Major Option: Medical Anthropology & Global Health (BS)

The following is information on the Bachelor of Science in Medical Anthropology and Global Health.  Student may wish to consider a Bachelor of Arts in MAGH.

Anthropology undergraduates earn either a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Anthropology. The difference between the two degrees lies in how they are structured.  If you want a broad overview of Anthropology as a discipline or if you want to focus on the more humanistic side of Anthropology, the BA is for you.  If you want to focus on a particular area within the more scientific side of Anthropology, you should pursue the BS.

Both degrees are appropriate for a myriad of post-baccalaureate opportunities including graduate and professional school training in the health sciences (e.g. medical school, public health, physical therapy), law, social justice advocacy, and (of course!) anthropology.

Majors completing the requirements for the Bachelor of Science in Anthropology may complete these requirements through the undergraduate option in Medical Anthropology and Global Health.

Many students who complete this option plan to pursue post-graduate training and careers in health-related fields such as public health, epidemiology, nursing, medicine, and global health. The liberal arts education offered through anthropology is recognized as an ideal course of preparation.

According to Newsweek Magazine (full article), over the past 20 years, social science majors have had an increasing rate of successful admission to medical school, in comparison to their science-major counterparts. Moreover, humanities students perform better on the MCAT, the standardized test for medical school admissions.

 “A science major is not a prerequisite for medical school, and students should not major in science simply because they believe this will increase their chances for acceptance…The schools also recognize the desirability of including in medical school classes students who have a broad variety of interests and backgrounds.”
- The Association of American Medical Colleges

“More humanities students have been applying in recent years, and medical schools like them…The schools are looking for a kind of compassion and potential doctoring ability. This makes many social-science and humanities students particularly well qualified.”
- Gwen Garrison, Association of American Medical Colleges

Anthropological training is also viewed as excellent preparation for careers in global health. This was recently highlighted in Nature Magazine’s special report on Global Health:

“International efforts to improve global health offer a wide range of career opportunities. The kind of skills required extend beyond the obvious front-line medical support…The skills in demand are management, cultural understanding, and an anthropological viewpoint.”

BS in Medical Anthropology & Global Health (MAGH) option requirements - 75 Credits

In addition to completing the core courses for anthropology (BIO A 201, ARCHY 205, and any 5 credit 200-level ANTH course) and one statistics course (choosing from CS&SS/SOC/STAT 221, STAT 220, STAT 311, Q SCI 381, or ARCHY 495), MAGH students are asked to take the following courses to complete their 75 anthropology credits:

  1. ANTH 215 Introduction to Medical Anthropology and Global Health OR ANTH 302 Body and Soul: Introduction to Medical Anthropology and Global Health as Social Justice Praxis
  2. At least 40 additional credits from the approved MAGH course list (below)

Additionally, out of their 75 credits, 40 credits must be Upper Division and 50 credits must be Natural World courses in Anthropology.

Approved courses for Medical Anthropology and Global Health (MAGH):