single degree

Master of Culture, Health and Medicine

A single two year graduate degree offered by the ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences and ANU College of Medicine, Biology and Environment

  • Length 2 years full-time
  • Minimum 96 Units
  • Length 2 years full-time
  • Minimum 96 Units

The Master of Culture, Health and Medicine is the only program of its kind in Australia. Drawing on anthropological and other social science perspectives, and technical expertise in health-related research and practice, you will understand the nature of health, sickness, and healing in a local and global context. You will emerge with the skills to undertake social and cultural analysis of health policy and practices.

This interdisciplinary program is taught by leading academics, clinicians, and global health practitioners from across the ANU.

Many courses in this program are available online. Although the program itself is not available online, it may be possible for some students with a prior cognate degree to complete the program by selecting only courses that are available online; please note that not all courses are available online and so there is a restricted selection available. Students interested in this option can contact the program convenor to discuss their eligibility and course selections.

Career Options

Employment Opportunities

The M CHAM will advance your career in health-related fields in development, policy and education, in government, non-government, and international organisations, and can lead to further PhD research.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of a Master of Culture, Health and Medicine, graduates will be able to:

  1. engage in informed debate demonstrating a critical understanding of the historical, political, institutional and cultural factors that frame health, illness and medical care;
  2. synthesise research, literature and other texts from a range of disciplinary perspectives to develop insight into contemporary health and medical issues; and
  3. develop a practical research plan in the fields of clinical care, public health or health promotion, incorporating a range of methodologies and theoretical perspectives.

Further Information

  • Interested in writing a thesis? Check out the advanced version of this degree.
  • Please be aware that any courses taken as part of the 24 units from completion of elective courses offered by ANU list will not count towards the advanced degree should you decide to transfer. This is because the advanced degree has no free electives, as they are in practice replaced by a 24 unit thesis.

Admission Requirements

A Bachelor degree or international equivalent with an average mark of at least 65%.

Applicants with a Bachelor Degree or Graduate Certificate in a cognate discipline may be eligible for 24 units (one semester) of credit.

Applicants with a Graduate Diploma or Honours in a cognate discipline may be eligible for 48 units (one year) of credit.

All applicants must meet the University’s English Language Admission Requirements for Students

Cognate disciplines

Anthropology, Archaeology, Area Studies, Biological Sciences, Education, Environmental Studies, Geography, History, International Relations, Law, Language and Literature, Medicine, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Pharmacy, Philosophy, Physiotherapy, Politics, Psychology, Public Health, Social Work, Sociology.

Indicative Fees

Annual indicative fee for international students
Annual indicative fee for domestic students


ANU offers a wide range of scholarships to students to assist with the cost of their studies.

Eligibility to apply for ANU scholarships varies depending on the specifics of the scholarship and can be categorised by the type of student you are.  Specific scholarship application process information is included in the relevant scholarship listing.

For further information see the Scholarships website.

Program Requirements

The Master of Culture, Health and Medicine requires completion of 96 units, which must consist of:

24 units from completion of introductory graduate culture, health and medicine courses from the following list:

ANTH6004 Religion, Ritual and Cosmology

ANTH6009 Culture and Development

ANTH6017 Culture, Social Justice and Aboriginal Society Today

ANTH6025 Gender and Cross-Cultural Perspective

ANTH6026 Medicine, Healing and the Body

ANTH6057 Culture and Person

ANTH6064 Anthropology of Environmental Disasters

ANTH6514 Anthropology of Media

ANTH6515 Crossing Borders: Migration, Identity and Livelihood

ANTH6516 Violence and Terror

ANTH6518 Food for Thought: Anthropological theories of food and eating

ANTH6519 Social Animals: anthropological perspectives on animal-human relationships

BIAN6013 Human Evolution

BIAN6115 Race and Human Genetic Variation

BIAN6119 Nutrition, Disease and the Environment

BIAN6120 Culture, Biology & Population Dynamics

BIOL6106 Biosecurity

BIOL6141 Infection and Immunity

BIOL6144 Advanced and Applied Immunology

BIOL6191 Biology, Society and Ethics

ENVS6005 Sustainable Urban Systems

ENVS6013 Society and Environmental Change

ENVS6025 Complex Environmental Problems in Action

ENVS6033 International Environmental Policy

ENVS6101 Environment and Society: Geography of Sustainability

ENVS6103 Introduction to Environmental and Social Research

ENVS6104 Australia's Environment

ENVS6108 Sustainable Development

ENVS6306 Human Futures

GEND6021 Trauma, Memory and Culture

HIST8018 A Globalising World

LING6015 Language, Culture and Translation

LING6021 Cross Cultural Communication

POLS6100 The Politics of Empire

POLS6101 Refugee Politics: Displacement and Exclusion in the 20th and 21st Centuries

SCOM8014 Communicating Science with the Public

12 units from completion of the following compulsory courses

CHMD8004 Qualitative Methodologies for Health Research

CHMD8014 Perspectives on Culture, Health and Medicine

A minimum of 6 units from completion of health courses from the following list:

CHMD8009 Anthropological Approaches to Health Interventions

CHMD8010 Anthropological Concepts for Health Research: From Risk to Suffering

A maximum of 30 units from completion of applied culture, health and medicine courses from the following list:

ANTH6005 Traditional Australian Indigenous Cultures, Societies and Environment

ANTH8007 Key Concepts in Anthropology of Development

ANTH8009 Development in Practice

ANTH8014 Mining, Community and Society

ANTH8030 Critically Assessing Contemporary Development Practice

ANTH8038 Critical Issues in Gender and Development

ANTH8042 Migration, Refugees and Development

ANTH8044 Land Rights and Resource Development (Advanced)

BIAN6512 Ancient Health & Disease

BIAN6519 Ancient Medicine

BIOL8021 Health and Disease in a Changing World

CHMD8001 Directed Readings in Culture, Health and Medicine

CHMD8005 Representing Medicine: Performance, Drama and Identity

CHMD8006 Global Health and Development

CHMD8008 Medicine and Society in History

CHMD8011 Refugee Health: From Displacement to Resettlement

CHMD8019 Culture, Health, Medicine Internship

CHMD8020 The Future of Food and Human Health

DEMO8048 Gender and Population

DEMO8079 Health Demography

EMDV8001 Environmental Sustainability, Health and Development

GEND6501 Technoculture and the Body

IDEC8007 Aid and Development Policy

24 units from completion of elective courses offered by ANU

Unless otherwise stated, a course used to satisfy the requirements of one list may not be double counted towards satisfying the requirements of another list.

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