Anthropology is a relatively new academic discipline in Bangladesh, which has attracted a large number of undergraduate students interested in developing their skills and understanding of culture and society. The Department of Anthropology at the University of Dhaka was established in 1992. The first course was offered in the autumn of 1993 and the first 3 year Bachelor of Social Science and 1 year Master of Social Science Degrees was awarded in 1996 and 1997. Since 1992, more than one thousand students have received Bachelor of Social Science and Master of Social Science degrees. During the same period, more than 25 students were awarded PhD and MPhil degrees. The University of Dhaka has now one of the oldest and most successful undergraduate and postgraduate Anthropology programs and there is growing interest among students in taking up anthropology as the subject of study.
Since its inception, the Department of Anthropology has sought to achieve the highest possible distinction for teaching and scholarly research and has accomplished this by extending boundaries of knowledge in both traditional and new fields in the social sciences. We promote the highest academic standards in our teaching, our scholarship, and the connections we build between them. Synchronized with our institution’s rich heritage, the Department is committed to produce the country’s leader in all facets, from classroom instruction to national policy setting. Our values-based commitment is to create an optimal learning environment for all students from all over the country and help expand the horizons of knowledge and culture among students, colleagues, and the general citizenry. We devote all of our resources and energies to developing strong mission-driven programs of scholarship (research and creative activities) in the acquisition, synthesis, dissemination, and creation of new research knowledge, coupled with the application of knowledge, and the invigoration of undergraduate and graduate education. The following academic plan provides a strategic approach for improving the already high standing of the Department of Anthropology at the University of Dhaka over the next twenty five years.
The Department, by acting on our values in every respect, will come to occupy a unique position of strength and visibility among the institutions of higher education in Bangladesh and internationally. The Department of Anthropology will continue to be the first-choice department among all other public and private universities in Bangladesh for high-achieving, motivated students who seek an individualized educational experience combined with the resources of the largest university.
Individualized Attention: Providing the supportive learning environment through an innovative general education program, strong student-faculty-staff connections, superior student services, and a focus on each student as an individual, with unique educational needs and potential. The Department is dedicated to placing the learner at the center of teaching and scholarship.
Active Pursuit of Learning and Scholarship: Working with students as partners in their educational development inside and outside of the classroom, so that students come to appreciate learning as an active and lifelong process; contributing new knowledge through research, creative artistry, and other forms of individual scholarship in which all students, faculty, and staff are encouraged to participate.
Diversity: Encouraging community and an informed respect for differences among students, faculty, and staff by fostering an inclusive environment characterized by ethical behavior and social justice that prepares students to be fully engaged participants in a global society; a diverse faculty and staff mentoring a diverse student population, enhancing pedagogical, research, and service functions.
Innovation: Supporting disciplinary excellence and personal growth of students, faculty, and staff through knowledge development and innovative applications in undergraduate and graduate study, pedagogy, research, creative activities, and public service.
Through the Mission, Vision, Goals and Actions of the Department’s Strategic Plan, our Department of Anthropology will be recognized in 2035 as:
The department offers a variety of courses from BSS (Hons.) to Ph.D. in the discipline of Anthropology on four academic levels: Bachelor’s degree, Master’s degree, M.Phil and Ph.D.