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Doctoral Program

Funded Research Opportunities

PhD Track Starch granule analysis for
detecting plant domestication

Dr. Lisbeth Louderback, Assistant Professor of Anthropology at University of Utah and Curator of Archaeology at the Natural History Museum of Utah, is searching for a PhD candidate to fill a four-year, fully-funded, graduate research and teaching position. Years 1 and 2 are a research assistant (RA) position, part of a NSF-funded project that focuses on developing starch granule analysis for detecting plant domestication. Years 3 and 4 will be a teaching assistant (TA) position in the Anthropology Department at the University of Utah. Both positions include tuition waivers and student benefits.

The position will begin August 2019. Interested candidates are encouraged to contact Dr. Louderback for additional information (e-mail:

PhD Track Faunal Analysis in Southern Africa

The Department of Anthropology is seeking applications from prospective graduate students interested in the history of human impacts on African ecosystems, with a methodological focus on zooarchaeology, paleoecology, and vertebrate taphonomy. The successful applicant will work with Dr. Tyler Faith (Department of Anthropology; Natural History Museum of Utah) on an NSF-funded project exploring the history of human and climatic influences on ecosystem change in southern Africa over the last one million years. This project will provide three years of student funding, with the Department of Anthropology providing up to three additional years of support. Applications must be submitted no later than December 29, 2018. Interested candidates are encouraged to contact Dr. Faith for additional information (e-mail:

Doctoral Program Overview

University Requirements

The Graduate School has requirements concerning hours of coursework, GPA, residency, and required forms that must be filed. Registration requirements include two consecutive semesters of full-time registration (9 credit hours per semester), 14 credit hours of ANTH 7970 (dissertation research), and 3 credit hours of registration during the semester in which the dissertation is defended. There is no University-wide language requirement. ANTH 7990 (continuing registration), which carries a minimal charge, is available for a maximum of four semesters to students who are working on the dissertation and not using university resources. See the section on Dissertation for more information on 7990, and consult the Graduate Catalog for a complete description of these requirements. 
You are responsible for knowing the Graduate School Requirements.

Departmental Requirements

Please see the graduate student handbook for detailed degree requirements and information regarding supervisory committees. Close contact with your committee is essential to success in the program. The departmental requirements for the doctorate include coursework, a qualifying examination, and preparation and defense of the dissertation. These requirements must be completed within six years after acceptance into the Ph.D program.  Extensions must be approved by the supervisory committee.


Students are required to take Anthropology 6611 (Preparation of Grant Proposals) and are expected to have basic proficiency in statistics. Additional course requirements are determined by the student's Supervisory Committee.

For additional program requirements and general information, please see the Graduate Student Handbook.

Graduate student handbook

Qualifying Examination

It is recommended that students take the Ph.D. qualifying exam by the end of their third year in the Ph.D. program. Detailed information about the exam can be found in the graduate student handbook. An oral follow-up with the supervisory committee is required, ten days after submission of the exam.

The exam consists of two components A) a Breadth Requirement and B) a Dissertation Research Proposal.

  1. Breadth Requirement.The student must prepare a substantial written piece that demonstrates a breadth of understanding in anthropological research.  There are three ways to satisfy this requirement, descriptions are available in the graduate student handbook.  The choice should be made by the student in consultation with, and approval by the supervisory committee.
  2. Dissertation Proposal.The student must write a formal dissertation research proposal, and should consult with the supervisory committee while doing so. Final approval will be given in a conference attended by the student and supervisory committee. It is recommended that the proposal be completed within six months of finishing step I, above.

After the qualifying exercise is completed, the student is responsible for providing written notification to your Graduate Coordinator. The documentation should include the date of completion and a approval from the chair of your supervisory committee.


The supervisory committee is responsible for approving the content of the dissertation. It is important to consult with the committee regularly during the research and writing. A final oral examination (usually known as the "dissertation defense") is open to the academic and professional community, and must be passed at least four weeks before graduation.

We recommend that students schedule a final meeting with the full committee prior to the defense to discuss any changes the committee feels are necessary. Please allow the committee four weeks to read the manuscript. The defense is scheduled only after the committee agrees that the dissertation is substantially complete. Work with your committee to schedule your defense. The defense should be scheduled early enough for you to make any changes requested by the committee and still submit the manuscript by the Thesis office Deadlines (WEBSITE)

The Thesis Office has specific requirements concerning forms, advertisement of the oral exam, registration, and format and publication of the dissertation. Some requirements must be met in the semester before you plan to graduate.

Hardbound Copy

Graduating Ph.D Students must supply the Anthropology Department with 1- hardbound (not spiral bound) copy of their dissertation no later than 60 days after approval of your dissertation by the Graduate School.  The Campus Bookstore offers a dissertation binding service. The cost is approximately $60.00 through the Campus Bookstore, call 801-581-5352 for more information. Competitive pricing may be found at other binderies.  The size must be 8 ½" x 11" and the color of the hardbound book may be either solid red, solid black, or solid blue. The student's name and dissertation title must be embossed on the front of the book.  The year the dissertation was defended and the student's name must be on the spine of the book.  A copy of the signed Supervisory Committee Approval and the Final Reading Approval, signed by the Dean of The Graduate School, must be included as the first two pages of the hardbound copy.


All graduate students must provide written notice to the department Graduate Coordinator at least one semester in advance of their desired graduation term. At that time, your Program of Study is entered into your Graduate Record File. Your Supervisory Committee must approve this Program of Study no later than one semester before graduation.

Deadlines to apply for graduation


Graduate Student Handbook

Last Updated: 11/13/18