The Joint Honours Programme in Anthropology and Politics provides students with an in-depth, interdisciplinary understanding of contemporary cultures and politics, international affairs, societies, and institutions in their political, historical, social, cultural, economic and legal dimensions.
Anthropology is the study of human diversity around the world. In studying anthropology, you will learn how different societies live together and think about such topics as family, sex, religion, art, and economics and gain skills increasingly in demand in a globalized and automated world.
Studying anthropology at Queen’s will allow you to examine some of the deepest and most pressing questions about human beings. Issues addressed in our modules include:
Does globalisation mean the end of cultural difference?
Can a post-conflict society heal?
How do ritual traditions, musical performances, and art shape cultural identities?
How do some people become willing to die for a group?
Through classroom modules, optional placements, and your own anthropological fieldwork, you will also gain valuable skills in critical thinking, cross-cultural understanding, researching, interviewing, writing, and presenting.
The academic study of politics is concerned with the sources of conflict, co-operation, power and decision-making within and between societies, how differences are expressed through ideology and organisation, and how, if at all, disagreements and problems are resolved. We look at conflict, co-operation and its origins, dynamics and trajectories, at theories of society, at the value and ethical basis of political ideas and action, and at politics in different national and historical contexts.
Anthropology and Politics Degree highlights
In The Guardian University Guide 2021, Queen's Anthropology was ranked 2nd in the UK. Politics was ranked joint 1st in the UK for Research Intensity (Complete University Guide 2021).
- Undergraduate anthropology students, as part of their training, have carried out ethnographic field research around the world. Projects have focused on orphanages in Kenya; AIDS in southern Africa, education in Ghana; dance in India, NGOs in Guatemala, music in China, marriage in Japan, backpacking in Europe, and whale-watching in Hawaii.
- Through the different stages of the dissertation module (preparation and research design, fieldwork itself, and post-fieldwork writing-up), students develop a range of skills (organizational skills, interpersonal skills, information-handling skills, and project management skills) that prepare them for later employment. Many of our students work with NGOs and other organisations as part of their fieldwork.
- QUB students, uniquely in the UK, still have the opportunity to spend part of the course studying in other European universities, through our Erasmus programme. There are also opportunities to study at partner institutions in the USA and Canada.
- Anthropology students develop a range of skills (organizational skills, interpersonal skills, information-handling skills, and project management skills) that prepare them for later employment. Many of our students work with NGOs and other organisations (e.g. Operation Wallacea; Belfast Migration Centre) as part of their fieldwork.
- Politics graduates have risen to the top in a number of fields, including media, print journalism, translating, marketing, local government, fast-stream Civil Service, and a very wide range of local, national and international companies.
- In the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023, Anthropology was ranked 10th in the UK for graduate prospects.
World Class Facilities
- The Performance Room includes a variety of musical instruments from around the world, a collection that has grown since the 1970s when Ethnomusicology was first established as an International Centre at Queen’s by the late Prof John Blacking. These instruments, together with the sprung performance room floor, facilitate music and dance ensembles, enabling our unit to remain one of the leading departments in Ethnomusicology.
- Queen's has one of the largest politics departments in the UK and Ireland.
Internationally Renowned Experts
- Anthropology at Queen’s has international renown in the following areas: Ethnomusicology and performance; Conflict and borders; Religion; Cognition and culture; Migration and diasporas; Irish studies; Material culture and art; Human-animal relations; The cross-cultural study of emotions.
- Politics: with over 30 staff at the cutting edge of research and publication, the School is the largest in Ireland and one of the largest in the UK and Ireland, with specialisms in Irish and British politics, political theory, sustainable development, the politics of film and literature, gender, democratic innovations, European Union politics, ethnic conflict, and international relations.
- Centre of Excellence: the School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics at Queen‘s has 30 full-time academics, making it the largest institutional centre for the study of these subjects in Ireland and one of the largest in the UK.
The School also boasts the following:
• Centre for Public History
• The Senator George J Mitchell Institute for
Global Peace, Security and Justice
• Institute of Cognition and Culture
• Institute of Irish Studies
• Two International Summer Schools (the Irish
Studies Summer School; and the Conflict
Transformation and Social Justice Summer
- The School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics received an overall student satisfaction score of 90% in the 2019 National Student Survey. The 2021 survey results showed Anthropology received a 100% teaching score.
"The fieldwork and dissertation have been central to my experience as a Anthropology student. While I am sure it will stand me in good stead in my future search for employment, its central value was as a practice which revealed what Anthropology is really about; through fieldwork, the abstract and theoretical concepts which we had absorbed in two years previous study became immediate and concrete; the subject came alive. Observing and analysing patterns of human action and thought, and later attempting to relay any inferred information (in the form of a dissertation) was a stimulating and challenging process, which seemed to me to be of value in and of itself." Samuel Ward
Anthropology at Queen’s is constructed around four innovative, engaged themes:
What Makes Us Human?
Key modules explore core elements of anthropology. They examine social groups, from families to nations, and social dynamics, from village politics to globalisation. In understanding social groups we examine individual life trajectories against the background of diverse social expectations. Modules may include: Being Human: Evolution, Culture and Society; World on the Move; How Society Works.
Conflict, Peacebuilding and Identity
Modules on this theme deal directly with large-scale Global Challenges such as conflict, security, and peacebuilding. Issues such as migration, ethnic conflict, and globalisation will be covered across all three years of the degree, with specialist modules looking at Ireland and at the role of anthropology in policy. Modules may include: Us & Them: Why We Have Ingroups and Outgroups; Why Are Humans Violent? Understanding Violence, Conflict, and Trauma; Migration, Mobilities and Borders.
Arts, Creativity and Music
Globally renowned for long-standing research expertise in the area of ethnomusicology and the arts, our modules examine issues of sound and music making; art, aesthetics and emotion; and performance and identity around the world. We explore the production, appropriation and use of material artefacts and images in a world of interconnectedness through migration, trade, and digital communication technology. Modules may include: Being Creative: Music, Media and the Arts; Radical Musics: Understanding Sounds of Defiance across Disciplines.
Morality, Religion and Cognition
These modules examine a number of important themes in religion and morality, including the origins of religion, apocalyptic movements, sacred values, and the relationship of emotion and religion. We will explore our moral worlds and beliefs through the socio-cultural, psychological, and evolutionary sciences. Modules may include: Apocalypse!: The End of the World; In Gods We Trust: The New Science of Religion; Human Morality; Love, Hate, and Beyond.
• Being Human: Evolution, Culture and Society
• A World on the Move: Anthropological and Historical Approaches to Globalisation Us and Them: Why Do We Have In-groups and Outgroups?
• Being Creative: Music, Media and the Arts
• Understanding Northern Ireland
• Comparative Politics
• Contemporary Europe
• Issues in Contemporary Politics
• Perspective on Politics
• World Politics: Conflict and Peace
• How Society Works: Key Debates in Anthropology
• Skills in the Field: Dissertation Preparation
• Hanging out on Street Corners: Public and Applied Anthropology
• Business Anthropology in the Digital Age
• Why Are Humans Violent? Understanding Violence, Conflict, and Trauma
• Human Morality
• Radical Musics: Understanding Sounds of Defiance across Disciplines
• Apocalypse! The History and Anthropology of the End of the World.
• American Politics
• British Politics in crisis
• International Organisations
• Modern Political Thought
• Politics and Policies of the European Union
• Security and Terrorism
• Studying Politics
• The Politics of Deeply Divided Societies
• Dissertation in Social Anthropology: Writing-Up
• The Politics of Performance: From Negotiation to Display
• Human-Animal Relations
• In Gods We Trust: The New Science of Religion
• Love, Hate and Beyond: Emotions, Culture, Practice
• Music and Identity in the Mediterranean
• Ireland and Britain: People, Identity, Nations
• Remembering the Future: Violent Pasts, Loss, and the Politics of Hope
• Anthropology and Roma
• Arms Control
• Asylum and Migration in Global Politics
• Contemporary Political Philosophy
National and Ethnic Minorities in European Politics
• Northern Ireland: A Case Study
• Political Parties and Elections in Northern Ireland
• Challenges to contemporary party politics
• Politics, Public Administration and Policymaking
• Security and Technology
• The Far Right in Western Europe and North America
• The Politics of Irish Literature
• Earth, Energy, Ethics and Economy: The Politics of Unsustainability
Note that this is not an exclusive list, and these options are subject to staff availability
People teaching youDr Cillian McBride
Politics Programme Convenor
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Telephone: +44(0)28 9097 5028
Anthropology Programme Convenor
Email: email@example.com Telephone: +44(0)28 9097 5028
Contact Teaching Times
|Small Group Teaching/Personal Tutorial||6 (hours maximum)|
In a typical week, you will have 3-6 hours of tutorials (or later, project supervision).
|Large Group Teaching||6 (hours maximum)|
In a typical week you may have up to 6 hours of lectures, depending on the level of study.
|Personal Study||10 (hours maximum)|
Typically 10 hours per module (30 hours per week), revising in your own time
Learning and Teaching
Examples of the opportunities provided for learning on this course are:
- E-Learning technologies
Information associated with lectures and assignments is often communicated via a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) called 'Canvas'. A range of e-learning experiences are also embedded in the degree programme through the use of, for example, interactive support materials, podcasts and web-based learning activities.
Single-honours anthropology students have the opportunity to study research methods and carry out anthropological fieldwork for an 8-week period. This crucial period of skill-formation and research forms the basis of a dissertation they write up in the first semester of their third year.
Lectures introduce foundation information about new topics as a starting point for further self-directed private study/reading. Lectures, which are normally delivered in large groups to all year-group peers, also provide opportunities to ask questions and seek clarification on key issues as well as gain feedback and advice on assessments.
- Self-directed study
This is an essential part of life as a Queen’s student. It is during self-directed study when a student completes important private reading, engages with e-learning resources, reflects on feedback, and completes assignment research and preparation.
A significant amount of teaching is carried out in small groups (typically 10-12 students). These sessions are designed to explore in more depth the information that has been presented in the lectures. They provide students with the opportunity to engage closely with academic staff, to ask questions of them and to assess their own progress and understanding with the support of their peers. During these classes, students will be expected to present their work to academic staff and their peers.
A variety of assessment methods are used throughout the programme.
- The assessment methods used include coursework essays (submitted during or at the end of the semester), oral presentations by individual students, video logs, artwork and performance workshops, weekly online commentaries on set readings, written examinations, and dissertations.
As students progress through their course at Queen’s, they will receive general and specific feedback about their work from a variety of sources including lecturers, module co-ordinators, placement supervisors, personal tutors, advisers of study and peers. University students are expected to engage with reflective practice and to use this approach to improve the quality of their work.
- Feedback may be provided in a variety of forms including:
- Face to face comment. This may include occasions when you make use of the lecturers’ advertised “office hours” to help you to address a specific query.
- Placement employer comments or references.
- Online or emailed comment.
- General comments or question and answer opportunities at the end of a lecture, seminar or tutorial.
- Pre-submission advice regarding the standards you should aim for and common pitfalls to avoid. In some instances, this may be provided in the form of model answers or exemplars which you can review in your own time.
- Comment and guidance provided by staff from specialist support services such as, Careers, Employability and Skills or the Learning Development Service.
- Once you have reviewed your feedback, you will be encouraged to identify and implement further improvements to the quality of your work.
|A level requirements|
A maximum of one BTEC/OCR Single Award or AQA Extended Certificate will be accepted as part of an applicant's portfolio of qualifications with a Distinction* being equated to grade A at A-Level and a Distinction being equated to a grade B at A-level.
|Irish leaving certificate requirements|
Successful completion of Access Course with an average of 70%.
|International Baccalaureate Diploma|
33 points overall, including 6,5,5 at Higher Level
|BTEC Level 3 Extended/National Extended Diploma|
QCF BTEC Extended Diploma (180 credits at Level 3) with overall grades D*DD
RQF BTEC National Extended Diploma (1080 GLH at Level 3) with overall grades D*DD
A minimum of a 2:2 Honours Degree
All applicants must have GCSE English Language grade C/4 or an equivalent qualification acceptable to the University.
There are no specific Level 3 subject requirements to study Anthropology and Politics.
In addition, to the entrance requirements above, it is essential that you read our guidance below on 'How we choose our students' prior to submitting your UCAS application.
Applications are dealt with centrally by the Admissions and Access Service rather than by individual University Schools. Once your on-line form has been processed by UCAS and forwarded to Queen's, an acknowledgement is normally sent within two weeks of its receipt at the University.
Selection is on the basis of the information provided on your UCAS form. Decisions are made on an ongoing basis and will be notified to you via UCAS.
For entry last year, applicants for this degree offering A-Level/ BTEC Level 3 qualifications or equivalent must have had, or been able to achieve, a minimum of 5 GCSE passes at grade C/4 or better (to include English Language). The Selector will check that any specific entry requirements in terms of GCSE and/or A-level subjects can be fulfilled.
Offers are normally made on the basis of 3 A-levels. Two subjects at A-level plus two at AS would also be considered. The offer for repeat applicants is set in terms of 3 A-levels and may be one grade higher than that asked from first time applicants. Grades may be held from the previous year.
Applicants offering two A-levels and one BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/National Extended Certificate (or equivalent qualification), or one A-level and a BTEC Diploma/National Diploma (or equivalent qualification) will also be considered. Offers will be made in terms of the overall BTEC grade(s) awarded. Please note that a maximum of one BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/National Extended Certificate (or equivalent) will be counted as part of an applicant’s portfolio of qualifications. The normal GCSE profile will be expected.
For applicants offering Irish Leaving Certificate, please note that performance at Irish Junior Certificate is taken into account. Applicants must have a minimum of 5 IJC grades C/ Merit. The Selector also checks that any specific entry requirements in terms of Leaving Certificate subjects can be satisfied.
For applicants offering a HNC, the current requirements are successful completion of the HNC with 2 Distinctions and remainder Merits. For those offering a Higher National Diploma, some flexibility may be allowed in terms of GCSE profile but, to be eligible for an offer, the grades obtained in the first year of the HND must allow the overall offer to be achievable. The current entrance requirements are successful completion of the HND with 2 Distinctions, 10 Merits and 4 Passes overall. Any consideration would be for Stage 1 entry only.
The information provided in the personal statement section and the academic reference together with predicted grades are noted but, in the case of BA degrees, these are not the final deciding factors in whether or not a conditional offer can be made. However, they may be reconsidered in a tie break situation in August.
A-level General Studies and A-level Critical Thinking would not normally be considered as part of a three A-level offer and, although they may be excluded where an applicant is taking 4 A-level subjects, the grade achieved could be taken into account if necessary in August/September.
Applicants are not normally asked to attend for interview, though there are some exceptions and specific information is provided with the relevant subject areas.
If you are made an offer then you may be invited to a Faculty/School Open Day, which is usually held in the second semester. This will allow you the opportunity to visit the University and to find out more about the degree programme of your choice and the facilities on offer. It also gives you a flavour of the academic and social life at Queen's.
If you cannot find the information you need here, please contact the University Admissions Service (firstname.lastname@example.org), giving full details of your qualifications and educational background.
Our country/region pages include information on entry requirements, tuition fees, scholarships, student profiles, upcoming events and contacts for your country/region. Use the dropdown list below for specific information for your country/region.
English Language Requirements
An IELTS score of 6.5 with a minimum of 5.5 in each test component or an equivalent acceptable qualification, details of which are available at: go.qub.ac.uk/EnglishLanguageReqs
If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this degree programme, INTO Queen's University Belfast offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for admission to this degree.
- Academic English: an intensive English language and study skills course for successful university study at degree level
- Pre-sessional English: a short intensive academic English course for students starting a degree programme at Queen's University Belfast and who need to improve their English.
International Students - Foundation and International Year One Programmes
INTO Queen's offers a range of academic and English language programmes to help prepare international students for undergraduate study at Queen's University. You will learn from experienced teachers in a dedicated international study centre on campus, and will have full access to the University's world-class facilities.
These programmes are designed for international students who do not meet the required academic and English language requirements for direct entry.
INTO - English Language Course(QSIS ELEMENT IS EMPTY)
Skills to enhance employability
Studying for an Anthropology degree at Queen‘s will assist you in developing the core skills and employment-related experiences that are increasingly valued by employers, professional organisations and academic institutions. Through classroom modules, optional placements and your own anthropological fieldwork, you will gain valuable skills in critical thinking, cross-cultural understanding, researching, interviewing, writing, and presenting.
Employment after the Course
Career pathways typically lead to employment in:
• User Experience
• Civil Service
• Development, NGO work, International Policy, Public Sector
• Journalism, Human Rights, Conflict Resolution, Community Work
• Arts Administration, Creative Industries, Media, Performance, Heritage, Museums, Tourism
• Market Research
• Public and Private Sector related to: Religious Negotiation, Multiculturalism/Diversity
• Teaching in schools
• Academic Teaching and Research
• Human Rights, Conflict Resolution, Community Work, Journalism
A growing number of Internship opportunities will match dissertation students with organisations and institutions relevant to their career paths by building on local and international staff networks and professional connections.
Current placement partners include
• Operation Wallacea, which works with teams of ecologists, scientists and academics on a variety of bio-geographical projects around the globe.
• Belfast Migration Centre offers students of the module ‘Migration, Displacement and Diasporas’ internship opportunities in their ‘Belonging Project’.
International Travel - As part of undergraduate training, students have the opportunity to use practice-based research skills during eight weeks of ethnographic fieldwork in areas of their specialisation, which can entail working with organisations around the globe.
Additional Awards Gained(QSIS ELEMENT IS EMPTY)
Prizes and Awards(QSIS ELEMENT IS EMPTY)
Degree Plus/Future Ready Award for extra-curricular skills
In addition to your degree programme, at Queen's you can have the opportunity to gain wider life, academic and employability skills. For example, placements, voluntary work, clubs, societies, sports and lots more. So not only do you graduate with a degree recognised from a world leading university, you'll have practical national and international experience plus a wider exposure to life overall. We call this Degree Plus/Future Ready Award. It's what makes studying at Queen's University Belfast special.
Fees and Funding
|Northern Ireland (NI) 1||TBC|
|Republic of Ireland (ROI) 2||TBC|
|England, Scotland or Wales (GB) 1||£9,250|
|EU Other 3||£20,800|
1 EU citizens in the EU Settlement Scheme, with settled status, will be charged the NI or GB tuition fee based on where they are ordinarily resident. Students who are ROI nationals resident in GB will be charged the GB fee.
2 EU students who are ROI nationals resident in ROI are eligible for NI tuition fees.
3 EU Other students (excludes Republic of Ireland nationals living in GB, NI or ROI) are charged tuition fees in line with international fees.
All tuition fees quoted relate to a single year of study and will be subject to an annual inflationary increase, unless explicitly stated otherwise.
Note that the tuition fees quoted above are for the 2023-24 academic year and are for indicative purposes only as the fees for 2024-25 have not yet been finalised. These fees will be subject to an inflationary increase. All tuition fees quoted relate to a single year of study and will be subject to an annual inflationary increase for each year of the course, unless explicitly stated otherwise.
Tuition fee rates are calculated based on a student’s tuition fee status and generally increase annually by inflation. How tuition fees are determined is set out in the Student Finance Framework.
Additional course costs
Depending on the programme of study, there may be extra costs which are not covered by tuition fees, which students will need to consider when planning their studies.
Students can borrow books and access online learning resources from any Queen's library.
If students wish to purchase recommended texts, rather than borrow them from the University Library, prices per text can range from £30 to £100. A programme may have up to 6 modules per year, each with a recommended text.
Students should also budget between £30 to £75 per year for photocopying, memory sticks and printing charges.
Students undertaking a period of work placement or study abroad, as either a compulsory or optional part of their programme, should be aware that they will have to fund additional travel and living costs.
If a final year includes a major project or dissertation, there may be costs associated with transport, accommodation and/or materials. The amount will depend on the project chosen. There may also be additional costs for printing and binding.
Students may wish to consider purchasing an electronic device; costs will vary depending on the specification of the model chosen.
There are also additional charges for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines.
Anthropology and Politics costs
Students have the option to take the Social Anthropology dissertation module. This will involve undertaking fieldwork in the summer vacation period between years 2 and 3. The cost will vary depending on the location of the fieldwork, ranging from £100-£500. The School will provide financial support up to a maximum of £300.
How do I fund my study?
There are different tuition fee and student financial support arrangements for students from Northern Ireland, those from England, Scotland and Wales (Great Britain), and those from the rest of the European Union.
Information on funding options and financial assistance for undergraduate students is available at www.qub.ac.uk/Study/Undergraduate/Fees-and-scholarships/.
Each year, we offer a range of scholarships and prizes for new students. Information on scholarships available.
Information on scholarships for international students, is available at www.qub.ac.uk/Study/international-students/international-scholarships/.
How and when to Apply
How to Apply
Application for admission to full-time undergraduate and sandwich courses at the University should normally be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). Full information can be obtained from the UCAS website at: www.ucas.com/students.
When to Apply
UCAS will start processing applications for entry in autumn 2024 from 1 September 2023.
Advisory closing date: 31 January 2024 (18:00). This is the 'equal consideration' deadline for this course.
Applications from UK and EU (Republic of Ireland) students after this date are, in practice, considered by Queen’s for entry to this course throughout the remainder of the application cycle (30 June 2024) subject to the availability of places.
Applications from International and EU (Other) students are normally considered by Queen’s for entry to this course until 30 June 2024. If you apply for 2024 entry after this deadline, you will automatically be entered into Clearing.
Applicants are encouraged to apply as early as is consistent with having made a careful and considered choice of institutions and courses.
The Institution code name for Queen's is QBELF and the institution code is Q75.
Further information on applying to study at Queen's is available at: www.qub.ac.uk/Study/Undergraduate/How-to-apply/
Terms and Conditions
The terms and conditions that apply when you accept an offer of a place at the University on a taught programme of study. Queen's University Belfast Terms and Conditions.
Additional Information for International (non-EU) Students
- Applying through UCAS
Most students make their applications through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service) for full-time undergraduate degree programmes at Queen's. The UCAS application deadline for international students is 30 June 2024.
- Applying direct
The Direct Entry Application form is to be used by international applicants who wish to apply directly, and only, to Queen's or who have been asked to provide information in advance of submitting a formal UCAS application. Find out more.
- Applying through agents and partners
The University’s in-country representatives can assist you to submit a UCAS application or a direct application. Please consult the Agent List to find an agent in your country who will help you with your application to Queen’s University.
Fees and Funding