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The application must be done online. Please go to the Graduate School's Application page to apply online.

Besides completing the online application, applicants will need to provide:

  1. Transcripts: two official hard-copy transcripts of undergraduate and (if applicable) graduate coursework OR one official e-transcript from each relevant institution. 
    1. Electronic transcripts are preferred. They can be sent directly to
  2. Three letters of recommendation
  3. A non-refundable application fee ($100 in 2020).
  4. CV: When prompted to submit additional documents please upload your CV. 
  5. Applicants whose first language is not English must also submit an acceptable score on TOEFL
    1. (minimum TOEFL internet-based test score = 90, with minimum score for each sub-section = 22)
  6. Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores are NOT required in 2020. If you wish to submit your GRE scores, however, Stony Brook's code for score reporting is 2548.

If you cannot submit an electronic transcript, hard copy materials should be sent to:

IDPAS Graduate Program Coordinator
SBS S-501 (Dept. of Anthropology)
Stony Brook University
Stony Brook, NY 11794-4364

Applications will be reviewed by the admissions committee of the IDPAS, and successful applicants will be considered for financial assistance through the award of a tuition scholarship and teaching assistantship (TA). The deadline for receipt of applications and all supporting materials for Fall admission is December 1 .

Currently, the IDPAS is unable to deliver a full curriculum in Socio-Cultural Anthropology. Thus, for the time being, the IDPAS will not accept any applications for the socio-cultural track. Students interested in Socio-Cultural Anthropology should apply to other programs.

For more information on Stony Brook graduate admission policies, please visit Stony Brook University Graduate School Admissions.


The majority of the students admitted to the IDPAS graduated from a baccalaureate program with majors in anthropology. While at least some exposure to the field - and especially to the field of research that is the applicant's expressed interest - is common and desirable, it is not a prerequisite for admission to the program. Rather, the faculty believes that the expected level of performance in graduate courses in anthropology and related fields can be predicted from the applicant's overall undergraduate record, with emphasis given to grades obtained in courses related to the student's area of interest.

Graduate students are admitted to the program after careful scrutiny by the IDPAS Admissions Committee. The Admissions Committee includes members from all the subfields, and admission to the program is only made after full consultation with all committee members and any relevant faculty not on the committee. 

At the national level, IDPAS students typically win student prizes for best paper and/or poster at the American Association of Physical Anthropologist meetings. In 2005-2010 they received 10 awards including the Juan Comas Prize, the Earnest A. Hooton Prize, the Ales Hrdlicka Prize, and the Sherwood L. Washburn Prize. The IDPAS has an excellent record in attaining NSF predoctoral fellowships and other scholarships. Additional funding is provided through Turner Fellowships (four students), Graduate Council Fellowships (four students), and Turkana Basin Fellowships (three students). Students have had great success at obtaining external funding. In 2005-2009, IDPAS students secured more than half a million dollar in grant money through 84 grants. This included 13 Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Awards from NSF, 13 Research Grants from the Leakey Foundation, six Dissertation Fieldwork Grants from the Wenner-Gren Foundation as well as 12 grants from Primate Conservation Inc. and 16 grants from Conservation International through the Margot Marsh Biodiversity Foundation and the Primate Action Funds Program. Students publish widely in peer-review journals. Finally, placement of graduated students in postdoctoral and faculty positions has been excellent. The IDPAS is an elite group of faculty and students with an international reputation for excellence.