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1997 - 2019
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In today’s globalized world, where media representations shape social and political spheres, a critical understanding of media and (audio-) visual culture is crucial. Media studies, rooted in social anthropology, offers an in-depth approach to analyzing the complex connections between media, culture and society.

The three-year Master Program trains students in theory and practice in the areas of visual anthropology, the documentary arts (film/photography/installation), media culture and media anthropology. Conceptual and practical knowledge within these areas can be applied in academia, the arts, and culture and media industries, as well as to social, applied, or educational media projects. Students study the theoretical and practical foundations of visual anthropology, they gain experience in film production, project development, and (audio-) visual installation. Ultimately, they acquire the necessary skills for producing their own research projects and media outputs.

The Master Program is designed with working professionals in mind enabling students to study and work at the same time. The master program "Visual Anthropology, Media and Documentary Practices" is accredited by AQAS.

Concept & target group

This program is for students with a background in the social sciences and humanities, especially those in cultural, media and communication studies. Applications are welcome from both Germany and abroad.

Students can acquire new prospects for the future as part of the Master Program. The practical and analytical media skills and competences gained in the program can be used in many and varied ways in both academic and non-academic contexts. They distinguish themselves (and differentiate from those acquired in traditional media schools) through the methodical and perspectival questioning and understanding of comparative cultural and social anthropology.

Social-anthropological media skills and competences can be used in many ways other than in an academic context such as social projects (e.g. intercultural communication), NGOs and in international organizations. They can further be used in the culture media industry, artistic projects and artistic research. The practical work experience stage and the public exhibition at the end of the program provide students with the opportunity for networking and to present themselves and their work. The resulting network of students and lecturers and the international orientation of the program provide an opportunity to gain professional prospects outside of German speaking countries.

Management and Lecturers

The Head of the program is Prof. Dr. Helene Basu who is a Professor at the Institute of Ethnology at the Westfälischen Wilhelms-Universität, Münster.

The program will be taught by highly qualified, international lecturers from academia and practice.

Structure and Program Outline

The program consists of 6 semesters (three years), including the master’s thesis and final media project. Students have the possibility to complete the program after 5 semester (two and a half years). Overall, the program is comprised of 46 days where attendance is required in Münster in Germany. The in-house classes will be offered as block courses.

The three-year Master Program was designed with working professionals in mind enabling students to study and work at the same time. Students have the choice whether to stay in Germany for the period of the master program or to travel to Germany just for the in-house classes and spend and work the rest of the year in their home country. Nevertheless students need to to prepare and follow up, write essays, finish film projects etc., so there will be a lot to work on during the days between the in-house classes.

Students receive the seminar documents in digital form. An important platform for the Master program is Adobe Connect. This is a multimedia web communication system, which enables students to attend online and in real-time. Students can upload their own productions and receive support. Lecturers and students can also communicate over this platform.


The Master Program is structured as follows:

  • Module 1: Introduction to Audio-Visual and Media Anthropology
  • Module 2: Representation and narrative Strategies
  • Module 3: Anthropological Short Film Production
  • Module 4: Media Practice Research
  • Module 5: Mediation of Human Experiences
  • Module 6: Media Production & Research Colloquium
  • Module 7: Project Supervision and Research Colloquium
  • Module 8: Practical Work and Experience
  • Module 9: Fieldwork, Media Project, Final Thesis
  • Final Presentation (voluntary)


The fee for the Master Program is €10,950.

The fee covers participation in the program, the exams, conference drinks and seminar documents (which will be made available to students in digital form).

The program is free from “Umsatzsteuer” (German sales tax) pursuant to paragraph 4 Nr. 21a (bb) UStG.

Admission requirements

Applicants for the Master Program “Visual Anthropology, Media and Documentary Practices” must have

  • A relevant undergraduate or first degree from a University in Germany or abroad,
  • At least one year relevant professional employment experience,
  • Proof of knowledge of English (Certificate, (GMAT), IELTS, LCCI-Test, TELC, TOEFL, TOEIC-Test) where it is apparent that an applicant has obtained at least B2-Level pursuant to the Common European Framework for Reference for Languages (CEFR) and is therefore adequately able to read and understand the literature used in the program which is in English as well as to take part in the lectures/seminars which will be held in English


The application period opens in January and closes by the end of April.


WWU Weiterbildung gGmbH
Julia Blumberg
Tel: 0049/(0)251 83-21705

You can get further Information on the program's website.

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Your stay in Münster

Münster is known as a bicycle and an administrative city. Since October 2004 it can also proudly call itself “the world’s most liveable city”.  Münster is considered to be a young city and is well known for its University: the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität (WWU) with approximately 43,000 students and one of the five largest Universities in Germany. Münster has nine institutes of higher education in total with approximately 60,000 students. This is at least one fifth of the entire population of Münster.

Part of what makes the city so “liveable” is the historical buildings and modern elements which can be explored. One can happily stroll along the Prinzipalmarkt, a street of gabled houses and buildings, and admire the town hall with its famous peace hall, the numerous shops and the Michaelisplatz which represents the opening to Cathedral Square with St Paul’s Cathedral.

The Aa lake is situated close to the city centre and is ideal for those who wish to jog, cycle or simply pass the time away in one of the cafes or terraces. Lovers of culture will be satisfied in this cultural city: the only Picasso museum in Germany is located in the middle of the city centre.  

There are many options for the evening. The creative quay, Münster’s rebuilt harbour, with its numerous bars, clubs and discos is particularly popular with both young and old. The “Kuhviertel”, an area of pubs and bars on the edge of the historical old town, is also popular and regularly attracts many visitors in the evening.

The majority of the inhabitants of Münster enjoy cycling around the city. The “Promenade” (a car free, tree-lined avenue) which encircles the city, is particularly popular for cycling.

In winter, the Christmas markets based around the city with mulled wine and other treats ensure that inhabitants and tourists are kept warm in the cold winter months.