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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : Archaeology

Undergraduate Course: Mediterranean Archaeology in the Field (ARCA10081)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryExcavation and survey are the two principal methods by which
archaeological data are acquired. This course introduces students to the key methodologies of both via a combination of practical fieldwork experience and classroom-based seminars. Designed specifically with a focus on ancient civilizations in the Mediterranean region, this course provides students with enhanced practical experience, skills, techniques, methods and theories, applicable to the archaeology of this period and region. The practical component of the course consists of a minimum of three weeks participation on an approved archaeological project during the summer vacation preceding the semester in which the course is to be taken.This should provide students with training in the following areas: excavation and/or survey methods and techniques and standard recording procedures, such as taking levels using a total station, plan and section drawing, field walking, artefact recovery and recording, sampling, and photography. Students may also learn about post-excavation management, including the processing, drawing and study of artefacts, under the supervision of finds specialists. Field experience will then be contexualised via class-based teaching in Edinburgh. The latter will cover a range of case studies of relevant archaeological projects in the Mediterranean region, including famous pioneering discoveries and projects of historic interest and importance (e.g. Schliemann¿s work at Troy and Mycenae, Evans¿ at Knossos, Davies¿ at Carthage) and more recent key projects with a modern research agenda (e.g. the Roman Forum, Aphrodisias, Pompeii, Utica), focussing particularly on excavations and surveys. Lectures will also deal with the history of exploration, controversies surrounding the interpretation of key sites, changing priorities and methodologies in fieldwork, the advent of new techniques, and the relationship between data collection and interpretation.
Course description Summer (preceding the semester in which the course is taken):
- Typically three weeks of excavation or survey on an approved fieldwork project
Semester 1:
- Week 1: Lessons from the field
- Week 2: Completing fieldwork journals
- Week 3: Case study 1
- Week 4: Case study 2
- Week 5: Case study 3
- Week 6: Case study 4
- Week 7: Essays discussion
- Week 8: Case study 5
- Week 9: Case study 6
- Week 10: Case study 7
- Week 11: Mediterranean and Classical Archaeology, past and present
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements Pre-requisites: Archaeology 2A and 2B, or Honours entry to degrees in Classics, or equivalent.
Additional Costs The total cost of the fieldwork component is estimated at £300 per week in 2013, but may vary considerably according to project.
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2014/15, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  None
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 7, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 4, Fieldwork Hours 105, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 80 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) - Completion of a journal with daily entries, assembled during the field project and written up within the first 2 weeks of the semester, with an introduction, conclusion, illustrations (plans,
drawings and photographs), contextualising the project within its relevant historical and archaeological setting and explaining the research goals: 60%.
- Coursework: one essay of 3,000 words, to be completed by the end of the semester in which the course runs: 40%.
- Students also taking ¿Archaeological Fieldwork: the Practice of Archaeology¿ are not allowed to use any of the practical portfolio items of that course as a basis for presentation of assessed work in this course. Students who undertook a fieldwork project at the end of their 1st year as part of their Archaeology degree fieldwork requirement are not able to use that project as the fieldwork requirement for this course.
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
By the end of this course, students will be able to demonstrate by means of a record of their practical experience (a field journal), a coursework essay, and class discussion that they:
- have a detailed understanding of the theory and methodology of archaeological fieldwork
- have learnt about good practice on an archaeological fieldwork project, including relevant recording methodologies and techniques, whether in a survey and/or excavation context
- have acquired competence in primary data collection and evaluation and/or post-excavation techniques (e.g. finds care and analysis, photography, drawing, etc.)
- are acquainted with primary sources and scholarship on archaeological fieldwork techniques, as typically encountered in the relevant geographical area and time period, and how these have emerged and developed over time
- are able accurately to present evidence and express clear arguments about fieldwork in both written and oral form, acknowledging existing scholarship and exhibiting appropriate analysis of the archaeological and historical context
- are able to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of published field projects and data with respect to contemporary methods and techniques.
Reading List
Alcock, S.E. and Osborne, R. eds. (2012), Classical Archaeology (Blackwell Studies in Global
Archaeology), 2nd
edition, Oxford.
Barker, G.W.W. and Lloyd, J. eds. (1991), Roman Landscapes: Archaeological Survey in the
Mediterranean Region, London.
Barker, P. (1993), Techniques of Archaeological Excavation, 3rd
edition, London.
Bowkett, D.W., Hill, S.J., Wardle, D., and Wardle, K. A. (2001), Classical Archaeology in the Field:
Approaches (Classical World Series), Bristol.
Carmichael, D.L., Lafferty, R.H., and Molyneaux, B.L. (2003), Excavation (Archaeologist¿s Toolkit 3),
Carver, M. (2009), Archaeological Investigation, London.
Collis, J. (2001), Digging up the Past, An Introduction to Archaeological Excavation, Stroud.
Coulston, J. and Dodge, H. eds. (2000), Ancient Rome: The Archaeology of the Eternal City, Oxford.
Cunliffe, B., Gosden, C., and Joyce, R.A. (2009), Oxford Handbook of Archaeology, Oxford.
Dyson, S. (2013), In Pursuit of Ancient Pasts: A History of Classical Archaeology in the Nineteenth and
Twentieth Centuries, New Haven.
Grant, J., Gorin, S., and Fleming, N. (2008), The Archaeology Coursebook: An Introduction to
Themes, Sites, Methods and Skills, 3rd
edition, London and New York.
Greene, K. and Moore, T. (2010), Archaeology: An Introduction, 5th
edition, London.
Harris, E. (1979), Principles of Archaeological Stratigraphy, London.
Hodder, I. (1999), The Archaeological Process: An Introduction, Oxford.
Johnson, M. (2010). Archaeological Theory: An Introduction, 2nd
edition, Oxford.
Renfrew, C. and Bahn, P. (2012), Archaeology: Theories, Methods and Practice, 5th
edition, London.
Roskams, S. (2001), Excavation (Cambridge Manuals in Archaeology), Cambridge.
Sauer, E. ed. (2004), Archaeology and Ancient History: Breaking Down the Boundaries, London.
Schnapp, A. (1996), The Discovery of the Past, London.
Snodgrass, A. (1987), An Archaeology of Greece, Berkeley and Los Angeles.
Trigger, B. (2006), A History of Archaeological Thought, 2nd
edition, Cambridge.
Whitley, J. (2001), The Archaeology of Ancient Greece (Cambridge World Archaeology), Cambridge.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills In addition to course-specific skills that the students will acquire, they will also show:

- Enhancement of their written and oral communication skills
- Refinement of observational and recording skills, including drawing and photography
- Improvement of team work skills
- Ability to research defined topics independently
- Library research skills
- Visual memory skills
- Analytical skills relating to recording and analysis of primary and secondary evidence
- Ability to produce succinct summaries of data
KeywordsMed Arch in Field
Course organiserProf Jim Crow
Course secretaryMs Amanda Campbell
Tel: (0131 6)50 3782
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