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BA/BSc Social Anthropology


UCAS code: BA L601
UCAS code: BSc L603

Usual standard offer:
A level: grades A A B

International Baccalaureate: Diploma with 37 points including 6 6 6 at Higher level

Other qualifications are considered and applications from mature students are welcomed

For further details see lse.ac.uk/ugAdmissionsCriteria|

BA Applications 2013: 190

BA First year students 2013: 26

BSc Applications 2013: 56

BSc First year students 2013: 9

First year:

Second year:

Third year:

As anthropology may be considered an art or a science, we allow you a choice of BA or BSc in the title. The programme is the same.

Please read the following important information before referring to full details of course options found in the Programme Regulations|.

The programme regulations available are for the current academic session and may be subject to change before the beginning of the next academic year. For more information about course availability in the next academic session, please contact the relevant academic department. The School reserves the right at all times to withdraw, suspend or alter particular courses and syllabuses, and to alter the level of fees. Courses are on occasion capped (limited to a maximum number of students) or subject to entry conditions requiring the approval of the course convenor. The School cannot guarantee that places on specific courses will be available.

Programme details

First year

There are three core courses. Introduction to Social Anthropology discusses the characteristic theories and methods of anthropology. It seeks to explain what is variable and what is universal in human culture and society by examining a range of political, economic, family, and religious systems found among different peoples of the world. Ethnography and Theory: Selected Texts introduces classic problems in understanding social institutions as they have appeared in the works of major theorists. Reading Other Cultures: the Anthropological Interpretation of Text and Film will develop your skills in anthropological analysis, your ability to read and reflect on complete book-length texts, to make well-grounded comparisons and to generate independent opinions.

You choose one introductory option from a range of subjects such as economics, geography, international relations, law, philosophy, politics, sociology, social psychology, language and literature among others.

Second and third years

There are six core courses and an extended essay (which counts as one course unit) over the two years. The Anthropology of Kinship, Sex and Gender considers the varied ways in which the family, kinship, personhood, femaleness and maleness, birth and sex are understood in different cultures. Political and Legal Anthropology explores fundamental questions about how a wide range of societies handle conflict, dispute, violence and the establishment and maintenance of forms of political and legal order. The Anthropology of Economic Institutions and their Social Transformations examines the institutions of pre-market and market economies and their transformation as a result of state policies, development initiatives and incorporation into the global market.

The Anthropology of Religion examines differences between local religious practices and world religions, explores the reasons why ritual is so central to the organisation of cultural life, looks at the character of particular cosmologies and symbolic schemes, analyses the logic of some non-western systems of thought and philosophy, and considers the relationship between religion and modernity. Advanced Theory of Social Anthropology goes deeply into the roots of modern theory in social anthropology. It examines approaches such as structuralism, feminism, Marxism and postmodernism, and addresses contemporary perspectives and debates. For the course Ethnography as Research Method and Text you will design and carry out a small anthropological research project, and write an extended essay on an anthropological topic of your choice.

In the second and third years you will also take options equivalent to one course unit per year. Over the two years you must take at least one half unit course which focuses on the anthropology of a selected geographical or ethnographic region (for example, South Asia, India or Melanesia). It may be possible, dependent on timetabling, for you to take options from the three other colleges of the University of London which have anthropology departments: Goldsmiths College, University College London, and the School of Oriental and African Studies.