applied anthropology in action
Apply ← Master of Arts in Applied Anthropology


Students working in the field

Applications for the pro­gram begin­ning Summer 2015 will be avail­able  begin­ning late Fall 2014 and will be open through early Spring 2015. Exact dates will be placed in this web­site in Fall 2014.

Application to the Master of Arts in Applied Anthropology is a three-step process.

Application Process At-a-Glance:

  • Step 1: Confirm eli­gi­bil­ity. Eligibility for HSU Graduate Admissions is described in the HSU online cat­a­log. In addi­tion, this pro­gram requires BA/BS in Anthropology/related field, and pre­ferred min­i­mum GPA 3.0.
  • Step 2: Apply to HSU by com­plet­ing the California State University Graduate Application online at CSUMentor. Letters of rec­om­men­da­tion (2 or 3 total) will be han­dled elec­tro­n­ially through the CSU men­tor appli­ca­tion, but the notifications/links to let­ter writ­ers will not be dis­patched until the CSUMentor appli­ca­tion is com­plete (be sure to notify your let­ter writ­ers in advance if you are com­plet­ing the appli­ca­tion near the deadline).
  • Step 3: Apply to the Anthropology Department by email­ing the fol­low­ing mate­ri­als to as a PDF: 2-page state­ment of pur­pose, CV, 8–12 page writ­ing sam­ple, offi­cial or unof­fi­cial tran­scripts from the uni­ver­sity where you received your BA/BS.

Students are encour­aged to con­tact the anthro­pol­ogy fac­ulty to dis­cuss their inter­ests prior to apply­ing to the program.

Application Process Details

Step 1: Confirm eli­gi­bil­ity to apply

Confirm eli­gi­bil­ity for HSU Graduate Admissions as described in the HSU online cat­a­log.

In addi­tion to the require­ments of HSU Graduate Admissions, the fol­low­ing pre­req­ui­sites have been set for eli­gi­bil­ity to apply to the MA in Applied Anthropology program:

  • BA or BS in Anthropology, Archaeology, or related field (must be com­pleted prior to begin­ning pro­gram). If BA/BS is not in Anthropology or Archaeology, appli­cants may still apply if they can demon­strate suf­fi­cient prepa­ra­tion to pur­sue intended course of study in the Applied Anth MA.
  • GPA: Minimum 3.0 in under­grad­u­ate major and last 60 attempted units of bachelor’s degree. The Anthropology Department may make excep­tions to this require­ment on a case-by-case basis; stu­dents with a GPA below 3.0 may still apply to the program.
  • GRE scores are not required, but appli­cants may sub­mit them as demon­stra­tion of aca­d­e­mic abil­ity if they desire.
  • Previous under­grad­u­ate field/research/applied expe­ri­ence in area of con­cen­tra­tion pre­ferred but not required.

Step 2: Apply for Graduate Admissions to Humboldt State University

During this process, you will be asked to do the fol­low­ing (as detailed on the HSU Graduate Studies web­site):

  • Complete the California State University Graduate Application online at CSUMentor. Note the following:
    • On the CSUMentor Graduate Application main page, IGNORE THE BOX AT THE TOP THAT SAYS “Application sub­mis­sion period begin­ning… for Summer”. These dates are NOT CORRECT for our pro­gram. Applications for our pro­gram begin­ning Summer 2015 will be open accord­ing to the dates indi­cated above. To begin your appli­ca­tion, click on the box that says “CLICK THIS BOX IF YOU ARE APPLYING FOR: …FALL 2015, SUMMER 2014…”
    • A $55.00 appli­ca­tion fee is required at time of application.
    • Letters of rec­om­men­da­tion will be han­dled elec­tron­i­cally through CSUMentor. Near the end of the appli­ca­tion process, you will be asked to pro­vide con­tact infor­ma­tion for two or three per­sons who can eval­u­ate your abil­ity and poten­tial for grad­u­ate edu­ca­tion — at least two should be fac­ulty at the insti­tu­tion where BA/BS or other advanced degree was received. These indi­vid­u­als will receive an email with a link to elec­tron­i­cally sub­mit their let­ter of rec­om­men­da­tion through CSUMentor. Letters sub­mit­ted as hard copies or as emails to HSU will not be accepted except if pre-arranged due to spe­cial cir­cum­stances. Please con­tact Graduate Studies with ques­tions regard­ing the sub­mis­sion of let­ters of recommendation, and the Anthropology Department with ques­tions regard­ing the suit­abil­ity of your let­ter writers.
  • In addi­tion to com­plet­ing the online appli­ca­tion through CSUMentor, please pro­vide one offi­cial tran­script from each col­lege or uni­ver­sity you have ever attended. These must be offi­cial paper tran­scripts (not elec­tronic copies) in their orig­i­nal sealed envelopes, mailed directly to HSU. Please request your tran­scripts early so that we receive them by the appli­ca­tion dead­line, prefer­ably sev­eral weeks in advance. Delayed tran­scripts are the #1 rea­son for appli­ca­tion delays. Note: If you have been an HSU stu­dent within the past five years, it is pos­si­ble that you may not need to sub­mit tran­scripts if you trans­ferred all other course­work to HSU pre­vi­ously — please check to con­firm. Please con­tact Graduate Studies with ques­tions regard­ing the sub­mis­sion of offi­cial transcripts.

Official tran­scripts must be in their orig­i­nal sealed envelopes and mailed to:

Humboldt State University
Office of Graduate Admissions
1 Harpst Street
Arcata, CA 95521



Step 3: Apply to the Anthropology Department

In addi­tion to apply­ing to HSU through CSUMentor, please send the fol­low­ing mate­ri­als directly to the Anthropology Department:

  • Please email the fol­low­ing mate­ri­als, in the spec­i­fied order (1–4), together as a sin­gle PDF doc­u­ment to the Anthropology MA grad­u­ate pro­gram coor­di­na­tor using this email address: It will be the respon­si­bil­ity of the can­di­date to con­firm receipt of materials.
    1. Statement of Purpose (2 page max­i­mum, single-to-double spaced) dis­cussing prepa­ra­tion and ratio­nale for pur­su­ing grad­u­ate study in anthro­pol­ogy, intended research area/focus dur­ing the MA pro­gram, and pro­fes­sional goals dur­ing and after com­plet­ing the MA. It is not nec­es­sary to have an exact the­sis topic in mind, but please do indi­cate your area(s) of interest/intended MA research focus as specif­i­cally (and hon­estly) as possible.
    2. Curriculum Vitae (make sure it indi­cates over­all and major GPA)
    3. Writing Sample  (8 pages min­i­mum, 12 pages max­i­mum, addi­tional pages may be included to accom­mo­date ref­er­ences). You writ­ing sam­ple should demon­strate your abil­ity to think crit­i­cally, write clearly, and appro­pri­ately uti­lize and ref­er­ence schol­arly work. It does not need to be in your intended research focus area, but it cer­tainly can be. One paper is pre­ferred, but the writ­ing sam­ple can include more than one paper to reach the minimum page limit.
    4. Scanned/electronic copies of  offi­cial or unof­fi­cial tran­scripts for all col­lege course­work (includ­ing HSU). If the tran­script from the insti­tu­tion where you received your bachelor’s degree lists your course­work from other colleges/universities, it is not nec­es­sary to include sep­a­rate tran­scripts for the other colleges/universities.
  • If sub­mit­ting GRE scores (optional), please use the ETS-GRE score send­ing ser­vice. The Anthropology Department address is:

Humboldt State University
Department of Anthropology
1 Harpst Street
Arcata, CA95521

Application Deadlines & Admission Procedures

  • Applications for the pro­gram begin­ning Summer 2015 will be avail­able  begin­ning late Fall 2014 and will be open through early Spring 2015. Exact dates will be placed in this web­site in Fall 2014.
  • Make sure all appli­ca­tion mate­ri­als are sub­mit­ted online CSU Mentor (step 2), post­marked to HSU (tran­scripts), and emailed to the Anthropology Department (step 3) by the dead­line (prefer­ably sooner, as appli­ca­tions may close before that data). Be sure your let­ter writ­ers sub­mit their let­ters of rec­om­men­da­tion by this date.
  • If you plan to apply (or sub­mit any last mate­ri­als) close to the appli­ca­tion dead­lines, it is advis­able to email the Graduate Coordinator ( so that we will be expect­ing your materials.
  • Once you sub­mit your CSUMentor appli­ca­tion, you should receive a paper let­ter in the mail that acknowl­edges your appli­ca­tion and pro­vides instruc­tions on how to log in to the HSU Student Center. Once you have log-in access, you can find the log in link at the top of the HSU home­page. Once you log in, you can nav­i­gate to the Student Center where you will be able to see a list of any out­stand­ing appli­ca­tion mate­ri­als you might need. Be sure to promptly com­plete any items on the “To Do” list. Please con­tact Graduate Studies if you have ques­tions about this mate­r­ial, or if you do not receive your log in information.
  • For appli­cants that applied by the pri­or­ity dead­line, admis­sions deci­sions will be made by date TBA and relayed to appli­cants via email and them via paper mail.
  • For appli­cants that apply on a rolling basis, deci­sions will gen­er­ally be made within 2 weeks of all mate­ri­als being received (dates TBA). Letters of rec­om­men­da­tion and other mate­ri­als not received by the appli­ca­tion dead­line may not be con­sid­ered — please con­tact the Graduate Coordinator ( if you are expect­ing let­ters of rec­om­men­da­tion after the appli­ca­tion deadline.
  • If you are offered admis­sion and all appli­ca­tion mate­ri­als are received, you will receive a paper let­ter in the mail with an offi­cial offer of admis­sion as well as infor­ma­tion on how to com­plete other pre-term require­ments. Around this time you will also be able to log in to the Student Center and offi­cially accept admissions.