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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : Classical Art/Classical Archaeology

Undergraduate Course: Classical Archaeology in the Field (B) (CACA10033)

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
SummaryThis course builds on the students' knowledge of key methodologies of excavation and survey via a combination of practical fieldwork ('The field school') and classroom-based seminars. Designed specifically with a focus on the ancient world (Classical Archaeology broadly defined as anything from the Aegean Bronze Age to Late Antiquity) this course equips students with skills and techniques necessary for studying the archaeology of this period at an advanced level.

Course description Excavation and survey are the two principal methods by which new archaeological data are acquired. Students who take this course will be able to further their archaeological knowledge and skills both 'on site' and in the classroom. The practical component of the course consists normally of three weeks on an approved archaeological project during the summer vacation preceding the semester in which the course is to be taken. This provides students with training in the following areas: grid establishment, excavation techniques, interpretation of stratigraphy, taking levels and using a total station, documentation, plan and section drawing, artefact recovery and recording, sampling methodology, and photography. Students will advance their understanding of post-excavation management, including the drawing and study of artefacts, under the supervision of finds specialists. They will themselves be able to assist students who are introduced to archaeological techniques for the first time on the basis of their own knowledge and skills, thus acquiring in turn experience of the management of an archaeological site and team at an advanced level.
Lessons learnt in the field will then be consolidated via a series of eleven classes back in Edinburgh. These will introduce a range of case studies of archaeological projects dealing with material evidence relating to the ancient world. These will include historical projects (e.g. Schliemann's work at Troy and Mycenae, Evans' at Knossos, Davies' at Carthage) and on-going ones (e.g. Sagalassos, Aphrodisias, Pompeii, Utica), covering the full span of Classical Archaeology and both excavation and survey. In these lectures students will learn in detail about a range of ancient sites but also the history of their exploration, as well as the practical concerns that so closely shape what is, and has been, achieved in the field. Throughout this course students will focus on the history of Classical Archaeology as a discipline and how the methods used to explore the material culture of the ancient world have changed over time.

A typical course schedule will look as follows:

A: Field School (typically three weeks of excavation or survey on a designated field school in the summer preceding Sem 1 in which the course is taught).

B: Classroom based teaching in Sem 1 following the Field School:
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 - Classical Archaeology: history and future

There is a special application process for this course in addition to the standard honours course application process.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: Classical Archaeology 2b: Materials and Methods (CACA08010)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements Student must have passed at 50% (or above) Classical Archaeology 2b at the latest by June of the academic year preceding the year in which the course is taken.
Priority will be given to students taking degrees involving Classical Archaeology, including the Ancient Mediterranean Civilizations degree.
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2015/16, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  6
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 7, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 4, Fieldwork Hours 125, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 60 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Coursework: 100%.

The coursework is divided into two parts:
1) a journal (daily entries, introduction and conclusion, illustrations such as plans, drawings and photographs, assembled during the field project ('The field school') and written up within the first 2 weeks of the semester: 60%.
2) an end-of-term essay of c. 3000 words: 40%

In addition to the daily comments and feedback out in the field, the assessment of the journal will also provide a feed-forward function with regard to the coursework essay, next to the evident feed-back function that the assessment of the journal will afford the students.
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate, by means of a field journal, a coursework essay, class discussion, survey and/or excavation work, that they have a detailed understanding of the theory and methodology of archaeological fieldwork.
  2. Demonstrate, by means of a field journal, a coursework essay, class discussion, survey and/or excavation work, that they have learnt about good practice on an archaeological excavation, including how to excavate and interpret stratigraphy, fill in context sheets and other forms of archaeological documentation, record features in plans, sections and elevations, take levels and use a total station.
  3. Demonstrate, by means of a field journal, a coursework essay, class discussion, survey and/or excavation work, that they have acquired the skills necessary to accurately describe and analyse primary evidence acquired by excavation or survey, including familiarity with the primary post-excavation techniques (ceramic analysis, photography, small finds drawing, etc.).
  4. Demonstrate, by means of a field journal, a coursework essay, class discussion, survey and/or excavation work, that they are acquainted with the core scholarship on archaeological fieldwork techniques, as they apply to the Classical period, and the major controversies and theoretical discussions relating to this topic, including an awareness of the historical developments of the discipline of Classical Archaeology.
  5. Demonstrate, by means of a field journal, a coursework essay, class discussion, survey and/or excavation work, that they are able to accurately present evidence and express clear arguments about it, acknowledging existing scholarship and exhibiting appropriate analysis of its historical and archaeological context.
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.
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.
Greene, K. and Moore, T. (2010), Archaeology: An Introduction, 5th edition, London.
Johnson, M. (2010). Archaeological Theory: An Introduction, 2nd edition, Oxford.
Renfrew, C. and Bahn, P. (2012), Archaeology: Theories, Methods and Practice, 5th edition, London.
Schnapp, A. (1996), The Discovery of the Past, London.
Snodgrass, A. (1987), An Archaeology of Greece, Berkeley and Los Angeles.
Whitley, J. (2001), The Archaeology of Ancient Greece (Cambridge World Archaeology), Cambridge.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Special Arrangements In order for a student from outwith Classics to be enrolled on this course, contact must be made with a Course Secretary on 50 3582 in order for approval to be obtained.
KeywordsCA in Field B / Classical Archaeology in the Field
Course organiserDr Candace Rice
Course secretaryMs Elaine Hutchison
Tel: (0131 6)50 3582
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