Field Archaeology - ARC00004C

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  • Department: Archaeology
  • Module co-ordinator: Mr. Steve Roskams
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: C
  • Academic year of delivery: 2016-17

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching cycle
A Autumn Term 2016-17 to Spring Term 2016-17

Module aims

This module is designed to introduce first-year students to what is entailed in prospecting for archaeological sites, collecting and assessing primary data and to provide hands-on experience of a variety of key archaeological field skills.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module, students should be able to:

  • be aware of the planning process and approaches to project design
  • appreciate the range of non-invasive techniques that archaeologists employ
  • understand approaches to fieldwalking and the practical application of these
  • participate in laying out grids and fieldwalking techniques
  • recognise a range of artefacts and their significance for evaluation
  • understand the process and assist with a general survey of landscape features
  • understand the method and assist with geophysical survey
  • describe methods of building recording
  • recognise forms of representation in building recording
  • have a basic knowledge of the structural elements of buildings
  • contribute to the recording of a plan and elevation of an upstanding building


Task Length % of module mark
Multiple Choice Questions
N/A 100

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
Multiple Choice Questions
N/A 100

Module feedback

Written and verbal feedback will be returned within 6 weeks of each formative or summative deadline.

Indicative reading

Autumn Term:

Roskams, S. 2001 Excavation CUP (chapter 1)

Carver, M. 2009 Archaeological Investigation (chapters 2 and 3)

Hunter , J and Ralston, I (eds) 1993 Archaeological Resource Management in the UK (chapters 4, 12 and 16)

Swain, H. (ed) 1991 Competitive Tendering in Archaeology RESCUE/SCAUM (chapters 5 and 6)


Spring Term:

Topographic Survey

Bettess, F. (1998) Surveying for Archaeologists. Durham: University of Durham

English Heritage (2002) With Alidade and Tape. Graphical and plane table survey of archaeological earthworks. English Heritage Publications.

Burn, A. and Brightman, J. (2009) An Analytical Earthwork Survey of the Hillfort at Fin Cop, Derbyshire. ARS Ltd Report No. ARS/34.

Barker, L. (2009) Gaer Fawr hillfort: An Analysis of the Earthworks. Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales.

Geophysical survey

Gater, J. and Gaffney, C. (2003) Revealing the Buried Past. Tempus

Clark, A.J. (1990) Seeing Beneath the Soil. London: Batsford.

Schmidt, A. (2004) “Remote Sensing and Geophysical Prospection” Internet Archaeology 15

Creekmore, A. (2010) “The Structure of Upper Mesopotamian Cities: Insight from Fluxgate Gradiometer Survey at Kazane Höyük, Southeastern Turkey” Archaeological Prospection 17: 73-88.

Fitch, S., Gaffney, V. And Thomson, K. (2007) “In Sight of Doggerland: From Speculative Survey to Landscape Exploration” Internet Archaeology 22

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.