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Postgraduate Archaeology 2021-2022

AY5001: NORTHERN WORLDS

30 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

In a series of research-led lectures and seminars, students investigate what characterises the Archaeology of the North from environmental, socio-cultural, and ideological aspects. We examine several inter-locking themes, from the first colonisations of the North tracing how these earlier populations established the cultural, ethnic and religious diversity that define later periods. Students will be introduced to the ecological characteristics of higher latitudes, and examine the diverse ways in which communities have made the Northern World their home. We also examine how human communities have responded to climate changes in the past, resilience and adaptation, technology, and spirituality amongst Northern peoples

AY5002: THEORY AND METHOD IN RESEARCH

30 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

In this course students will follow the development of archaeological thought from its roots in the scientific revolution of the 17th century through to the post-modern thinkers and finally discovering where the current theoretical debates stand. Students will explore the links between the theoretical development of archaeological research and the general developments in the history of science and philosophy. Students also explore different methodologies central to archaeological research, discuss what constitute archaeological data, and how to design a research project. Students will also discuss research ethics, and scientific agendas. These issues are explored through a series of lectures and seminars.

AY5005: VIKING ARCHAEOLOGY

30 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

In their brief 300-year heyday, the peoples of Viking-Age Scandinavia transformed the northern world, and themselves. This course explores the Vikings at home, abroad, and in their new homes overseas in the developing colonies of the diaspora that stretched from the coasts of North America to the Asian steppe. In lectures and seminars, with hands-on classes looking at the finds, students will consider themes such as settlement and social structure, urbanism and commerce, pagan and Christian religion, and the political process that created the modern nation states of Norway, Sweden and Denmark

AY5007: DISSERTATION IN ARCHAEROLOGY

60 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

In completing their dissertation, students will be expected to demonstrate that they can conduct advanced library research, prepare extensive literature reviews situating their research question in its wider archaeological, methodological and theoretical context and write and edit large pieces of work. In addition, they will be required to prepare abstracts and bibliographies and assess the ethical issues involved in original research. All students will receive staff supervision in identifying a suitable topic and in completing an original research project.

AY5008: HUMAN OSTEOLOGY

30 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

This course will provide you with the knowledge and practical skills required to identify and interpret human remains from archaeological sites. In addition to archaeology these skills are invaluable for any skeletal studies, including paleontology, human and primate evolution and forensic sciences.

AY5009: RESEARCH PROJECT IN CULTURAL HERITAGE

60 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

The final research project in the MSc in Cultural Heritage offers the opportunity to delve deep into a heritage issue or case study that interests you. By conversing with relevant literature and analysing a unique source material, you will become proficient in collecting, evaluating and synthesizing knowledge, and produce your own slice of original research. The project can be completed as a regular dissertation or as an applied research project based on a work-placement.

AY5010: MANAGING THE PAST: HERITAGE POLITICS AND PRACTICE

30 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

This course introduces students to the basic tenets of cultural heritage management at national and international level. Through the interdisciplinary lens of heritage studies, you will learn about the different political, social and economic meanings of heritage. Specific focus is placed on archaeological heritage, how its significance and stewardship has changed over time, and what policies and practices inform its management today. You will also learn about key challenges facing the sector.

AY5011: ANCIENT BIOMOLECULES

30 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

This course provides a broad introduction to the field of Biomolecular Archaeology and the study of ancient biomolecules. In a series of lectures, seminars and practicals, you will learn key theoretical concepts, principles, and laboratory methods underpinning state-of-the-art research on ancient biomolecules, such as DNA, proteins and lipids

AY5501: NORTHERN PEOPLES AND CULTURE

30 credits

Level 5

Second Sub Session

In a series of text based student-led seminars we study past Northern Peoples and Cultures through key topical debates, characteristic for different cultural regions and time periods. In the seminars students examine a range of northern contexts, from prehistory to more recent times all over the Circumpolar North.  Students encounter topics as versatile as animal domestication in Northern Eurasia, Scandinavian Vikings, and Colonial North America illustrating the diversity of life and thought in Northern communities. Each seminar will also explore how particular key issues have become central to the 'identity' of archaeological research in the respective areas

AY5504: ADVANCED ARCHAEOLOGICAL APPROACHES

30 credits

Level 5

Second Sub Session

As an advanced engagement with current trends and approaches in Northern Archaeology students examine current cutting edge debates associated with new theories and methodologies in archaeological research.  Students will encounter the versatility of methodological and theoretical approaches in Northern research through four different themes central to the Archaeology of the North; Body and Death, Heritage and Memory, Social Space and Structures, Human and Environment.  Each theme is explored through series of research led seminars and a practical, approaching the theme from different theoretical/methodological angels. The main assessment of the course is an Internal Masters Conference on these four themes.

AY5505: THE WORLD OF VIKINGS

30 credits

Level 5

Second Sub Session

The last centuries of the Scandinavian Iron Age, c. 750-1050, is the dynamic era in which Norse peoples made a lasting impression on Northern European and indeed world history. We call it the Viking Age. It was characterised by a society in transition – between Pagan beliefs and Christianity, Iron Age Chiefdoms and Medieval States, Thing and Law. In this course we explore the impacts that the Vikings had on Northern European society through the ancient artefacts and places they left behind. In addition to biweekly seminars, this course lets you meet the Vikings in their World through a week-long field trip where we will explore how society, landscape, economy and worldview was radically changed by the Viking Age.

AY5506: ANCIENT HEALTH AND DISEASE

30 credits

Level 5

Second Sub Session

This course provides students with the theoretical knowledge and practical skills needed in order to identify, and interpret, palaeopathological changes observed in archaeological human remains.  You will also gain an understanding of how such changes could have affected people in the past, and how, using a bioarchaeological approach, this data may inform the archaeological narrative.

AY5507: PALAEOGENETICS

30 credits

Level 5

Second Sub Session

This course provides students with an in-depth overview of the study of ancient DNA. Through extensive training in theoretical concepts and principles, laboratory methods, and bioinformatics, you will attain specialist skills in the analysis of DNA extracted from archaeological remains.

AY5510: MANAGING THE PRESENT: HERITAGE COMMUNITIES AND REPRESENTATION

30 credits

Level 5

Second Sub Session

This course examines “who” is represented in current frameworks for cultural heritage management, and explores possibilities and problems linked to community engagement. You will learn about approaches and ethics when working with groups that have a stake in archaeological sites and narratives, from indigenous peoples to experts and politicians. Through a joint field project, you will gain direct experience in identifying and engaging Aberdeenshire communities in heritage interpretation.

AY5512: THE ARCHAEOLOGY OF DEATH

30 credits

Level 5

Second Sub Session

Archaeologists are accused of not engaging with the significance of skeletal remains, osteologists are accused of not engaging with the mortuary context. This course aims to draw both worlds together and understand the complex and intertwined relationships between the two. Incorporating archaeological studies of skeletons and mortuary sites, as well as ethical, anthropological and forensic perspectives, you will explore and work to understand how people in the past reacted to, and dealt with, the realities of the inevitable.

AY5901: DISSERTATION IN ARCHAEOLOGY OF THE NORTH

60 credits

Level 5

Third Sub Session

This course let the students build on the skills and knowledge they acquired in the other courses of the MSc in Archaeology of the North, as they design and conduct their own research project. The student conduct independent studies on a topic of their own choice within the northern theme. All students will receive staff supervision in identifying a suitable topic and in completing an original research project. The course also includes a number of research seminars, and in addition to their written dissertation students are expected to produce a short popular piece presenting their research to a non-academic audience.

AY5902: DISSERTATION IN ARCHAEOLOGY

60 credits

Level 5

Third Sub Session

This course let the students build on the skills and knowledge they acquired in the other courses of the MSc in Archaeology of the North, as they design and conduct their own research project. The student conduct independent studies on a topic of their own choice within the northern theme. All students will receive staff supervision in identifying a suitable topic and in completing an original research project. The course also includes a number of research seminars, and in addition to their written dissertation students are expected to produce a short popular piece presenting their research to a non-academic audience.

AY5904: DISSERTATION IN ARCHAEOLOGY

0 credits

Level 5

Third Sub Session

In completing their dissertation, students will be expected to demonstrate that they can conduct advanced library research, prepare extensive literature reviews situating their research question in its wider archaeological, methodological and theoretical context and write and edit large pieces of work. In addition, they will be required to prepare abstracts and bibliographies and assess the ethical issues involved in original research. All students will receive staff supervision in identifying a suitable topic and in completing an original research project.

AY5905: OSTEOARCHAEOLOGY DISSERTATION

60 credits

Level 5

Third Sub Session

To provide you with the opportunity to demonstrate that you are able to complete a substantial and original piece of research on a specialist topic within human osteoarchaeology you will produce an analytical osteoarchaeological project that includes necessary analysis, laboratory work and 12,000 words.

 

AY5906: DISSERTATION IN ARCHAEOLOGICAL SCIENCE

60 credits

Level 5

Third Sub Session

This course enables students on the MSc in Biomolecular Archaeology or MSc in Bioarchaeological Science programmes to develop their own research project in archaeological science. Students are expected to demonstrate proficiency in conducting extensive literature review and synthesis, formulating a clear and concise research question, and design and execute practice-oriented research.

AY5909: RESEARCH PROJECT IN CULTURAL HERITAGE

60 credits

Level 5

Third Sub Session

The final research project in the MSc in Cultural Heritage offers the opportunity to delve deep into a heritage issue or case study that interests you. By conversing with relevant literature and analysing a unique source material, you will become proficient in collecting, evaluating and synthesizing knowledge, and produce your own slice of original research. The project can be completed as a regular dissertation or as an applied research project based on a work-placement.

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