Establish wide-ranging, advanced practical skills, while gaining a deep theoretical knowledge and understanding of the logistical challenges, legal requirements and ethics involved in archaeological fieldwork.
This challenging and rewarding course offers you the perfect blend of theory and practice, devised to meet demand for professional training in the UK and worldwide. It will give you a thorough knowledge of how, and why, archaeological fieldwork has arrived at its current state and acquaint you with the key methods employed in modern fieldwork, analysis and dissemination. You'll learn to think strategically about project design and tactically about project implementation.
You'll build a deeper understanding of the theoretical, legislative and ethical context of archaeological fieldwork while you study among a community of practitioners that is unrivalled in the UK.
As well as learning from leading figures in the field, you'll be supervised by our experienced, well-connected staff. There are also opportunities for placement experience with professional archaeological organisations, further developing the skills and knowledge essential for varied archaeological careers and research.
One of the best things about the MA is that experts from the various spheres are brought in to give lectures. We got to hear about the topic from specialists with ‘real world’ experience in the discipline. They maintained contact with us and were helpful when it came to planning essays. This was a great feature of the course and I thoroughly enjoyed it.Rachel, MA Field Archaeology
York is the UK's archaeological capital. You'll study in King's Manor, a beautiful Medieval building in the centre of the historic city.
Informality is one of our distinctive qualities - the atmosphere in our department is friendly, supportive and enthusiastic. We want you to develop your potential and thrive at York.
Ranked 6th overall for our research according to the Times Higher Education’s ranking of the latest REF results (2021).
We're proud to announce that we've been shortlisted for two prestigious University of the Year awards.
You will study 180 credits over the duration of your course. You'll study a variety of modules and then hone your research skills by producing a dissertation and presenting an assessed lecture on your dissertation topic.
Your core modules will cover topics such as:
You'll choose from a range of option modules. Examples may include:
Our modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.
Our course structures are changing in September 2023. Find out more about how this course may be affected.
In the final stage of your course, you will carry out research for your dissertation and give an assessed lecture on your dissertation topic.
Examples of previous dissertation topics include:
Alongside the taught course, at the end of your second term you will have the option of gaining experience in a student placement with a professional archaeological organisation.
Placements give you a valuable opportunity to put the knowledge and skills you have learned into practice and to further develop your skills and expertise. Although optional, most students take the placements as they not only provide excellent experience, but are an invaluable addition to your CV.
Placements may involve:
Although the organisations providing placements vary from year to year according to availability, those regularly offering opportunities include City of York Council, the Portable Antiquities Scheme, the York Archaeological Trust, AOC Archaeology and various other commercial archaeology units, plus community groups in and around the city.
Every course at York is built on a distinctive set of learning outcomes. These will give you a clear understanding of what you will be able to accomplish at the end of the course and help you explain what you can offer employers. Our academics identify the knowledge, skills, and experiences you'll need upon graduation and then design the course to get you there.
|Study mode||UK (home)||International and EU|
|Full-time (1 year)||£9,290||£19,950|
|Part-time (2 years)
This is the year 1 fee. Fees for future years are subject to confirmation.
|Part-time (3 years)
This is the year 1 fee. Fees for future years are subject to confirmation.
Students on a Student Visa (formerly Tier 4 Visa) are not currently permitted to study part-time at York.
For courses which are longer than one year, the tuition fees quoted are for the first year of study. Fees for subsequent years are subject to increase (no more than 2% each year).
UK (home) or international fees? The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK (home) or international student. Check your fee status
Find out more information about tuition fees and how to pay them.
We don't anticipate there being any additional fees associated with this course. All books and resources you need will be available in the library or online and it isn't mandatory that you buy your own copies. You may wish to set aside a small budget for photocopying, depending on how you like to work.
Some modules include field trips. Costs associated with attending field trips are covered by the department.
Placements are unpaid and there may be travel costs associated with attending them. However, if this is an issue, other placements can be considered which do not have travel costs associated.
Discover your funding options to help with tuition fees and living costs.
We'll confirm more funding opportunities for students joining us in 2022/23 throughout the year.
If you've successfully completed an undergraduate degree at York you could be eligible for a 10% Masters fee discount.
We have a variety of funding options available within the department.
You can use our living costs guide to help plan your budget. It covers additional costs that are not included in your tuition fee such as expenses for accommodation and study materials.
You’ll work with world‐leading academics who’ll challenge you to think independently and excel in all that you do. Our approach to teaching will provide you with the knowledge, opportunities, and support you need to grow and succeed in a global workplace.
You will be taught via a combination of lectures, seminars and field visits.
The Department of Archaeology is based in King's Manor, in York city centre. The majority of your teaching will take place within the Department, with a small amount taking place on Campus West.
Our beautiful green campus offers a student-friendly setting in which to live and study, within easy reach of the action in the city centre. It's easy to get around campus - everything is within walking or pedalling distance, or you can always use the fast and frequent bus service.
You will be assessed by a variety of methods. Depending on which modules you opt to take, these could include:
Our graduates have gone on to pursue research degrees or take up managerial positions working for museum, conservation and archaeological services and for local councils, national authorities, field units and heritage bodies. Other graduates have set up their own archaeological businesses, both within the UK and in other countries. You'll also develop transferable skills that are applicable to a multitude of careers beyond archaeology and heritage.
The Field Archaeology course has equipped me with the sensibility of both archaeological practices and theories, which serves as a solid grounding for my current duties of interpreting and curating archaeological data and disseminating archaeological knowledge for greater utility by the public.Brevis, MA Field Archaeology
Exhibition Curator, Hong Kong Museum of History
|Undergraduate degree||2:1 or equivalent in Archaeology or a related subject. We also consider applicants who have a 2:2 degree and relevant work experience.|
|Other qualifications and experience||Mature students or those with less conventional qualifications but with relevant professional experience in this field will be considered. Candidates lacking sufficient previous experience will be required to spend at least three weeks prior to entry on either one of the department’s own training excavations or another approved project. To find out if your experience or qualifications are appropriate, please contact the Course Director. We normally interview applicants before making an offer.|
|Other international qualifications||Equivalent qualifications from your country|
You will need to submit examples of written work with your application. Please see our guidance on submitting written work.
If English isn't your first language you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. We accept the following qualifications:
|IELTS||6.5, minimum 6.5 in Writing and 6.0 in all other components|
|C1 Advanced and C2 Proficiency||176, minimum 176 in Writing and 169 in all other components|
|Duolingo||110, minimum 110 in production and 100 in all other components|
|LanguageCert||B2 Communicator High Pass with 33/50 in each component|
|PTE Academic||61, minimum 61 in Writing and 55 in all other components|
|TOEFL||87, minimum 23 in Writing and 21 in all other components|
|Trinity ISE III||Merit in all components|
For more information see our postgraduate English language requirements.
You may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English language courses. These courses will provide you with the level of English needed to meet the conditions of your offer.
The length of course you need to take depends on your current English language test scores and how much you need to improve to reach our English language requirements.
After you've accepted your offer to study at York, we'll confirm which pre-sessional course you should apply to via You@York.
Get in touch if you have any questions
Our new app, Visit UoY, allows you to take a self-guided tour of campus narrated by our current students. You can either visit us in-person and explore the campus for yourself or get the campus tour experience from the comfort of your own home.
Find out more about using the Visit UoY app.
We offer a range of campus accommodation to suit you and your budget, from economy to premium.
Explore campus and city life and hear what our current students have to say about living here.
Lively, full of culture and beautiful, York is regularly voted one of the best places to live and visit in the UK.
Find out more about York. Chat to staff and students and take the tour, on campus or online.