single degree

Master of Biological Anthropology (Advanced)

A single two year graduate award offered by the ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences

  • Length 2 year full-time
  • Minimum 96 Units
  • Academic plan VBIAN
  • CRICOS code 082276D
  • Length 2 year full-time
  • Minimum 96 Units
  • Academic plan VBIAN
  • CRICOS code 082276D

Program Requirements

The Master of Biological Anthropology (Advanced) requires completion of 96 units, which must consist of:

 12 units from completion of the following compulsory research project courses:

BIAN6013 Human Evolution

BIAN6517 Human Skeletal Analysis


12 units from the completion of the following compulsory research training courses:

BIAN6516 Research Design and Analysis in Biological Anthropology

BIAN8008 Data Analysis and Methods in Biological Anthropology


A minimum of 36 units from completion of courses from the following list:

ANTH6026 Medicine, Healing and the Body

ANTH6064 Anthropology of Environmental Disasters

ARCH6041 Introduction to Environmental Archaeology

ARCH6108 Animals, Plants & People

ARCH6521 Archaeology of Death and Mortuary Practices

BIAN6018 Primate Behavioural Ecology Field School in Cambodia

BIAN6119 Nutrition, Disease and the Environment

BIAN6120 Culture, Biology & Population Dynamics

BIAN6124 Evolution and Human Behaviour

BIAN6510 Scientific Dating in Archaeology and Palaeoenvironmental Studies

BIAN6512 Ancient Health & Disease

BIAN6513 Primate Evolutionary Biology

BIAN6514 Primate Ecology and Behaviour

BIAN6515 Forensic Anthropology and Archaeology

BIAN6518 Analysis of Mammalian Remains

BIAN6519 Ancient Medicine

BIAN6520 Primate Conservation Biology

BIAN8009 Stable Isotopes in Archaeology and Biological Anthropology

BIAN8010 Ancient Behaviour: Advanced Topics in Bioarchaeology

MUSC8004 Internship 1


A maximum of 12 units from completion of courses from the following list:

BIAN8002 Topics in Human Population Biology/Health

BIAN8003 Topics in Primatology/Palaeoanthropology

BIAN8005 Bioanthropology Honour IV Seminar


24 units from completion of THES8103 Thesis


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.

Study Options

Year 1 48 units Min 36 unit list course 6 units Min 36 unit list course 6 units Min 36 unit list course 6 units Min 36 unit list course 6 units
BIAN6516 Min 36 unit list course OR Max 12 unit list course 6 units Min 36 unit list course 6 units Min 36 unit list course 6 units
Year 2 48 units BIAN8008 BIAN6013 Human Evolution 6 units BIAN6517 Human Skeletal Analysis 6 units Min 36 unit list course OR Max 12 unit list course 6 units
- THES8103 Thesis 6 to 24 units - -

Admission Requirements

By transfer from the Master of Biological Anthropology with a minimum GPA of 6.0/7.0, and the approval of an identified supervisor for the research project/thesis.

If the total number of units attempted exceeds 72 in the same teaching period in which the 72nd unit is attempted, exactly 72 units will be used in the calculation of the weighted average mark with units from the course with the highest mark applied first followed by further units from courses in descending order of marks.

Students will be awarded up to 72 units of course credit for completed courses listed in this Masters (Advanced) degree.

Cognate Disciplines

Anatomy, Ancient History, Anthropology, Archaeology, Botany, Human Biology, Indigenous Studies, Medicine, Psychology, Social Sciences, Zoology.

English Language Requirements

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

Assessment of Qualifications

Unless otherwise indicated, ANU will accept all Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) qualifications or international equivalents that meet or exceed the published admission requirements of our programs, provided all other admission requirements are also met. Where an applicant has more than one completed tertiary qualification, ANU will base assessment on the qualification that best meets the admission requirements for the program. Find out more about the Australian Qualifications Framework:

ANU uses a 7-point Grade Point Average (GPA) scale. All qualifications submitted for admission at ANU will be converted to this common scale, which will determine if an applicant meets our published admission requirements. Find out more about how a 7-point GPA is calculated for Australian universities:

Unless otherwise indicated, where an applicant has more than one completed tertiary qualification, ANU will calculate the GPA for each qualification separately. ANU will base assessment on the best GPA of all completed tertiary qualifications of the same level or higher.


Annual indicative fee for domestic students

For more information see:

Annual indicative fee for international students

For further information on International Tuition Fees see:


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.

What does it mean to be human?

If you’re interested in the answer, you’ll love the Master of Biological Anthropology.

This program - not offered at any other Australian University – equips you with the theory and skills required to study humans and non-human primates as varied and dynamically changing biological organisms. You will explore primate evolution, ecology, behaviour and conservation; human evolution, and behaviour; animal domestication; palaeopathology and bioarchaeology.

You can also choose from a range of electives including ancient health and medicine, forensic anthropology and archaeology, anthropological genetics and environmental disasters.

Career Options

Graduates from ANU have been rated as Australia's most employable graduates and among the most sought after by employers worldwide.

The latest Global Employability University Ranking, published by the Times Higher Education, rated ANU as Australia's top university for getting a job for the fourth year in a row.

Employment Opportunities

A Master of Biological Anthropology will advance your career in universities, museums, zoos, government, forensic sciences, and applied anthropometry, or lead to further study.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the skills and knowledge to:

  1. Clearly understand evolutionary processes as they relate to biological anthropology.
  2. Apply the scientific method to paleontological specimens, morphological materials and/or primate behaviour & ecology.
  3. Critically analyse data and literature within the discipline to reach independent conclusions
  4. Effectively communicate to others their knowledge of humankind’s place in nature
  5. Complete a major piece of research in biological anthropology
Back to the top

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions