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Career as Anthropologist

Anthropology is the study of humans, human behaviour and societies in the past or present. The Anthropologist studies the human language, culture, societies, biological and material remains to understand the human origin and the evolution of various beliefs and customs. They study the past to collect information and gather knowledge of humans hundreds of years ago, including the study of genetics, bones and diets. They compare humans with other beings such as other primates like monkeys and Chimpanzees to see the commonality between the two and also the things that changed during the process of evolution. Even though Anthropology is considered as a Study of Natural Science, over the years, it has evolved into a technical & complex study. It is treated with the great support of multiculturalism and pluralism. The Anthropological Survey of India represents anthropology in India.

Job Profile

Career as Anthropologist

In India, Anthropology is a growing field. Students can find multiple job opportunities after completing their degrees in anthropology. In this field, the candidates may be able to acquire jobs at the state and central government organizations as well as many private firms. Anthropologists can work in the following areas:

 

Education: after completing a master's degree in anthropology, and clearing the UGC NET examination to work as a professor in any university or college- both government and private. They can also work as researchers and scientists as there are plenty of opportunities in India to conduct research.

 

Museums/ Art Galleries/ Publishing House: with an extensive background in ethnography, anthropologists play a crucial role in these fields. They can act as critics and help identify areas of faults and aid in further developments in these fields. They can also work in publishing houses, providing insight and knowledge about the texts.

 

Advertising and Market Research: This is a newly developing area for anthropologists. They put their understanding of cultures and ethnicities to aid big companies to become more global by targeting cultural norms.

 

Criminal Investigation: Anthropologists are also needed to solve crimes. They work together with the investigating teams as Forensic Anthropologist to analyze crime scenes, study human anatomy and aid in medical examinations. Sometimes they also have to reconstruct the crime scenes.

 

Non-profit organizations: Multinational NGOs like WHO, UNICEF and UNESCO, work with Anthropologists from around the world in various fields. Anthropologists help these groups to focus on social issues and development.

 

Salaries: Starting as a fresher, an Anthropologist can earn anywhere between Rs 10,000 to 15,000 per month. The Anthropologists can work in multiple projects and research both in India and abroad, with organizations which keep funding their work.

Future Growth Prospects and How to get there faster

If you're starting as a fresher, it can take many years to gain a firm hold on the field, as the fieldwork is much different from the knowledge gained in books. One can work early-on on their research skills by publishing research projects. You can gain a lot of benefits in this field by working in varied organizations and regions of the world.

Pros and Cons of being an Anthropologist

Pros:

  • Add to the existing knowledge about human history and evolution, and make a massive difference in the field
  • It is a culmination of all fields like science, culture and arts, and history.
  • You will get the scope to work in varied organizations and regions of the world.

 

Cons:

  • It is a tedious field, in which people have to work hard
  • Developing research skill is a must, which can take many years to develop
  • It is recommended to do a postgraduate degree in this field

How do I get there?

To pursue a degree in Anthropology, the candidate must pass his/her higher senior secondary education 10+2 with Physics, Chemistry and Biology (as Main) with a minimum of 50% of marks in aggregate. Students with an Arts background can also pursue the course. The duration of the bachelor course in Anthropology is three years. For those students who want to pursue a Masters degree in Anthropology, the candidate must have an undergraduate degree in Anthropology. The duration of the Master's course is two years. Students also need to pass an Entrance examination which is the Actuarial Science Entrance examination to pursue the B. Sc in Anthropology. 

How much does it cost to study Anthropology

The Anthropology course fees depend on the institute on which the candidate will take admission either in India or Abroad. The course for pursuing Anthropology is of 3-year duration. For the total duration of the course, the fees may fall anywhere within the range of Rs 15,000- 3 Lakh, approximately. For studying in a different state than the one you are residing in, then you will have to incur the hostel or living expenses, which could range from Rs 5,000 to 10,000 per month, in addition to the semester fees.
For postgraduate courses, like MSc, MPhil and PhD, the course duration is two years (MSc and Mphil) and three years course, respectively. It could cost your Rs 20,000-50,000 depending on your choice of university. It would be best if you also kept in mind that studying in a different state may cost you an additional Rs 5,000-10,000 approximately every month.

What are the Colleges/Institutes where one should be studying to pass Anthropology

For BA/BSc in Anthropology, some of the leading colleges are as follows:

Sl. No

Name of college

Fees (in Rs)

1

Hansraj College, University of Delhi

64,185 

2

Hindu College, University of Delhi

45,810

3

Panjab University, Chandigarh

7,802

4

Ashoka University, Sonipat 

21,00,000

5

Symbiosis School of Liberal Arts, Pune

15,50,000

 

For MSc in Anthropology some of the leading colleges are as follows:

 

Sl. No

Name of college

Fees (in Rs)

1

Visvabharati University, West Bengal

11,000 

2

Berhampur University, Orissa

8,000

3

University of Allahabad

2,600

4

University of Hyderabad

9,400

Books and other Study Materials

  1. Guns, Germs and Steel by Jared Diamond
  2. Sapiens, A Brief History by Yuval Noah Harari
  3. Indian Anthropology by Nadeem Hasnain
  4. Tribal India by Nadeem Hasnain

What if this career doesn't work out for me? What are the other options available for a person with these credentials?

With this degree, you can become a professor at any reputed institute. If Anthropology is not a field of choice, then one can also take jobs as a history teacher. They can also work in the forensics department and help in solving crimes.

Content on this page is by Career Expert
Mrs. Kum Kum Tandon
MA (Psychology), M.Ed, Diploma in Educational Psychology, Vocational Guidance & Counseling (NCERT, Delhi) | View Complete Profile
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