Departmental Deadlines and Applications


After browsing the websites for the Anthropology Department and the University of Alaska Fairbanks, you should be in a position to make an informed decision on the appropriateness of our university and its programs relative to your own areas of interest. Contacting one or more Anthropology Department faculty members before submitting an application is strongly advised.

Should you decide to apply for admission to our graduate program, please go to UAF Admissions to being the application. Please submit all parts of your application to Graduate Admissions, this includes letters of recommendation, test scores, transcripts, statement of goals, etc. If you wish to be considered for departmental funding, please fill out the application (new students or returning studentsand send it to the Graduate Program Coordinator, Dr. Sveta Yamin-Pasternak ( We recommend that prospective applicants review the graduate student manuals to understand the structure and degree requirements of our MA program and PhD program. Students applying for fall admission into the MA or PhD program should submit their applications prior to March 15. 


Deadlines for application to the anthropology graduate program are:

  • March 15: Fall admission with consideration for departmental funding
  • October 15: Renewal of TAship for Spring term
  • October 15: Spring admission (no departmental funding available for mid-year applicants).

NOTE: These departmental deadlines are different from those listed on other UAF web sites.

We offer roughly 10 to 15 Graduate Teaching Assistantships per year for a one-year term on a competitive basis with students ranked by multiple variables (GPA, timely progress toward degree, previous TA performance).

NOTE: Students must reapply EACH YEAR for a TAship: MA students are limited to two years of departmental funding and PhD students are limited to three years of departmental funding. Duties and assignments vary but all TAships require 15 hours of work/week. Several faculty have also been able to award Research Assistantships through their own grants. 

Departmental admissions requirement

The department receives many applications for graduate studies and admits the most qualified students in the applicant pool. Due to an increasingly large number of applications, our faculty has developed the following priorities for accepting students into the graduate program:

  • Students should have a BA or BS in anthropology.
  • Students with undergraduate degrees in fields other than anthropology should have some course-work in the discipline (15 or more credits), e.g. a minor. If this requirement is not met, this does not automatically preclude admission, but you should expect to take background courses in anthropology over and above the basic requirements of the graduate program. In addition to the course-work in anthropology, we also weigh courses taken in disciplines related to your anthropological interests (e.g. biology courses for a physical anthropology emphasis, social sciences courses for a cultural anthropology emphasis, linguistics for a language and culture emphasis, geology courses for an archaeology emphasis).
  • The student's GPA should be at or above 3.0, although there is some flexibility here (given the quality of universities attended and the nature of courses successfully completed).
  • We no longer require GRE scores.
  • Letters of recommendation are very important; most highly regarded are letters from anthropologists, especially those well known in their field. In general, letters from university professors (any discipline) are more useful than letters from non-academic employers and/or associates.
  • Your statement of goals is very important; it should not only explain your background preparation for graduate study, but also your ideas for research - you may not have a specific project developed at this point, but you should have some fairly specific ideas about the direction you want to go. The statement should also show a compatibility with the expertise of our faculty. The department, for example, has a strong focus on the peoples of the circumpolar north (language, culture, biology, prehistory and history).

Admission to the PhD program is more restrictive than admission to the MA program. PhD applicants are expected to fulfill all the criteria outlined above, plus have a Master's degree in anthropology, a well defined research problem, and evidence of ability to do independent theoretically informed research and writing. Individuals with undergraduate and graduate degrees in disciplines other than anthropology are not encouraged to apply to the PhD program.

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