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MsC Anthropology: LSE vs UCL


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Hi everyone,

I recently received my offers in Social Anthropology (LSE) as well as Social and Cultural Anthropology (UCL).

Could someone kindly advice on the pros and cons of each university life and curriculum? I've narrowed down to these 2 choices but I'm stuck now.


As I am an international student taking out a hefty loan to study, I am conflicted on which university provides a 

(i) better course (support & range) 

(ii) employer reputation (both in UK and worldwide). 

(iii) availability of part-time /internship placements for international students


The rankings all say different things, so I hope to get some grounded insight from students like myself. Any information will be so helpful, thank you!



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If you're an American student, I've been told by numerous people that if you plan on getting your PhD after getting your masters in the UK, it's a lot harder to get into a program. This is because most of the masters programs in the UK are only one year and many future professors think that it's not enough time to gain the experience needed for future studies. I'm not 100% in agreement with that statement, but I would say that you should take it into consideration. Maybe talk it over with your current professors and American students studying at these universities or who have studied there to see what they say about their experiences after finishing there.

I know that I really wanted to study at UCL for bioarch, but decided against it for numerous reasons, but mostly because of the cost of attendance for international students plus the cost of living in London is extremely expensive. If you don't have any funding from the university, I would suggest against attending the universities.

I don't know much about the cultural side of anthropology at these schools, but I will say that they are well-known around the world anyway. But again, I'm iffy about doing a masters there and then coming back to the States for a PhD. Maybe if you plan on getting your PhD abroad too it won't be as bad.

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Emily - 

For your questions (i) and (iii), it's in your interest to contact the graduate program director (I believe they are called graduate tutors in the UK) and ask them. They'll be best informed about how they support students and the availability of internships. As far as university life, you can email current students to ask. As bioarch mentioned above, the cost of living is high but it's an incredible city with a lot of opportunity.

LSE and UCL are both highly ranked universities in the world and in the UK. As far as future study, are you doing an MA or an MPhil? In either case, you'll have the option to continue in the UK, though most PhD programs expect an MPhil. With that said, getting funding for a PhD in the UK is difficult - studentships are an option, as are scholarships, but they are highly competitive. Many international students are self-funded. The degree will also be recognized in the US, though many programs that require a Master's for admission prefer that you have done independent research (an MPhil).

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