Office of the Registrar
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences (2016/2017)
12.2 Archaeology

In accordance with Senate's Policy Regarding Inactive Courses, the course descriptions for courses which have not been offered in the previous three academic years and which are not scheduled to be offered in the current academic year have been removed from the following listing. For information about any of these inactive courses, please contact the Head of the Department.

Students should note that credit may not be obtained for an Archaeology course if, prior to 2007, the student received credit for that course when it was designated as an Anthropology course.

Archaeology courses are designated by ARCH.


Critical Reading and Writing About the Archaeological Past

is an introduction to archaeological literature including essays, monographs, and journal articles and popular media. Emphasis is placed on critical reading and writing, analyzing texts, framing and using questions, constructing essays, organizing paragraphs. Students learn elements of academic assessment of literature and technical skills to refine analytical writing. All sections of this course follow the Critical Reading and Writing Course Guidelines available at

CR: the former ARCH 2590


Critical Reading and Writing in Aboriginal and Indigenous Studies

features the analysis of scholarly literature, media, and other sources of knowledge related to Aboriginal and Indigenous studies. Students practice analytical reading and writing through class discussion and assignments related to the study of both past and present. All sections of this course follow Critical Reading and Writing Course Guidelines available at


Introduction to Archaeology and Bioarchaeology

is a broad overview of Archaeology and Bioarchaeology introducing the concepts of human biological and cultural evolution and the methods and techniques by which these are investigated. The course is designed to provide the basis for further study in the disciplines.


Principles of Bioarchaeology

investigates the human animal as we exist now and as we developed through time. Students will discover how the study of fossil remains, living and extinct primates, and the applications of the principles of genetics, adaptation and variation of human evolution help to provide an understanding of how biology and culture have interacted to produce modern humans.

PR: ARCH 1030


Principles of Archaeological Science

introduces the student to a broad range of scientific approaches and quantitative methods used in archaeology. The course provides an overview of the historical development of archaeological science and a survey of the analytical techniques used to investigate materials recovered from archaeological contexts, including biomolecular methods, statistical analysis of data, geophysical prospection, dating techniques and quantitative methods of calibration, and remote sensing. All sections of this course follow Quantitative Reasoning Course Guidelines available at


Principles of Archaeology

is an introduction to archaeological techniques, methodology and theory. Lectures cover the development of the discipline, techniques of survey and excavation, methods of analysis and the interpretation of prehistory.

PR: ARCH 1030


Ancient Civilizations of the Americas

is a survey course introducing the archaeology and ethnohistory of various pre-contact civilizations of North, Central and South America. Archaeological Evidence will be used to explore the rise of civilizations in the Americas and particular civilizations will be examined and compared based on idealogy, economy and administration.

PR: ARCH 1030


Forensic Archaeology

is an examination of procedures and techniques used by Biological anthropologists and archaeologists to obtain data pertinent to investigations by law enforcement and medical authorities; evidence concerning the identification of human remains and the cause, time and manner of death.

UL: may not be used for credit toward a major or minor in Archaeology


Archaeology on Film

explores the use of archaeology as a popular backdrop to many films and documentaries. Yet, the manner in which archaeology is represented in modern film is hardly realistic, or is it? The portrayal of archaeology in popular film will be discussed in order to determine what movies convey to the public about archaeological method and theory as well as the historical stories that archaeologists investigate.

UL: may not be used for credit toward a major or minor in Archaeology


Game of Genders: Sex and Society in the Medieval North

introduces students to considerations and expressions of gender in northern medieval society, with particular reference to Viking and Anglo-Saxon worlds. The course explores the concept of gender and considers varied gendered identities found in material and textual evidence. Students will reflect on how significant cultural changes, such as the conversion to Christianity and the expansion to the North Atlantic and to L'Anse aux Meadows, laid the foundation for what is considered gender appropriate in Western society.

PR: it is recommended, but not obligatory, that students should have successfully completed ARCH 1030 or Gender Studies 1000


Archaeological Frauds and Mysteries

will explore the sensationalized and ‘unreal’ side of archaeology and delve deeper into popular misconceptions of the past. From unraveling the mysteries of Big Foot to evaluating the evidence for alien life on Earth, students will learn how scientific methodology is used to determine facts from myths in archaeology.

CR: the former ARCH 2491

UL: may not be used for credit toward a major or minor in Archaeology


Art, Architecture and Medieval Life

(same as Medieval Studies 3001, History 3020, Folklore 3001) is an examination of the development of medieval art and architecture and of the ways in which they mirror various aspects of life in the Middle Ages. This course will include a discussion of art and architecture in the countryside, in the town, in the castle, in the cathedral and in the cloister.

CR: the former ARCH 3589, Anthropology 3589, Medieval Studies 3001, History 3020, Folklore 3001

PR: it is recommended but not obligatory, that students should have successfully completed one of the following courses: ARCH 2480, the former ARCH 2582, Folklore 1000 or the former 2000, History 2320, Medieval Studies 2001, History 2330/Medieval Studies 2002, or Medieval Studies 2000.


What is Human?

discusses how humans have long considered themselves unique. Through readings, discussions and presentations this seminar will explore exactly how distinctive humans are in their biological, behavioural, and intellectual traits and whether there is, in fact, something which sets us apart from all other creatures.

PR: ARCH 2430


The Human Skeleton

reflects genetic, environmental and cultural influence. This course, emphasizing identification of individual bones in the skeleton, techniques for obtaining size and shape differences in individual bones and the entire skeleton, estimation of group numbers and death rates, and diagnosis of disease and other abnormal conditions, provides a means of assessing all of these influences on past human populations.

PR: ARCH 2430


First Peoples of Newfoundland and Labrador

is a seminar and reading course on the culture history of Newfoundland and Labrador from about 9,000 years ago until the time of European settlement. Particular attention will be paid to the interactions among the several ethnic and cultural groups upon whose history this course focuses.

PR: ARCH 1030


First Peoples of the Maritime Provinces

explores cultural developments in the area which today includes the Maritime Provinces and northern Maine, from the entry of humans into the region until the time of European contact. Emphasis is placed on cultural adaptations to a changing regional environment and the evidence for intercultural contact.

PR: ARCH 1030


Prehistory of Africa, Asia and Europe I

examines the early stages of cultural evolution in the Old World. Topics include: earliest human origins in Africa; the dispersal of humans throughout the Old World: the appearance of modern-type humans during the last ice age.

PR: ARCH 1030


Prehistory of Africa, Asia and Europe II

is a survey of the more recent stages of human cultural evolution in the Old World. Topics include: complex behaviour of modern-type hunter-gatherers of the last ice age; the domestication of plants and animals in early farming communities.

PR: ARCH 3500


The Ancient Americas

is a survey of cultural development in the Americas from the entry of humans until the time of European contact. Topics include: the earliest human migrations and the dispersal of human groups throughout the New World; the development of complex hunting-gathering societies; the origins of agriculture and sedentism.

PR: ARCH 1030


Prehistory of Mesoamerica

(same as the former History 3515) discusses the Spanish explorers arriving in Mesoamerica i.e. Mexico and Guatemala of today, and how they discovered rich and complex civilizations that had developed independently of European or Asian influence. This course traces the development of Mesoamerican civilizations from their known origins to the point at which growth was terminated by Spanish intervention.

CR: the former History 3515

PR: ARCH 1030


Aboriginal History to 1763

(same as History 3520 and the former Anthropology 3520) examines Aboriginal history in North America from before European contact to the Royal Proclamation in 1763. Particular attention will be paid to historical encounters framed by first contacts, cultural exchange, trade, disease, religious encounters, conflict and diplomacy, and territorial encroachment.

CR: History 3520, the former Anthropology 3520


Aboriginal History from 1763

(same as History 3525 and the former Anthropology 3525) examines the history of Aboriginal peoples in North America from 1763 to the twentieth century. Particular attention will be paid to Indigenous-settler relations, including Aboriginal policies, military encounters and diplomacy, expansion and removals, education, treaties, and politicization.

CR: History 3525, the former Anthropology 3525


Object Lessons: Putting Strange Things in Context

(same as History 3536) explores the interpretation of unique objects, especially those which have been separated, in some way, from their historical context or archaeological assemblage. Students will take a multi-disciplinary approach to understanding a specific remarkable artifact. Topics include the history of technology, the emergence of art, the invention of tradition and the role of design in industrial societies.

CR: History 3536

PR: it is recommended but not obligatory, that students should have successfully completed one of the following courses: ARCH 1030, Classics 1100 or 1200, Folklore 1000, History 1010 or 1011



is a subfield of archaeology that uses recent ethnographic information to interpret and explain the material remains of past human behaviour. This course compares the goals and methods of ethnoarchaeologists with those of ethnographers and archaeologists. Case studies are used to illustrate the different approaches and concerns of ethnoarchaeologists working in different regions of the world.

PR: ARCH 1030, or permission of instructor


Bronze Age Archaeology of the Eastern Mediterranean

(same as Classics 3580) examines the archaeological evidence that underlies the current reconstruction of the Bronze Age in the eastern Mediterranean. The Bronze Age of the Aegean and the island of Cyprus is essentially prehistoric and inaccessible except through the methods of archaeology; physical dating techniques, geoarchaeology, residue studies, palaeoethnobotany, zooarchaeology, forensic anthropology, underwater archaeology and cultural resource management. Pieced together these give us a compelling picture of the cultural history, lifeways and the dynamics of cultural change during this important period. Emphasis is placed on the role of Cyprus as a physical and cultural link between peoples of the Aegean and the Near East.

CR: Classics 3580

PR: ARCH 1030 or permission of instructor


Historical Archaeology

(same as the former ARCH 2582, the former History 2582, and History 3582) will introduce students to historical archaeology, with special reference to the North Atlantic, 1000 to 1900 AD. The archaeology of specific sites will be examined in order to raise issues about theory and method. Students will be introduced to paleography; historic maps; documentary archaeology; the survey, excavation and analysis of complex sites; material culture and subsistence studies; cultural resource management and theoretical approaches including historical anthropology, ethnohistory, world systems and consumer studies.

CR: History 3582, the former Archaeology 2582, the former History 2582, the former History 3530

PR: Archaeology 1030


Archaeology Field School Orientation

is designed to familiarize students with field and laboratory techniques. Students will learn about research design and the methodologies involved in archaeological site survey and mapping. Students will be instructed in the identification of archaeological sites, completion of site inventory forms, the use of surveying instruments, and the creation of accurate site maps, using these instruments as well as the concepts associated with archaeological excavation, mapping, recording and photography. Finally, students will be given basic instruction in artifact identification, processing and cataloguing. This course is intended to be a precursor to Arch 3585 and 3586 (Archaeology Field School).

PR: ARCH 2480


Historical Anthropology

(same as the former Anthropology 3584 and History 3535) will explore selected issues in historical anthropology, with special reference to the Mediterranean and North Atlantic worlds. Students will read specific case studies in order to explore the theoretical issues raised by the attempt to understand historically-documented past cultures. In order to give practical examples of methodology classes will analyse primary source material. Students will be introduced to the textual analysis of myth and legal records, to the interpretation of images and to the analysis of patterns in material culture. The course will consider specific current interpretive issues, particularly the rise of individualism, the consumer revolution and the cultural construction of gender.

CR: the former Anthropology 3584, History 3535


Archaeology Field School

offers students practical introduction to archaeological fieldwork (3585) and laboratory techniques (3586). These courses provide instruction and experience in site mapping, sampling strategies, the recovery and conservation of archaeological materials (i.e., artifacts and ecofacts) and the cleaning, cataloguing and cultural interpretation of artifacts and features. The students will also receive an introduction to archaeological research concerning prehistoric and/or historic cultures of a selected region.

PR: ARCH 3583


Arctic Archaeology

is an introduction to the archaeology of the Canadian Arctic, Greenland, and Alaska, from earliest settlement to historic interactions between Inuit and Europeans. Special emphasis is placed on the eastern Canadian Arctic, and the changing social and economic adjustments arctic peoples have made to a challenging environment.

PR: ARCH 1030


Hunter-Gatherer Studies

(same as the former Anthropology 3590) examines past and present hunting and gathering societies from various areas of the world, both from an ethnographic and an archaeological perspective.

CR: the former Anthropology 3590

PR: ARCH 1030 or Anthropology 1031


Norse Archaeology

explores the influence of the Vikings on the medieval world and the place of L'Anse aux Meadows within this cultural milieu. Students will be introduced to Viking-Age archaeological and literary texts to gain knowledge of specific questions and problems concerning multicultural contact within the Viking-Age world, specifically the North Atlantic region. They will also gain an appreciation of the challenges associated with using interdisciplinary evidence as well as migration and multicultural issues in the past and present.

CR: the former ARCH 3685

PR: ARCH 1030


Archaeology of Children

examines emerging archaeological and bioarchaeological research on children and childhood. Topics include play, learning work, embodiment, identity, death, narrative approaches to children’s lives, and the paleoanthropology of childhood.

CR: the former ARCH 3684

PR: ARCH 1030


Archaeology of Sport

addresses organized recreation as a fundamental variety of past social activity. The evolution of athletic physiology, bioarchaeological traces on past bodies, sporting facilities and equipment, animal sports, experimental and ethnoarchaeological approaches, and the varying social, ritual and economic contexts of past athletic performance will be examined, with case studies of notably large scale and long-running sporting phenomena such as chariot racing and the Mesoamerican ballgame.

CR: the former ARCH 3681

PR: ARCH 1030


Artifacts of Colonial North America

(same as Folklore 3650) provides students with practical experience in the analytical methods used to identify, date and interpret artifacts from colonial-era sites in North America. Detailed discussions on manufacture, technology, form and function provide the necessary background for a better understanding of concepts relating to artifact identification, provenance, dating techniques, and other current issues. Practical, hands-on exercises will help reinforce weekly topics and teach students the fundamentals required to interpret artifact assemblages from the historic period.

CR: Folklore 3650, the former Anthropology 3683

PR: ARCH 1030, or permission of the instructor


Archaeology of Colonial North America

focuses on the history and archaeology of North American colonization and covers the period of European exploration and settlement from approximately 1500 to 1700. A diverse range of topics will be discussed including: contacts and interaction with native peoples; early colonies and seasonal outposts; established settlements; war, trade and economics; the material record; the built landscape; daily life in colonial society and maritime archaeology.

CR: the former ARCH 3862, or the former Anthropology 3682

PR: ARCH 1030

3680-3689 (Excluding 3687)

Studies in Archaeology and Prehistory

will include the consideration of current developments in methods, techniques and theory as applied to selected areas of the world.

PR: ARCH 1030


The Archaeology of Death

explores archaeological studies of mortuary rituals, human remains and grave goods to provide insight into past social structures, cultural ideals, identity, and community beliefs. This course takes multiple approaches to understand the variability in archaeological mortuary practices cross-culturally over time and space.


Museums and Historic Sites

- inactive course.


Archaeology of Warfare

is a broad overview of archaeological research conducted at sites associated with human conflict spanning from ancient times to World War II. Weekly lectures and hands-on exercises will provide students with a solid background on the various means by which archaeologists study and excavate sites relating to war, conflict and captivity. A broad range of topics will be covered including remote sensing and field survey techniques, the changing technology and tactics of war, battlefield sites, POW camps, sunken naval vessels, aviation sites, fortifications and frontier outposts.

PR: ARCH 1030


Material Culture

(same as Folklore 3850) is an introduction to the study of material culture and the question of why objects are important to us. Using folklore and interdisciplinary approaches, we will look at objects as cultural products, question the influence of objects on behaviours, and address the role of objects in historical and ethnographic research.

CR: Folklore 3850


Vernacular Architecture

- inactive course.


Cultural Resource Management

(same as Folklore 4015 and Geography 4015) is a study of cultural resource management: the definition and recognition of cultural resources, the application of policy in managing cultural resources, and the identification and consideration of contemporary issues in cultural resource management. Three hours of lecture and three hours of seminar per week.

CR: Folklore 4015 and Geography 4015

PR: ARCH 2480 or the former ARCH 2582



looks at disease, diet, genetics, accidents and maternal health factors as contributors to variations in the human skeleton. In this lecture and seminar course students will investigate how these factors are diagnosed from bones, and aspects of the culture, health, economy and environment of the skeletal individuals are examined.

PR: ARCH 2430 and ARCH 3040


Biomolecular Archaeology

is a rapidly developing, multidisciplinary subfield of archaeology concerned with unraveling aspects of human behaviour and adaptation from ancient biomolecules preserved in artifacts and biological remains. Through lectures, directed readings and seminars this course aims to review and critically assess the many facets of biomolecular archaeology, including how biological and (geo)chemical methods can be used to address questions of diet, migration and ancestry in the past.

PR: one of ARCH 2430, ARCH 2450 or ARCH 2480


Special Projects in Bioarchaeology

includes directed reading, seminars and lab analysis of various skeletal collections. Topics to be covered may include primate behaviour, forensic anthropology, stable and radiogenic isotope analysis and various aspects of human evolution.

PR: ARCH 2430 and ARCH 2450


Environmental Change and Quaternary Geography

(same as Earth Sciences 4703 and Geography 4150) examines methods of reconstructing Quaternany environments, effects of Quaternany environmental changes on landform, with special reference to North America, development and characteristics of glacial and nonglacial climates.

CR: Earth Sciences 4703, Geography 4150

LH: 3

PR: 6 credit hours in Physical Geography or in Archaeology at the 3000-level, or permission of the instructor



is a combined directed readings/laboratory course on palaeoethnobotany. Palaeoethnobotany concerns the recovery and analysis of archaeological plant remains as a basis for understanding human and plant interactions in the archaeological record. This course focuses on recent palaeobotanical research in northeastern North America.

PR: ARCH 2450, ARCH 2480, or the permission of the instructor



aims to introduce the student to the wide range of information that can be gleaned about past human groups from the animal remains they left behind after butchery, meals, toolmaking and other activities. Students will also gain practical experience in the identification and analysis of faunal remains.

CR: the former ARCH 4195 or the former Anthropology 4195

PR: ARCH 2450 or ARCH 2480


Lithic Analysis

explores the range of techniques used to study stone tools, including material and provenance identification, morphology and functional analysis, temporal and cultural typology, measurement, illustration, experimental manufacture, use wear and breakage patterns, refitting, debitage analysis and spatial distribution.

CR: the former ARCH 4196 or the former Anthropology 4196

PR: ARCH 2450 or ARCH 2480


Special Projects in Archaeology

are courses which may be offered from time to time as demand arises. They may involve readings, seminars and actual analysis of archaeological collections on, for example: The Neolithic of Western Asia; the Rise of Civilization in Western Asia Scandinavian Prehistory; Palaeoethnobotany; and Technology and Material Culture.

PR: one of ARCH 2450, 2480, 2481, the former 2582, or permission of the instructor


Iroquoian Archaeology

is a lecture course examining the culture developments of the Iroquoian peoples of Northeastern Canada and the USA. Using both archaeological and ethnohistoric materials, this course will outline and explain the changing social, political and economic traditions of this culture group from their origins through the early contact period.

CR: the former ARCH 4190

PR: ARCH 2480


Postcolonial Archaeology

critically explores the history and contemporary practice of archaeology in light of the political claims of (formerly) subjugated groups. Topics to be discussed include archaeological antecedents of a postcolonial perspective (postprocessualism, critical archaeology), political economy of archaeology, interests of indigenous and other descendant groups, repatriation, national and transnational archaeologies, and community archaeology.

CR: the former ARCH 4192 or the former Anthropology 4192

PR: ARCH 2480 or the former ARCH 2582


Archaeology of the Body

explores the possibility of a more encompassing archaeology of embodied experience, starting from archaeological work on gender and recent reconceptualizations of the body in social, cultural and feminist theory. Topics to be discussed include the notion of bodily practice, biopolitics, sexuality, hybridity, violence, identity, sensory experience, disability and aging.

CR: the former ARCH 4191 or the former Anthropology 4191

PR: ARCH 2480


History of Archaeology

is an intensive study of the emergence and maturation of archaeology as a discipline within the social sciences, particularly in Western Europe and North America, during the 19th and 20th centuries.

PR: ARCH 2480


Selected Topics in Archaeology and Prehistory

is a seminar course focusing on recent theoretical and methodological developments in archaeological research.

PR: one of ARCH 2450, 2480, or the former ARCH 2582


Theory and Method in Archaeology and Prehistory

is a seminar course focusing on recent theoretical and methodological developments in archaeological research.

PR: ARCH 2480 and ARCH 4182


Special Topic in Historical Archaeology

is a consideration of current developments in methods, techniques, and theory in Historical Archaeology.

PR: ARCH 2480, the former 2582, or permission of instructor


Past Material - Advanced Research and Writing

is a directed reading course and is a prerequisite for the Honours Essay in Archaeology (ARCH 4995). Readings will be chosen to complement students’ specialization and to prepare them for the honours essay. Assignments will emphasize short essays and will provide students with the opportunity to improve their professional writing skills in the fields of archaeology, material culture and heritage.

PR: ARCH 2480


Honours Essay

is required as part of the Honours program.

PR: ARCH 4994

AR = Attendance requirement; CH = Credit hours are 3 unless otherwise noted; CO = Co-requisite(s); CR = Credit can be retained for only one course from the set(s) consisting of the course being described and the course(s) listed; LC = Lecture hours per week are 3 unless otherwise noted; LH = Laboratory hours per week; OR = Other requirements of the course such as tutorials, practical sessions, or seminars; PR = Prerequisite(s); UL = Usage limitation(s).
12.2.1 Work Terms

The following! Work Terms are a requirement of the Bachelor of Arts Co-operative Education Major or Honours in Archaeology.


Work Term 1 (Co-operative)

will be the student’s first work experience in a professional environment. Students are expected to learn, develop and practice the high standards of behaviour normally expected in the workplace. Students may be required to attend seminars on professional development.

CH: 0

PR: admission to the ACE Program; ARCH 3585 and 3586 or previous archaeological experience; a minimum overall average of 65%; and permission of the ACE Coordinator and Head of the Department


Work Term 2 (Co-operative)

builds on previous work term experiences and academic instruction as students will be assigned to a more challenging position. Students will now possess the necessary academic grounding and work experience to contribute to the problem-solving and management needs of a professional work environment. Students should observe and appreciate the attitudes, responsibilities and ethics normally expected of professionals, and should exercise greater independence and responsibility in their assigned work functions.

CH: 0

PR: admission to the ACE Program; ARCH 300W; a minimum overall average of 65%; and permission of the ACE Coordinator and Head of the Department

AR = Attendance requirement; CH = Credit hours are 3 unless otherwise noted; CO = Co-requisite(s); CR = Credit can be retained for only one course from the set(s) consisting of the course being described and the course(s) listed; LC = Lecture hours per week are 3 unless otherwise noted; LH = Laboratory hours per week; OR = Other requirements of the course such as tutorials, practical sessions, or seminars; PR = Prerequisite(s); UL = Usage limitation(s).