Explore key topics such as technology, consumption practices, death and burial, plants and animals, and settlement, drawing on the research carried out in a globally renowned centre for mesolithic studies.
This course provides an important overview of the European Mesolithic, exploring the ways in which the period has been interpreted from the 19th century up to the present day. You'll have the opportunity to learn about cutting-edge research on several Mesolithic excavation projects, including nearby Star Carr, site of the oldest house and oldest carpentry in Europe; Howick in Northumberland; and coastal shell middens in Europe.
The lack of research in this area means that there is a huge amount waiting to be discovered, and you could find yourself becoming a leading specialist in the field and getting involved with pioneering projects and research. You'll even have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience of experimental archaeology in our Mesolithic camp. You'll also learn about cutting-edge techniques, such as ancient DNA and stable isotope analysis and climate-change reconstruction.
The skills that I learned while completing the Mesolithic Studies programme have helped me exponentially. From academic writing to time management, I was able to develop many skills that have been transferable to my current employment.Marina, MA Mesolithic 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.
We were awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize in 2011 in recognition of our dynamic research community and teaching excellence.
You will study 180 credits over the year. These will be made up of two core modules, two option modules and four shorter 'skills' modules. You will then hone your research skills by producing a dissertation and presenting an assessed lecture on your dissertation topic.
You will study two further 20-credit modules and two 5-credit 'skills' modules from our full range of options. Examples may include:
Please note, modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.
You will carry out a piece of original independent research, using appropriate disciplinary skills in an imaginative way. You'll be assessed with a dissertation and an assessed lecture (80 credits) on your research.
You will have regular meetings with your supervisor who is there to offer support, guidance and encouragement throughout the dissertation writing process.
Examples of previous dissertations include:
You will have the opportunity to handle artefacts on this course, which may also include some experimental archaeology. In addition, you can volunteer to work on post-excavation processing in the lab, which might include refitting flint, or processing environmental samples. We have contacts across Europe and, for students who might wish to get experience on a Mesolithic archaeological dig, we can provide links to excavations where possible. You would need to fund such activities yourself.
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.
Students on a Tier 4 Visa are not currently permitted to study part-time at York.
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.
UK/EU or international fees? The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK/EU or international student.
Discover your funding options to help with tuition fees and living costs.
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.
The course was split into a number of seminars that focused on specific research questions. This part of the course not only built on my previous research but also enabled me to explore areas that are often neglected. I thoroughly enjoyed the closeness of my peer group, as well as the opportunity to devote a considerable amount of time to independent research as part of a dissertation.Harry, MA Mesolithic Archaeology
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.
Coronavirus (COVID-19): changes to courses
We're making changes to comply with rules on social distancing. We aim to deliver as much face-to-face teaching as we can, supported by high quality online alternatives where we must.
Find details of the measures we're planning to protect our community.
You'll be taught via a combination of lectures, seminars, field work and lab-based practicals.
The Department of Archaeology is based in King's Manor, in York city centre. The majority of your teaching will take place there within the Department, with some additional teaching 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:
Many course graduates go on to further specialist research at PhD level, many of which have been funded, and then pursue careers in academia. Others have gone into a range of careers, from teaching and digital archiving to commercial archaeology work and wilderness training. You'll also develop transferable skills that are applicable to a multitude of careers beyond archaeology and heritage.
Some of the organisations our past students now work for include:
I am currently a Teaching Fellow at the University of Leicester, and an Honorary Research Associate at the University of York. The MA in Mesolithic Studies helped to set many wheels in motion which are still pushing me forward with my career today; such as key skills, contacts and experiences which I have built on in the subsequent course of my PhD and postdoctoral employment.Ben, MA Mesolithic Archaeology
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 IELTS 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
We offer a range of campus accommodation to suit you and your budget, from economy to premium.
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