The Integrative Anthropological Sciences Ph.D. program at UCF provides graduates with scientific, technological, and sociocultural skills, and prepares them to use these STEM skills to address important societal issues. Graduates will benefit from anthropology’s conceptual strengths in methods and theory. Our program seeks to integrate the subdisciplines of cultural anthropology, biological anthropology, and archaeology. Our integrated model of training utilizes cutting edge methodological and theoretical skills in anthropology to offer an education that is applicable in solving present-day social, global, and environmental problems.

The program’s thematic interests are grounded in sophisticated interdisciplinary approaches to ongoing challenges related to local and global disparities, environmental and anthropogenic crises, human variation and health, as well as the resilience and vulnerability of human populations. Graduates of UCF’s Integrative Anthropological Sciences Ph.D. program will be engaged scholars who are well-positioned to make substantive contributions to identifying, studying, and solving problems related to transformation and change as these processes intersect with human populations.

View the graduate catalog



Archaeology is the branch of anthropology that relates the past to the present, giving insight to the complicated, multidimensional problems of the 21st century. Our faculty works throughout the world and here in Central Florida, analyzing material culture, reconstructing ancient environments, and studying cultural relationships between and within cities, rural settlements, and coastlands. Our methodological expertise includes GIS, paleoethnobotany, isotopic analysis, PXRF, ceramic analysis, lithic analysis, landscape archaeology, excavation, and survey. Cultural heritage is increasingly recognized as a unique aspect of policy debates, and UCF teachers and researchers train PhD students to take their places alongside other stakeholders in the public arena, and not just as experts in reconstructing past lifeways.

Biological Anthropology

Biological anthropology is an interdisciplinary science that explores the adaptations, variability and evolution of humans, primates and our fossil lineages. Biological anthropologists integrate methodological and theoretical approaches from numerous disciplines to better understand the human condition and our place in the world around us. Our combined teaching and research foci engages students in developing skills in human osteology, bioarchaeology, forensic anthropology, biogeochemical analyses, quantitative methods, geospatial analysis, and field methods. This integration of problem-oriented knowledge and applied skills provides graduates with a wide range of opportunities to be successful in academic and non-academic professional careers in numerous private-sector industries, research programs and government agencies.

Cultural Anthropology

The increasing need to address an array of contemporary problems and issues calls for training Ph.D. students for work in health-related and justice-related international and community settings as well as academia. These include social justice problems, economic issues, urbanization, public health crises, persistent health disparities, emerging global health challenges, migration and immigration, drugs and addiction, nutrition and diet, gender and sexuality rights, educational equality, and outcomes of new population shifts. Our cultural and medical anthropology faculty work at the intersection of social science, social justice, globalization, public health, medicine, and ethics. Their expertise offers Ph.D. students diverse research and public anthropology skills in preparation for work in these and other growing fields.


This program is specifically designed to prepare graduates for employment in the private, government, and non-profit sectors, in addition to academic positions. Our graduates will be prepared to work in collaborative research teams, as well as independent researchers and practicing anthropologists.

Students will enroll in advanced-level methodological courses. This includes anthropological topics in geospatial analysis, and a choice of either advanced qualitative or quantitative methodological training and analysis.

The central purpose of the program is to produce graduates with the necessary methodological expertise and analytical skills to create innovative solutions to the ongoing challenges of local and global disparities. For example, students may explore pressing problems such as food accessibility and insecurity, immigration, differential access to healthcare, environmental issues, and other anthropogenic crises.

The program will take advantage of existing institutional commitments to established interdisciplinary collaboration to strengthen cross-disciplinary ties and produce graduates able to triangulate using multiple methodologies to address current, complex problems, such as:

  • Geospatial Cluster in the College of Sciences
  • National Center for Integrated Coastal Research at UCF
  • Puerto Rico Research Hub
  • Center for Research and Education in Arts, Technology, and Entertainment
  • India Center
  • Zora Neale Hurston Institute for Documentary Studies
  • National Center for Forensic Science at UCF


Our program requires advanced coursework in geospatial analysis, statistics or advanced qualitative analysis, and a cornerstone applications course. Each plan of study requires 51 credit hours beyond an earned master’s degree. Students must complete a dissertation based on original research developed in consultation with the student’s faculty advisor.

The curriculum is comprised of the following basic elements:

  • Independent field or laboratory research
  • Core curriculum focused on methodological expertise
  • Topical curriculum covering the dynamics of transformation in human societies
  • Professional competence in workplace skills embedded into all courses

View the Integrative Anthropological Sciences PhD Handbook

Application Requirements & Materials

  • A master’s degree or its equivalent in anthropology or a closely related discipline. Students must have completed a master’s degree at the time of matriculation. The Graduate Program Coordinator and Graduate Program Committee, in discussion with appropriate faculty, will evaluate the suitability and applicability of MA or MS degrees in other disciplines for admission purposes.
  • Official copies (sent from institution) of all undergraduate and graduate transcripts from accredited institutions. Students should have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.5 for all master’s level work completed.
  • A personal statement of intent that must specify the student’s educational background and qualifications, research interest, geographical area of research (if applicable), the faculty they would like to work with, and future career plans (1,500 words).
  • Contact with a potential advisor prior to application submission is strongly recommended. Advisors are unable to grant admission to applicants prior to all application materials being submitted and reviewed by the department.
  • A current curriculum vita.
  • A writing sample of the applicant’s academic work of at least 2500 words that demonstrates the applicant’s ability to conduct graduate-level work and scholarly writing.
  • Three letters of recommendation that evaluate the applicant’s academic performance, and their suitability and potential for undertaking doctoral studies. At least one of these letters must be written by a faculty member from the institution where the master’s degree was earned, preferably the thesis advisor.
  • International applicants are required to submit additional materials by the College of Graduate Studies, such as foreign influence screening, results of an approved English proficiency exam, and a course-by-course credential evaluation. International applicants should review all requirements set by the College of Graduate Studies before starting an application.

All application materials must submitted by the deadline to be considered for admission. Students will be selected on a competitive basis and meeting the application requirements does not guarantee admission.

Application Deadlines

Fall: January 1st (for both domestic and international applicants)

Multi-year funding is limited and available for qualified, competitive applications. Funding offers include a tuition wavier (not including fees), individual health insurance coverage, and a competitive yearly stipend. An offer of admission does not guarantee funding.