Research course

Archaeology and Anthropology

University of Bristol · Faculty of Arts

Entry requirements

MPhil: An upper second-class honours degree (or international equivalent). Please note, acceptance will also depend on evidence of your readiness to pursue a research degree. MPhil/PhD: A pass at Master's level (or international equivalent).

Months of entry

January, September

Course content

The Department of Archaeology and Anthropology has an international 'four-field' approach, combining archaeology with evolutionary, social and linguistic anthropology. Our diverse researchers collaborate in a thriving interdisciplinary environment, with key strengths in understanding cultural, biological and social change: the spread of peoples, their ideas and material artefacts. Archaeology and anthropology have been studied at the University of Bristol since its foundation as a university college in 1876, and a Department of Archaeology and Anthropology was formed in 2004 to unite the two fields.

Research in the department ranges from the outdoors - landscape and maritime archaeology, and anthropological fieldwork - to the indoors, with laboratory-based science using radiocarbon dating, isotopic methods and micro-imaging technology. A key strength is the interdisciplinary study of human diversity, both biological and cultural. Our research spans a variety of time periods and global regions, from Ancient Egypt and the Classical World to the industrial heritage of Bristol, and from prehistoric migrations and connections across the Indian and Pacific Oceans to the transformations of economic and religious life in contemporary societies. Field research in archaeology and anthropology takes place in the UK (including locally at Berkeley Castle, the department's field school location) as well as Ethiopia, Turkey, Jordan, Madagascar, Tanzania, Sri Lanka, France, Mongolia, Belgium, Slovenia, Hungary, Peru and the US.

We are well equipped to undertake surveys, fieldwork and excavations. Dozens of PhD students work on a wide range of subjects, many of them bridging the disciplinary boundaries between archaeology and anthropology. The department's creative, interdisciplinary research culture includes a series of research seminars and we have a range of scientific and teaching laboratories. We draw on expertise and facilities from across the University, including the Bristol Isotope Group (in the Department of Earth Sciences), the Organic Geochemistry Unit (in the School of Chemistry), the School of Social and Community Medicine, the Bristol Centre for Complexity Sciences (School of Engineering), the School of Biological Sciences, and the Bristol Institute for Research in the Humanities and Arts (BIRTHA) in the Faculty of Arts. Our success in interdisciplinary collaborative research is evidenced by success in research funding from nine research councils and international funding bodies.

Information for international students

Fees and funding

UK students
Full time: £4,185 Part time: £2,093
International students

The University of Bristol is part of the South, West and Wales Doctoral Training Partnership (SWW DTP), which will be offering studentships for September 2017. For information on other funding opportunities, please see the Faculty of Arts funding pages.

For further information on funding for prospective UK, EU and international postgraduate students please visit our webpage,

Qualification and course duration


full time
36 months
part time
72 months


part time
24 months
full time
12 months

Course contact details

Postgraduate Admissions
+44 (0) 117 331 8443