Archaeology

Last updated: 8ย months, 2ย weeks ago


Archaeology is the study of the whole scope of human history and activity through the recovery and analysis of material culture, including artefacts, architecture, biofacts and cultural landscapes.

Application Resources

Here are some general resources related to Archaeology. These should be a useful introduction, regardless of which Archaeology related course youโ€™re interested in and where you might want to study it.

If you are specifically interested in Classical Archaeology, you should also look at the resources on InsideUniโ€™s Classics page ๐Ÿ”— ๐ŸŒŸ.

Online Archaeology

These resources will help you understand the real work that archaeologists do. They highlight recent research and exploration - which will be useful as you make decisions about what to study, and then in writing your personal statement!

DigVentures ๐Ÿ”— offer online courses (some of which are periodically free) and places on digs or working with finds. They also publish all of their finds online and make this information easily and freely available.

Vindolanda ๐Ÿ”— This excavation site also has a lot of online resources, focusing mostly on Roman forts.

Beacons of the Past: Citizen Science ๐Ÿ”— ๐ŸŒŸ This project, based in the Brecon Beacons, UK, gives you the chance to become a โ€˜citizen scientistโ€™, offering free online training in LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging), and then letting you get stuck into crowdsourced archaeology from your own home.

GlobalXPlorer ๐Ÿ”— An online platform that uses the power of the crowd to analyse the incredible wealth of satellite images currently available to archaeologists. The educational course about Peru is of great use.

Online (free!) journals and blogs

Explore the way people are writing and thinking about archaeology now - take notes as you read, and use these articles as a springboard to dig deeper!

Eidolon ๐Ÿ”— An online journal for scholarly writing about Classics that isnโ€™t formal scholarship.

That Magister ๐Ÿ”— ๐ŸŒŸ A very useful collection of resources on a variety of archaeology-related topics, including an extensive reading list of suggestions for university applicants.

Podcasts

Podcasts are fantastic introductions to areas of archaeological research. Listen & then follow up anything you find interesting with some independent research online. This process is something university students do all the time; it is also good evidence of interest, curiosity and good academic practice in a personal statement.

The Hellenistic Age podcast ๐Ÿ”— From the Wars of the Diadochi to the rise of the Roman Republic, these episodes look at the political, social, economic and cultural changes that occurred over 300 years: a fascinating yet often unappreciated period of history.

The Archaeology Podcast Network ๐Ÿ”— A huge collection of podcasts on everything archaeology-related!

The British Museumโ€™s 'A History of the World in 100 Objects' podcast ๐Ÿ”— ๐ŸŒŸ A really useful podcast covering the full range of human world history. It also has useful notes on museology for those with a specific interest creating museums and preserving artefacts.

Documentaries

At any one time, there are loads of different Mary Beard, Michael Scott, Bettany Reeves, and Alastair Sooke documentaries on YouTube or BBC iPlayer - type their names into the search bar and see what comes up!

The Monk, The Midden & The Missing Monastery ๐Ÿ”— A realistic account of a DigVentures excavation.

DigNation Festival 2018 talks ๐Ÿ”— ๐ŸŒŸ A fascinating series of lectures by renowned archaeologists.

Archaeology: A Secret History ๐Ÿ”— A BBC series discussing the origins and evolution of archaeology as a discipline in the West and how archaeology has been used by rulers to try to control history.

Britain at Low Tide ๐Ÿ”— Dr Tori Herridge explores the archaeology of the islandโ€™s coastline, and the historical remains we see when the tide goes out.

Britainโ€™s Ancient Tracks with Tony Robinson ๐Ÿ”— Exploring the mysteries and legends of the ancient trackways that have been used for over 5000 years.

TV Shows


Time Team ๐Ÿ”— A team of experts investigating a wide range of archaeological sites.

Digging up Britainโ€™s Past ๐Ÿ”— The showโ€™s presenters visit ongoing archaeological digs, and discuss their discoveries with experts.

โ€˜Lostโ€™ Kingdoms of Africa ๐Ÿ”— British art historian Dr Gus Casely-Hayford explores the history of some of Africaโ€™s old kingdoms.

โ€˜Lostโ€™ Cities of the Maya: Revealed ๐Ÿ”— A series of LiDAR-based discoveries combined with work on the ground.

Book recommendations

Look out for these books in your local library, or try to find second-hand copies online.

'A Very Short Introduction to Archaeology' - The Very Short Introduction series is always a good place to start.

'Archaeology from Space' by Sarah Parcak - Professor Sarah Parcak is an Egyptologist and a Space Archaeologist. This book is predominantly about using satellites to map archaeological sites and track looting and covers a huge span of different world archaeologies! Sarah Parcak is also a Ted Talks Presenter, so you can find her Ted Talks presentations, too!

'Pompeii' by Mary Beard - all about the famous site of Classical Pompeii. Covers some of the archaeological problems with the seemingly so well preserved city.

'Erebus: The Story of a Ship' by Michael Palin - recent maritime archaeology and history and their intersection with global exploration, the arctic and antarctic, and shipwrecks.

'Mudlarking' by Lara Maiklem - learning about London and its lost ways of life through objects recovered from the banks of the Thames.

'The Silk Road' by Peter Frankopan - exploring where civilisation began and how empires began to form.

Magazine recommendations


World Archaeology Magazine ๐Ÿ”— A wide range of articles on recent excavations, discoveries and museum reviews.

Current Archaeology Magazine ๐Ÿ”— Interviews with archaeologists themselves to find out why excavators went to the site; how they made their discoveries; what they found; why itโ€™s important; and, of course, what it all means.