Graduate Program Graduate Program


Graduate Program in Anthropology and Applied Archaeology


We have a 50-year history of graduate education in anthropology. Our program is designed to prepare students for a career in public or private archaeology or to pursue a doctoral degree. This specially focused master's program concentrates on the archaeology and bioarchaeology of the U.S. Southwest and Plains.  The department's up-to-date facilities are located in a newly-renovated building and instruction is supplemented by the Blackwater Draw National Historical Landmark archaeological site, the Blackwater Draw Museum, the Agency for Conservation Archaeology, and a variety of opportunities for student employment and research within the department.  We welcome students right out of a bachelor's degree program as well as those who are starting a second career or who have been working for a while and are ready to move forward by earning a master's degree.

All classes are taught in person so students receive hands-on experience in class as well as through outside projects in areas such as curation, GIS, museum work, artifact analysis, and field work.  Coursework is offered in the following areas of faculty expertise: Southwest archaeology, Paleoindian studies, lithic technology, zooarchaeology, GIS, quantitative methods, hunter-gatherers, geoarchaeology, historic preservation, cultural resource management, osteology and ceramics.  Students can choose from two options:  either a master's thesis or a combination of an internship and research project.

Tuition and fees for a full-time, non-resident graduate student are only $389.25 per credit hour while New Mexico residents pay only $293.50 per credit hour.  Graduate assistantships which include a stipend and an out-of-state tuition waiver are available for qualified students.  Additional part-time paid position working in the department may also be available.

Students interested in applying to our program should submit an  online application to the Graduate School and have official copies of all transcripts sent to ENMU.  Applicants also need to submit the following items to apply for admission to the graduate program in anthropology.  Applications are reviewed year round as they're received.

  • One- to two-page letter of introduction and intent
  • Current resume or curriculum vitae
  • Two letters of recommendation written and sent by academic or professional references

Use the tabs above to learn more about current graduate students, alumni, degree requirements, course offerings, and more.  Don't hesistate to contact us at (575) 562-2206 or for more information about our program.

We  now have a new accelerated bachelor's-to-master's program for students who want to receive their bachelor's and master's degrees in anthropology from ENMU.  More information will be posted soon.


Graduate Program FAQ Graduate Program FAQ


Graduate Program FAQ


What are the two degree options in this program?


We offer a thesis option and a non-thesis option, both of which lead to a Master of Arts in Anthropology degree.  The thesis option requires 38 credits, including 6 credits of ANTH 599 Thesis, and the completion and defense of a thesis.  The non-thesis option requires 38 credits including an internship and a research report.


Can I take graduate classes in anthropology online?


Our program is focused on hands-on skills, and for that reason all classes are currently taught in person.  We plan to start offering an online program in the fall of 2022.


What is the prospectus?


The prospectus is a written paper outlining the research you plan to do for your thesis or research report.  It should be about 20 pages long and follow the format presented in the ANTH 501 Anthropological Research Foundations class.  Both thesis and non-thesis students need to complete a prospectus.


What is the colloquium?


The colloquium is the oral presentation of your prospectus.  After the prospectus has been approved by your committee, you'll give a public presentation of no more than 20 minutes followed by time for questions and comments.  Both thesis and non-thesis students present a colloquium.  The colloquium needs to be completed before data collection begins for your research.  



What is the defense? 


The defense is an oral presentation and defense of your thesis or research report.  The thesis defense is open to the public, similar to the colloquium.  The research report defense is  done only with your committee members.



How long does it take to write a thesis?


 That depends entirely on the individual student.  A rule of thumb is one semester to collect data and at least one semester to analyze it and write it up.


What formatting style should I use for my thesis or research report?


 You should follow the Society for American Archaeology's style guide:



How many people should be on my graduate advisory committee?


You need at least three ENMU faculty or staff members on your committee, one of whom serves as committee chair and your advisor.  Not all committee members need to be from the Anthropology Department.  You can also have additional members from outside of ENMU.



When should I update my degree plan?


You should update your degree plan when you choose the members of your committee.  You should update it again the semester you plan to graduate to be sure that everything is in order.  You can also update it at other times if substantial changes are made.  The updated degree plan goes to the Graduate School with a copy to the Anthropology Department secretary for the department file.



How long do I have to complete my graduate work?


All work, including the thesis or research report defense, must be completed within six years of enrolling in the first course on your degree plan.  If extenuating circumstances prevent you from completing the work within six years, you can apply for an extension to this time limit.  An extension is not automatic - it must be approved by your advisor, the Anthropology Department faculty members, and the Graduate Council.  When planning your work timeline, don't assume that an extension will be granted.


Can I work in the department while I'm a graduate student?

 Qualified students may be awarded a graduate assistantship.  GAs work 10-20 hours per week in the department gaining valuable para-professional experience while receiving a stipend and paying the in-state resident rate for tuition.  There are also opportunities for some graduate students to work on an hourly basis at the Blackwater Draw Museum, at the Blackwater Draw archaeological site,  in our curation lab, or assisting with faculty research.


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Contact Information


Department of Anthropology and Applied Archaeology

ENMU Station 53

1500 South Avenue K

Portales, NM 88130


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