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History & Archaeology×

Masters Degrees in Archaeology, Netherlands

We have 7 Masters Degrees in Archaeology, Netherlands

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The Research Master’s programme in Archaeology is the most diverse in the Netherlands. Benefit from our extensive experience and reputation in archaeological research. Read more

The Research Master’s programme in Archaeology is the most diverse in the Netherlands. Benefit from our extensive experience and reputation in archaeological research.

Choose Archaeology at Leiden University:

Our research master's programme offers interesting regional and thematic specialisation possibilities. It stimulates extra-talented and motivated students by exposing them to cutting edge research and making them part of it.

The programme helps you to find your own place in the wide world of archaeological careers, and equips you with all the 21st century professional and transferable skills you need.

Our research facilities and labs, field schools and excavation projects, experimental archaeology projects and the national research schools (ARCHON, OIKOS) offer excellent opportunities for every prospective researcher.

Research possibilities in 2018-2019:

Human Origins

Australopithecus africanus, one of our many ancestors

Interdisciplinary studies of the human past

This programme provides an in-depth interdisciplinary introduction in the European Palaeolithic record and its wider setting, from the Early Pleistocene to the Late Pleistocene.

  • Study the archaeology of Prehistoric hunter-gatherers, from the earliest stone tools in East Africa, 2.6 million years old, to the end of the last ice age.
  • Focus on Neanderthal behaviour, and explore research questions, methods of analysis and theoretical perspectives in Palaeolithic archaeology.

Prehistoric Farming Communities

A view of past communities

The programme aims to develop a detailed and coherent view of past communities.

  • Focus on the later prehistory of Europe, especially on communities bordering the North Sea (Scandinavia, the Low Countries, France, Great Britain and Ireland).
  • Explore research topics such as Beaker cultures and settlements of the Bronze and Iron Ages, cultural identity, and burial ritual and (selective) deposition.

Town and Country in the Mediterranean Region and the Near East

The cradle of civilisation

This programme focuses on a region that has enormous culture-historical significance, and is a cradle of civilisation from Prehistory up to the Early Medieval period.

  • Study various key developments, such as the origins of farming and sedentary life, as well as the emergence of complex urbanised societies and writing, as they occurred first in this region and spread subsequently.
  • Participate in current research projects. These projects focus on the Near East (modern Iraq, Iran, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine, Syria and Turkey) and Egypt, as well as the Mediterranean.

Religion and Society in Native American Cultures

Leiden Archaeology researchers used high-tech imaging to reveal rare precolonial Mexican manuscript hidden from view for 500 years

Study the past in connection to the present

The programme offers an interdisciplinary context, where archaeology, anthropology, sciences, history, linguistics, landscape and heritage studies come together.

  • Gain a broad knowledge of and deep insight into Native American cultural history, focusing on the relationships between religious worldview and social agency.
  • Participate in field schools related to long-term research projects, such as excavations in the Caribbean or Nicaragua,including studies of material culture and physical anthropology.

Bioarchaeology

Fragments of a sabre-toothed cat skull where recenty excavated

Combine archaeology with hard science

Discover our four research disciplines, together covering an extensive geographical area and time range.

  • Opt for Archaeobotany and investigate changes in vegetation and environment during the past 2.6 million years, as well as the taphonomy of plant macrofossils in lacustrine and fluvial depositional settings.
  • Focus on Archaeo/Palaeozoology and dive into Eurasia in the period from the Early Pleistocene to the Holocene. Biostratigraphical studies, palaeo-ecological studies, as well as taphonomical studies are carried out.
  • Study Human Osteoarchaeology and analyse human remains from international archaeology contexts as well as behavioural and social facets of mortuary practices in past societies.
  • Explore Isope Archaeology and work on the analysis and interpretation of stable isotopes of human and faunal remains from archaeological contexts. Learn how to carry out dating projects, including radiocarbon dating as well as other dating methods.

Archaeological Heritage in a Globalising World

A new and exciting interdisciplinary approach

The programme focuses on the role of the past in the present. Explore the various aspects of recent developments in international politics, cultural tourism, the use of social media, and the revitalisation of local traditions and regional identities.

  • Develop the practical skills to translate academic research and social knowledge into strategies for heritage management, and pursue individual initiatives.
  • Benefit from our close association with the Center for Global Heritage and Development, an interdisciplinary cooperation between three high-ranking universities: Leiden University, Erasmus University Rotterdam and Delft Technical University. This allows for a partnership between archaeology, social sciences, humanities and natural sciences.

The Transformation of the Roman World

Europe on the starting blocks

This programme offers an introduction to advanced studies of Europe and the Mediterranean in Late Roman and Post-Roman times (c. 300-900 AD).

  • Analyse the economic recovery of North-Western Europe in Merovingian and Carolingian times, exchange networks in the Mediterranean, and agrarian innovation and water management in Jordan.
  • Study burial sites, the fate of Roman towns in the early Middle Ages, and centres of Christianity.

Master of Arts or Master of Science

Students who choose the Bioarchaeology track receive a Master of Science degree in Archaeology. For the other research tracks you receive a Master of Arts degree in Archaeology.



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In this programme, you will learn to find the answer to these and other puzzles of Classical and Mediterranean Archaeology. The programme is part of the Archaeology Master programme and builds on the knowledge and skills obtained in a BA programme of Archaeology. Read more
In this programme, you will learn to find the answer to these and other puzzles of Classical and Mediterranean Archaeology. The programme is part of the Archaeology Master programme and builds on the knowledge and skills obtained in a BA programme of Archaeology.

Within the programme three different tracks are available. These tracks have their specific core modules, but also share courses with the other tracks within our MA programme.

The tracks are:

* Classical and Mediterranean Archaeology, with core modules The Rise of Cities and States, Mediterranean Landscape Archaeology and the Archaeology of Death.

* Bioarchaeology, with a core module of the same name.

* Maritime Archaeology with a core module of the same name.

The first semester comprises one compulsory module, Archaeology Today, and two optional modules (The Rise of Cities and States, and Mediterranean Landscape Archaeology). In the second semester you can follow two optional modules (Archaeology of Death, Advanced GIS course), or do an internship. The final stage of the MA programme is a thesis.

Why in Groningen?

- flexible structure
- all courses are taught in English
- attention to both theory and practice
- large international research projects in Italy, Greece, Egypt, Turkey, Iraq
- unique archaeobotanical and archaeozoological reference collections
- GIS and Material Culture laboratories
- close connections with Ancient History, Classics and Religious Studies
- close connections with Centre for Isotopes Research and Biology
- very low tuition fees
- a student friendly city

Job perspectives

The job opportunities for archaeologists in Europe are good. Because of the Valleta Treaty, all spatial planning projects have to take archaeological heritage into account. This has increased the work possibilities at consultancy and governmental agencies. It is also possible to find a position in the museum world or become an academic researcher.

The BA and MA programmes are strongly tied to the Groningen Institute of Archaeology (GIA), which comprises the archaeological research of the University of Groningen.

GIA research is focused on:
- Prehistoric, protohistoric and historical archaeology in the Netherlands, the Mediterranean and the Arctics.
- Bioarchaeology: archaeobotany and archaeozoology
- Material culture studies, including conservation
- Landscape archaeology, including GIS-based studies

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Archaeology in Leiden encompasses the study of societies and cultures from the past, aiming to reconstruct and revive them. Make a meaningful contribution to resolving present-day societal issues such as migration, globalisation and climate change, using your interest in the past. Read more

Archaeology in Leiden encompasses the study of societies and cultures from the past, aiming to reconstruct and revive them. Make a meaningful contribution to resolving present-day societal issues such as migration, globalisation and climate change, using your interest in the past.

Leiden's Faculty of Archaeology

Leiden’s Archaeology master’s degree has the most diverse programme in the Netherlands. Leiden also boasts the only independent Faculty of Archaeology in the Netherlands. The study programme offers various regional and thematic specialisations and the teaching programme is closely linked to ongoing research.

Our academic staff are involved in research all over the world, with a strong focus on field research. In addition, the programme emphasises ecology and geology, combined with both iconology and historical studies, as well as ethno-archaeological, anthropological and experimental approaches. A combination with modern museum practices and developments in archaeological heritage management broadens your scope even more.

Choose Archaeology at Leiden University:

  • Explore a truly unique choice of challenging regional and thematic specialisations.
  • Study at a faculty that ranks in the top ten worldwide in academic reputation and research impact (March 2017 QS World University Ranking by subject).
  • Benefit from our outstanding international faculty staff, which is involved in projects all over the world, and has a strong emphasis on field archaeology.
  • Work with top researchers, and take advantage of the strong connection between our current research projects and our education.

Multidisciplinary focus

As a student of one of our specialisations, you will gain in-depth knowledge of the discipline of your choice. At the same time, you will take part in ongoing debates about general theory, the development of new methods and the use of information technology.

Our teaching is multidisciplinary and uses theories, methods and techniques drawn from the humanities, social sciences and sciences. By regarding the matter from an ecologist's viewpoint, or seeing it through a geologist's or anthropologist's eye, you add great value to your studies and research.

Specialisations

Master of Arts or Master of Science

Students who choose the Archaeological Science specialisation receive a Master of Science degree in Archaeology. For World Archaeology and Heritage and Museum Studies, you receive a Master of Arts degree in Archaeology.



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Students in this programme are trained to research these type of questions. This programme is part of the Master programme of Archaeology and builds on the knowledge and skills obtained in a BA programme of Archaeology. Read more
Students in this programme are trained to research these type of questions.

This programme is part of the Master programme of Archaeology and builds on the knowledge and skills obtained in a BA programme of Archaeology.

Within the programme four different tracks are available. These tracks have their specific core modules, but also share courses with the other tracks within our MA programme.

The track are:
- Prehistory and Protohistory in northwest Europe, with core modules Prehistoric Cultural Landscapes and Terp-mound Archaeology
- Bioarchaeology, with a core module of the same name
- Maritime Archaeology with a core module of the same name
- Arctic Archaeology, with the core module Sustainability at the Polar Regions

The first semester comprises one compulsory module, Archaeology Today, and two of the other modules named here. In the second semester there is the opportunity to do an internship or an advances GIS course. The final stage of the MA programme is a thesis.

Why in Groningen?

- flexible structure
- unique archaeobotanical and archaeozoological reference collections
- GIS and Material Culture laboratories
- all courses are taught in English
- close connections with Centre for Isotopes Research and Biology
- very low tuition fees
- a student friendly city

Job perspectives

Thanks to the Valetta Treaty on Archaeology, the job market in the Netherlands has been strong. These opportunities have now decreased, leading to a more diverse job market, within government and semi-government agencies, tourism, journalism and private enterprises. Archaeology is traditionally strong in obtaining grants for research projects, especially PhD projects.

The BA and MA programmes are strongly tied to the Groningen Institute of Archaeology (GIA), which comprises the archaeological research of the University of Groningen.

GIA research is focused on:
- Prehistoric, protohistoric and historical archaeology in the Netherlands, the Mediterranean and the Arctics.
- Bioarchaeology: archaeobotany and archaeozoology
- Material culture studies, including conservation
- Landscape archaeology, including GIS-based studies

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You can choose between the Master's programme in Classical and Mediterranean Archaeology and the Master's programme in Prehistory and Protohistory of Northwest Europe. Read more
You can choose between the Master's programme in Classical and Mediterranean Archaeology and the Master's programme in Prehistory and Protohistory of Northwest Europe. Both Master programmes include different tracks: a track with the name og the programme, a specialized track in Bioarchaeology and Maritime Archeology, while a third track, Arctic Archaeology can be followed under the programme Prehistory and Protohistory of Northwestern Europe. All programmes and tracks will teach you to tackle archaeological problems in a scientific way.

In the first semester, you will be introduced to the archaeological practice and its multidisciplinary character. You will discuss the role of archaeology in contemporary society and explore the relation between archaeology and politics. You will strengthen your knowledge of archaeological theories that are used in collecting and interpreting data. In addition, you will carry out research in an excavation project. If you choose the programme Classical and Mediterranean Archaeology, you will work on a project in Greece, Italy, Turkey or Egypt. Does your preference go to Prehistory and Protohistory of Northwestern Europe, then you will carry out your research at a site in that region, or in the Arctic.

In the second semester, you have to do an internship. Finally, you will finish your degree with a thesis.

Job perspectives

Thanks to the Valetta Treaty on Archaeology, the job market in the Netherlands has been strong. These opportunities have now decreased, leading to a more diverse job market, within government and semi-government agencies, tourism, journalism and private enterprises. Archaeology is traditionally strong in obtaining grants for research projects, especially PhD projects.

Job examples

- Commercial archaeological firms
- Free-lance specialist
- Musea
- State archaeological service
- Research institutes
- Cultural institutes
- PhD research

The BA and MA programmes are strongly tied to the Groningen Institute of Archaeology (GIA), which comprises the archaeological research of the University of Groningen.

GIA research is focused on:
- Prehistoric, protohistoric and historical archaeology in the Netherlands, the Mediterranean and the Arctics.
- Bioarchaeology: archaeobotany and archaeozoology
- Material culture studies, including conservation
- Landscape archaeology, including GIS-based studies

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The Master's programme in Art History and Archaeology is part of the Research Master's Degrees in Archaeology and in Arts and Culture. Read more
The Master's programme in Art History and Archaeology is part of the Research Master's Degrees in Archaeology and in Arts and Culture. One of the aims of the programme is to develop an awareness of the academic responsibilities towards our cultural heritage; the programme gives you the tools to deal with these responsibilities in a proper way and translate them into research and exhibitions.

This Master's degree offers a two-year programme in the theory and methodology of material culture and landscape studies. All subjects are approached from multiple perspectives. Part of the programme is compulsory for all students. Of course, you will also choose a specialization: Archaeology, Art, Architecture or Landscape.

In the first year, you will attend two seminars that focus on the historical background of the interaction between archaeology and art. In these seminars, you will also look into perspectives on the nature and representation of cultural landscapes. Your focus for the rest of the year will be on your specialization.

In the second year, you will spend time researching a subject in the area of your field of interest. You will finish the programme by writing a thesis.

Why in Groningen?

- Intensive supervision by high-quality researchers in small groups
- Challenging multidisciplinary approach
- Research Assistantships and Talent Grants for excellent students

Job perspectives

The degree is an excellent preparation for a career in the areas of archaeology, art, architecture and landscape. After this programme a research position, within or outside the university, is a logical step.

Job examples

- (research-oriented) career in the areas of Archaeology and Art History

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