A degree in anthropology covers the cultural and biological diversity of humans. The broad discipline you'll gain from studying both science and the humanities could lead to a variety of careers

Job options

Jobs directly related to your degree include:

Jobs where your degree would be useful include:

Remember that many employers accept applications from graduates with any degree subject, so don't restrict your thinking to the jobs listed here.

Work experience

Gaining work experience is vital when starting out in most careers and shows commitment to a future employer. Take a proactive approach and find opportunities in which you can build up a desirable range of skills such as communication, planning, and project management.

Look for opportunities that are relevant to the area in which you wish to work. For example, if you want to get into charity or international aid roles, there are many opportunities for you to volunteer overseas in your summer break.

Involvement in a student society can help you develop relevant skills and experience in, for example, publicity, campaigning, and public speaking.

Try contacting local council offices or museums and galleries for information about project activities and ask if they need volunteers to help out with the organisation or running of events.

Search for placements and find out more about work experience and internships.

Typical employers

Only a tiny proportion of graduates become anthropologists, as academics or researchers. Some choose careers that build directly on anthropology, including social policy and teaching, development/overseas agencies and work for non-governmental organisations (NGOs).

A high proportion of anthropology graduates work in the public and not-for-profit sectors, all branches of the Civil Service, local government, charities, central government bodies, universities, international organisations, such as the United Nations (UN), museums and voluntary organisations.

Anthropology graduates also pursue roles in:

  • advertising
  • conservation
  • health and social work
  • heritage management
  • museums
  • sales and marketing.

Find information on employers in charity and voluntary work, marketing, advertising and PR, and other job sectors.

Skills for your CV

As well as knowledge of anthropology, your degree equips you with general skills, including:

  • written communication
  • analytical and critical skills
  • the ability to gather, assess and interpret data
  • oral communication and presentation skills
  • time management
  • discussion and group work skills
  • statistical and computing techniques
  • clear, logical and independent thinking
  • organising and planning
  • problem-solving
  • the ability to construct an argument.

You may also be able to offer subject-specific knowledge, including topics such as genetic and biological traits, globalisation and society, an understanding of how cultures function and their common traits, and the importance of language and power.

Further study

Courses chosen by recent graduates include:

  • criminology
  • development studies
  • environmental anthropology
  • industrial relations
  • journalism
  • law
  • marketing
  • public health
  • teaching
  • youth and community work.

Some students go on to Masters degrees and specialise in an anthropological area, such as visual or medical anthropology, while others pursue related disciplines, such as community health, sociology, social research methods, politics, human geography and economics.

Vocational courses, such as museum ethnography, counselling, health and social work, are also taken up by anthropology graduates.

To find a course that interests you, search postgraduate courses in anthropology.

What do anthropology graduates do?

Roles that anthropology graduates may go into include welfare and housing associate professionals and admin or marketing professionals. A fifth of graduates are carrying out further study, either full or part time.

Further study20
Working and studying6.9
Graduate destinations for anthropology
Type of workPercentage
Retail, catering and bar work18.7
Legal, social and welfare14
Technicians and other professionals11.3
Secretarial and numerical clerks11.1
Types of work entered in the UK

Find out what other graduates are doing six months after finishing their degrees in What do graduates do?

Graduate destinations data from the Higher Education Statistics Agency.

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