Faculty of Human, Social, and Political Science, University of Cambridge

The Faculty of Human, Social, and Political Science at the University of Cambridge was created in 2011 out of a merger of the Faculty of Archaeology and Anthropology and the Faculty of Politics, Psychology, Sociology and International Studies. Many Cambridge HSPS students go on to work in politics and government in the United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Australia, and China. Other graduate destinations include the United Nations, World Bank, World Economic Forum, and various NGO-groups. [1]

The Faculty houses 3 departments: Department of Archaeology and Anthropology,[2] Department of Politics and International Studies [3] and Department of Sociology.[4] Each of these departments has a worldwide reputation for teaching and research, and the undergraduate curriculum (Tripos) is designed to serve both students who have a clear disciplinary commitment at the time of application as well as those who want a broader multidisciplinary degree. Students with a passion for politics can take advantage of links with such departments as Economics and History, those with interests in Sociology can draw on Anthropology and Geography, while those dedicated to pursuing an archaeology career can specialise from the first year or combine this with Biological and Social Anthropology.

Undergraduate students study several disciplines in their first year and then specialise in one or two disciplines in their second and third years. Clearly specified tracks (Archaeology, Biological Anthropology, Politics, Psychology, Social Anthropology, Sociology, or a combination of disciplines) ensure that students graduate with appropriate intellectual and professional skills. Assyriology and Egyptology are also possible specialisations, within the Archaeology track.

At the postgraduate level, there are established one-year M.Phils in Archaeology (including Assyriology and Egyptology), Biological Anthropology, International Studies, Social Anthropology and Sociology. A new M.Phil in Politics was launched in 2008. Ph.D students conduct research within a wide range of subjects within Archaeology, Assyriology, Egyptology, Biological and Social Anthropology, Politics & International Studies and Sociology.

The Faculty is currently spread across several sites. The SPS Library (now affiliated with the University Library) and the Department of Sociology are on Free School Lane at the New Museums Site. The Department of Politics & International Studies is currently located at the Alison Richard Building on the Sidgwick Site. The Department of Archaeology & Anthropology is spread across the Downing Site, New Museums Site, and Henry Wellcome Building.

Selected members of the Faculty

University and College Teaching Officers in the HSPS Faculty

Members of the Faculty elsewhere in the University


Tripos (BA)

An Archaeology and Anthropology Tripos has been taught at Cambridge for more than a century. A Politics, Psychology and Sociology Tripos (previously known as Social and Political Sciences, "SPS") has been running at Cambridge University, in some form, since 1970. From 2013, the PPS and A&A Triposes will be replaced by the Human, Social, and Political Sciences Tripos (HSPS), which will offer students the opportunity to explore a wide range of multi-disciplinary options before specialising in one or two subjects, or to specialise from the first year, according to their interests.

Postgraduate (MPhil/PhD)

The Faculty teaches seven masters programmes in Politics, International Studies, Sociology, Social Anthropology, Social and Developmental Psychology, Archaeology (including Assyriology and Egyptology), Biological Anthropology. The Faculty also has around 200 students studying for doctorates at any one time. Many graduate students go on to work in politics and government in the United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Australia, and China. Other graduate destinations include the United Nations, World Bank, World Economic Forum, and various NGO-groups.


The number of applicants per place for Politics, Psychology and Sociology has traditionally been one of the highest in Cambridge. On average, there are six applications per offered place, though this ratio is better at some colleges such as Murray Edwards. Colleges with particular teaching strength in Human, Social, and Political Science include Selwyn, Gonville and Caius, Queens', King's, Sidney Sussex, Corpus Christi and Trinity.[6] Numbers of applications for the new HSPS BA course remain high across all colleges. Typical offers for the course are A*AA at A Level, or 40–42 points out of 45 with 776 or 777 at Higher Level in the International Baccalaureate.[7]

As of 2008-2009[8] the MPhil in Social and Developmental Psychology received 66 applications, with 7 starting the course in October 2008. The MPhil in Modern Society and Global Transformations saw 99 applicants, with 26 starting the course in October 2008.[9]

Notable alumni


  1. Faculty of Human, Social, and Political Science
  2. Department of Archaeology and Anthropology
  3. Department of Politics and International Studies
  4. Department of Sociology
  5. http://www.admin.cam.ac.uk/reporter/2007-08/special/05/23.html Members of the Faculty retrieved 2008-09-21
  6. http://www.undergraduate.study.cam.ac.uk/apply/statistics ;
  7. http://www.hsps.cam.ac.uk/prospective-students/hsps-leaflet
  8. http://mcserver.gold.ac.uk/journalism/ma/2008/ma_journalism_jmm/Student_Profiles/Patrick_Barkham.html
  9. Timmins, Jerry (2007-07-05). "Kari Blackburn: World Service executive". The Independent. London. Retrieved 2008-05-26.
  10. Wikipedia article on Jimmy Carr
  11. Housden, Martha (2004-10-16). "Why politics still matters". The Guardian. London.
  12. http://www.johannhari.com/about.php
  13. https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0365140/bio
  14. BBC profile
  15. Hetherington, Peter (2007-07-24). "More power to the regions". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 2010-04-02.
  16. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2009-04-11. Retrieved 2009-04-15.
  17. http://www.lbbd.gov.uk/News/PressReleases/Pages/NewChiefExec.aspx
  18. https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0652066/bio
  19. http://helenoyeyemi.com
  20. http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio1/news/profiles/maddy_savage.shtml
  21. http://www.benschott.com/en/benschott.html
  22. http://kyoto-phil.sakura.ne.jp/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/GALEN-STRAWSON-2015-CV.pdf
  23. Mayer, Jane (2018-03-05). "Christopher Steele, the Man Behind the Trump Dossier". The New Yorker. ISSN 0028-792X. Retrieved 2018-03-06.
  24. Leith, William (1993-03-07). "The experience of being Tilda: Tilda Swinton has spent her career in the cutlish, shoestring end of theatre, less involved in acting than in art. If fame means giving up her own weird way of doing it, is she interested?". The Independent. London. Retrieved 2010-04-02.

Coordinates: 52°12′13″N 0°07′07″E / 52.2036°N 0.1187°E / 52.2036; 0.1187

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