Field Archaeology – A 3 day hands-on field-based short course located at The Cairns, one of Orkney’s leading excavations.
This three day short course in Field Archaeology from the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) Archaeology Institute aims to provide participants with basic training and understanding of the practices and processes in Field Archaeology.
Located at the on-going excavations at The Cairns broch, South Ronaldsay, Orkney, training will cover excavation techniques, finds identification, the principles of stratigraphy, basic site survey and archaeological recording (drawn, written and photographic record).
In a friendly and supportive atmosphere, the course aims to equip participants with the skills and confidence to engage with other archaeological field projects or lead onto further studies in the discipline. Participants will be trained by professional archaeologists from the UHI Archaeology Institute and will form part of the large team at the excavation site.
Recommended equipment: Steel toe boots/wellies, full waterproofs, packed lunch and flask. Toilet facilities are provided. Participants are to meet at the excavation site each day at 9:30. Accommodation, travel and lunch are not included.
A new distance learning course by the University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute examining the Historic Landscapes of the UK is now enrolling for January 2020.
The course is aimed at people who are interested in the history and archaeology of Scotland and is designed to be an introduction to the fascinating landscape of the British Isles.
Students will not only study how landscapes have changed over time but also investigate an area of landscape in detail and learn how to conduct a Desk Based Assessment (DBA) on an area of landscape of their choice – a key employment skill in archaeology.
The course will be delivered through a series of weekly lectures given on a Monday 11:00 – 13:00 GMT via video conferencing or by attending Orkney College UHI or any of the UHI partner colleges across the Highlands and Islands of Scotland. Additional support sessions will also be made available through the Virtual Learning Environment.
Introduction to Historic Landscapes
Study Archaeological & Historical Landscapes
The Prehistoric Landscape
The Historic Landscape: Agriculture, Enclosure & Improvement
The Landscape of Movement
The Maritime Landscape
The Development of the Urban Landscape
Landscape & Politics: Clearances
Finding Religious Landscapes
The Landscape & Folklore
The Military Landscape
The Modern Landscape: Heritage & Conservation
In detail…..this introductory module is designed to demonstrate the great complexity of landscapes using a series of case studies from across the British Isles and students will examine how the landscape evolution is influenced by the interplay of historical processes, physical constraints and human social, economic and political factors. The student will develop an historical perspective on the landscape, the people who have inhabited it, and those who continue to do so.
The student will also be encouraged to consider the major forces in operation in the formation of a landscape from prehistory to the present e.g. agricultural practice, afforestation, access and routeways. This module will also address the practicalities of how goods and people (and thus ideas) moved across landscapes, the constraints on those movements imposed by available technology, and the efforts made to overcome those constraints.
Other themes to be explored in relation to the landscape including politics, religion and mythology. The student will develop a clearer vision of present-day problems and ongoing trends, and will be set thinking about concepts of “history”, “inheritance” and “heritage” – a topic that runs as a theme through the course.
The University of the Highlands and Islands MSc Archaeological Practice is a world leading archaeology course which equips you with the tools for work in the real world.
Key practical skills are emphasised using the rich archaeological resource of Orkney as your research ‘laboratory’. Core modules will develop your practical skills in a suite of archaeological techniques including project management, excavation, non-intrusive field archaeology, environmental archaeology and post-excavation analysis.
One of the elements of the programme that students find especially useful is a professional placement in a commercial or academic environment. This provides students with the vital experience of working in the often demanding environment of a large organisation.
Last year Ross Drummond worked in the marketing department at the Archaeology Institute and gained valuable experience in all aspects of public relations and media management including on-site social media reporting and blog writing.
The special features of the course that students mention are:
Studying in the outstanding archaeological landscape of Orkney….including the Ness of Brodgar, The Cairns and on the island of Rousay (the Egypt of the North)
Optional modules allow you to develop professional skills in a range of areas including archaeobotany, archaeozoology, geoarchaeology, survey & geophysics, digital recording of archaeological materials and sites
A 3-month professional placement offers the opportunity to further develop your professional skills in a chosen area(s)
The course is flexible to fit in with your personal and professional life
A limited number of places with full tuition fee support are available for Scottish-domiciled/EU students, studying full time, on the MSc Archaeological Practice starting in September. Eligible students must live in Highlands and Islands for the period of their studies. The MSc itself requires that you study in Orkney.
The University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute are now enrolling for the popular short course in Field Archaeology to be held at The Cairns Broch excavation – one of Orkney’s leading excavations.
When? 19 – 21 June 2019 (3 full days 9:30 – 16:30)
This short course in Field Archaeology from the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) Archaeology Institute, run by a team from our commercial unit Orkney Research Centre for Archaeology, aims to provide participants with basic training and understanding of the practices and processes in Field Archaeology. Check out last years site diary to give you a flavour of the exciting discoveries, including a wooden bowl and human hair in the well!
Archaeological recording (drawn, written and photographic record).
Recommended equipment: Steel toe boots/wellies, full waterproofs, packed lunch and flask. Please note: Toilet facilities are provided. Participants are to meet at the excavation site each day at 9:30. Accommodation, travel and lunch are not included.
Places are limited (15 max.) so book now by contacting Mary using the form below…..
Art and Archaeology: Context and Practice Module Code: UV408115 (SCQF Level 8)
The University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute have teamed up with the department of Art and Design at Orkney College UHI to offer a distance learning course for those who wish to explore the creative, practical and vocational aspects of art and archaeology in their own research and practice.
The Art & Archaeology: Context and Practice course has been specially designed to be studied as CPD for those professionals working in the creative and heritage sectors or as an introduction to research in the expanding art & archaeology field.
The course itself explores the history of the relationship between art and archaeology, and through a series of practical assignments students will gain a deepened understanding of not only their own creative practice, but also of the processes of making and craft production in the past and how these are interpreted in the present.
Introduction to Art and Archaeology
Drawing and photography in archaeology
Artists and archaeologists from the Renaissance to now
Experiencing and recording landscapes in archaeology
Collecting and curating objects and assemblages
Materials and making in prehistory
Prehistoric art and mark-making
Contemporary archaeology: ‘the archaeology of us’
Course Structure and Delivery
The module takes place over 14 weeks between February and May 2019. Teaching is delivered via a blend of Video Conference seminar sessions, individual and group tutorials, online teaching and resources, and self-directed study. You will document your personal creative enquiry in your reflective journal which will form part of your final assessment, with a final project.
At least 3 Scottish Highers at grade C or above / 2 A-Levels at grade C or above, or equivalent, and a strong interest in art and archaeology.
£215 for an accredited Level 11 module for Scottish/EU domiciled students in 2018-2019. For students from the rest of the UK or outwith the EU, please contact us for full details of fees and funding
Enrolling now for a February 2019 start! Fill out the form below to register…or find out more.
University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology undergraduate and postgraduate students undertake their studies and research from locations across the whole of north Scotland through the use of video conferencing and a virtual learning environment.
The blended learning approach adopted by UHI also gives students studying archaeology an opportunity to experience work in the field.
Last week, the staff of the University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute set off to conduct field trips across Scotland in order to give the widest possible number of students experience of outdoor learning.
On Friday 30th November 2018, Dr Scott Timpany together with Martin Carruthers led a group to King’s Seat Fort, Dunkeld in the Highlands of Scotland where, during the summer, a group of UHI Archaeology students were involved in the ongoing excavations at the site. On the same day, and nearly 300 miles north, Professor Jane Downes led an excursion to the ‘Egypt of the North’ island of Rousay, Orkney. The weather was so windy that it was feared that the ferries may be cancelled, but the window of opportunity remained open for a few hours and the teams made it across to collect students from various locations across Scotland.
With field booklet in hand, the students from Inverness, Perth, Moray and Argyll Colleges visiting King’s Seat Fort battled their way through the woods surrounding the hilltop site. The weather miraculously cleared to a cold, blue sky day, to allow Martin, Scott and the UHI students who were involved in the excavations at the hillfort to explain the site, the archaeology and the landscape.
King’s Seat Hillfort has been the subject of archaeological investigations by Perth & Kinross Heritage Trust, Dunkeld and Birnam Historical Society, archaeologists from AOC Archaeology and UHI and, according to the Perth and Kinross Heritage Trust website, little was known about the site until King’s Seat Archaeology Project started their excavation. Their website continues….”Fragments of crucible, stone and clay moulds used for smelting and casting metal objects were identified suggesting that the site was important in the production of pretige metalwork and may even have been a centre of production in the early historic/Pictish period (c.600-900AD)” The full report can be accessed via the project website.
As the team from the south were scaling the heights of King’s Seat Hillfort, the Orkney contingent approached the Island of Rousay as the clouds gathered ominously above the ferry.
Driving along the deserted single track road that serves the island, the team soon arrived at the impressive Midhowe Chambered tomb which has been protected from the elements by a huge hangar like building. Once inside, the whole amazing prehistoric structure can be viewed from above from a series of walkways. Back outside in the gathering storm the intrepid group examined the Midhowe Broch which is located literally on the edge of Eynhallollow Sound. Here, Jane explained how such sites can be used as an indicator of how climate change affects coastally eroding archaeology sites and the research being carried out jointly with ICOMOS Climate Change & Heritage Working Group.
If you would like to explore the possibility of studying and contributing to the research undertaken at the UHI Archaeology Institute at undergraduate or postgraduate level then please either e-mail us at email@example.com or see our website.
Love Art? Love Archaeology? Why not study both and get an accredited undergraduate or masters-level module at the same time!
Art and Archaeology courses ENROLLING NOW for January 2019 start!
The University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute, and the Art & Design Department, at Orkney College UHI are pleased to announce that enrolments are now open for the 2019 Art and Archaeology modules. These are available at both undergraduate or postgraduate level and can be studied either as elective modules as part of a UHI degree or masters course, or as standalone modules for Continuing Professional Development.
Both modules provide students from a range of backgrounds with a deepened understanding of the creative, practical and vocational aspects of art and archaeology and provide the transferable skills which are currently in demand in the cultural industries and heritage sector. Either module can be taken as a distance learning student, from either a UHI learning centre, or from your home anywhere in the world*.
New for 2019!! Art and Archaeology: Context and Practice (Level 8 / undergraduate)
This new undergraduate level 20-credit course is suitable for students who have at least 3 Scottish Highers at grade C or above / 2 A-Levels at grade C or above, or equivalent, and a strong interest in art and archaeology. This module allows students to explore the creative, practical and vocational aspects of art and archaeology in their own research and practice.
You will learn about the history of the relationship between art and archaeology, and through a series of practical assignments you will gain a deepened understanding of not only your own creative practice, but also of the processes of making and craft production in the past and how these are interpreted in the present.
Over the 14 weeks of study between January and May 2019, you will develop a portfolio of work which will lead to your final assessed project.
*International validation for the Level 8 module is awaiting confirmation
Art and Archaeology: Contemporary Theory and Practice (Level 11 / postgraduate)
This 20-credit masters level course will appeal to students from a wide range of backgrounds including fine art, design and applied arts, archaeology, heritage studies, galleries and museums, and anthropology.
It provides an advanced understanding of the new interdisciplinary area of Contemporary Art and Archaeology, through discussions, seminars, and lectures on current and historical contexts and case studies. The module takes place in Semester 2 over 14 weeks (January – May 2019). Teaching is delivered via a blend of Video Conference seminar sessions, tutorials, Online teaching and resources, and self-directed study. You will document your personal creative enquiry through a reflective journal, which will form part of your final assessment, along with a research project and presentation.
We will research and explore Contemporary Art and Archaeology as a group, and together we will develop new thinking and understanding in this exciting area. There is an optional 4-day residential workshop in Orkney which runs at the start of this module; this is not compulsory but is strongly recommended (no additional teaching cost but students are required to fund their own travel and accommodation).
“A great course, thank you! It has kick-started my art practice after a long break and introduced me to the world of archaeology. I would recommend this course.”
“A fantastic course overall, taught by tutors really engaged in their field. It has had a positive impact on my own practice and I would recommend it to anyone interested in these subjects. I felt that I was genuinely learning something new and it made me look at both art and archaeology from a fresh perspective.”
The University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute are now enrolling for the ‘Archaeology of the Highlands & Islands’ evening class starting in September 2018.
Venue: Orkney College, University of the Highlands and Islands, East Road, Kirkwall, Room G4.02
Course length: 10 weeks (2 hour sessions)
Commences: 26th September 2018
Finishes: 12th December 2018
Time: 7-9 pm on Wednesday evenings at Orkney College.
Classes will be lecture based with case studies and some workshops
Course fee: £100
This 10 week course will take students on a tour of the spectacular archaeological remains of the Highlands & Islands region, exploring the sites and landscapes of the past from the Neolithic to post-medieval periods. Additionally, the course introduces the techniques, methods and concepts that archaeologists use to make sense of this rich past, including environmental archaeology.
The teaching involves several members of the UHI Archaeology Institute staff on a weekly basis to afford students the opportunity to hear from specialist expert researchers on the topics covered by each themed-session.
Week 1 (Wed 26th Sept) Getting started
Introduction to the course – Martin Carruthers
An introduction to archaeology – Martin Carruthers
Week 2 (Wed 3rd Oct) The Environment of the Highlands and Islands in the past
Investigating Landscapes of the Past – Scott Timpany
Case Study: Holocene Vegetation of Orkney – Scott Timpany
Week 3 (Wed 10th Oct) Ceremony and Ritual in the Neolithic
Living and dying in the Neolithic of Orkney and Scotland – Antonia Thomas
Case study: Art and architecture in Neolithic Orkney – Antonia Thomas
17th & 24th Oct – no class due to holidays
Week 4 (Wed 31st Oct) Understanding the Archaeological Record
Formation processes and the methods of archaeological investigation – Martin Carruthers
Week 5 (Wed 7th Nov) The Bronze Age
The Bronze Age in the Highlands and Islands – Jane Downes
Case study: Bronze Age Orkney – Jane Downes
Week 6 (Wed 14th Nov) Environmental Archaeology
Environmental Archaeology – a hands–on introduction to principles and methods – Ingrid Mainland Zooarchaeology workshop – Ingrid Mainland
Week 7 (Wed 21st Nov) The Iron Age
The Iron Age in the Highlands and Islands – James Moore
Week 8 (Wed 28th Nov) Viking and Norse
Viking and Norse in the Highlands and Islands – Siobhan Cooke
Case study: Mapping Magnus: exploring saintly veneration in Orkney – Sarah Jane Gibbon
Week 9 (Wed 5th Dec) Landscape Archaeology
Studying Archaeological and Historical Landscapes – James Moore
Case Study: Geophysics in the World Heritage Area, Heart of Neolithic Orkney – Amanda Brend and James Moore
Week 10 (Wed 12th Dec) Medieval and Post-Medieval Archaeology
Medieval and Post-Medieval Archaeology in the Highlands and Islands – Julie Gibson. Case study: Harbours – Julie Gibson
Edwards, K. and Ralston, I. 2003. Scotland After the Ice Age: Environment, Archaeology and History 8000 BC – AD 1000. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.
Renfrew, C. and Bahn, P. 2008. Archaeology: Theory, Methods and Practice. Thames & Hudson: London.
Ashmore, P. J. 1996. Neolithic and Bronze Ag Scotland. Batsford: London.
Aston, M. 1985. Interpreting the Landscape: Landscape, Archaeology and Local History London: Routledge
Barclay, G.J 1998. Farmers, Temples and Tombs: Scotland in the Neolithic and Early Bronze Age (The Making of Scotland Series). Cannongate Books / Historic Scotland: Edinburgh.
Batey, C. E. and Graham Campbell, J. 1998. Vikings in Scotland. An Archaeological Survey. Edinburgh University Press: Edinburgh.
Hingley, R. 1998. Settlement and Sacrifice: The Later Prehistoric People of Scotland. Canongate/Historic Scotland: Edinburgh
Thompson, W. 2000. The Little General and the Rousay Crofters. John Donald: Edinburgh.
Ritchie, A. 1995 Prehistoric Orkney. Batsford: London.
Wilkinson, K. and Steven, C. 2003. Environmental Archaeology. Approaches, Techniques and Applications. Tempus: Stroud.
The course is not available online and is based at Orkney College in Kirkwall, Orkney. There are 15 places available.
The University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute is offering a limited number of funded places on the MSc Archaeological Practice course.
The MSc Archaeological Practice is a world leading archaeology course which equips you with the tools for work in the real world. Key practical skills are emphasised using the rich archaeological resource of Orkney as your research ‘laboratory’.
Core modules will develop your practical skills in a suite of archaeological techniques including project management, excavation, non-intrusive field archaeology, environmental archaeology and post-excavation analysis. You will gain additional vocational experience through our professional placement enabling you to take full advantage of employment opportunities.
Study in the outstanding archaeological landscape of Orkney
Optional modules allow you to develop professional skills in a range of areas including archaeobotany, archaeozoology, geoarchaeology, survey & geophysics,
digital recording of archaeological materials and sites
A 3 month professional placement offers the opportunity to further develop your professional skills in a chosen area(s)
The course is flexible to fit in with your personal and professional life
A limited number of places with full tuition fee support are available for Scottish-domiciled/EU students, studying full time, on the MSc Archaeological Practice starting in
September 2018. Eligible students must live in Highlands and Islands, including Moray, Perth and Kinross for the period of their studies.