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Special Topic: Death & Burial in Early European Prehistory - ARC00065H

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  • Department: Archaeology
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Aimee Little
  • Credit value: 30 credits
  • Credit level: H
  • Academic year of delivery: 2017-18

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching cycle
A Autumn Term 2017-18

Module aims

This module aims to:

  • Provide an introduction to burial practices in early prehistory, drawing upon key
  • European sites as case studies
  • Present current scientific and theoretical approaches being applied to the study of burials from Palaeolithic and Mesolithic Europe
  • Examine changes in the treatment of the body through time and space
  • Investigate grave goods - their treatment and context - in relation to social identity and belief systems (e.g. shamanism and animism)
  • Explore the landscape and architecture of death: from cave crevices to the development of Europe’s first cemeteries

Module learning outcomes

By the end of the module students will be able to:

Demonstrate a broad and comparative knowledge of funerary practices throughout early European prehistory

Grasp key theoretical and scientific approaches currently used to study skeletal remains and grave assemblages

Critically evaluate various forms of mortuary behaviour and discuss these in relation to belief systems and concepts of social identity

Recognise gaps and limitations in the archaeological record


Task Length % of module mark
Essay, 3500 words
N/A 100

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
Essay, 3500 words
N/A 100

Module feedback

Processes for written and verbal feedback are detailed on our deadlines pages:

Formative assessment.

Summative assessment.

Indicative reading

Reading is published on the module web pages and VLE.

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.