of 2 referees. At least one referee should be an academic referee.

N.B. We may also require prospective applicants to present themselves for an interview. The interviewing of overseas applicants may be conducted by Skype or similar.

All other required supporting documentation (e.g. evidence of Non-UCC undergraduate/postgraduate qualifications) must be uploaded via the applicant portal.


1 year full-time, 2 years part-time.

Enrolment dates

Start Date: 7 September 2020

Post Course Info

Skills and Careers Information
Anthropologists can be universally employed as intercultural competency, socio-cultural reflexivity and cultural literacy represent key social and educational skills in contemporary societies.

Identified career paths are
• Research
• Education
• Higher Education
• International and national politics
• Journalism
• International Organisations (UN, UNESCO etc)
• NGO sector

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Full time,Part time,Daytime

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    Course provider