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Course content

Overview

Oxford is a wonderful place to study and it has unrivalled facilities. We have been running this part-time masters course successfully for thirteen years. The overwhelming response gained from our students is one of satisfaction, enjoyment and fulfilment. We have brought together a good balance of men and women, older and younger students, historic environment professionals and those with a personal or community interest in the subject. We have had some great field experiences and outstanding seminars. Although the coursework requires a solid commitment from you over two years, the course atmosphere is informal and friendly, and we aim to support every student with ideas, guidance and encouragement.

Visit the website https://www.conted.ox.ac.uk/about/msc-in-applied-landscape-archaeology

What the course offers

The MSc in Applied Landscape Archaeology is a part-time modular course over two years, leading to an Oxford University Postgraduate Degree in Archaeology. Students become fully matriculated members of Oxford University during their period of registration, and therefore also become a member of a college. The course is designed for the needs of students who wish to study part-time and this includes those who are in full-time employment. Those with a personal or professional interest in landscape archaeology are welcome to apply.

Landscape Archaeology is an increasingly popular and widely-understood concept. Using a multi-period systematic approach, it is concerned with understanding past human impacts on the resources, topography and environment of the whole landscape, from uplands to coasts, and from farmed landscapes to urban/industrial areas.

Many methods of research are being developed in landscape archaeology, including geophysical survey, digital mapping and remote-sensing techniques such as LiDAR. These take their place alongside fieldwalking, historic landscape analysis, aerial photography and selective excavation to provide an effective armoury of techniques for the researcher. Skills such as survey and resource assessment are becoming essential for anyone involved in the management of the historic environment. Effecive communication and presentation of the value and potential of the historic landscape is vital in the world of planning, tourism, outreach and education.

The course involves a combination of academic study and field practice - survey and geophysics form a central theme, and we enjoy the support of Bartington Instruments Ltd for this.

This course is designed to appeal to those who already have experience of studying archaeology (or a closely-related subject) at undergraduate degree or diploma level and who wish to expand their academic, practical and professional skills in landscape archaeology. With a strong (but not exclusive) emphasis on the archaeology of Britain, it focuses on the applications of research methods in varying landscape situations. The course format is flexible and enables students to pursue their own research interests leading to a 15,000 word dissertation.

College affiliation

All students studying for a degree (including the DPhil) must be a member of a college. A number of Oxford colleges accept applications from part-time postgraduates whereas others do not: please consult the graduate prospectus or enquire with individual colleges. The majority of part-time DPhil students in Archaeology have chosen to apply to Kellogg College and most of the tutors and lecturers are members of the College. Kellogg is dedicated to graduate part-time students and has developed a unique expertise in attending to the intellectual, social, IT and welfare needs of part-time, mature graduate students. If a college choice is not specified on your application, it will be automatically sent to Kellogg if places are still available there.

Course structure

The course is divided into two one-year modules, Year A and Year B, which are run in alternate academic years (from October to September):

Year B begins in October 2015
Year A begins in October 2016

All students attend both modules, but they may be done in any order depending on year of admission. Because the course is modular there is no advantage to one combination over the other. Students normally study two consecutive modules and this is regarded as the best way to experience the course. However, in exceptional cases, regulations permit a student to intermit between modules (by permission of the Board of Studies only).

Both one-year modules have one core paper and two advanced papers spread over three terms.

Year A:

- Core Paper: Method and Theory in Landscape Archaeology
- Advanced Paper (Artefacts and Ecofacts in the Landscape)
- Advanced Paper (Archaeological Prospection)

Year B:
- Core Paper: Managing Historic Landscapes in the 21st Century
- Advanced Paper (Digital Landscapes)
- Advanced Paper (Reading the Historic Landscape)
- Field Training Week

Instead of one advanced paper, students may choose to opt for a ‘flexi-placement’ comprising at least 14 days spread over approximately one year to be spent working at an organisation which is involved in an aspect of landscape archaeology. The Course Director will supply details of these.

The dissertation (15,000 words) is the student’s own project which develops throughout the course and is submitted at the end of the second module. It can be based on a piece of fieldwork, or a methodological or artefactual study. Each student will be assigned a tutor who will supervise their dissertation. A dissertation workshop is held each year to help students work together on this essential course element.

In addition, once every two years (in late June - early July of Year B) a compulsory field survey training week will take place. Each student will also have a series of tutorials with the course director and tutors; these may take place in person or on-line.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.ox.ac.uk/admissions/graduate/courses/msc-applied-landscape-archaeology/

Visit the MSc in Applied Landscape Archaeology page on the University of Oxford website for more details!

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