By acknowledging that most archaeologists and heritage practitioners will be exposed to archaeological database management systems and spreadsheets in the course of their work or research, this module seeks to familiarise students with the fundamentals of the technical and theoretical aspects of archaeological data management, whilst making them aware of the types of issues they may face in the process.
Over the four session students will become familiar with the nature and common limitations of archaeological data and database management systems. We will begin by examining the relative advantages (and disadvantages) ‘flat table’ spreadsheets, before moving on to introduce the basic principles of relational database structures (the most common type of database consisting of a set of tables, containing data fitted into predefined data categories in columns) and explore their application to archaeological and historic environment data.
Finally after considering best practice in the design and implementation of relational databases, we will focus upon how to disseminate and visualise archaeological data, and prepare it for long term archival deposition.
By engaging with databases and data management in archaeology, this module aims to allow students to:
By the end of the module the students will be able to: