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Masters Degrees in Archaeology, United Kingdom

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The Archaeology MA inspires you to think about the human past from a variety of thematic and analytical perspectives. Newcastle is surrounded by world-class prehistoric, Roman and medieval heritage. Read more

The Archaeology MA inspires you to think about the human past from a variety of thematic and analytical perspectives. Newcastle is surrounded by world-class prehistoric, Roman and medieval heritage. We make full use of our rich archaeological landscape with regular study trips and fieldwork.

The Archaeology MA has five specialist pathways and a generic route to suit your individual needs, background and career aspirations:

  • Prehistoric Archaeology
  • Greek Archaeology
  • Roman Archaeology
  • Roman Frontier Studies
  • Late Antique, Medieval and Byzantine Archaeology

Newcastle University has a long and distinguished history of archaeology, including:

  • Prehistoric
  • Greek
  • Roman
  • Late Antique
  • Western Medieval
  • Byzantine
  • Historical Archaeology

We have access to some of the finest collections of archaeological artefacts in Great Britain in the on-campus Great North Museum: Hancock.

We provide quality teaching in small groups. This means you'll reach a level of familiarity with artefacts that most students can only dream of.

We have a range of period-based, practical and theoretical modules available. Our modules will give you an understanding of the interpretive approaches that archaeologists adopt. They will also help you understand the methodologies and sources available during your investigations.

You can develop a range of advanced practical skills in:

  • artefact analysis, including metallography and use-wear analysis
  • archaeological surveying, including topographical, buildings and geophysical survey
  • database and archive use
  • geographical information systems (GIS)
  • ancient languages

You'll join a vibrant archaeology community at Newcastle. You'll receive specialist teaching from leading academics in subjects of their research expertise.

Throughout the course you'll have opportunities to engage and learn about our innovative research. We have an extensive programme of invited speakers organised by our research groups. Our Postgraduate Forum also has a seminar series, annual conference and e-journal.

The Archaeology MA provides you with outstanding skills and the ability to enter a range of professions. You will gain advanced skills in literacy, research and project management. You could also choose to continue your academic career with a PhD in archaeology.

Fieldtrips

The North East has an outstanding prehistoric, Roman and medieval heritage. We take full advantage of this through regular study trips and fieldwork. You can also take optional modules with field trips to:

  • Rome 
  • Athens

The tuition of these trips is included in your course fees. If you select a module with an overseas trip you should budget about £450 to cover your flights and accommodation.

Delivery

All campus-based teaching takes place during the working week. Some field trips take place during holidays and weekends, depending on the modules taken. 

Contact and independent study times vary depending on the module and time of year.

Semesters one and two: You typically attend between 6 - 15 hours of teaching per week. The remaining hours of a standard week are for independent study.

Work experience

Work experience

There are many opportunities for you to gain archaeological experience outside your course. We'll encourage you to gain this experience whilst part of our archaeology community.

Staff carry out a wide range of archaeological projects. Most of our students participate in projects run in Newcastle and by partners in the UK and overseas.

Facilities

Facilities

Archaeologists have exceptional facilities on campus. This includes over 200 years of scholarship, libraries and archaeological collections built up by the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle and the Great North Museum: Hancock.

You'll have access to one of finest archaeological collections in the UK. You can access the following internationally important collections:

  • prehistoric
  • Greek
  • Etruscan
  • Roman 
  • medieval artefacts
  • Gertrude Bell archive.

You'll be based in the recently renovated Armstrong Building. It has:

  • dedicated study spaces
  • Reading Room
  • computers
  • free printing
  • photocopying
  • laptops for research trips,

You'll also get a personal research allowance and an interlibrary loan allowance to support your studies.



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The Core Archaeology course introduces current debates in archaeological theory and the history of archaeological thought, as well as archaeological methods (ranging from the study of prehistoric exchange to bio-archaeological techniques to artefact studies, quantitative analyses and dating methods). Read more
The Core Archaeology course introduces current debates in archaeological theory and the history of archaeological thought, as well as archaeological methods (ranging from the study of prehistoric exchange to bio-archaeological techniques to artefact studies, quantitative analyses and dating methods). Area option courses examine the archaeology of a particular region of the world (such as South Asia or Europe) in detail. Students are encouraged to choose a third module from the range of MPhil options on offer in the Division of Archaeology to complement their specific interests (e.g., heritage, science, material culture, etc). All module choices must have the approval of the module's instructor and the MPhil in Archaeology Coordinator.

Students may choose to specialise in any of the following options:

- Archaeological Heritage and Museums
- Archaeological Science
- Archaeology of the Americas
- Egyptian Archaeology
- European Prehistory
- Medieval Archaeology
- Mesopotamian Archaeology
- Palaeolithic and Mesolithic Archaeology
- South Asian Archaeology

Visit the website: http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/hsarmpmar

Course detail

Students electing the Archaeological Heritage option will take three taught modules:
1. The Socio-politics of the Past
2. Museums: History, Theory, and Practice
3. Management of the Archaeological Heritage. This course concentrates on issues of differentiation of interpretation.

The topics are all of academic importance and the teaching focuses on a theoretical understanding of the issues involved, with practical examples used as case studies. The aim is to educate you within this expanding field and to activate further research.

Students choosing the Archaeological Science option will take:
1. Archaeological Science
2. Practical Application of Scientific Methods modules
3. One other module offered by the Division of Archaeology (chosen in consultation with the supervisor and MPhil Coordinator).

This course covers a broad range of scientific archaeological approaches with geo- and bioarchaeological foci, from theoretical, methodological and practical points of view. A series of recurrent case studies is used to introduce the questions, techniques and ideas applicable in each archaeological situation. In addition, this MPhil equips students with analytical skills in archaeological science.

Format

All MPhil students in the Division of Archaeology take a Research Skills Module and write a dissertation (15,000 words maximum). Students choosing Archaeology of the Americas, Archaeology of Egypt, European Archaeology, Medieval Archaeology, Mesopotamian Archaeology, Palaeolithic and Mesolithic Archaeology, or South Asian Archaeology take:

1. the Core Archaeology course
2. the appropriate area option course
3. any other module offered by the Division of Archaeology (in consultation with the supervisor and MPhil coordinator).

The assessed components of the three selected modules each represent 15% of the final mark. The assessed components of Research Skills module represents 5%, while the dissertation counts for 50% of the final mark.

Assessment

- The dissertation is an extended piece of independent, original research. Students work with their supervisor to formulate a dissertation project, carry out research and write it up. The topic of the dissertation has to be approved by the Faculty Degree Committee. The dissertation is of maximum 15,000 words (excluding bibliography and appendices) and is due at the end of August; it counts as 50% of the student’s final mark.

- Students taking the MPhil in Archaeology are usually required to produce between 3 and 6 assessed essays depending on their chosen course of study and the modules they select. The essays are between 3000 and 4000 words and are submitted in Michaelmas, Lent and Easter Terms.

- Students taking the MPhil in Archaeology are required to sit written examinations for some modules.

- Attendance at the relevant Research Skills Workshops is required of all MPhil students in the Division of Archaeology. MPhil students submit a 2000 word research proposal and give a presentation to teaching staff and peers which form the assessed part of the Research Skills module and are worth 5% of the overall MPhil degree.

Continuing

MPhil students wishing to continue to the PhD in Archaeology are required to achieve a High Pass mark of 68 overall and no less than 68 in their dissertation, and to obtain the support of an appropriate supervisor. In some circumstances additional academic conditions may be set to ensure appropriate skills, such as language competence, are in place prior to admittance on the PhD programme.

How to apply: http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/applying

Funding Opportunities

There are many different sources of funding available to support UK/EU and international students at the Division of Archaeology but full scholarships for MPhil students are highly competitive. The Division of Archaeology enters exceptionally strong MPhil candidates for Gates Cambridge, CHESS and AHRC scholarships and scholarship schemes administered by the Cambridge Trust. The Division of Archaeology also administers several funds which aim to support Archaeological fieldwork, Egyptology and Assyriology at MPhil level and will endeavour to support students in obtaining funding from University and external sources. For further information about funding opportunities at the Division of Archaeology consult the Division website: http://www.arch.cam.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate-funding or contact the Graduate Administrator: .

General Funding Opportunities http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/finance/funding

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The Archaeology MA. Cultural Archaeology pathway focuses on cultural interpretation in archaeology, both in relation to specific cultures/periods and current research themes. Read more

The Archaeology MA: Cultural Archaeology pathway focuses on cultural interpretation in archaeology, both in relation to specific cultures/periods and current research themes.

There are opportunities to specialise in a range of subjects, including material culture studies, funerary archaeology, British and European prehistory, Greek and Roman archaeology, and thematic areas relevant to all periods and regions of archaeological study such as environment, landscape, material culture, death and burial, age and gender, warfare, ritual and religion, and archaeological theory and method.

It is an ideal foundation for doctoral research in all fields of cultural archaeology, as well as training in practical and research skills for careers in archaeology and heritage.

We offer the flexibility to upgrade from Certificate to Diploma level and from Diploma to Masters level during your programme as you develop your postgraduate studies. We also offer a Landscape Archaeology pathway on the Archaeology MA.

Course details

The MA Archaeology programme provides a foundation for doctoral study, or for developing research skills and capabilities applicable in professional fields in Archaeology and Heritage, and for demonstrating expertise in chosen aspects of archaeological method and interpretation.

The course structure combines the advantages of training in technical and methodological areas, gaining in-depth knowledge of particular thematic, period-based and/or geographical fields of archaeological study, with the freedom to pursue your own research interests through your Masters dissertation project.

You will study three core modules:

  • Archaeological Theory, Method and Interpretation
  • Funerary Archaeology
  • Material Culture

In addition, MA and Diploma students choose three optional modules from a wide range of subjects including landscape archaeology, late prehistoric and early medieval Europe, Greek archaeology, ancient Egyptian society, empire and identity in the Roman world, Byzantine archaeology, GIS and spatial analysis, and field survey. Full module descriptions are available below.

MA Archaeology students are encouraged to develop a broad range of transferable skills during the course. These include: familiarity with research methods; the ability to manage information from diverse sources; the ability to organise information in a logical and coherent manner; the ability to write clearly and concisely and to tight deadlines; analytical rigour; confident oral presentation; and the capacity for critical argument and debate.

Research training is also provided for all postgraduate students.

Assessment

Modules are typically assessed by written assignment, with the exception of Archaeological Theory, Method and Interpretation which also requires a presentation. MA students also complete a supervised 15,000-word dissertation.

Learning and teaching

MA Archaeology students attend a wide range of seminars, lectures, and classes as part of their taught modules, potentially including computer suite-based classes, a survey field school, and study visits, depending on the modules selected. 

Dissertation research is conducted independently, guided by a supervisor selected for their expertise and experience relevant to the student's project, with supervisory meetings taking place on a regular basis. The course benefits from excellent library resources for archaeological study, housed within the new University Library situated close to the department, and MA students join the wider, dynamic community of Archaeology staff and students at the University with opportunities to attend seminar series, public lectures, social events, and potentially participate in departmental field projects. 

Support with academic writing

As a postgraduate student in the College of Arts and Law, you have access to the Academic Writing Advisory Service (AWAS) which aims to help your transition from undergraduate to taught Masters level, or back into academia after time away. The service offers guidance on writing assignments and dissertations for your MA/MSc programme with individual support from an academic writing advisor via tutorials, email and the provision of online materials.

Employability

Your degree will provide excellent preparation for employment and this will be further enhanced by a range of employability support services offered by the University.

The University's Careers Network provides advice and information specifically for postgraduates that will help you to develop an effective career and skills development strategy, and to make the most of your time with us at the University. The College of Arts and Law also has a dedicated careers and employability team to deliver tailored programmes of careers events and local support.

You will have opportunities to: meet employers face-to-face at on-campus recruitment fairs; attend employer presentations and skills workshops; receive individual guidance on your job applications, writing your CV and improving your interview technique; and access to comprehensive listings of hundreds of graduate jobs and work experience opportunities.

You will also be able to access our full range of careers support for up to two years after graduation.

Postgraduate employability: Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology

Birmingham's Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology graduates develop a broad range of transferable skills including: familiarity with research methods; the ability to manage large quantities of information from diverse sources; the ability to organise information in a logical and coherent manner; the expertise to write clearly and concisely and to tight deadlines; critical and analytical ability; the capacity for argument, debate and speculation; and the ability to base conclusions on statistical research.

Many of our postgraduates enter roles for which their programme has especially prepared them, such as museum and heritage activities and archaeological posts. Elsewhere, a range of professions are undertaken by our graduates, from librarianship and teaching to accountancy. Employers that our graduates have gone on to work for include: AC archaeology; University of Birmingham; National Trust; and the Barber Institute of Fine Arts.

International students can access support for English Language development and skills through the Birmingham International Academy (BIA).



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The Public Archaeology MA at UCL is a unique programme in a rapidly growing sector. Read more

The Public Archaeology MA at UCL is a unique programme in a rapidly growing sector. It provides students with an understanding of the different means of communicating archaeology to the public, and of the real-world political, educational, social, economic and moral/ethical dimensions of public archaeology from a global perspective.

About this degree

Students are introduced to the range of areas in which archaeology has relevance to the wider world, and develop an understanding of how archaeology is communicated, used (and misused) in the public arena. The flexible programme structure allows students to design a theoretically based or practically based degree depending on each individual's interests and needs.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of a core module (30 credits), optional modules (60 credits) and a research dissertation (90 credits).

Core module

Students are required to take the following module: 

  • Public Archaeology

Optional modules

You are then able to choose further optional modules to the value of 60 credits. At least one of these must be taken from the list below of modules recommended for this degree programme. The other 30 credits may also come from this list or can be chosen from amongst an outstanding range of other Master's programmes offered at the UCL Institute of Archaeology.

  • Antiquities and the Law
  • Applied Heritage Management
  • Archaeologies of Modern Conflict
  • Archaeologies of the Modern World
  • Archaeology and Education
  • British and European Prehistory: Neolithic to Iron Age
  • Cultural Heritage and Development
  • Cultural Memory
  • Key Topics in the Archaeology of the Americas
  • Managing Archaeological Sites
  • Managing Museums
  • Museum and Site Interpretation
  • Themes, Thought and Theory in World Archaeology: Foundations
  • Themes, Thought and Theory in World Archaeology: Current Issues

Dissertation/report

All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 15,000 words (90 credits).

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars discussions, practical demonstrations, and field trips to museums and archaeological sites and monuments around the UK. It features a series of distinguished guest lecturers with extensive first-hand experience in the archaeology, museum, cultural and heritage sectors. Assessment is through essays, project reports and the dissertation.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Public Archaeology MA

Funding

Institute of Archaeology Master's Awards: a small number of grants up to the value of £1,000 are available for the academic year 2018/19. All UK/EU and Overseas fee-paying students with an offer to start any Master's degree offered by the IoA are eligible to apply. For an application form please email . The deadline for applications is 1 March 2018.

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

Careers

Some graduates of the programme go on to PhD studies while others pursue careers in professional organisations associated with the archaeology, museum, cultural and heritage sectors. Students benefit from the practical real-world insights and contacts within these sectors that the programme offers. Career paths in these sectors include the growing fields of education and interpretation in museums and heritage sites; policy and research jobs in organisations such as the Sustainable Preservation Initiative, English Heritage and Arts Council England; and the growing interest in public archaeology within commercial archaeological organisations worldwide.

Recent career destinations for this degree

  • Communications Assistant, MOLA (Museum of London Archaeology)
  • Visitor Experience Host, York Archaeological Trust
  • Strategic Development Intern, National Museum of the Royal Navy
  • Project Researcher, American University in Italy
  • Senior Archaeologist, Museum of London Archaeology

Employability

Graduates of the Public Archaeology MA have a distinct set of skills and knowledge that equips them for work across the archaeology, heritage and museum sector. This includes an in-depth understanding of the structure of the sector and its socio-economic, political and cultural contexts, but also a very practical appreciation of public understanding and engagement with the past. These strengths are reflected in the diversity of career paths amongst graduates of the Public Archaeology MA programme, in archaeology, museums, the heritage industry and academia.

Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The UCL Institute of Archaeology is the largest and most diverse department of archaeology in the UK, and provides a stimulating environment for postgraduate study.

Its outstanding archaeological library is complemented by UCL's main library, University of London Senate House and other specialist libraries.

UCL is located in central London, within walking distance of the British Museum and the British Library. Students benefit from London's many museums, galleries and other archaeological spaces, but in particular have easy access to UCL's own museums and collections, which form a resource of international importance for academic research.



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Highly respected qualification in buildings archaeology. Established more than 15 years ago, this course is one of the longest-established and most respected buildings archaeology and buildings history programmes in the UK. Read more
Highly respected qualification in buildings archaeology.

Why choose this course?

Established more than 15 years ago, this course is one of the longest-established and most respected buildings archaeology and buildings history programmes in the UK. It brings together experts in buildings survey and recording, archive research, legislation and policy, conservation, theoretical interpretation and computer modelling to deliver a dynamic course, which will equip you with the specialist skills and knowledge required for a career in researching, managing and conserving historic buildings.
-Learn the specialised skills required for researching, analysing and recording historic buildings.
-Gain experience in rectified photography, photogrammetry and other 3D recording methods, CAD drawing and computer modelling of historic buildings.
-Develop the knowledge and skills essential for careers in the architectural and archaeological sectors.
-Study in the cultural heritage capital of the UK – experience buildings archaeology in action.
-Access state-of-the-art facilities, including survey support, archives and libraries.
-Receive careers advice from staff with significant experience of recruiting within the sector.

York is one of the best places to study Archaeology, Heritage or Conservation. The Department has an excellent reputation and is one of the largest Archaeology teaching centres in the UK. The historic City of York is rich in architectural and archaeological treasures and resources which you will have easy access to during your studies.

What does the course cover?

The MA in the Archaeology of Buildings is designed to train students in the systematic research, recording, analysis and interpretation of historic buildings.

Through a combination of academic studies, practical training and research projects, the course will:
-Introduce the specialised skills required for the historical research, visual analysis and archaeological recording of buildings.
-Give you a foundational knowledge of the history of architecture in the UK, from c.1000 to the present day.
-Introduce you to current intellectual and professional research priorities in the archaeology of buildings.
-Introduce you to conservation legislation, policy and practice.
-Enable you to develop excellent research and communication skills relating to the research, analysis and interpretation of historic buildings.

Who is it for?

This course is suitable for students of Archaeology, History of Art, Architectural History and related subjects, as well as for mid-career professionals seeking to develop or enhance their professional specialism in buildings archaeology.

What can it lead to?

The discipline of buildings archaeology has grown in confidence, with new theoretical and methodological developments allowing archaeologists to record, date, model and present research in exciting new ways. There is significant demand for buildings archaeology professionals in the commercial sector and in national and local heritage organisations.

Course alumni have successfully launched careers in key roles with organisations across the heritage sector, including English Heritage, National Trust, Historic Scotland and Historic Royal Palaces, as well as with local authorities and conservation bodies, conservation architects, archaeological units and commercial developers.

Placement

Work placements provide a valuable opportunity to gain practical experience of working in the professional buildings sector. Your placement will draw on and contribute to the knowledge and experience you have gained on your taught courses, while enabling you to develop new insights, understanding and expertise in buildings archaeology that will be extremely valuable in future employment.

Aims
-To provide students with experience of buildings archaeology in a professional working environment.
-To consolidate students’ knowledge and understanding of buildings archaeology procedures and issues gained from the taught modules.

Learning outcomes
Upon completing these placements you should have:
-Gained experience and knowledge of how building recording and research inform conservation and heritage practice, under the guidance of experienced professionals.
-Developed experience in practical applications, facilitating critical reflection on the theoretical and philosophical issues raised in both core modules.

Placement providers
Although the organisations offering placements change from year to year, according to availability, the following list is a good indication of the choices likely to be available:
-English Heritage
-National Trust
-Council for British Archaeology
-York Civic Trust
-West Yorkshire Archaeology Service
-The Churches Conservation Trust
-Purcell Architects
-Quercus Design
-City of York Council
-Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings
-York Archaeological Trust
-Cathedral and Church Buildings Division

Careers

The MA in the Archaeology of Buildings offers practical skills and research training that provide excellent preparation for a range of careers. By the end of the course you will be able to:
-Record and analyse structures of all types, selecting a level of record appropriate to the end use.
-Execute hand, metric and photographic surveys and present the results in hand drawings, photographs and CAD.
-Recognise and apply the principles of structural analysis to elucidate a building’s history.
-Draw on a sound knowledge of British architectural history and, where appropriate, that of other countries.
-Carry out research using a wide range of archival sources on buildings in the UK and integrate these critically and effectively into the interpretation of buildings.
-Discuss and debate current research agendas in buildings archaeology.
-Direct your own independent work, and also interact with others as a member of a recording or conservation team.
-Communicate the results of research effectively through oral, written and graphic forms of presentation.

Alumni from the course have been employed in a range of commercial and heritage organisations across the UK, including:
-Field Archaeology Specialists (FAS Heritage)
-Oxford Archaeology
-URS Corporation
-Purcell Architects
-AOC Archaeology Group
-Pre-Construct Archaeology
-Headland Archaeology
-Arc Heritage
-York Archaeological trust
-English Heritage
-National Trust
-Historic Scotland
-Historic Royal Palaces
-West Yorkshire Archaeology Service
-MOLA (Museum of London Archaeology)

Others have been employed as freelance building archaeologists, local authority conservation officers and museum professionals.

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The Archaeology MA is an intensive induction programme on current archaeological theory and interpretive trends which equips students to undertake research in their chosen field. Read more

The Archaeology MA is an intensive induction programme on current archaeological theory and interpretive trends which equips students to undertake research in their chosen field. The flexible programme of study serves as an excellent expansion of undergraduate studies or as a self-designed foundation for further postgraduate and professional work.

About this degree

The programme provides a wide-ranging introduction to archaeology as a comparative, anthropologically-informed, and socially situated discipline. Students develop critically aware perspectives on archaeological practice and research processes and gain an in-depth understanding of approaches to the collection, analysis and interpretation of archaeological data. The programme is extremely flexible, with a wide choice of options available allowing students to tailor the programme to their own interests.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of two core modules (30 credits), optional modules (60 credits) and a research dissertation (90 credits).

Core modules

All students are required to take the following: 

  • Themes, Thought and Theory in World Archaeology: Foundations
  • Themes, Thought and Theory in World Archaeology: Current Issues

Optional modules

Students choose to follow further optional modules up to the value of 60 credits from an outstanding range of Master's programme options available at the UCL Institute of Archaeology. Some of the most popular choices include: 

  • Aegean Prehistory: major themes and current debates
  • Ancient Italy in the Mediterranean
  • Archaeologies of Modern Conflict
  • Archaeology of Buddhism
  • Archaeology and Education
  • Archaeology of Hunter-Gatherers from the Emergence of Modern Humans
  • Aztec Archaeology: Codices and Ethnohistory
  • Beyond Chiefdoms: Archaeologies of African political complexities
  • British and European Prehistory: Neolithic to Iron Age
  • Cities, States and Religions in Ancient India
  • Funerary Archaeology
  • Interpreting Pottery
  • Key Topics in the Archaeology of the Americas
  • Making and Meaning in Ancient Greek Art
  • Making and Meaning in Ancient Roman Art
  • Maya Art, Architecture and Archaeology
  • Medieval Archaeology: Select Topics and Current Problems
  • Prehistoric Stone Artefact Analysis
  • Society and Culture in Ancient Egypt
  • The Neolithic and Early Bronze Age of the Near East: The Emergence of Villages and Urban Societies

Dissertation/report

All MA students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of approximately 15,000 words (90 credits).

Teaching and learning

The core modules are seminar based, and the sessions are interactive, with an emphasis on student participation and critical discussion. The optional modules are delivered through seminars, lectures, practicals, laboratory sessions, tutorials, and site and museum visits, as appropriate for specific modules. Assessment is through essays, oral examination and the dissertation.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Archaeology MA

Careers

Some recent graduates of the programme have gone on to PhD studies while others have pursued an incredibly wide range of professional careers both within and beyond archaeology.

Recent career destinations for this degree

  • Project Manager, Korea Cultural Heritage Foundation
  • Freelance Archaeologist, Murray Archaeological Services
  • Sales Executive, Harper Collins
  • MPhil/PhD in Archaeology, UCL
  • Assistant, Museum of Nicosia

Employability

As the most general of the MA/MSc programmes, the experience and skills acquired depends on the optional modules selected, and how those skills are developed through assessed work, developing expertise in the archaeology of specific regions, periods or themes, or specific field, museum and analytical skills. All students acquire a detailed understanding of specific theoretical debates and the critical skills to evaluate existing arguments and interpretations and to develop their own research, develop a range of research skills, and design and carry through original research. Taught from a comparative anthropological perspective, understanding cultural differences, in the past and present, is fundamental.

Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The UCL Institute of Archaeology is the largest and one of the most highly regarded centres for archaeology, archaeological science, cultural heritage and museum studies in Britain, highlighted by its leading position in university assessments and National Student Survey results. It is one of the very few departments in the world undertaking research on a truly global scale. Its degrees offer an unrivalled variety of modules. The institute hosts events on many different aspects of archaeology and is linked to heritage organisations, museums and archaeological societies, providing an outstanding research environment for students.

It is truly international in outlook and membership, with students and staff from over 40 countries, and involvement in field research projects around the world.

UCL is located in central London, within walking distance of the British Museum and the British Library. UCL's own museums and collections constitute a resource of international importance for research.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.

The following REF score was awarded to the department: Institute of Archaeology

73% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)

Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.



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The Archaeology MA. Landscape Archaeology pathway will allow you to develop a thorough knowledge of current investigative methods in landscape archaeology, and current approaches to the interpretation of human agency in past landscapes and their social and cultural construction. Read more

The Archaeology MA: Landscape Archaeology pathway will allow you to develop a thorough knowledge of current investigative methods in landscape archaeology, and current approaches to the interpretation of human agency in past landscapes and their social and cultural construction.

There are opportunities to specialise in a range of practical techniques, digital landscape studies, and interpretative approaches in thematic and period/area landscape studies. These include the investigation of both prehistoric and historic landscapes around the world, and topics such as sacred landscapes, funerary landscapes, the spatiality of warfare and conflict, landscapes of inhabitation, wetlands, and environmental and landscape change. The pathway is ideal for research preparation, or as a basis for professional careers and career development in archaeology and heritage.

We offer the flexibility to upgrade from Certificate to Diploma level and from Diploma to Masters level during your programme as you develop your postgraduate studies. We also offer a Cultural Archaeology pathway on the Archaeology MA.

Course details

The MA Archaeology programme provides a foundation for doctoral study, or for developing research skills and capabilities applicable in professional fields in Archaeology and Heritage, and for demonstrating expertise in chosen aspects of archaeological method and interpretation.

The course structure combines the advantages of training in technical and methodological areas, gaining in-depth knowledge of particular thematic, period-based and/or geographical fields of archaeological study, with the freedom to pursue your own research interests through your Masters dissertation project.

You will study three core modules:

  • Archaeological Theory, Method and Interpretation
  • GIS and Spatial Analysis
  • Landscape Archaeology

In addition, MA and Diploma students select three optional modules from a wide range of choices. These can include field survey, virtual landscapes, digital cultures, funerary archaeology, material culture, and cultural studies ranging from European prehistory and Egyptology to Classical and Byzantine archaeology. Full module descriptions are available below.

MA Archaeology students are encouraged to develop a broad range of transferable skills during the course. These include: familiarity with research methods; the ability to manage information from diverse sources; the ability to organise information in a logical and coherent manner; the ability to write clearly and concisely and to tight deadlines; analytical rigour; confident oral presentation; and the capacity for critical argument and debate.

Research training is also provided for all postgraduate students.

Assessment

Modules are typically assessed by written assignment, with the exception of Archaeological Theory, Method and Interpretation which also requires a presentation. MA students also complete a supervised 15,000-word dissertation.

Learning and teaching

MA Archaeology students attend a wide range of seminars, lectures, and classes as part of their taught modules, potentially including computer suite-based classes, a survey field school, and study visits, depending on the modules selected. 

Dissertation research is conducted independently, guided by a supervisor selected for their expertise and experience relevant to the student's project, with supervisory meetings taking place on a regular basis. The course benefits from excellent library resources for archaeological study, housed within the new University Library situated close to the department, and MA students join the wider, dynamic community of Archaeology staff and students at the University with opportunities to attend seminar series, public lectures, social events, and potentially participate in departmental field projects. 

Support with academic writing

As a postgraduate student in the College of Arts and Law, you have access to the Academic Writing Advisory Service (AWAS) which aims to help your transition from undergraduate to taught Masters level, or back into academia after time away. The service offers guidance on writing assignments and dissertations for your MA/MSc programme with individual support from an academic writing advisor via tutorials, email and the provision of online materials.

International students can access support for English Language development and skills through the Birmingham International Academy (BIA).

Employability

Your degree will provide excellent preparation for employment and this will be further enhanced by a range of employability support services offered by the University.

The University's Careers Network provides advice and information specifically for postgraduates that will help you to develop an effective career and skills development strategy, and to make the most of your time with us at the University. The College of Arts and Law also has a dedicated careers and employability team to deliver tailored programmes of careers events and local support.

You will have opportunities to: meet employers face-to-face at on-campus recruitment fairs; attend employer presentations and skills workshops; receive individual guidance on your job applications, writing your CV and improving your interview technique; and access to comprehensive listings of hundreds of graduate jobs and work experience opportunities.

You will also be able to access our full range of careers support for up to two years after graduation.

Postgraduate employability: Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology

Birmingham's Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology graduates develop a broad range of transferable skills including: familiarity with research methods; the ability to manage large quantities of information from diverse sources; the ability to organise information in a logical and coherent manner; the expertise to write clearly and concisely and to tight deadlines; critical and analytical ability; the capacity for argument, debate and speculation; and the ability to base conclusions on statistical research.

Many of our postgraduates enter roles for which their programme has especially prepared them, such as museum and heritage activities and archaeological posts. Elsewhere, a range of professions are undertaken by our graduates, from librarianship and teaching to accountancy. Employers that our graduates have gone on to work for include: AC archaeology; University of Birmingham; National Trust; and the Barber Institute of Fine Arts.



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This programme is taught by experts and specialists in fields such as European, Mediterranean, science-based, and theoretical archaeology. Read more

This programme is taught by experts and specialists in fields such as European, Mediterranean, science-based, and theoretical archaeology. It offers a range of courses and allows you to tailor your studies to suit your interests and take advantage of the experience of our staff, and those in related programmes in history, classics and geography. You will develop an in-depth understanding of archaeology and its links with the historical, social and natural sciences, as well as the practice of archaeology within and outside an academic setting, incorporating skills and training.

The programme prepares you for a professional role in archaeology or further study at doctoral level. We have excellent facilities: dedicated study space, archaeological and computing laboratories, and teaching and reference collections. Edinburgh is ideal for archaeological study and research, allowing you to benefit from the presence of national and local institutions and heritage agencies, such as the excellent archaeological collections of the National Museum, the archival and bibliographic resources of Historic Environment Scotland, and the expertise and practical advice of staff in several commercial archaeology companies.

Programme structure

Our wide-ranging programme encompasses theory, methodology and practice. You will undertake a varied schedule of learning, including lectures, seminars, practicals, and individual supervisions. You will complete three compulsory courses and select a further three options from a wide range on offer. We will help you to develop your research interests and choose a suitable dissertation topic.

The compulsory courses are:

  • Frontiers in Archaeology: Research Seminars
  • Research Sources and Strategies in Archaeology
  • Theoretical Archaeology

Option courses previously offered include those listed below. Option courses change from year to year and those available when you start your studies may be different from those shown in the list:

  • Archaeological Illustration
  • Bronze Age Civilisations of the Near East and Greece
  • Byzantine Archaeology: The archaeology of the Byzantine empire and its neighbours AD 500-850.
  • Principles of GIS for Archaeologists
  • Space, Place and Time: the archaeology of built environments
  • Archaeology of the Roman Economy
  • Etruscan Italy, 1000 - 300 BC
  • From Foraging to Farming: the Beginnings of Agriculture in the Mediterranean and Europe
  • Gallia from the Third Century BC to Augustus
  • Human Evolution
  • Ritual and Monumentality in North-West Europe: Mid-6th to Mid-3rd Millennium BC
  • Conflict archaeology: materialities of violence
  • Constantinople: The History of a Medieval Megalopolis from Constantine the Great to Suleyman the Magnificent.

Learning outcomes

You will acquire:

  • a good understanding of the distinctive nature of archaeology and its contribution to a critical and informed understanding of the past
  • a good understanding of theoretical and methodological debates within archaeology
  • familiarity with a number of important fieldwork studies
  • a broad knowledge of archaeological methods, techniques and practices in current use

The programme will help you to develop potential research interests and to explore these with a view to progressing to further research. You will also acquire a range of transferable intellectual and practical skills.

Career opportunities

Archaeology graduates can follow a variety of career options. The programme equips you to go on to advanced study, and also provides a solid foundation for a career. You will gain practical as well as academic experience, teamworking and analytical skills, and will be able to work in a variety of contexts.

Examples of career paths available to archaeology graduates (although some may require additional training) include: higher education, heritage management and agencies, commercial archaeology, environmental assessment, teaching, tourism industry, broadcasting and the police. An archaeology degree does not restrict you to a career in archaeology.



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This programme lets you explore the richness of European archaeology, a region that presents innumerable opportunities for archaeological research, through examination of a wide range of periods, geographical areas and themes. Read more

This programme lets you explore the richness of European archaeology, a region that presents innumerable opportunities for archaeological research, through examination of a wide range of periods, geographical areas and themes. The flexible programme lets you tailor your individual studies to suit your interests and take advantage of the experience of our staff, as well as those in related programmes in history, classics and geography.

You will develop an understanding of European archaeology, with an emphasis on European prehistory, and a knowledge of topics including contemporary theoretical perspectives, methodologies and practice.

This programme incorporates transferable skills and training, while preparing you for a professional role in archaeology or further study at doctoral level. The School has excellent facilities: dedicated study space, archaeological and computing laboratories, teaching and reference collections.

The city of Edinburgh is ideal for archaeological study and research, allowing you to benefit from national and local institutions and heritage agencies, such as the excellent archaeological collections of the National Museum, the archival and bibliographic resources of Historic Environment Scotland, and the expertise and practical advice of staff in several commercial archaeology companies.

Programme structure

You will combine lectures, seminars, practicals, essays, research projects and one-to-one meetings in all areas of archaeology. You will complete one compulsory course and select a further five options from a wide range on offer. You will then complete a dissertation on an approved subject of your choice.

The compulsory course is:

  • Research Sources and Strategies in Archaeology

Option courses previously offered include those listed below. Option courses change from year to year and those available when you start your studies may be different from those shown in the list:

  • Frontiers in Archaeology: Research Seminars
  • Archaeological Illustration
  • Bronze Age Civilisations of the Near East and Greece
  • Byzantine Archaeology: The archaeology of the Byzantine empire and its neighbours AD 500-850.
  • Theoretical Archaeology
  • Principles of GIS for Archaeologists
  • Space, Place and Time: the archaeology of built environments
  • Archaeology of the Roman Economy
  • Etruscan Italy, 1000 - 300 BC
  • From Foraging to Farming: the Beginnings of Agriculture in the Mediterranean and Europe
  • Gallia from the Third Century BC to Augustus
  • Human Evolution
  • Ritual and Monumentality in North-West Europe: Mid-6th to Mid-3rd Millennium
  • Conflict archaeology: materialities of violence
  • Constantinople: The History of a Medieval Megalopolis from Constantine the Great to Suleyman the Magnificent

Learning outcomes

You will acquire:

  • a good understanding of the distinctive nature of archaeology and its contribution to a critical and informed understanding of the past
  • a good understanding of theoretical and methodological debates within archaeology
  • a familiarity with a number of important fieldwork studies
  • a broad knowledge of archaeological methods, techniques and practices in current use

Career opportunities

Archaeology graduates can follow a variety of career options. The programme equips you to go on to advanced study, and also provides a solid foundation for a career.

You will gain practical as well as academic experience, teamworking and analytical skills, and will be able to work in a variety of contexts. Examples of career paths available to archaeology graduates (although some may require additional training) include: higher education, heritage management and agencies, commercial archaeology, teaching, tourism industry, broadcasting and the police. An archaeology degree does not restrict you to a career in archaeology.



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UCL is a world-leading centre for research and teaching in the archaeology and cultural heritage of Egypt and the Middle East. The programme is ideally suited to students seeking to combine advanced study of these regions with new technical and interpretative skills, and offers an ideal grounding for doctoral research. Read more

UCL is a world-leading centre for research and teaching in the archaeology and cultural heritage of Egypt and the Middle East. The programme is ideally suited to students seeking to combine advanced study of these regions with new technical and interpretative skills, and offers an ideal grounding for doctoral research.

About this degree

UCL’s wide range of archaeological expertise provides a unique opportunity to study Egypt and the Middle East in a truly comparative context, and for students to develop a programme and research dissertation tailored to individual interests. These may include the application of new skills in archaeological science, exploring new theoretical perspectives, or the significance of archaeology for the wider cultural heritage of these regions.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of three core modules (45 credits), two or three optional modules (45 credits), and a dissertation.

Core modules

All students must take the following: 

  • Archaeology of Egypt and the Near East: A Comparative Approach
  • Themes, Thought and Theory in World Archaeology: Foundations
  • Heritage Ethics and Archaeological Practice in the Mediterranean and Middle East

Optional modules

You are then able to choose further optional modules to the value of 45 credits. The most popular choices are: 

  • Ancient Cyprus: Colonisations, Copper and City-States (by arrangement with King's College London)
  • Archaeologies of Asia
  • Aegean Prehistory: major themes and debates
  • Beyond Chiefdoms: Archaeologies of African Political Complexity
  • Egyptian Archaeology: An Object-Based Theoretical Approach
  • Intangible Dimensions of Museum Objects from Egypt
  • Introductory Akkadian (by arrangement with SOAS)
  • Mediterranean Dynamics
  • Mediterranean Prehistory
  • Middle Egyptian Language
  • Society and Culture in Ancient Egypt
  • The Neolithic and Early Bronze Age of the Near East: the emergence of villages and urban societies
  • Middle Bronze Age to the Iron Age in the Near East: City-States and Empires

Students may also elect options from the wide range of other graduate courses in world archaeology, ancient languages, archaeological sciences, or cultural heritage offered at the Institute of Archaeology, subject to availability

Dissertation/report

All students undertake an independent research project, with guidance from an assigned supervisor, which culminates in a dissertation of 15,000 words.

Teaching and learning

Teaching at the IoA is delivered through a combination of lectures and seminars to support student interaction, and examination is primarily through module-based essays and the individual dissertation. Depending on the options taken, teaching may also include object handling, museum work, and laboratory practicals.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Archaeology and Heritage of Egypt and the Middle East MA

Careers

The first cohort of students on the Archaeology and Heritage of Egypt and the Middle East MA is due to graduate in 2018, therefore no specific career destinations are currently available.

Previous UCL graduates in these areas have regularly gone on to undertake doctoral research, or found employment in related areas of the public, museum and heritage sector.

Employability

In addition to receiving advanced training in their chosen subject areas, students will have the opportunity to acquire a strong combination of general research skills, communication skills, skills in teamwork and networking and overall personal effectiveness.

Why study this degree at UCL?

Egyptian and Middle Eastern archaeology at UCL are embedded in the vibrant research environment of London's Bloomsbury Campus, in the centre of one of the most exciting cities in the world. The research facilities and collections of the British Museum, the UCL Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology, and the Institute of Archaeology's own extensive collections from these regions will be on your doorstep. Our institute includes over 20 researchers with regional expertise in these areas, from prehistory to the present, and has a long and ongoing history of active fieldwork throughout the study region. We are also an international centre for research in cultural heritage and museum studies, where the study of the past is critically related to the concerns of the present.

UCL’s wide range of expertise in archaeology and cultural heritage will allow you to study the Egyptian and Middle Eastern past under the instruction of world-leading experts, and with a sensitivity to the contemporary circumstances of the study region. In addition to taught modules, students are given the opportunity to develop a programme of research tailored to their individual interests, including hands-on work with collections from Egypt and the Middle East. New skills you may acquire include the application of techniques in archaeological science, new theoretical perspectives, and critical approaches to the use of museum collections and archives in research. The legacy of colonialism, and the ethical challenges of archaeological research in regions of current conflict, are also core topics in the teaching of the programme.

With its international staff and student body, the UCL Institute of Archaeology (IoA) is well known for its welcoming atmosphere, challenging intellectual climate, and supportive feedback structure. It is regularly rated in first place among UK archaeology departments for student experience.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.

The following REF score was awarded to the department: Institute of Archaeology

73% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)

Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.



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The Comparative Art and Archaeology MA at UCL is a wide-ranging and challenging programme designed to provide students with a sophisticated understanding of the major problems, theories and approaches in the sociological and anthropological interpretation of the art of pre-modern societies. Read more

The Comparative Art and Archaeology MA at UCL is a wide-ranging and challenging programme designed to provide students with a sophisticated understanding of the major problems, theories and approaches in the sociological and anthropological interpretation of the art of pre-modern societies.

About this degree

Students are encouraged to think critically and work independently, from a broadly comparative perspective, across the boundaries of regional and period specialisation which have traditionally characterised the study of art. They develop subject-specific, research-oriented skills relevant to their development as practising analysts within the history, anthropology or archaeology of art.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of two core modules (30 credits), optional modules (60 credits) and a research dissertation (90 credits).

Core modules

All students are required to take the following: 

  • Nature, Culture and the Languages of Art: theories and methodologies of art interpretation
  • Social and Material Contexts of Art: comparative approaches to art explanation

Optional modules

Students choose to follow further optional modules up to the value of 60 credits from an outstanding range of Master's module options available at the UCL Institute of Archaeology. For this degree the most popular choices include: 

  • Ancient Italy in the Mediterranean
  • Archaeology of Buddhism
  • Archaeology of Egypt and the Near East: a Comparative Approach
  • Aztec Archaeology: Codices and Ethnohistory
  • Cities, States and Religion in Ancient India
  • Making and Meaning in Ancient Greek Art
  • Making and Meaning in Ancient Roman Art
  • Maya Art, Architecture and Archaeology
  • Social Complexity in Early China: from the Neolithic to the Early Empire
  • Society and Culture in Ancient Egypt
  • Technology in Society: archaeology and ethnography in the Andes
  • The Mediterranean World in the Iron Age
  • The Transformation of the Roman Mediterranean

Dissertation/report

All MA students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 15,000 words.

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of seminars, lectures and presentations. Some optional modules include site visits to museums. Assessment is through essays, coursework, oral examination and the dissertation.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Comparative Art and Archaeology MA

Careers

Some recent graduates of the programme have progressed to PhD studies while others have developed careers in museums, other professional cultural heritage organisations, as well as art and archaeology-related publishing and television. A high level of success has been achieved by students going on to fully funded PhD research at the University of Oxford, UCL, University of California Berkeley, and Stanford, funded by the AHRC, the Chilean government, Japanese Government, UCL, and the Ministry of Education of Taiwan. Other students have secured positions in the museums and heritage sector, for example at the Petrie Museum at UCL and the Museum for Asian Civilizations in Singapore.

Employability

Successful graduates will have been fully prepared to undertake research on the art history and archaeology of early civilizations, from a comparative or region/period/theme-specific perspective, and will also possess the expert background knowledge to move on to related professional work in art history, archaeology and cultural heritage (subject to the particular requirements of a given position).

Why study this degree at UCL?

The UCL Institute of Archaeology is the largest and most diverse department of archaeology in the UK, and provides a stimulating environment for postgraduate study.

We are international in outlook, with students and staff from over 40 countries, and involvement in field research projects around the globe. The teaching staff for this programme bring together a range and depth of expertise that is arguably unparalleled at other institutions.

UCL is located in central London, within walking distance of the British Museum and the British Library. UCL's own museums and collections form a resource of international importance for academic research.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.

The following REF score was awarded to the department: Institute of Archaeology

73% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)

Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.



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The Palaeoanthropology and Palaeolithic Archaeology MSc, run jointly by the Institute of Archaeology and UCL Anthropology, brings together the expertise of the two departments to provide graduate students with an integrated training in the biological and archaeological aspects of human evolutionary studies. Read more

The Palaeoanthropology and Palaeolithic Archaeology MSc, run jointly by the Institute of Archaeology and UCL Anthropology, brings together the expertise of the two departments to provide graduate students with an integrated training in the biological and archaeological aspects of human evolutionary studies.

About this degree

Students gain training in research methods and a scientific grounding in the principles, content and practice of palaeoanthropology and palaeolithic archaeology, including: fossil and archaeological evidence of human evolution; temporal and spatial patterns and processes of evolutionary and environmental change; and the evolutionary background for understanding human adaptation and culture.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of one core module (30 credits) four optional modules (60 credits) and a research dissertation (90 credits).

Core modules

All students are required to take the following: 

  • Themes in Palaeoanthropology and Palaeolithic Archaeology

Optional modules

Students will be encouraged to select options from the following list up to the value of 60 credits. Alternatively, they may choose from the wider range of Master's options available at the UCL Institute of Archaeology or the Department of Anthropology

  • Archaeology of Human Evolution in Africa
  • Advanced Human Evolution
  • Archaeology of Hunter-Gatherers from the Emergence of Modern Humans
  • Evolution of Human Brain and Behaviour
  • Geoarchaeology
  • Prehistoric Stone Artefact Analysis
  • Palaeoanthropology
  • Primate Evolution
  • Primate Socioecology
  • Zooarchaeology in Practice

Dissertation/report

All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 15,000 words (90 credits).

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, discussions, seminars, laboratory practicals and student presentations. Assessment is through essays, practical examination and seminar presentations, (depending on the options chosen), and the dissertation.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Palaeoanthropology and Palaeolithic Archaeology MSc

Funding

Institute of Archaeology Master's Awards: a small number of grants up to the value of £1,000 are available for the academic year 2018/19. All UK/EU and Overseas fee-paying students with an offer to start any Master's degree offered by the IoA are eligible to apply. For an application form please email . The deadline for applications is 1 March 2018.

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

Careers

A significant number of the graduate students from this programme have gone on to take PhDs at UCL, elsewhere in the UK and in other countries. A number of those have been awarded prestigious scholarships to cover their costs. Other graduates have gone on to work in cultural resource management and museums, and others have used their skills to pursue careers in fields such as IT, teaching and management.

Recent career destinations for this degree

  • Conference Producer, Global Transport Forum
  • Field Archaeologist, NPS Group (Norfolk Property Services)
  • Senior Scientist: Archaeology, Tetra Tech
  • PhD in Anthropology and Archaeology, Stockholms Universitet (Stockholm University)

Employability

The skills which students develop include the critical evaluation of scholarship across the discipline, design and management of personal research, primary data collection and analysis, and the preparation of detailed reports/dissertations up to publication standard. Although these will relate to anthropology and archaeology, they are invaluable skills for other areas of employment.

Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The UCL Institute of Archaeology and UCL Anthropology have considerable staff expertise in the fields of palaeoanthropology and palaeolithic archaeology. Staff and research students are currently involved in field projects as well as museum-based studies in Britain, various parts of Europe, the Middle East, China, East and South Africa and South America.

Our excellent results in the recent Research Excellence Framework (2014) show that our two departments are both very highly ranked in the UK.

Situated in central London, the university is within easy access of the British Museum and Natural History Museum and their outstanding palaeontological and archaeological collections.



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This MA is unique in the UK in providing such a comprehensive overview of Asian archaeology and cultural heritage. The UCL Institute of Archaeology is one of the few places in the world with the expertise to deliver such a programme, encompassing not only India and China, but also South–East and Central Asia. Read more

This MA is unique in the UK in providing such a comprehensive overview of Asian archaeology and cultural heritage. The UCL Institute of Archaeology is one of the few places in the world with the expertise to deliver such a programme, encompassing not only India and China, but also South–East and Central Asia.

About this degree

The aim of this programme is to develop a comparative appreciation of the cultural histories and heritage of Asia, moving chronologically from early human history, through movements towards the Neolithic, and the rise of cities and states, to the present day. It looks at current debates around conservation ethics, reconstruction and authenticity of archaeological remains.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of three core modules (45 credits), three optional modules (45 credits) and a dissertation/report (90 credits).

Core modules

All students are required to take the following: 

  • Themes, Thought and Theory in World Archaeology: Foundations
  • Archaeologies of Asia
  • Archaeological Heritage Management in Asia

Optional modules

Students take three further optional modules to the value of 45 credits. These can be selected from the outstanding range of Master's options available at the UCL Institute of Archaeology, but for this degree, the normal choices include: 

  • Archaeology and Education
  • Archaeology of Buddhism
  • Archaeology of Egypt and the Near East: A Comparative Approach
  • Critical Perspectives on Cultural Heritage
  • Cultural Memory
  • Managing Archaeological Sites
  • Managing Museums
  • Public Archaeology
  • Social Complexity in Early China: from the Neolithic to the Early Empire

Dissertation/report

All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 15,000 words

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures and seminars. Assessment is through essays, PowerPoint presentations, supervised independent research project and dissertation, and an oral viva towards the end of the degree.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Archaeology and Heritage of Asia MA

Careers

Graduates of this programme are expected to pursue further studies at PhD level or embark on a wide range of professional careers in archaeology - in the archaeological servics or heritage organisations specialising in Asian countries - and beyond.

Employability

The experience and skills acquired depends on the optional modules selected, and how those skills are developed through assessed work, practical elements and dissertation, but in general we expect students to develop expertise in the archaeology of specific regions of Asia (in particular East Asia, South Asia, Central Asia and to some extent South–East Asia) and a broader comparative, international perspective on that specific region. Students gain knowledge of both current scholarly debates in archaeology as well as heritage management issues.

Why study this degree at UCL?

This programme is unique in training pan-Asian specialists – escaping traditional study area boundaries where China, India, South–East and Central Asia are studied on their own – and conducting inter-regional dialogue on the human past.

Students are given the opportunity to develop depth of expertise in a particular region in Asia while benefiting from an innovative macro-regional comparative perspective.

This MA focuses on the development of human societies and civilisations in a part of the world which is becoming increasingly influential in world affairs but has been under-represented in most general and regional archaeological programmes.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.

The following REF score was awarded to the department: Institute of Archaeology

73% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)

Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.



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Training the next generation of archaeological pioneers. Read more
Training the next generation of archaeological pioneers

Why choose this course?

The MA in Field Archaeology offers a perfect blend of theory and practice, equipping you with wide-ranging, advanced practical skills, while giving you a deep theoretical knowledge and understanding of the logistical challenges, legal requirements and ethics involved in archaeological fieldwork. It is both challenging and rewarding.

York has been called the ‘heritage capital of the UK’. Here, we have routine contact with local, national and international leaders in archaeology and heritage management. We work closely with our neighbours at the Council for British Archaeology, English Heritage and Natural England, as well as local commercial units including York Archaeological Trust. You will also meet visiting lecturers of national standing, including John Oxley, the most experienced Local Authority Archaeologist in the UK, and Patrick Ottaway, formerly Fieldwork Director of York Archaeological Trust and now a respected archaeological consultant. You will also:
-Develop wide-ranging advanced field skills
-Build a deeper understanding of the theoretical, legislative and ethical context of archaeological fieldwork
-Study among a community of practitioners that is unrivalled in the UK
-Gain work experience with nationally significant public and private organisations
-Develop skills and knowledge essential for varied archaeological careers and research
-Learn from leading figures in archaeological research and fieldwork
-Receive close personal mentoring from experienced, well-connected staff

The MA in Field Archaeology is a flexible course, devised to meet demand for professional training in the UK and worldwide. It will give you a thorough knowledge of how, and why, archaeological fieldwork has arrived at its current state and acquaint you with the key methods employed in modern fieldwork, analysis and dissemination. It will enable you to think strategically about project design and tactically about project implementation.

Who is it for?
The course aims to ground you in European, and particularly UK, archaeology, so it is well suited to graduates of Archaeology. However, graduates in History, Geography and related disciplines often bring complementary perspectives that are greatly valued by both teachers and students. Also lessons and perspectives from Europe are relevant to archaeological fieldwork contexts worldwide. Individuals with some practical experience who wish to develop their careers by advancing their appreciation of the wider context of archaeology will also benefit from this course.

What can it lead to?
The MA in Field Archaeology aims to turn out not just archaeological practitioners, but leaders and creative thinkers with the imagination to advance the discipline, as well as their own careers. Some of our graduates go on to become project officers, curators and managers in the heritage industry. Others progress to further study, including doctoral research.

Placement

MA Field Archaeology students have a unique opportunity to gain practical work experience in a professional field environment with one of the many leading archaeological organisations based in and around York. You will work alongside experienced professionals on projects that enable you to gain new skills, as well as put into use those skills gained during your taught courses.

Aims
-To provide experience of organising archaeological fieldwork and interpreting results within a professional environment.
-To consolidate knowledge and understanding of data gathering or analysis as developed in one or more of the taught modules.

Learning outcomes
During your placements you will get involved with one or more of the following:
-Develop a practical understanding of how archaeological fieldwork is planned and carried out in an integrated way.
-Gain detailed knowledge of how ecofactual or artefactual assemblages might be identified, quantified, analysed and interpreted.
-Become familiar with the ways in which field archaeology is organised and administered, and of the pressures it is subject to, working with a local government organisation or national organisation with offices in York.

Placement opportunities
Although the organisations providing placements vary from year to year, according to availability, those regularly offering such opportunities include City of York Council, the Portable Antiquities Scheme, the York Archaeological Trust, AOC Archaeology and various other commercial archaeology units.

Careers

By the end of your MA in Field Archaeology you will have:
-Developed an awareness of the organisational and legislative context within which fieldwork operates in the UK
gained a detailed knowledge of the varied techniques of site evaluation used today
-Become aware of the practicalities, and problems, of implementing archaeological projects and understood the implications of this for strategy and project design
-Grasped the processes of analysing stratigraphic, spatial, artefactual and palaeoecological material, the objectives of this work, and how it is managed
-Surveyed the range of mechanisms for synthesising, archiving and disseminating the evidence generated by fieldwork
-Developed your understanding of how the profession operates in “the real world”, through work placements and field visits
-Developed your ability to gather and organise information and arguments in a critical and independent manner, through writing essays and producing projects
-Undertaken a piece of independent research on a topic within field archaeology
-Developed your presentational skills through the delivery of seminar papers on a range of diverse topics

The practical skills and theoretical knowledge gained on the course are applicable to a wide range of archaeological careers, as well as further study and research.

Course postgraduates have gone on to pursue research degrees or take up managerial positions working for museum, conservation and archaeological services and for local councils, national authorities, field units and heritage bodies. Others have set up their own archaeological businesses, both within the UK and in other countries. Some of the organisations now employing our students include:
-Historic England
-English Heritage
-The National Trust
-Natural England
-Commercial archaeological units
-York Archaeological Trust
-The Council for British Archaeology
-National Park services
-UK and overseas museum services
-Local Authorities
-Yorkshire Museums Trust
-Portable Antiquities Scheme
-Churches Conservation Trust

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The area around the Mediterranean presents many opportunities for archaeological research. This MSc allows you to explore the region through the examination of periods, geographical areas and themes. Read more

The area around the Mediterranean presents many opportunities for archaeological research. This MSc allows you to explore the region through the examination of periods, geographical areas and themes. You’ll analyse contemporary theoretical approaches, hone your skills in current methodologies and take advantage of the specialist fields and periods of study that our staff, and those in history and classics, can offer.

You’ll develop an understanding of specific regions and periods, current theories, methodologies and major research issues, all of which provide the basis for a PhD or future participation in excavation, survey and/or lab work.

Edinburgh is ideal for archaeological study and research, allowing you to benefit from national and local institutions and heritage agencies, such as the excellent collections of the National Museum, the archival and bibliographic resources of Historic Environment Scotland, and expertise and practical advice from staff in commercial companies.

Programme structure

You will complete one compulsory course and select a further five options from a wide range on offer. You will take a variety of seminar-style courses in small groups while developing your own research project, in the form of the dissertation, on an approved subject of your choice.

The compulsory course is:

  • Research Sources and Strategies in Archaeology

Option courses previously offered include those listed below (Option courses change from year to year and those available when you start your studies may be different from those shown in the list).

  • Bronze Age Civilisations of the Near East and Greece
  • From Foraging to Farming: the Beginnings of Agriculture in the Mediterranean and Europe
  • Frontiers in Archaeology: Research Seminars
  • Archaeological Illustration
  • Byzantine Archaeology: The archaeology of the Byzantine empire and its neighbours AD 500-850.
  • Theoretical Archaeology
  • Principles of GIS for Archaeologists
  • Space, Place and Time: the archaeology of built environments
  • Archaeology of the Roman Economy
  • Etruscan Italy, 1000 - 300 BC
  • Gallia from the Third Century BC to Augustus
  • Conflict archaeology: materialities of violence
  • Constantinople: The History of a Medieval Megalopolis from Constantine the Great to Suleyman the Magnificent

Learning outcomes

The programme will help you develop potential research interests and explore these with a view to progressing to research. You will also acquire a range of transferable intellectual and practical skills, including:

  • a good understanding of the distinctive nature of archaeology and its contribution to a critical and informed understanding of the past
  • a good understanding of theoretical and methodological debates within archaeology
  • familiarity with a number of important fieldwork studies
  • a broad knowledge of archaeological methods, techniques and practices in current use

Career opportunities

This programme equips you to go on to advanced study and provides a solid foundation for a career. You will gain practical as well as academic experience, teamworking and analytical skills, and will be able to work in a variety of contexts.

Examples of career paths available to archaeology graduates (although some may require additional training) include: higher education, heritage management and agencies, commercial archaeology, teaching, tourism industry, broadcasting and the police. An archaeology degree does not restrict you to a career in archaeology.



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